Managing Your Business Expenses

business expenses I hope you had a great Christmas and enjoyed the fellowship and gift exchanges with family and friends! Now that Christmas is over, in a few more days we’ll be celebrating the New Year, which means it won’t be long until we self-employed folks have to fork over some of our earnings to Uncle Sam. With that in mind, I thought I give you a few tips on how you can manage your business expenses. These tips will help you give as little as possible to Uncle Sam. Furthermore, they’ll help you keep your writing business more organized in 2011 and the years to follow.

Business Expenses You Can Claim

As long as your yearly investments had to do with your writing business, you can pretty much claim them. Some of the things we writers can claim are: mileage for any travel related to a writing job, any equipment bought for writing (laptop, computer, printer, fax, digital camera, flash drive, etc.), telephone expenses for interviews, research and fact checking, supplies (printer paper, ink cartridges, etc..), charitable contributions, books that you bought to help you learn more about the industry, advertising expenses, insurance expenses, postage expenses and more — visit the IRS Website for additional information.

Managing Your Business Expenses

  • Keep receipts of everything you buy (online and offline) related to your writing business.
  • Keep a record of all your business expenses. The easiest way to do this is to create a spreadsheet with four columns: purchase date (date you made the purchase), amount spent (how much you paid), what (the name of the product or service you bought) and for (what the item, service or etc. was bought for).
  • File all your receipts in a folder labeled business expense receipts or something similar.

I hope you found these tips helpful. Join me again in 2011 for another post. In that post, you’ll discover how to build a store on your writing website that will help you increase your income in 2011. I plan to share a list of writing-related products you can sell, so stay tuned! Until then, I hope you have a very happy, safe, blessed and prosperous New Year!

Photo credit: Mat Honan


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7 Responses to “Managing Your Business Expenses”

  • Tammy:

    I’ve earned $3000 + every single month since May writing for Demand Studios. September was my best month, at $4100. I write 5-6 hours a day, which is a lot less than I would work at any full-time job. I send queries and do other writing after I’m done with the DS articles. Content writing is not for everybody. To make it work, you need to be fast. If you’re going to spend 8 hours at the computer every day and earn less than $2000 a month, then it’s not worth it. But it can work if you do it right.

    • Tammy,

      That’s a nice amount of income, no doubt; however, one would have to know a little more information, and then do the math to figure just exactly how much you’re earning per hour.

      I use to write a lot for Demand Studios too. The pay of $15.00 per article on top of pay-per-view earnings is better than the other content mills pay, but the amount of research required and the time and effort you put into writing the article and following their strict guidelines, is a one reason I stopped writing so much for them. Another reason was when I sat down and figured up exactly how much I was actually making per hour writing for DS, I realized I was making less than minimum wage — or what minimum wage is in my state. It was then that I decided to take the time I was spending writing articles for DS and use it on marketing my writing services. A few months later I began earning an income that was worth my time and effort.

      I could go on and on with this one, but instead of making my comment too long, I’m going to make a note to myseft to do a whole blog post on writing for Demand Studios.

      • Tammy:

        Sorry, didn’t see this response until now. I write only $25 articles for Demand. An article never takes me more than 1 hour. I only do a few articles every day (usually between 4 and 6). The rest of the day is spent on other writing, private clients, sending out queries, etc. I think if you can put a few hours into content writing and then do something else the rest of the day, the combination can be quite lucrative.

  • Tom:

    As a self-employed persons, it is our responsibility and I think advantage to always keep track of everything we are spending money for. It can help a lot in lessening the burden of tax.

  • Jean:

    Hi Misti. Why haven’t you updated your blog anymore? Your money/life posts in particular were really motivating.

    • Jean, I just published a new post yesterday morning that explains why I haven’t blogged for a while. I plan to update more often now, so you can expect more advice soon. Thanks so much for your comment. It’s always nice to hear from a reader I helped or inspired in some way. 😉 Blessings and best wishes!

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