Passive Income From EBooks

Passive income through eBooks is great.  Write an eBook, let it sit on Amazon, Smashwords, iBooks or Google play and reap the royalties, month after month.

I have somewhere around 10 eBooks available in non-fiction and fiction categories (under various pseudonyms). No new eBooks in 2015 and most published between 2012 to 2014.

From eBooks, I receive royalties when purchased.  The eBooks are available on various platforms, including: Amazon, Smashwords (iBooks, Barnes and Noble, et al.), and Google Play Books. Amazon and Google pay monthly and Smashwords pays quarterly. Below are my recent earnings from Amazon and Google as directly deposited into my account:


Amazon Deposit - June

google deposit - July


This is not much money, I concede.  However, none are newly published, most are priced at $0.99 USD, and I did not market or “sell” them. Nothing I’ve written and published is especially memorable or innovative.  Readable, yes, and entertaining or useful, yes.  Great prose or enlightening substance – no.  The eBooks sell though, and I am forever grateful to my readers.

My point is that you can make money from eBooks for months or years and supplement your income.  Put some effort into the work and market it (I did not) and you may make much more. The best part?  I wrote these eBooks at home, once, and make money every month from sales of the original work. Did I mention that eBooks are a perfect home business idea?

Once again, if I can do this with some success, so can YOU!

Some notes:

Earnings from Smashwords are not included here.

Royalties vary from month to month based on eBooks sold.

Amazon separately reports any sales in Europe.

The eBook distribution and pricing are not necessarily the same for each e-Bookseller.  Some e-Bookstores may have titles that others do not.

Passive income as defined by the US IRS is limited.  Consult a tax professional for advice and expertise. Other countries tax laws will differ.


– Passive Income – according to Investopedia, “Earnings an individual derives from a rental property, limited partnership or other enterprise in which he or she is not actively involved. As with non-passive income, passive income is usually taxable; however it is often treated differently by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).”¹

– Royalties – money paid to a patentee for the use of a patent or to an author or composer for each copy of a book sold or for each public performance of a work

– eBooks – an electronic or digital version of a printed book. eBooks do not need to have a printed source – eBooks can be specifically written for eReaders

– Amazon – one of the largest online shopping websites in the world. Roughly 20% of all books sold are Kindle titles.²

– Google Play Books – is a cross-platform ebook application offered by Google where Users can purchase and download ebooks from Google Play, which offers over 5 million ebooks and is the world’s largest ebookstore.

– Smashwords – is an ebook self-publishing and distribution platform. Smashwords distributes to iBooks (Apple), Barnes and Noble, Kobo and more.