Business Tip #14 for Writers: Writing – Business or Hobby?

October 1st, 2012 → 8:00 am @

Most authors begin a writing business as a hobby, telling stories for fun and personal enjoyment. How do you know when your writing hobby turns into a writing business? A tricky question. Chapter 1 of my book, Business Tips and Taxes for Writers, answers just this question:

“How do you know if you have a hobby or a business? There is no set dollar threshold that changes a hobby writer into a professional. It depends primarily on your motivation for writing. The IRS has a few factors to consider:

The time and effort you spend in the activity can determine hobby status

The manner you conduct the activity, such as doing advertising or bookkeeping

Your expertise and prior success in a similar activity

Your profit motive and prior history of profits

Other sources of income

Take a look at your writing. Do any of these points seem to describe or determine whether or not your writing has become more than a hobby? You may be the owner of a writing business. Exciting! You now need to look at your writing in an entirely new light. For more details as to the distinction between writing as a hobby or business, Business Tips and Taxes for Writers provides the information you as a writer need. And if you feel your writing has become a business, it is the perfect place to go for the right steps to start operating your business!

Carol Topp, CPA

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