One of the smartest things I ever did was to give away the C# Yellow Book. I've had more interest and traffic from the free downloads than I'd ever have got if I tried to make a profit from the text.
I was talking to one of the musician folks who will be helping make music and sound effects for Three Thing Game on Friday and I was expounding on this theory. My theory is that people really love free stuff, and that if you make a name for yourself as a provider of good, free, stuff then sooner or later someone will want to hire you for a proper job.
The great thing about being young and creative is that you often have more ideas than you know what to do with. So why not put some of the stuff you make out there for free and see what comes back. If you're a programmer you can get a similar effect by taking part in Open Source Projects.