Tax Deductions for Writers

February 13th, 2012 → 8:20 am @ // No Comments

IRS 1040 Tax Form Being Filled Out
Creative Commons License photo credit: kenteegardin

Here are some common tax deductions for writers, authors, bloggers and self-publisher:

  • Advertising and promotional costs including your website, ads, bookmarks and business cards that serve as advertisements.
  • Commission and fees. If you have an author that takes a commission based on your royalties, record it here. Some authors prefer to put their Paypal or shopping cart fees from book sales in this category. The IRS does allow merchant fees to be included in cost of goods sold. Some authors the fees to be more visible so they know what they are spending on merchant fees. This helps them shop for a better plan.
  • Car expenses. Use a mileage log or a calendar. The IRS requires the records be kept contemporaneously, meaning you should not rely on your memory. Estimates are not allowed; there must be actual mileage records. The IRS sets the per mile rate and adjusts it annually. For example from January to June 30, 2011 the mileage rate for business miles was $.50/mile. After July 1, 2011 it is $.51 per mile.
  • Contract labor for your editor, graphic designer, or anyone you hire as an independent contractor.

Carol Topp, CPA


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