The Business of Writing and Publishing

I have been caught up in the pre-release, and now official release, of my book The Bastille Family Chronicles: Camille (informally known as The Camille Chronicles). As part of that pre-release, I’ve had to step out of the writer zone and into the business zone.

As creative folks, we don’t really sweat the details of the business side. Indeed, that’s what makes signing a publishing contract so attractive: someone else deals with all that other stuff (marketing, accounting, etc) while you create. If we as artists (as a writer, I’m definitely addressing other writers but the same applies to other artistic media) are to really gain control over our work and reap the monetary benefits accordingly, we have got to get into the business of things.

From calculating shipping costs, to the amount of discount I could give without going broke,  to how could I compete with Amazon…all this required a stretching of skills I didn’t know I had;  there was a reason I wasn’t a business major in college!  Even the cost of publishing: purchasing ISBNs (even if you do it through Amazon), the cost of graphic design, the cost of editing, the cost of website design…these things add up, and since writing is my primary livelihood right how, I have to figure out how to make it pay the most to cover my basic needs, and then some.

God forbid if I need an attorney, for whatever reason. Attorneys need to eat too and while I probably won’t hire anyone who bills $500 and hour and up, even $100/hour can be daunting, especially when you tack on the price of a retainer.

Then there’s the question of hiring an accountant. I am a writer, but I am also a small business, publishing under my own imprint. I need to be aware of various tax breaks, the benefits of forming a corporation (or not), and things like that. Business accounting is  a lot different than personal accounting, especially when it comes to tax time in April. And I am not trying to end up on the wrong side of an IRS audit.

I don’t yet know how successful my fledgling business acumen will prove to be; I am just focused on getting the book out there and hoping that people like it enough to 1) recommend it to others and 2) want to buy the next one. But this is definitely an education, and I am understanding now why publishing services, etc charge what they do.

 

Thanks for stopping by.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: