August 2016 Income Report


Thanks for bearing with me as I feel out how much I want to share with these income reports. This month, I’m going to be vaguer about everything, speaking in estimates when it makes sense to share amounts.

Financially, this was my best month of the year. After a so-so summer, I finally got a bunch of money I was owed all at once. I still am waiting for about $1,000 in back pay from various gigs, but that’s the freelance life for you.


Two elements converged to make this a huge month for my freelance income stream. First, there was some sort of accounting error at my day job which led to my paycheck being a fraction of what it is usually, despite me working overtime. It happens.

Second, it was a bad Amazon month. The way Amazon affiliate earnings work, you get paid three months after the fact. So even though August was a $650+ month for my Gunpla 101 site, I got paid my May earnings, which were only around $350.


Here’s an income stream comparison with July. These circles aren’t to scale, or July would be way smaller. The point is, because I got a lot of checks I was waiting for work from last month, freelance went super well. Combined with the error at my day job and a low month for Amazon, Orsini Bowers Media gigs basically take up the entire pie.


Here’s a much better chart for showing total income since I started writing these reports. I think I’ve mentioned before that in 2015, I had a five-figure month AND a three-figure month. Freelance really fluctuates.

Honestly it’s a huge relief to be earning a lot again. I have been feeling burnt out and overwhelmed. I’ve been slowly morphing into the kind of person I hate, who always says “I’ll have it done by tomorrow” and then has it two days later. It’s a clear sign I am doing too much at one time, so I need to better regulate my projects.


Because of all those earnings, my expenditures took a considerably smaller chunk of my business than usual. This month, I spent money on web hosting, renewing my Freckle time-tracker for the year (so no more monthly payments), paying Gunpla 101 contributors, and paying Rusty, my amazing developer for GunplaDB.

How did I do on those August financial goals? Great! I made sure I got paid and cooked at home and brought lunch to the office 99% of the time. I did not spend as much time on my affiliate sites as I should have, but I am in the midst of a big new tutorial for Gunpla 101. Plus, John and I came up with a new savings plan, so I’ll be contributing more money to that.

My September financial goals are:

  • Contribute August income to each savings goal. Our goals are to 1) create an emergency fund that consists of three months of our total living expenses 2) save up for another international vacation and 3) save more aggressively for retirement.
  • Find some new freelance gigs now that I’ve gotten paid for and finished up the last batch of jobs.
  • Invest time and energy in building up GunplaDB, my newest affiliate site.

Share how your August went, and any financial goals you have for September, in the comments!