Episode 25 – How to Make Thousands with Romance Novels and 5 Other Ways to Grow Your Income

Michelle is Money Hungry

I don’t consider myself an introvert, but man, can I tell you that Michelle from the blog Michelle is Money Hungry makes me reconsider my personality type?  🙂 She is the most outgoing, approachable, no-nonsense, hardworking, all around fun FIRE journeyer we’ve talked to.  What other F.I. interviewee is getting to F.I. by writing romance novels?


She’s got Wendy and I thinking…

Who is Michelle

Our previous guests overcame difficult obstacles on their F.I. journey, but for the most part, they followed pretty straight laced paths in order to Reach F.I.  Michelle is having none of that. Her approach is very different. She is the daughter of a single mom. Michelle lives in Colorado and embraces that awesome Colorado outdoors lifestyle.  And in terms of money, She is embracing and chronicling her credit card and student loan pay off journey, and she is doing it as a freelancer. Beyond all of that – which we will get into of course – she never stopped living.  She travels, she auditions for TV Shows, she has a huge personality, and she is hustling her way to debt free.

Michelle’s Money Story

Michelle’s childhood began as a part of a two parent household. However,  as a result of divorce, Michelle went from living in a two parent home with a SAHM to a single parent home with a working mother.  

Michelle was greatly affected by this change, and through the process, her money story began to change.  

Money lessons abounded at this time – and these money lessons were shrouded in negativity.  She learned that “money is scarce” and that “money is hard to make”. She states, “…money was used to survive  – and we were in survival mode”.

As soon as Michelle had the chance, she began working so that she could escape the difficulties of being in survival mode on her mom’s one income.  She went head to head with her mom, as she began to take the income from her first job at the sandwich shop, and use it to purchase expensive clothes.

Looking back, she states she needed to have these moments of growth with money – she needed them in order to learn the independence that money can bring.

Michelle’s FIREry Evolution

Michelle admits that she came from generations of frugality, but these generations lacked true financial education.  In order to set herself on a strong foundation financially, Michelle had to almost strip herself down and allow herself to be built back up by the personal finance information she learned.  

She started from square one.

Michelle focused on adjusting her money mindset along the way, noting that:

“a lot of women of color end up in jobs where we are in service to others, and there is a negative energy around wanting to earn money for ourselves, for wanted to be stable, for envisioning your life in a different way”.

She was determined to go through the FIRE in one piece – coming out on the other side a financially savvy, independent and RICH Black female.

Getting Off The Sidelines

Michelle is a firm believer in taking action, much like Wendy and I.  In fact, she believes that we are in a current phase of online growth where if you choose not to participate in the process, you will be miss your chance.  Windows of opportunity are closing. She implores listeners to find ways to create income that has nothing to do with external employers – income that is for them and by them.   

So, what are the ways Michelle Earns Money?

6 Ways to Earn Passive Income

Brand Ambassador

Michelle earned $22/hr or more sharing a product that she likes. She was paid weekly.

Affiliate marketing

For Michelle, her affiliates have to be win-win.  She only shares products, goods and services that she uses personally.
She is not a great credit card user, so she doesn’t share credit card affiliates.  It has to be consistent with what you say.

Course Creation

Michelle created a writing course in which she teaches others the details -from start to finish – for creating their own e-book.  She talks about the ins and outs of the process, and has Live Calls and a closed Facebook Group for author support. If you’ve ever thought about publishing a book, this course is a great place to start. All of the content is there to go through at your own pace, and there are different levels for different budgets.

Make Money with Ebooks: Self Study

Make Money with Ebooks Group Study

Make Money with Ebooks VIP

The Brand Building Lab

Published Author

Michelle has written her own romance novels and her own non-fiction book about visiting Colorado!  These books took time to write, but now continue selling month after month.

Event Creator

Michelle is running her first ever single ladies retreat in October 2019.  Here is a link if you are such a lady and want to attend: Money on the Mountain Financial Retreat

Freelance Writer

Michelle writes for blogs and other publications on a consistent basis.  Pay can be per article or on retainer

Balancing Personal Finance and Personal Life

Michelle hiked during the middle of the day at her old job – just to get outside in nature when the craving hit.  

She makes sure that time with friends, mom, fitness, nature – is built in to her life so that she can decompress.

She believes you should be very deliberate to make sure that you always comes first.  

“I am already living my dreamed FI life…now I just need the money to go with it” she says.

Michelle on the final questions:

Money Lesson:

My mom is super frugal and thank God for that.  She taught me how to find a good deal.

Favorite Life Hacks:

Meetup, Eventbrite and Facebook Events are the best places for FREE/FUN things to do.

This year alone she has been to the following for free or a discount →  Liquor tastings, Morton’s Steakhouse, Free or Discounted Yoga (including puppy yoga). The November Project – use their city as their workout space and is free.

Favorite Reads:
Jane Eyre – “Full of Melancholy “

The Hunger Games

The Epic Guide to Moving to Colorado, by Michelle Jackson herself!

Best Way to Find Michelle

At her Blog or Podcast!

PBS Video with Mr. Money Mustache   

Listen to our previous episode with Whitney Hansen of Money Nerds!

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