Just over 77% of self-published writers make $1,000 or less a year, according to the survey, with a startlingly high 53.9% of traditionally-published authors, and 43.6% of hybrid authors, reporting their earnings are below the same threshold. A tiny proportion — 0.7% of self-published writers, 1.3% of traditionally-published, and 5.7% of hybrid writers — reported making more than $100,000 a year from their writing.
From the way this is presented I assume respondents were predominantly book authors. If you’ve been reading here for a little while then you know I’m an independent-publishing evangelist, but I really don’t get what’s so “sad” about this. For me, aspiring writers are like musicians and actors in the sense that the idea appeals to many, but only few are skilled and/or lucky enough to succeed. The question is: How do we minimize the effect of randomness on discovery?