Most authors start off self-publishing as a purely creative endeavor, with little expectation around writing more books or earning a great deal. But if you get the bug of writing, you may find yourself with a lot of intellectual property assets that earn you a decent income every month. At that point, you might well be running your own author business!
In today's show, Helen Sedwick talks about how to turn your writing hobby into a business.
In the intro, I mention some of my highlights from London Book Fair (more on that later this week on the blog), which coincided with the launch of the new Amazon Kindle Oasis at the premium end of the ebook device market. Remember also to check out the sessions from the Indie Author Fringe, which presented a 24 hour online summit that you can still access on the Self Publishing Advice site. It includes the recording of the session on Sell more books in more formats in more countries with me, Mark Dawson, Orna Ross and Toby Mundy.
The corporate sponsorship for this show pays for hosting and transcription. This podcast episode is sponsored by 99 Designs, where you can get all kinds of designs for your author business including book covers, merchandising, branding and business cards, illustrations and artwork and much more. You can get a Powerpack upgrade which gives your project more chance of getting noticed by going to: 99Designs.com/joanna
Helen Sedwick is a California attorney with 30 years' experience representing a diverse range of businesses and entrepreneurs. She writes historical fiction, and is well known in the indie author world for The Self-Publisher's Legal Handbook and has also recently co-written How Authors Sell Publishing Rights with Orna Ross (which we recently discussed on the podcast here).
Her latest product is Publishing Business in a Box, which we're talking about today.
- The maturation of the indie author community.
- What an ‘author business' means, and the point at which authors should start thinking about their writing as a business.
- The challenges of the indie author business.
- The two types of record-keeping that author entrepreneurs need to be conscious of, and the software available to support an author business.
- Pen names, publisher names and imprint names, and what name your books should be copyrighted under.
- The ways that an author business can evolve legally and with accounts etc.
- On financing a new author business, including when crowdfunding works.
- The number one problem Helen sees with self-published books.
- Contracts with editors and other freelancers, what authors should look out for, and how to stay out of trouble with contracts.
- Things to watch out for if an author is writing non-fiction about other people.