Supplemental Income for Writers: 8 Easy Ideas

Jackie Pearce
September 28, 2022 | 6 mins

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If you're looking for supplemental income for writers, you've come to the right place. The truth is, there are a ton of ways to make money as a writer and as an author. But the road to get to a full-time living is not instantaneous. It takes work.

If you want to make a living as a writer, you'll often need to start by making extra money outside of writing.

However, if you're smart about your career and make some extra steps, you can increase your income so you can spend more time doing what you love to do: writing.

This article will break down some other side-hustle and supplemental ideas you can do as a writer to earn more and practice your overall skills.

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Why do writers need supplemental income?

It's no secret that it can take a while to make decent money as a writer. Or maybe you're in the process of writing your book and getting it published, hoping that will be your ticket to full-time.

While it's certainly possible to make a full-time living as an author or writer, you might hit moments where you'll need to bring in extra income on the side to make ends meet.

You might also be doing well as a writer but want to diversify your income streams in case you lose a client or a deal falls through.

Either way, there are lots of reasons you might need to increase your cash flow, so let's go over a list of ideas to get you on the right track.

Supplemental income for writers – list of ideas

There are endless ways you can make extra money as a writer and also increase your skills. Some are easier than others and some will take more or less time, so you might want to try out a few until you find the right fit.

Keep in mind, you might not be paid in the beginning of each of these options. You'll often have to pay your dues, just like you did as a writer when you were starting out, but the sooner you start, the faster you'll get paid.

You'll also want to keep an eye on if your side hustle takes away from your main writing goal.

You don't want to end up working so much that you don't have any time left to work on your book or hit your bigger goals as a writer.

Speaking gigs

If you're a person who enjoys public speaking, taking on some speaking gigs can help you make extra money.

Not only can you make extra money, but you can also expand your brand and career as a writer. If you are a successful writer or you have a particular area of knowledge, there are likely people who want to hear what you could say.

If speaking gigs might be interesting to you, you'll want to read this post on speaking engagements on how to find and book your own gigs.

Freelance writing

Depending on what kind of writing you already do, it might be easy to become a freelance writer in other areas.

It would be hard to list all of the available options to you as a freelance writer, but here are some:

You might want to dip your toes into a few of them to see what is a natural fit for your schedule and your writing style. You can also check out this article on 11 Best Ways to Earn Money Writing.


When it comes to blogging, you have the choice to either blog for other people or start your own blog.

If you feel passionate about a topic, you could start a blog or website around it. This might be one of the more time-consuming options, but after some time a blog can help supplement your income as a writer.

Otherwise, tons of websites always need blogs written and content to grow their sites.

Course creation

For writers who love to teach, creating a course is also an option. You could teach people the tricks and tips you use as a writer and author.

To get started creating a course, you might want to ask some people you know if they would love to learn your tricks and tips.

You could start putting together all of your tips and teach them to your test group to see if your ideas stick or are helpful.

Once you have an idea for what ideas resonate and help, you can package them together in a course or workshop.

You have the option of also packaging your whole course so it's pre-recorded. That way, you don't need to be there to teach it each and every time, helping you make money without investing so much of your effort.


If you don't want a side hustle that requires writing, editing might be a good fit.

For people who have a sharp eye for grammar mistakes or who love to steer the overall direction of written work, editing might be the perfect way to supplement your income.

You can find editing jobs on job boards, using Upwork, or through your writing network to see if anyone might need some help with their current work.

Learning and practicing editing is also a great way to mix it up so you don't spend all of your hobby and your work time writing.


If you're okay with not receiving credit for your writing, ghostwriting is a perfect opportunity to blend your writing skills with someone else's expertise.

Ghostwriting is where you take someone else's thoughts, opinions, and expertise, and find a way to write in their voice to create a piece as if they wrote it.

For example, you could be asked to write a thought-piece from the CEO of a company explaining their new business goals for the year.

Many people hire ghostwriters when they struggle to clearly articulate their thoughts in a way that readers understand.

People who are experts in their field can struggle to make their knowledge accessible and understandable to people who don't share the same expertise.

That's where you come in.

You take their thoughts and you write them in a way that's interesting. For more on Ghostwriting, check out this article.


Scriptwriting encompasses a wide range of writing scripts. You could write scripts for short TikTok videos, video game scripts, advertisements, or work on longer scripts such as screenplays.

For anyone who likes to write dialogue or have a style of writing that is full of personality, this might be a perfect way to make extra money.

Each type of script often earns a different amount of money, but make sure you're taking the time to learn what goes into each type of script before you decide to take one on.

This is one of the more creative options and if you're writing books on your own time that require heavy dialogue, this can really help accelerate your skills.

Self-publishing your own books

If you want to write books, there are so many possibilities to publish your own books and make some side income.

The good part about choosing to sell a book is that it can be a great marketing tool for your own brand. When people know that you've published a book before, you seem instantly more credible and trustworthy.

Plus, once you've written a book, you don't always need to put more effort into it (unless it needs to be updated later on) so it can keep earning you money without you having to put constant effort into it.

Next Step: looking for more ways

Depending on which route you want to go, we have more opportunities for you to earn supplemental income with your writing.

Our friends at Make A Living Writing and Freelance Writers Den help freelancers get their start, then take their income to the next level.

We will help you write and self-publish your book. Our partners at Self-Publishing School help you publish as well.

If you aren't quite sure what the next step for you looks like, take this assessment:

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