How to Make $0 in 35 Years
The Solopreneur’s Passive Income Life Hack for Multiplying Your Earnings* (*by Zero)
Do what you love.
Whether it’s making candle holders out of driftwood or leading a search for Bigfoot in the woods behind your parents’ house or recreating the Buffy the Vampire Slayer musical episode as a one-woman show, following your passion in life is a surefire way to add some red to your ledger. And no, I don’t mean that in the Black Widow sense. (Also, if you get that previous reference, MCU nerd that you are, congratulations: you’re well on your way to earning zero dollars.)
In general, music is a great option for lightening one’s wallet. Composing and performing your own music is best, of course, because once you develop a repertoire of cover songs — songs that people actually know and enjoy — you run the risk of booking paid gigs at local watering holes. I speak from experience. Best to stay home and diddle around with that outdated version of GarageBand on that old, white plastic MacBook of yours. (And yes, I know the plastic has chipped in several places.) Finished songs may be uploaded to SoundCloud. That way, when you finally send that zinger of a tweet that gets thousands of likes, you’ll have something to link to that won’t earn you any money.
Writing is a tricky one. Again, speaking from experience, there is plenty of writing you can do that will keep your head (metaphorically) below water. Poetry. Fiction. Fan-fiction is perhaps the best option of all, but be careful: Fifty Shades of Grey started out as Twilight fan-fiction, and now author E. L. James — who used to write under the much less lucrative pen name Snowqueens Icedragon — has more than zero dollars. In fact, she has millions of dollars. What a loser!
As a career or side hustle (#DoTheHustle #Hustlemania #DavidHustlehoff), writing tends to be riskier than making music. That’s because while there is an infinitesimally tiny chance that a human with money will pay you to write a song, there is an ever-so-slightly greater chance that a human with money will pay you to write a blog post, or a white paper, or a book. Indeed, ghostwriters and marketing writers are in high demand these days. So if you must write, proceed with vigilance and avoid writing anything that…