Explaining How Much Money Do You Make Writing a Book

Explaining How Much Money Do You Make Writing a Book


Book writing is a career many of us would want to dive into. Book writers have an image of making tons of money with little to no physical effort involved. This profession is a dream job for someone who is working day in and day out in an engineering firm, or likewise. But you look around and ask the writers themselves, the answer may depend upon a few factors. So let’s try to find the answer, How Much Money Do You Make Writing a Book?

History of Professional Book Writing

Book waiting has been around as a profession for thousands of years, as many people in Ancient Egyptian, Roman, and Greek eras specialized in penning down words. The concept of Book writing as a livelihood came in the early to mid 14th Century in the eastern parts of Europe after the advent of the printing press, which allowed rapid growth in the literacy of the region. How much you can make writing a book would still depend on the amount of research work you’ve put in and the size of your book. So let’s see how this has evolved in today’s modern age.

Do authors make a lot of Money?

As we’ve established, the amount a writer earns through book writing depends upon the book he’s writing, and in the modern age what publisher he is in contact with for writing and publishing the book. 

On average, a novelist, or a writer can earn up to $50,000 a year through book writing and publishing with the range of income lying between $15,000-$130,000. Do the math, maybe the amount is big enough and maybe it’s not. Another important factor in adding the answer of how much authors make is the sales of the books. Now let us look into a scenario where you decide to write a book with the help of a publisher.

  • In the case where you hire a publisher. If they produce and put it up on the market at $15, you’ll be earning at least 10% of the amount, that is $1.5 per sale, and the royalty amount may differ when you write an ebook.
  • Now let’s flip sides. You’ve decided to write, and publish a book on your own. Supposing that you’ve spent the same amount (i.e. $15) to produce and put it up on the market, your earnings may vary from 50%-70%, which is at least $7.5 per sale.

These figures may seem nice and good, but they usually don’t come in handy, as book publishing and writing isn’t everybody’s cup of tea.

Factors That Affect How Much an Author Makes

Numerous factors and things may affect a writer’s earnings. The most important of them is the revenue that an author generates per sale. If the income he generates per sale is good, the amount that would come in the larger chunk is always meant to be good. But this is just a single factor, the other important factor is the consistency of bookselling in the market, and here’s how you can know it better. 

  • Keeping that $15 range in our head, Let’s assume that an author is earning roughly 15% of its royalties per sale, and if the trend of bookselling in the market is on the rise, we can assume that the author has an amazing time as his book is live in the market.
  • Now assuming the same figures, but slightly rotating market’s paradigm on the other side, which is low levels of consistency in bookselling. This would result in the same profit coming to the author, but with no consistency whatsoever, at times making it difficult for him to make a living out of it.

What’s better? Self-Publishing or Traditional Publishers?

There are two different routes you can take when you are looking to write a book and make money from it. We’ve explained what’s the profit count and how much money you’ll be making from each of the two, but you need to have a book that is also readable and finds its way onto a reader’s shelf. Now let us see the professional aspect of these two streams you can get into while looking to write a book.


When you self-publish a book, chances are that you’re going to make a better income out of it. But these chances are slimmed down the road when you see the potential challenges a writer and publisher faces. If you’re new, the foremost challenge for you will be to continuously make a habit of writing for your project, for starters that might be easy, but later on the journey you may want to quit just because of the lack of confidence, or maybe a lack-luster story you’re willing to commit to. Another thing that can come along is the aspect of investing more upfront, which can be more difficult for new writers. 

The benefits are still there as well. You can have more control over your book, in terms of the content and editing procedure, and you can have a quicker publication for your first book. These factors may affect how much a writer makes per book when he looks to self-publish his first writing venture.

Traditional Publishers

When you take the route of traditional publishing, you are taking a slightly safer side of publishing your book. The foremost thing that they’ll look after is the publication of your book, which will be a smooth procedure but will take up a lot of time if you’re looking to do it in a hurry. A few negatives from this side is that the procedure, as mentioned earlier will be slowed down as the professional publishers will take time to assess the things and then put up the final product on the market, Another important thing is that you will have fewer words to say in your book editing, that may just erase some of the things that you wanted to be in the book. The most important element of publishing your book through a traditional route is that you will end up getting a smaller portion of the profit as compared to the one being published by yourself.  

Also, the book writing cost that would want to manage at the start of your writing journey may skyrocket, for example, an average book writer will take a good amount from you every month to complete the book, automatically doubling the cost 

Now the choice is up to the writer who has the main decision to make. 

Can You Market Your Book Yourself?

This is a very important question, it is very effective in the question of how much an author makes per book. Well, marketing your book isn’t an easy job for you. Here’s how you can effectively market your book. 

Use of Social Media

You can utilize the immense power of social media to market your book to a larger audience. When you start a marketing campaign on your social media, you are bound to attract a much larger audience for your book, which will help in marketing your book better.

Getting Reviews

Another way to market your book can be by giving it out to people who are looking to read something new, maybe a friend of yours or maybe anyone interested in giving it a shot, Once you’ve sent the venture to someone who’s looking to read, you’ll not only get reviews but also get an idea of where you need to get better at with the story or anything else.

Is AI Writing a safe option?

With the advent of artificial intelligence, the general perception has changed and many think about how much money do authors make after the launch of AI. Well, with its numerous perks and benefits of carving the right amount of words in the quickest possible time, AI can also be a factor that takes away the elements that make people write and read books. AI content, despite being grammatically the best and with authentic knowledge and pieces of information, is not the go-to for many readers and writers even almost after 2.5 years of its existence. Mainly because AI Content will always have repetitive words, and will retain the “robotic” essence to it. Nonetheless, despite being so bad, it will be more widely used in the future by writers and editors, but for now, this is something that needs major changes and great concentration to be perfected.

Secondary Streams of Incomes

In all the above information, we’ve seen and established the fact that most of the authors, especially slightly newer ones, are not on the right end of the tunnel as the story unfolds. But, there’s always a second ray of hope through secondary streams of income. A writer may get another hefty amount of income through other sources, which may include. 

  • A secondary source of income for a writer may be through merchandise, where your book, if it gets enough appreciation is printed on mugs and shirts.
  • You may also make some royalties from platforms like Netflix or any other streaming or filming platform that adapts your story if they find it worthy of being screened.
  • You can make money through seminars, and speaking platforms where you are invited to talk regarding the topic you’ve written about. 
  • You can also have a royalty based on the fact that your book is published by a traditional publisher, who is to pay you a certain amount once they’ve recovered their initial investment for publishing and editing your book.
  • Writers can always find a way into the freelance world by giving the services to anyone who is looking to write about any specific topic. 


In the blog, we’ve discussed every possibility of writers ’earnings, how they are affected and how they can be better, the effects of AI, and the future. We can never say never with anything, maybe you decide to write a book and you have instant success, and reach new heights within a few days, maybe you find your book nowhere except your room, or maybe, you don’t even find a way to complete your story. Everything is possible in today’s world. Let us hope that you find your niche with writing a book, and finally get a good amount for that.

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