The Entrepreneurial Business of Writing

Wednesday, Apr 19, 2017
Tagged As: business, publishing
Christine Taylor-Butler article header; a monochromatic, faded image of a collage of her books with the title written over it.

"Either your writing is a hobby, or it's a business. It can't be both," writes local author Christine Taylor-Butler in a recent blog post for KCSourceLink.

It's easy for writers to overlook the business aspect to writing. Much of the process is hidden and easy to ignore. If you aspire to make a living from your writing--or, at least, add to your income from it--you would do well to get to know that side of things.

Taylor-Butler says that you should start thinking of yourself as an entrepreneur. That's why she wrote the piece for KCSourceLink, whose mission is to "connect the individuals, organizations and institutions that support entrepreneurship to one another and the community at large to grow a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City."

The piece is titled: So You Want to Be a Full-time Writer? Take These 5 Steps First. In brief, here are the five steps she recommends:

  1. Be prepared to think of yourself as a business owner with skills.
  2. Be prepared to do the work with no assurance of a return on your investment right away.
  3. To make it work, you must learn, learn, learn.
  4. Don't approach more experienced people for mentoring. Work hard, and the right people will notice your work and "offer" the mentoring.
  5. Entrepreneurs need to cover all bases. You will be, in the beginning, the content creator, the finance person, the sales and marketing team, the web development team, and everything else including janitorial staff.

Check out the article to see what she has to say about each step, along with extra tips, an introduction, and an epilogue.

Although, we can't stop ourselves from sharing one more quote from the post:

But in this business, I recommend getting to know librarians and teachers. They're the Swiss Army knife of research and literature knowledge. Early in my career, when I felt stalled, librarians and teachers were my lifeline and my support system. They pointed me toward resources and sent notes of encouragement. Both are grossly underpaid, and unsung heroes in our community.

You can learn more about Christine Taylor-Butler in her Meet the Author interview we posted on this blog last year.