I've hussled $$ on the side, well, forever. One great job I had was to clean a small office once a week for $125/mo. It was less than an hour on either saturday or sunday. I cleaned 1 bathroom, the coffee station and vacuumed the place. I got the job via word of mouth. I needed the money to pay for my horse habit. Its really the horse habit that has always led me to better and better side gigs.
I framed art for years, then once I got my grown up job I would work for this same company during the holidays. Its a great skill to have and I do own some equipment, a chop saw and mat cutter. There's a local art supply store that has the professional equipment I can use for larger pieces.
I used to sell computers. I would build them and deliver them, set them up and give the buyer a 2 hour walk through. often this led to more time at $30/hour easy money and I enjoyed helping folks learn to use a PC. Today I could see someone be a "consultant" to help folks go buy a PC, like a PC personal shopper.
As I phased away from building computers, I started consulting with small businesses for $75/hour. I knew quicken, quickbooks, excel, mysql, and would happily learn and teach them any software they were struggling with. I even worked as an IT consultant for a sporting goods store and they had a ginormous ski sale once a year I would help prep for. I think I did that gig for 3 years or so. It got to be too much as I had moved to IT for my day job.
Now I have 3 side gigs that have blossomed into really lucrative ventures.
1. the old computer business is now a web building, hosting maintenance gig, I do this as little as possible since its my day job now as well. I can only handle so much web (been doing web work for 16 years now)
2. I created hundreds of designs and put them on cafepress, invested the earnings in my own equipment and now make the same designs at home. I have a set of travel sized equipment and go to horseshows and make the items there, as well as compete with my horse (sold him last year). I also make high end custom jewelry to sell at the shows. I make about $1500/weekend. I work solo. sometimes my horse friends will hang out with me and if they really help I pay them in food, product or $$. I could make alot more if I did get formal help. I could work on the custom orders during the day while someone sold. But I like it just the way it is.
3. I have built or signed up on many websites with the above products I make. The best seller for me is ebay. I bring in alot during the holidays. Im usually exhausted by Christmas. I always take Christmas week off and veg.
Side lined: I have written an e-book, but never did figure out a good security model so it sits on the side lines. I had a special promo for a keychain, they submit their serial number and their detailed info, that was to feed my database of buyers for the next book. Oh well... Im busy enough already. This could be revisited at a later date. Perhaps when I am FI and need something to fill my time.
Finally my DH has become a property investor. Though not as a side gig. He is working on replacing his income and this will become our core FI income in another 2 years per my calculations. He has a PM do the tenant work on the rentals, he does all maintenance he wants, and lets them do whatever isn't up his alley. He hasn't done a flip yet, though his first task was to rehab our place that we have lived in for 12 years, its now awesome! If the value of our place hits a certain amount, we will flip it, if not we will enjoy it. We won't work on a flip until our core rental income hits a certain threshhold. He helps me with all of my side gigs and I help him, its a win-win!
I love the Amazon book selling idea. I even think thrift shopping/reselling on ebay I could expand upon. I do that for horse show shirts already...hmmm always new ideas to try out!