Time flies when you’re having fun writing! It’s time to take a step back and see how things are going. Why keep track of the work being done? Well, it helps me stay motivated – and to see the small, imperceptible from day to day changes that are quite large when you look back at things over a longer period (like a month).
Here’s what I wrote this month.
- Articles and stories published: 5
- Total word count published: 6,484
- Videos published: 3
- Total Page Views:
- Overall EPMP (earnings per mili/thousand pageviews): $10.45 (up from $7.94 last month)
My writing and publishing schedule this month has been a lot lighter than usual for several reasons.
- I needed a break.
- There were some serious distractions (more on that later).
- We had some fun family vacations scheduled.
- So I allowed myself to take a good-sized break – and it’s been amazing to feel so renewed and refreshed.
- Next month is the semi-annual Project 24 Content Warrior Challenge, so I’m gearing up for that.
So while I haven’t published a lot of new content this month, that’s okay. I have a ton planned for next month – and so far I’ve got 24 posts outlined and researched – I just need to write and publish them. I’ll finish this month strong in the research and outlining departments.
13-Month Analysis of my Project 24 Membership
This month, I want to do a dual comparison, as I knew that this month wouldn’t necessarily line up to the projected expectations of Project 24. Even so, here’s my (quick) analysis for a month 13 niche site with my actual accomplishments.
|Project 24 Expectations||My Actual Results|
|A website with an ongoing publishing routine, optimized ads, affiliate monetization, and a growing email list.||I have 4 websites (this one and 3 niche sites) that I’m working on. Each is set up with ads and affiliates. Each also has the beginnings of a growing email list.|
|140 Pieces of Content Published on a site||195 pieces of content across 3 websites and 2 YouTube channels.|
|Estimated Monthly Income: $756||In the last 30 days, my ad network reports $205 in revenue. Affiliate revenue in the last 30 days adds an additional $5-10 to that total.|
|Total Income So Far: $1,443.94||Just adding up my ad and affiliate revenue from Project 24 related earnings in the last year, my total income is over $2697.|
|Estimated Traffic: 28,000 page views monthly||Across all four of my websites, August’s traffic to date has seen 17,194 pageviews.|
Now, Project 24 recommends working on a single niche site. I have 4 websites, which is 3 more than are recommended. If we go off the total of all of them (as I just did above), then you’ll notice that I’m on track with publishing, I fall short in revenue earned in the last 30 days, and I’m less than half of where I should be with traffic.
Why is that? Well, there are several reasons.
- First, two of my niche sites are not high volume niches. They are smaller-volume searches, and that’s okay. I just need to remember that in my analysis. Because smaller search volume will affect the traffic and therefore the ad revenue.
- Second, my broader niche site is only 8 months old, not 13. So I need to analyze it per its expected timeline.
Let’s do that now, shall we?
8-month Analysis of Niche Site
This particular niche is in the homestead or gardening area.
|Project 24 Expectations||My Actual Results|
|A website with an ongoing publishing routine, optimized ads, affiliate monetization, and a growing email list.||This niche site is set up with ads and affiliates. It’s got an email list, though the subscriber count isn’t very amazing yet.|
|100 Pieces of Content Published on a site||54 blog articles and 19 YouTube videos aren’t equal to 100, but it is 73.|
|Estimated Monthly Income: $27.50||In the last 30 days, this niche site has earned $33.68 in ad revenue.|
|Total Income So Far: $49.94||Adding up just the ad revenue so far, this site has already outearned expectations: it’s earned $68. It’s earned at least another $10 from some of the smaller affiliate programs.|
|Estimated Traffic: 1250 page views monthly||Pageviews for this month so far are over 1800.|
So while I’m officially knocked off the main track, I’m still on-track for this particular niche site. Again, it’s got a broader search base and more traffic potential than both the other niches combined. So it’s definitely something to be considered.
And that’s really part of the reason why, when I was evaluating my niche and potential earnings back in December of last year, I realized that my two smaller niches wouldn’t be enough – I needed a bigger-niched site, too. So I’m glad I did it, even if it did mean a lot of extra work for the past 8 months. It’s starting to pay off.
August Was Distraction and Refocus Month
Okay, so like I mentioned earlier, this month had quite a few distractions. Some were of the “I need a day off!” variety. Others were shiny objects and some cool (but distracting) opportunities.
I lost about a week’s worth of time pursuing these opportunities. Thankfully, though, I ultimately realized that the shiny objects weren’t going to help me become a better writer – and so I tried to step away from things as graciously as I could. Time will tell if I succeeded.
But because I did clear those shiny objects from my plate (and then took a much-needed family vacation), I’ve been able to renew my motivation, commitment, and my energy levels to writing – both for my websites and my fiction projects.
Speaking of fiction, my latest story survived alpha reads. It required some edits, which have been done. Now, it’s headed into the hands of a few beta readers.
This particular story started out as a common-enough writing exercise – one from the earlier episodes of the podcast Writing Excuses. It was to take a common fairy tale, change one vital aspect of things, and to go from there. I was stuck until a friend told me a funny story about how her stove almost electrocuted people – and then the creative juices started flowing.
The story is Goldilocks and the 3 Bears – but Goldilocks is an exterminator. And everyone’s in space. Thankfully, though, there’s no electrocuting stoves in the story. I really wanted to include that particular detail, but it had to be cut when I realized that it threw the reader out of the story. It crossed the line of plot-driven antics, so it had to go.
Sad day. But that’s okay – because it goes into the folder for future story ideas. And even if it doesn’t quite make it into another story any time soon, it’s okay – because now you guys know that it’s part of the backstory and world-building.
After this story survives the beta reads, I’ll be shopping around to find it the perfect home. I know where I want it to go – I just need to see if that can become a reality.
Planned Writing Projects
For the month of September, I’ll be focusing on website writing. As I mentioned earlier, I’ve got 24 (and counting) articles outlined.
- 10 of those are for my homesteading site.
- 10 of those are for the genealogy site. The outlines are all submitted to Breanne for the next step: research! Then they’ll come back to me for writing.
- 4 of those are for mentoring a paid intern/writer. One of the best ways to improve your writing is by teaching others. So I’m working to improve there – and to cultivate a gifted writer who can help me get more done each month.
I also have another project that’s in the bare beginning stages of research and development, but I’m really super excited about it. I don’t want to say too much about it yet, because things could change radically between now and go-time. But there are other things planned – including more stories.
It’s all about baby steps – but the baby steps are beginning to add up – and I’m excited for you all to see them. Although for you, it’ll look like a massive leap out of nowhere – at least until you look back at all of these blog posts and see that the overnight success wasn’t so overnight – it took several years’ worth of effort.
If you want more information on Project 24 so you can start your own website, I fully recommend you check them out. Just be smart about the niche you choose – or choose to build several in succession as a way to diversify your income. Or just so you can have several topics. Either way. Go check them out.
Then, get back to (very patiently) awaiting my next update and story. It’s coming, I promise!
Keeping track of my writing isn't just an accountability thing. It also helps me see my progress to help me stay motivated. And since July 11th marks my 1-year anniversary with the Income School...
Today's the first day of the online library - and I'm equal parts excited, terrified, and nervous. And because I don't want to have it totally empty while I'm working out my jitters (so I can...