I’ve been promising to publish my income reports from August to December 2015 for the past two months. August 2015 was the first month that I started using my current system to track my freelance income and it’s as far back as I can reliably go to publish my income reports. I wasn’t keeping track by project the exact way I am now, so I will only be able to publish the total amount of income from each month in 2015 without the project breakdown that I normally publish.
2016 has been a really great year for me. My freelance business has been taking off and I’ve found other projects that have provided me [so much more] more stability than I had in 2015. You’re about to see just of difficult starting off as a freelancer can be – and this doesn’t even include the first year (!!) that I worked as a freelancer before I started keeping track of my income in an organized fashion. Honestly, the first year I was probably afraid to keep track, and even the five months that I am about to share with you weren’t that great.
August 2015 – $1,579.04
September 2015 – $653.01
October 2015 – $1,432.48
November 2015 – $1,295.89
December 2015 – $1,518.56
While I can’t give you a full project breakdown, I can tell you that during these months I was doing a little bit of freelance writing, but no where near what I am doing now, award bookings, and some substitute teaching.
You’re reading that right. I didn’t make more than $1,600 during a single month in the last five months of 2015. And I probably didn’t make more than that in a single month for a full year before that either. It was disheartening, to say the least, but (for some reason) I had confidence that it was going to work out and I kept going. January 2016 was the first month that I made more than $2,000 in a single month since before I quit my engineering job at the end of March 2014. Since then, my best month every was June 2016 where I made over $7,000 – more than what my engineering salary once was even after accounting for paying higher taxes as a self-employed individual.
There’s no guarantee that I won’t have a bag month again in the future – that’s part of the risk you taken when you decide to go off on your own – but at the point I’m at now I am so thrilled at how far I have come. 2014 and 2015 were tough years for me on so many levels, but I’m glad that I was able to push through and get to where I am now. I hope these few months that I am able to share with you gives you encouragement that it is possible to do what you love – just work hard, always keep your eyes open for new opportunities, and don’t give up.
I don’t know if this would be interesting/useful to anyone else. But when you do your taxes, how does a freelancer/independent worker/blogger do their taxes. To me that would be interesting. I have always wondered. (Do you have to do it quarterly? Do you do it all at the end? Etc.)
That’s a great idea for a post! I’m definitely still working on figuring out all of the nitty gritty, but before tax season I will hopefully have it all a little more sorted. Stay tuned!