Tag Archives: money

Authors Answer 143 – The First Book Advance

Writing books is a job. Most authors do it with the hope that they can become a full time author, and be able to support themselves on the income they receive. But that first advance is a big milestone in any author’s career. This week’s question comes from our very own C E Aylett.

I would also like to take a moment and thank Beth Aman for her contributions in the past year. She’s going to college, and will be concentrating on that. Good luck, Beth!

Question 143 – What would you/did you spend your first book advance on?

Linda G. Hill

I would spend my advance getting myself out of debt. …wait, how much are we talking? More than $30,000? I’ll probably go out for coffee.

Cyrus Keith

Probably a car. I’ve never had a car that I didn’t have to spend dark, cold evenings in my driveway effecting repairs to get to work the next morning. Even my best cars needed the Desperation Treatment at least once. At least I’m a halfway decent backyard mechanic.

D. T. Nova

I’m not sure what, but I’m sure that whatever special thing I spent part of it on right away wouldn’t cost a very large portion of it.

Paul B. Spence

Cookies? What does anyone spend any money on? Bills? Food? Books? Whatever? I’m not sure that I see an advance as anything other than a paycheck.

Jean Davis

I splurged on a comfortable writing chair. Not that my advance covered the whole purchase, but it did go towards it. I figured if I was finally going to be serious about this writing thing, I should have a chair that I wanted to sit in, one that felt like a reward for years of toiling over words and would motivate me to continue to do so.

Gregory S. Close

Any book advance I receive, if I ever am so fortunate, would go in the bank to pay the bills like any other income. If we’re talking a ridiculous sort of advance, where the money spilleth over… well, then I’d like to do something nice for the family – maybe a remodel of the house, or something really exciting like saving for my daughter’s college.

Eric Wood

I would spend it on a vacation. Naturally, while on vacation I would be looking for more writing inspiration – new characters, new settings, new plot twists, etc. It’s always fun to people watch and it provides ample opportunity to find people to put in a book.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

It really depends on the size of the advance – the average of which I am woefully uneducated in – but after some thought on the topic, I think I’d go with a couple of new gadgets, specifically a new phone and laptop. My current laptop is huge, heavy, and bulky, and is getting old enough that it’s starting to act up in some really annoying ways, which makes things like writing, for example, rather annoying. My phone is way too old, gets way too hot, and I actually recently dropped it and shattered the screen, so…yeah. It’d be nice to have a new one of those right now!

H. Anthe Davis

I’m a saving kinda person, so I’m sure I would deposit any large check immediately and bask in the increase of my overall savings account. Money is fodder for more projects, though, so I imagine I’d at least mentally dedicate part of it to cover art payments and other acts of brand upkeep. Oh, and maybe get some sushi.

C E Aylett

Depends how big it is. If a small advance probably clear the household bills! If anything was left over, take the kids to Disney in Paris.

If it was a big advance, I’d invest in some sort of property and rent it out so I would always have an income to support my writing, no matter what twists and turns came up in my career. I’d still take the kids to Disney, though.

Jay Dee Archer

I have a feeling this will be a common answer. I’ll pay bills. I think for any kind of income, a lot of it will go toward anything that is obligatory. Bills. If it’s a large advance, bills would be paid for quickly, but I’d probably save most of the money. And if it were a ridiculously large advance, I’d go on a trip and buy a car. Or buy a car and go on a trip. Not at the same time, of course! A road trip would be nice, but my wife and I want to travel overseas.

How about you?

If you’re an author, what would or did you use your first advance on? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Income from YouTube

As you all know, I’m making videos on YouTube, and have already done three new ones in the past week. That’s a pretty good pace for me. It’s a pace I’d like to keep up. I’ll be doing short vlog style videos for a while about our move to Canada. They’ll mainly just be me talking and maybe showing you what I see (especially when we’re on the move, going places).

