• Member Since 30th Jan, 2013
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Viking ZX

Author of Science-Fiction and Fantasy novels! Oh, and some fanfiction from time to time.

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Being a Better Writer: Taxes · 9:23pm Feb 14th, 2017

Fair warning, this is not going to be a happy post. A lot of times I try to deliver good news or positive vibes with my posts, but today? Well, today you're probably going to leave unhappy. You'll see why in a bit.

So, you've been published! Your book is out in the wild, selling copies and making you dough! Success! You're on the way to riches, watching with glee and satisfaction as money slowly funnels into your bank accounts or arrives in publisher's checks.

For many young authors, this is "the end" of the line as far as they are concerned when it comes to money. They wrote the book, and now royalties roll in. End of story, right?

No, unfortunately. It's the end of the book's story, but it's not the end of the writers. Even if they create a one-hit wonder and call it quits afterwards ... they can't just sit back and relax. Because sooner or later, the IRS will come calling.

Now, from my mention of the IRS, you may rightfully realize that yes, I'm speaking about taxes as a US writer, and any specifics that I'm going to offer are going to be focused around my experiences with the US tax system. Which isn't to say that if you're not a US citizen you won't find something to gain from this post, but it may be more general advice than specific. Regardless of where you live, after all, you're going to have taxes of some kind. They may not be exactly like what I speak of here, but they may be similar.

Anyway, first things first. You will pay taxes on your book sales.

Follow the rest of this post with growing dread at Unusual Things

Comments ( 5 )

Just finished reading the whole thing...

Having been a business owner for 3 years, I can attest to this... it was pretty bad for me because I was an owner with two other guys and the whole business was not even pulling enough in to pay all of its owners. So, with me being me, I stayed with my parents and only took enough out of the business to pay for gas and sometimes food. After doing this for three years, I walked out of the business. It was ultimately cheaper for me to not even work than it was to continue. Still kinda salty about the whole thing.

Being an owner of a machine shop with expensive equipment, managing all of it, talking to customers, paying bills, programming CNC machines, fixing them whenever they break down, tons of overtime... While I loved doing all of that, I can not do it for only gas money.

If Trump and congress does not make it better, then it never will. In that event, get ready to move to Texas and vote to secede from the union. I don't see any other solution anywhere else in the world.


I don't see any other solution anywhere else in the world.

This is the part that worries me the most. It's so bad that you're penalized for trying to run your own business, and instead encouraged to go work for some larger unit. The United States of America was built on self-starters, people who would make things happen. Now we penalize them and take what they make? To do what? Support broken systems? Support those who have no path forward now that it's been blocked?

It's like telling a man who's walking through a desert to eat his own legs for sustenance, ignoring the fact that he needs his legs to walk out of said desert. It can't go on.

4422781 I have no other reply other than:

Empires rise and fall, but the kingdom of God lasts forever. Apart from the Lord Jesus Christ, there is no lasting reason to even exist.

I just wish people were not so idiotic about it; they have no clue how much easier life could be.

Fascinating… and disheartening. What I'm left wondering is how taxes look if you're both employed by a company and also self-employed via writing… either way I'm not about to walk out on my day job

Yeah, this is one reason why a lot of writers keep their day job. The day job is still taxed at normal rates.

But yeah, it is disheartening. And almost a warning to those who believe writing to be the easy path to riches. It isn't.

But some of us love it too much to stop.

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