To listen to the show: http://bit.ly/xnnKR4
Today let’s talk about why it’s essential to treat your book and writing career like a business.
Although the facts show that less than 10% of writers make a full-time living from their books, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t treat your book and writing career as a hobby.
The fact is your book is a business and your writing career really is a profession. If you treat it that way, it will grow.
All good businesses require new product creation, creative product introductions, great marketing platforms, sales strategies, savvy financial management, good legal representation and more.
How do you treat your writing career and books? Are they a hobby? Or do they have scheduled times in your calendar for you to pay attention to them?
Business managers like today’s show guest, Anita Katzen, see creative artists like writers treat their careers as a hobby but spend money on them and from them like it was a business with a paycheck. If you want your writing career to pay, then you’ll need to treat it as a business so it has every opportunity to generate money for you.
Writers really are a dime a dozen. More than 81% of Americans want to write a book. The writers who succeed see their craft as a discipline that requires a support team and give it their dedicated time and attention.
Today’s author guest, Carla Neggers, knows this well. She writes more than one book a year and continues to grow her writing career and business. Every time we have the opportunity to talk with her about another book, she’s constantly expanding her reach, following, number of bestsellers and her sales. She’s a great example of how to treat your books like a business.
Writing is really a full-time job. It requires everything you’ve got from great imagination to research, creativity, craft and perseverance. It also requires joy and commitment to make it work and to make you want to keep doing it day in and day out.
If you intend to use your books as your hook for your great writing career and legacy, treat it like a business. When you treat your projects well and support them with everything you’ve got, they’ll support you and your dreams in ways you may have never imagined.
Guest Blogger, Anita Katzen, CPA & Partner at Schulman Wolfson & Abruzzo LLP
To listen to Anita’s interview on the show: http://bit.ly/xnnKR4
When people think of the entertainment industry they think of the fame, privilege, perks, and financial success. What is not in the forefront are the team who help guide the entertainers such as agents, lawyers, stylists, personal assistants and business managers, to name a few. These professionals become not just business related necessities but confidants and an important part of managing fame.
Unfortunately, too often, we hear of entertainers who end up losing it all, filing for bankruptcy, and even some having no place to live. This can partly be the result of poor business management advice. Finding the right business manager is important to protect the things that are important: financial stability, planning for the future, and sustaining life while doing what you are passionate about.
In my over 25 years as a successful business manager for the day to day finances, finding the right business manager can come down to three areas: Helping you map out what is important to be financially content, helping you control your spending, and helping you save for not just the ups and downs but the future.
Here are a few things to take into consideration when looking for a great business manager:
Helping you map out what is important…
A good manager steers their clients to make their money work for them. Helping clients get a handle on purchasing what they need as opposed to what they want. It is important to find out “what are the top 5 things important to you?” The answers could range from the tangible such as clothing, travel, and entertainment to future security. The bottom line is they can always easily answer the question. My belief is they can have all they want, but they have to do away with everything else that you don’t really care about.
Helping you control spending…
It is vital to find someone who will help get control of spending, which in some cases could take years to stabilize. Many clients engage a business manager because they have found themselves in debt. Often, entertainers, especially early in their careers, spend more than they make. They don’t take into consideration the fees going out for the agent and manager; usually 10% for agents and 15% for managers. In some professions in the industry, such as models, the agent fees are sometimes 20%. After those fees they need to pay the expenses like everyone else which include taxes, personal expenses, and living expenses.
To combat with the fees, the entertainers’ mentality usually is I WANT IT NOW! Unfortunately so many don’t know what it means to do without or even just put off buying something on a whim. A good business manager will try to teach their clients the difference between wants and needs. This becomes especially important when most have an unsteady income. For example, an actor’s series ends; or musicians often have many sources of income that are unpredictable and erratic; producers and filmmakers work years on a project. Often there is not a big payday at the end of these projects. The concept of wanting it now can be particularly challenging in today’s world. We are constantly bombarded with advertisements, promotions, and tactics to show us what is available to buy, making it even harder for people who don’t have a controlled spending mentality.
Helping you plan for the future…
A good business manager pushes their clients to save money. That savings will help them carry through the tougher times, when the paychecks are not rolling in, and will help them maintain their cash flow in retirement. I always stress to my clients that you need to have your assets work for you. For example, if they have vacation homes, they could rent out when they are not using them. Entertainers who purchase many homes cannot necessarily afford to pay the overhead without receiving rental income.
A good manager is not afraid to say NO. They are there to pay the bills, make sure the entertainer is receiving their income through contracts, payroll, and residuals. They are most importantly there to make sure the entertainer is putting their money away for the future and for retirement.