The videos for A Taste of Japan will be coming, don’t worry. I’ve found them difficult to work on because of the amount of time required to edit them. They are big videos with many pieces to stitch together. I’ll be doing another video for that this weekend, actually. Going to Kawazu in Ito City, Shizuoka. It’s on the Izu Peninsula, which is famous for hot springs and resorts. We’ll be seeing the Kawazuzakura, or Kawazu cherry trees, which should be in full bloom. We’ll be spending a night with my wife’s parents at a hotel there, and we can enjoy some hot springs. Believe it or not, that’ll be the first time I’m experiencing hot springs in Japan! I’ll be sure to take whatever video I can for another installment of A Taste of Japan.

But what I want to mention is that once we get to Canada, I’m going to have my YouTube channel monetized. That means that I’ll be getting advertising income from Google/YouTube, though it’ll be incredibly small. That is unless I can get more subscribers and views. I currently have 45 subscribers (the 45th subscribed yesterday!), and haven’t been consistent in creating content, so I understand that small number. But now that I’m getting serious about it, I hope to increase that number by quite a bit. So, this is where you come in. If you haven’t already done so, please subscribe to my YouTube channel. I would be incredibly grateful. And whenever you can, please share my videos.

The future of my channel looks bright. In addition to the immigration vlog, I’ll be doing travel videos for Japan and Canada in the short term. I also plan on doing a lot of videos related to books and writing, though I’m not sure what direction to take that yet. Actually, if you have any suggestions about what I could do, that would be great. I’m always open to that. You can leave your suggestions in the comments below. And thanks to those of you who subscribe!

Writing Books: Money and Fame Versus Personal Enjoyment

I’m often asked if I’m writing to make money or become famous. I’m pretty certain that will never happen. I mean the famous part. I may make some money, but I doubt it’ll be enough to make it a full-time career. So, is it for my own personal enjoyment?

I love making stories. I love to create a world I can call my own, make my own rules, and have people live the way I wish I could live. And I want to share it. I want my world to inspire people, make them want to live there, and give readers a temporary place for their minds to live in. I think that’s what a lot of people enjoy doing while they read, experiencing another way of life. And I’m enjoying doing it (if I can find the time).

But part of me wants to become successful at it. I want to be able to make enough money to do this full time. But fame? As an introvert who doesn’t particularly enjoy being the focus of attention, I’d like to skip that. But the money, sure! I mean, what author wouldn’t want to be able to make money doing what they love?

What am I really doing this for? I think the main thing is for myself. I want to enjoy telling stories. If I make money at it, that just makes it easier for me to devote more time to make more stories for people to enjoy.

What about you? If you’re an author, how would you explain the balance between money, fame, and personal enjoyment? Let me know in the comments below.

Life in Japan: Least Favourite Thing

Another week has passed. Time goes by too quickly. Well, it’s time for another question about living in Japan. This is kind of a part two question from the last week.  Again, it’s S. R. Carrillo asking.

What’s your least favorite part about living in Japan?

JPY_BanknotesUnlike the last question, I find this one easy to answer. There are some things I don’t like about living in Japan (cockroaches, very big spiders, drivers who run red lights), but there’s one really big thing that I don’t like.  Banks.

Japanese banks are pretty similar to those in other countries.  They have ATMs, they have bank tellers, they have many services. However, the ATMs tend to only be open during business hours or slightly longer than business hours. But that’s not the worst thing. The banking system is rather archaic.

In Canada, waiting in line to see a teller isn’t that long, and once you’re up there, you can get everything done within two or three minutes with a minimum of paperwork.  Everything is electronic.

In Japan, you take a number and wait.  And wait and wait. Often fifteen to thirty minutes. Then your number is called and you go up, give them the forms, the money (if depositing), and then they give you another number.  As I watch the bank teller, he or she (usually she) works on processing the transaction…on paper. She then hands it off to another person who works on it for a few minutes, still on paper. Then that person hands it to yet another person who works on it, also on paper. They don’t use computers very much.  Finally, they bring it back to the teller, who then calls me up to get my paperwork and anything else.  Total time waiting can be up to an hour, though I’ve gotten through everything in as little as fifteen minutes.  That’s rare, though.

For a country that’s high tech, the banking system is incredibly old-fashioned. And everyone pays with cash! I’m used to that now, but when I return to Canada, I’m going to find it strange using my debit card again.

If you have any questions, check out the original post and leave a comment with your question.  Any comments on this subject, leave them below.