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View Full Version : Taxes for self-published authors?



HannahWing
12-18-2014, 03:33 AM
I'm wondering if anyone has any good resources for doing taxes as a self published author. I've always done my own taxes and found it pretty breezy, even as a business owner, but I'm feeling a little lost when it comes to preparing to file as a self-published author and I'm not finding a ton of information on it. For people that have filed taxes before, do you file as though you were a business owner/self employed? What kind of expenses do you write off on your taxes?

I'm specifically looking for help with Canadian taxes, but I'm hoping this will be helpful to more than just me, so feel free to share anything that you feel would be useful information. I'm just trying to prepare things in advance since last year I left everything to the last minute and well, that was a horror show.

EDIT:

I spoke to soon, I've finally found this page which provides useful information: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tp/it504r2-consolid/it504r2-consolid-e.html#P81_3785

Also, sorry to the mods if I've asked a stupid question that you're going to have to delete/move. I never set out to make your job more difficult!

veinglory
12-18-2014, 05:03 AM
I just declare it as miscellaneous income and pay the tax. There may be better ways to do it but as I have no expenses to deduct this is good enough for me.

knight_tour
12-18-2014, 10:27 AM
I'm curious about this as well, and I hope the mods don't just close the thread like they did before, saying we should just talk to a tax attorney. We can't all afford one, we should be smart enough to take everything we read with a grain of salt and do more research, and I live in Azerbaijan where I can't talk to an attorney anyway (doing so by email doesn't thrill me in the slightest). I don't see why it's a bad thing to have experienced authors give us some insights as to their process for doing taxes related to this business. For example, if I have sales here at the end of the year but I don't receive payments until next year, does that count as income for this year or next?

Polenth
12-18-2014, 11:00 AM
Tax rules vary by country, so the advice for someone living in Canada isn't likely to help much in Azerbaijan.

Old Hack
12-18-2014, 11:52 AM
Also, sorry to the mods if I've asked a stupid question that you're going to have to delete/move. I never set out to make your job more difficult!

You've not asked a stupid question, Hannah, so don't worry about that. The problem is that you're asking for professional advice which we can't give; and if you get bad advice and follow it, you could end up in trouble.

You need to speak to a suitably qualified professional, not ask the advice from a random bunch of people on the internet. So I'm going to lock this, just as I lock all the other threads which are started on this subject. Sorry.


I'm curious about this as well, and I hope the mods don't just close the thread like they did before, saying we should just talk to a tax attorney.

If you disagree with a mod's actions take it to PM. Don't derail threads by complaining about it out in the open.


We can't all afford one, Proper accounting is one of the basic requirements of any business. If you can't afford to make sure you're doing things right, then you have to question the validity of your business plan.


we should be smart enough to take everything we read with a grain of salt and do more research, You should be smart enough to realise that unqualified people on the internet can't do as good a job as a properly qualified professional.

My husband is a highly qualified professional (not an accountant--he works in a different field) and he makes a substantial amount of his income by cleaning up the messes people make by trying to work without appropriate professional services. It's astonishing how costly it can become.


and I live in Azerbaijan where I can't talk to an attorney anyway (doing so by email doesn't thrill me in the slightest). Are there phones in Azerbaijan? And why is email not an option for you? I'm not being snarky, it just seems odd to me.


I don't see why it's a bad thing to have experienced authors give us some insights as to their process for doing taxes related to this business. Because, as Polenth has already pointed out, tax rules vary by country; and there are all sorts of variables depending on your business or employment status, your personal situation, and so on, so the advice you get might not be appropriate for your situation and will therefore be worthless--but you won't know, and so you could easily get yourself into a pickle by following it.

It's a complex situation, which is why tax advisors make so much money. They have to work hard and long to know what they're doing, and in my experience are worth every penny they charge.


For example, if I have sales here at the end of the year but I don't receive payments until next year, does that count as income for this year or next?As I am not an accountant I am not going to attempt to answer that.

Locking this.