Last night I finally got some time to myself. I was having a bit of a nervous breakdown because I feel like I have no free time anymore. The girlfriend has been occupying almost all of it. She worked last night so I finally got a moment to chill out. It looks like I'll get some more time this week to myself as well. I'm trying not to freak out and bail like my instincts are telling me, but I'm going to need a little more me-time to even things out. It's been a little much lately.
But that's neither here nor there. Just venting. The real purpose here is to mention that I have done some research and it looks like Operation: Heist has been revived and is a GO. After looking through all my options, I formed some criteria on what will be be a worthwhile ROI.
* It must not cost me any investment up front - I don't have cash right now. That is the whole point of doing this.
* It must not require full-time work. - I still have a full-time job plus a full-time girlfriend. I need to be able to squeeze the project in between these commitments.
* It must not require selling my soul - I have to be able to sleep at night.
* It must pay more than minimum wage when the payout is averaged over the time spent - Otherwise, what is the point?
* OR, it must provide more than a financial value - I don't mind working hard for lesser pay if it is something I can put on my resume.
After evaluating several suggestions for ways to make money online, I have evaluated the following options:
- DollarSurveys.net - I am just kicking the tires on this guy, but it seems pretty legit. Not a big money maker, but if I do say, a survey a day, that's $30 a month. Enough to pay my gym membership. And provided I take no longer than 10 minutes a survey, that's around minimum wage. Given that I probably have 10 minutes a day to spare, I think this could be viable.
- Write a book - This is my favorite option. I am in love with this option. There are several ways to self-publish these days, and some of them are free. Registering an ISBN is about $125. When I'm done with the book, I can pitch it to publishers. If no one bites, I can publish it myself. And when I'm done, I'll have a hell of an addition to my resume. I will keep the titles and subjects of the books Top Secret, but they will be tech-related and non-fiction. Needless to say, I'm an expert on this shit. I think I can hit a home run. I am, however, also realistic about this. I think it's going to take me the majority of the year to write, edit, review, etc. Maybe longer. But when I'm done, I will have a masterpiece. And it might make me some money.
- Mechanical Turk - This is my least favorite in that I will probably be getting less than minimum wage for time spent. I think I would be better off writing my book. But it could be an "I'm bored, I'll do this for a bit" type thing.
- Intrade.com - This is shady as shit. It's like stocks for events. Betting on something happening. I think it could be fun, but it requires an investment. It's totally gambling, but if I can get an edge, then it's more of a sure thing. I think it might be just a fun thing to do. Bonus if I make money.
- Stocks - This is what I want to eventually get to. Always have. The problem is, it requires a lot of investment capitol, and I have none. But this is the goal. Get to the point where stocks provide my primary income. Everything else is secondary. That'd be awesome.
So this is where I'm at. This year is going to be a year of rebuilding. Much like 2011 was. But this year will be more focused. I have clear goals in mind. Become more involved with Open Source. Write a book. Pay down debt. Establish multiple channels of revenue. I can make this happen. Let it be written (the book). Let it be done!