Let's face it, writers haven't always had to consider themselves business people…until they have climbed to the big time and found themselves in charge of a media empire. When they make the New York Times best seller lists year after year, win a Pulitzer Prize or two, have a block buster movie series based on their short stories or novels and they start seeing their bank account numbers climb over the 6 digits, only then did authors start thinking about themselves as business people.
Self-publishing has changed all of that. With the onset of all the choices writers must face, come tremendous opportunities. Now you can send your fiction or non-fiction to a traditional publisher or you can self-publish or, as many people are now doing, you can take on a blended approach. You can write what you want to write and publish it yourself if you want. You can publish your back list, if you have one and have the e-rights.
Contracts with publishers are getting more restrictive. Margins with the online retailers are more lucrative.
You have more choices which means you have more decisions to make. And each decision is a business decision, but take heart! A lot of writers are also business people having either had companies of their own or have worked for start-ups or small business, or have experienced all three! And like all writers, these business people understand the need to pay back to other writers. No one knows how to write well without help from other writers, which is why the writing community is an amazing place to work.
The desire to give back is why I wrote The Writer's Business Plan book. Not to rip other writers off but to pass along the knowledge I've accumulated over the past 30 years of my business career (with the past 15 years spent helping small businesses) to help others turn their passion into a profitable business for themselves. I firmly believe you need a plan for your writing business so you can make the money you need to keep writing. And let's face it – the world is a better place the more authors we have writing and publishing!