DIARY of a 99%-er: The Struggle Between Survival and Creative Expression

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September 28

The writer must earn money in order to be able to live and to write, but he must by no means live and write for the purpose of making money.” – Karl Marx

Due to the recent rent increase, I have been trying many other ways to make money, while I continue working on my writing projects. I wish I could tell you that I’ve become a gazillionaire from them. Not yet. But I have definitely dipped my toes into the entrepreneurial waters.

After the nutritional coaching fizzled out, I ventured into another domain – selling clothes on eBay. I was inspired by the founder of a hot, new, online retail venture who had started out on eBay. So, I asked a friend to come over and take some pictures of me, modeling the clothes I wanted to sell. Most of them were gently worn but still in very good shape. She took great pictures, and I listed them with great expectations. To reciprocate for her help, I gave her some of my clothes.

Nine days into the 10-day auction period, not one of the first items I listed had received a bid. I promptly got on the phone with eBay customer service and asked them if they had any advice. Try free shipping, they told me. So, with one day to go in my auction period, I changed to free shipping. Still, not one thing sold, probably because I priced them too high. I gave up at that point, feeling it wasn’t worth it to cheapen the prices even further -- that I might as well just keep these nice clothes. I am certainly not a fashionista, or even close. But, there will be some point in the future when I will be living from a place of financial surplus and can wear them out to dinner or the theater. I have to keep the faith. And, they will come in handy for interviews as well.

But the feeling I’ve taken away from these efforts is, “Why is it so difficult to make money as an entrepreneur? I read all the time about people who make beaucoup bucks selling things on eBay. I guess I’m just not an entrepreneur. It was more like eBust for me.

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