Wow, I've been travelling for 6 months. I left home on Jun 12 so technically, more than 6 months but what's a few days?
I've been to a whole heap of countries: Germany, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong. Plus I've had some amazing adventures.
So, how does that breakdown into numbers:
Amount earnt in the last 6 months (technically June - Nov because I don't keep daily figures): $AUD 32,000 // $US 24,000
My income peaked at over $9000 in July because I released the final book in a 3 part series and did a heap of promotion on it. Then settled around $4500 a month after that. Even though I've released two near books in Oct and Nov, my income didn't increase at all. I plan to do a heap more promotion next year and also push hard on getting mailing list signups and building an ARC (advanced review copy) team. That will give me a solid foundation for any further releases.
Amount spent on accommodation: $AUD4880 //$US3800*
* That figure isn't exact because a few times because I recorded future spending. A couple of times, due to various issues (here and here), I decamped to hotels and didn't include that in the figures above. It pretty much would amount to a few hundred bucks, not much more since I got refunds from Airbnb.
This includes all utilities, internet, cleaning products, toilet paper and other random living costs.
ETA: I spend 6 weeks at my friend's place in Geneva rent free and now, 2 weeks with my sister in Hong Kong, so that's around 2 months of not paying rent in past 6 months.
Words written: 137,000
Best month - October with over 50,000 words. Worst month - June 1400 words. In June, I'd just started travelling and had some personal issues. I'd also just finished writing one series and wasn't sure where to go next. It took me a decent slab of time to get into the next series.
What I've learnt is that I need to be in a place for at least a month if I want to be productive. Any less than that and I start thinking of it as a holiday, not work. I've also been a heap more productive anywhere that is familiar - so returning to Geneva and Tokyo really helped. Obviously, when I've done all the sightseeing, there is less incentive to run around doing tourist things.
The main thing that I've discovered though is that being in a new place takes up a huge amount of mental space. Not just the unfamiliar surroundings but needing to work out directions, where to get good coffee and what's what. Settling in can take a long time.
Other things I've learnt:
Obviously when you are travelling long term, you aren't putting up in luxury hotels (not my thing even if I had the bucks) but I do need to think more about my needs when booking places. I mainly book though Airbnb which has been good, on the whole, but things like a decent workspace not only make everyday life better but also save on money going out to cafes etc.
The thing I miss most:
Gemma, the faulty beagle. Dogs hate skype apparently but I've sent her a few postcards with sniffs from around the world. Here's a tip - if you send postcards to dogs, rub the postcard in your armpit so they know it's from you. Probs best to do that before you get to the post office.
Note: Gemma is not a thing, really.
The bear sanctuary in Budapest, of course. I got to feed honey to the bears and they were my friends.
And Arashi concerts.
I've had a few.
Not a lot, to be honest. Probably the biggest one is packing the blue dress that I decided to throw in at that last moment. Only worn it once, carried it for 6 months. It's going home.
I wasn't sure if buying a thick, heavy winter coat was a smart idea but I sure appreciated the hell out of it in Sapporo.
So, that's it. I've got no plans to stop travelling for the time being although I might head back to Australia for a while in the middle of the year. Mostly to see that beagle.