When turn of events finally led me to fulfill my life-long urge to write (read my post about it here) I never foresaw it becoming my life’s work. I would write when I felt the passion to and do something else when I didn’t. In a sense, I thought of it as just another hobby of mine like gardening. But, when I was fortunate enough to turn my love of writing into a full time hobby and the first of my middle-grade mystery series was completed I realized I had more than just a passion to write; I had a passion to one day be an author whose stories would be talked about over lunch in school cafeterias all across America and perhaps beyond! That’s when I knew my writing was no longer a hobby.
It’s important to distinguish the difference between a hobby and a business. A hobby is an activity you engage in for the pure pleasure of it; a business is an activity you engage in with the intent to make a profit. In other words, the difference comes down to motive and not just one of, “WOW! It will be fun to make money at something I love doing,” but one of, “if I don’t make a profit doing this then I’ll move on to something else in which I will.”
You spend many hours and days, if not years, pouring your heart and soul into the stories you write. If you truly have the desire and persistence to become an author, which includes self-published, why wouldn’t you apply the same passion toward building your author platform and turn "you" into a business?
When I started out on the next adventure in my life of becoming an author I sought the advice of people who had traveled the same road and were willing to share their experience and knowledge (read my post about it here), and I joined reputable organizations such as (SCBWI, MWA and The CBI Clubhouse), which could help me grow as an author. So, naturally, when I decided to turn my “authorship” into a business I applied the same mentality and sought the advice of a professional tax advisor and business start up professional to help make T.K. Millin and their parent company, Efi Loo Publishing, LLC, become a reality. (It’s important for you not to go it alone for depending upon the state, or country, you live in tax laws can vary and it’s also important to ensure you are getting the proper benefits of owning a business.)
Now I’m not saying I only write with the intent to make a profit, because I still write stories for the pure pleasure of it. What I am saying is I approach my writing with the entrepreneurial spirit of running a business (read my post about it here) and that I’m proud to be part of the community of self-employed authors.
How about you, what’s your motive for writing? Have you ever considered turning your writing life into a business?
Next week, we’ll explore things you can do to “brand” you as an author, and stay tuned for an upcoming announcement to an exciting addition to The Unknown Author!
The Unknown Author