Author to Business Owner: Annie Eskeldson

April 2nd, 2012 → 8:00 am @

Author to Business Owner is designed to provide first-hand business tips for any writer. Each special guest has graciously imparted knowledge of their writing business in hopes of encouraging fellow authors to grow and manage their own businesses.

I am pleased to introduce Annie Eskeldson! After her daughter was diagnosed with autism, Annie decided that she would provide the therapy and schooling her daughter needed. Along the way, Annie documented her family’s story into a series of children’s books, as an encouragement to other families with autistic children. This highly recommended series, The Ashi’s Gift Series, contains three stories: Ashi’s Gift, Ashi: In a Class All By Myself, and Ashi’s Birthday and Other Dreaded Days. She has a wonderful story, and is full of great advice for fellow authors.

Welcome, Annie! Tell us what you write.

I write children’s books about autism.

Do you write full-time or do you still have a day job?

I am a stay-at-home mom, homeschooler, author, blogger, the “accountant” for our family business, and most recently, speaker.

Wow, that must keep you busy! Could you share with us a brief summary of your writing career?

I began writing after providing thousands of hours of therapy for my autistic daughter. She began reading at age 2. We spent many, many countless hours at the library. Just once, I would’ve loved to have picked up a book about what we were going through, something that told the story through the child’s eye (because we were always in the children’s section) but yet something that nurtured the parent. I couldn’t find them, so I wrote them.

That’s great. In terms of your writing business, how have you organized it?

I am the sole proprietor.

Have you ever hired a CPA?

We actually own a business, a doughnut shop, and since I do all of our accounting, payroll, taxes, everything, I’m already used to keeping records. So keeping them concerning my books is pretty natural.

Are there any helpful business tools that you use for your business?

I’m a fan of QuickBooks and TurboTax.

What is it that you love about being a business owner?

Being a business owner is very hard work – especially for restaurant owners. My husband works nights, and so I am at home with the kids during the day. This is a fabulous schedule. I’m more behind the scenes – moving the money around, shuffling papers and forms, taxes, payroll, advertising – the numbers person. It’s a good mix.

Before we wrap up, is there any advice you have for other authors about being a business owner?

I have had other authors ask me about record keeping, so there is a need to know about that. Keeping good records is important. Personally, all of our receipts go into a “to be processed box.” Later, I enter all of the info into QuickBooks, and then file all of the entered receipts into another box labeled with the appropriate year. I have hard copies of everything as well as an electronic record.

We appreciate your time, Annie. Thank you for the invaluable advice! Parents, be sure to visit her website,, to take a look at her children’s series, like Ashi’s Birthday pictured on the left. It could be just the tool you are looking for! Annie emphasizes record keeping in her writing business. She is dead on. If you are unsure how to maintain good record keeping in your business, find tips and methods in my book, Business Tips and Taxes for Writers

Carol Topp, CPA


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