Technically every article I wrote on my website was for free, until I got the traffic to be able to monetise it a year later.
I picked a niche I enjoyed, rather a big money one, so I didn’t care that I had to write for free, and initially to an empty room.
People don’t seem to realise that there’s a difference between writing for free, and writing for vacuum cleaner reviews for $0.002 per word for the rest of your life.
As writer, I recommend starting with zero expectations and working your butt off. It’s the only way to reach success without losing your mind.
Delayed gratification is just part of the deal for writers. If you don’t like it, pick another career.