Books are good to get a foundation and understanding of the games principles. They can be very heavy reading and repetative if you have 5 to read. It starts to become panning for gold (just getting little nuggets of good advice here and there) if you read to many.
You need to start finding live games and play and play and play. The reason for live games is you have to remove your tells
and calm your nerves when people are staring you down. You can't do that playing on the computer.
The money becomes an issue when you are playing over you funds. Whatever money you bring to the table you must have no fear of losing it. It can't be rent money or food money. When you play with the fear of losing it all you will be forced into making decisions that are not good poker decisions. Make enough money on the cheap tables and use that to move up. You could also just spend time watching the more expensive games and see how they play. You have to feel comfortable making the bets at each level otherwise you should not be playing at that table yet.
You can make a living just playing poker and never hit the WSOP
or the pro circuit. I make a supplemental income by playing poker and if spent all my time I could scratch out a living just by playing local casinos