I think the best example of what you are looking for can be found in this quote from my client, Melissa Archer, an actress on One Life to Live, “When I first met my business manager I didn’t know much about money except how to spend it. When someone could take me, the girl who spent money like tokens at the arcade, and put me on a budget that worked for my personality, and then saved me a ton of money, that to me is a good business manager. Someone you can trust and someone who wants you to do better”
To listen to the show: http://bit.ly/zSpFrC
Today let’s talk about why publishing a book helps you help others.
Many people do a variety of things to help others. Some work professionally as teachers, trainers, consultants and coaches. Others work in the healthcare field. Some work in a non-profit organization. Others volunteer, and still others find ways to support their local communities in some meaningful way. Everyone wants to make a difference somehow some way.
Writing and publishing a book about an area you have a specialty in helps so many people in a lot of different ways. If you write a novel, you help people learn through stories about the expertise you have in an area affecting their lives. If you write a nonfiction book, you can strut your stuff in a how-to type of book, a cookbook, or a step-by-step guide to whatever your specialized insights apply to. If you write a children’s book, you help parents and children foster their relationships while supporting the child with an essential skill for success – reading.
I’ve met a lot of people in different professions who say they don’t have time to write a book, much less figure out how to publish it.
Options abound for those who want to write a simple book these days. With the advent of self-publishing being more available through venues like today’s show guest, LuLu.com, and with e-publishing being easier than ever to do, it’s never been a better time to be a writer! With so many avenues to get published, all you really have to do is want to.
Understand this: your book is your hook in your area of expertise. The most important thing you can do is write it. The second most important is to get it published.
If you’re not sure what to do, try this:
Sit down and think about what it is you have to say about a particular subject that you’re an expert in. It doesn’t mean you have to write a how-to book in that area. You could also fashion a fictional story about it that leads the reader to the same conclusion through storytelling.
Consider whether a writing career is really for you. Perhaps you could start with a short story and see how it feels. Try it on like a sweater and see if it fits you.
Whatever you write and publish, know this: books heal, help and haunt the reader. They make people laugh, cry, think, gasp and scream out loud. They touch our hearts. They heal our souls. They entertain us. They educate us and they enlighten us.
But the only way they do that is when you write one.
By Guest Blogger, Joanna Poppink, MFT, Psychotherapist, Author, Lecturer
To listen to Joanna Poppink’s interview on the “Your Book Is Your Hook!” Show: http://bit.ly/zSpFrC
Conari Press wanted an eating disorder recovery self-help book for adult women. I wanted to write it. We were a match. In August, 2011 Healing Your Hungry Heart: Recovering From Your Eating Disorder reached bookshelves in stores throughout the United States and the United Kingdom.
As I wrote HHH, my book deepened and changed, and so did I. I wrote too much and too little. I told. I stopped telling. I shared and described. I kept the sharing but stopped describing and told stories. I told stories I never dreamed I would tell.
The North Star I followed was an ever changing yet consistent image of my reader. I saw her living a life governed by an eating disorder. I had been that woman. I’ve seen her in my private psychotherapy practice. I’ve heard her speak in 12-step meetings. I’ve heard her on the telephone choking with tears. I’ve read her stories in letters she’s written to me for 25 years. I’ve heard her loved ones tell me their stories and hers.
Throughout every phase of book creation I saw her – a living collage of womanhood yet always being herself. I wanted to show her how she could work her way out of the horrors of an eating disorder and into freedom.
If you are writing a self-help book, please keep the person you want to teach close to your heart and clearly in your mind. Have empathy for your reader’s experience as he or she tries to follow your guidance.
To win my reader’s trust, I told some of my story. The editor at Conari said I mentioned a Cornish lover. I either had to say more or cut it because, as it was, it teased the reader. I decided to tell my private story because I believed that in the telling my reader would recognize herself too.
I realized my reader could tire as she worked her way through my book so I created a “Recovery Check-In” chapter. It’s a rest stop to review progress, reflect on success and gently contemplate challenges ahead.
As I wrote, I got news of a sexually exploiting situation between a professional in the field and a woman in early recovery. I had days of sorrow and rage at the betrayal. I told my publisher I needed to include sexuality in my writing. My editor said, “Follow your heart and write to your reader.” I added a chapter called, “Sex, Stalking and Exploitation.”
As you write your self-help book, make your information accessible by keeping a clear picture in your mind and heart of your reader’s life, why they need what you are sharing, and how they feel as they follow your suggestions. Your reader is your North Star that leads you to the book you need to write and they need to read.
My hook? Healing Your Hungry Heart brings me clients, opportunities to speak, and new connections with wonderful people in the healing community.