You don’t have to productive the content you make for yourself and others, but you have the option.
You can start selling something as soon as you’re ready to sell it and people are waiting to buy it. (Just mind your taxes.) You don’t have to build a massive audience, nail down a major client, run a marketing campaign, or even put up a sales page (though you should at least do that). If one friend asks to buy something from you and then one of their friends asks to buy something, too, then you have the beginnings of a business.
It’s your business, too, and your decision on how to run it. You might grow that business into a multinational corporation. You might stop after six months or after it’s paid for your new 3D printer. You can stop after one sale. You can keep your day job. It’s your business to run or not to run.
You don’t have to donate your time to everyone who asks. The more people who pay for your work, the more you can give to those who couldn’t otherwise pay. You never have to hire someone or fire someone. You can keep it boutique or grow it into a legacy. You deserve to be compensated for your effort and time. And besides, the people who love your work want to free you to do more of it, not struggle to make ends meet.
Consider starting a business today. Even if it doesn’t last a week, you’ll be ready to start the next time. And even if it brings in only a couple hundred dollars a month, you’ll be all the more prepared to start another business, grow an existing one when opportunity strikes, or pay for your student loan. Why not find an accountant and give it a shot?