For decades, writing has been Thea Atkinson’s passion; until just a few years ago, she’d won a few awards and acquired a few agents, but hadn’t landed a book deal yet.

And that was OK ... until July 2010, when her husband was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, which essentially ended his career as a lobster fisherman.

Obviously this was tough news, but things could — and did — get worse. Less than a year after the diagnosis, Thea lost her own job.

“I remember sitting at my desk after the news and feeling stunned,” she says. “I felt like my world had turned me inside out and left me raw and quivering.”

What were they going to do?

In the time between her husband’s diagnosis and her job loss, Thea had decided to give Kindle Direct Publishing a shot, and while she wasn’t raking in six figures, she was definitely seeing earning potential.

So while she managed to find another teaching job within a month, she knew she also had to take KDP seriously — the lobster-fishing industry pays very well in Nova Scotia, where the Atkinsons live, so that income had to be replaced.

Thankfully, Thea figured out how to take her writing career to the next level: switching from literary fiction to urban fantasy.

The change of genre was her turning point; today she has twenty-two full novels, five novellas, and a few short story collections out ...

... and she makes a fair living. Her royalties and her teaching salary are enough to pay the bills, plus contribute to a rainy day fund.

Your book purchases aren’t buying them Porsches (unless we’re talking about the Hot Wheels versions). They’re covering the basic necessities of life. Just like any job should.

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