Bookkeeping for Writers: Dealing with the Accounting Part of the Writing Business with Tax Tips for the U.S. and Canada

Posted on May 5, 2014 by   No Comments Yet | Posted in Uncategorized · Workshops

This class is for writers who either don’t want to or can’t afford to hire an accountant to keep track of their business finances.

The class will deal will accounting practices, basic instructions in Quicken & Excel, how to set up your books, and includes useful tax tips for writers in the US and Canada.

Are you comingling your money for writing expenses and personal ones? Did you know that the way you are handling your income and expenses can affect whether all your writing expenses are tax deductible instead of just part of them? Did you know there are legal tax tricks that can save you money on income taxes? Do you know how to deal with things like getting a tax ID number? Do you know how to avoid a random audit on your business and/or personal income taxes and how to keep red flags off your tax returns? The class will handle all this and more.

Lesson Plan:

This is a four week class with two lessons a week as described below and plenty of time for questions and responses:

1. Business or Hobby. Which category does your writing fall under? How to tell the difference, and what that difference makes with regard to your taxes.

2. Setting up your books. How to set up your books so that your expenses are tax deductible.

3. Basic Quicken. Step by step instructions. How to enter data, categorize it, and run reports.

4. Basic Excel. Step by step instructions. How to set up Excel to run basic formulas and act as an accounting system.

5. Things You Need to Know For Identity Protection. Tips that can help protect your identity, what to do if your identity is stolen.

6. Tax Tips – Part One. What tax forms to file for the different types of businesses, how to avoid random audits, how to classify your business with the IRS, and how to keep red flags off your tax returns so you don’t get audited. If you have employees—state and federal payroll taxes, employee W-2s /1099s and when they apply to your business, how to set up an account to pay employee payroll taxes, pitfalls you need to be aware of as an employer. Independent Contractors, what they are and how they apply to your business. Independent Contractor Agreements and Non-Disclosure Agreements, when you need them, how to create them, and what to look for before you sign one as an independent contractor yourself.

7. Tax Tips – Part Two. Ditto to Lesson 6.

8. Legal Pitfalls. Things to watch out for so you don’t get sued, how to protect yourself, and what to do if the worst happens. Resources, links, and where to go for help when you need it.

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