Book Beat Babes

Book Beat Babes

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Non-Writing Part of Writing

There is a must-read article for all writers of all levels that I just finished reading.  The title is:  How to Succeed as an Author:  Give up on Writing, by Lionel Shriver.  Here’s the link:

Now you might wonder why I would recommend such an article based on this title but Shriver does an excellent job of supporting what I said in my first blog, and that is that writing is hard work.  Well, not only is writing hard work, but often all the ancillary activities that accompany the status of becoming a published author are as well.  And this is regardless of your path to publishing – traditional publisher, small press, self-published or a hybrid of any of the above.

Shriver also lays out very clearly just what those ancillary activities are and if you think back to my last blog about intent-to-make-a-profit or IMP, something the IRS uses as one of its many yard sticks during audits, then in my opinion this article is basic reading for all those who aspire to become, or already have become, a published author.

In my last blog on IMP I made the strong suggestion that writers maintain a journal/diary/log (whatever you want to call it) of all their writing and writing related activities.  This article spells out what many of those activities are.  I would further suggest that all writers keep a copy of this article (electronic or paper) with your tax records so that should you ever face an audit and want to have supporting references for why you do what you do as a writer, you can refer to this article.  It’s akin to having a job description or work plan as most companies do for their employees.

Furthermore, all of this feeds into the concept of Material Participation (MP) which we will discuss in more detail very soon.

Until then, read the Shriver article and we’ll meet back up next week at Book Beat Babes to explore more about some of those other haunting topics such as MP.


  1. Thanks for your helpful advice, Terri!

    Morgan Mandel

  2. Interesting link.

    The non-writing part of being a writer does indeed take up a lot of time that could be spent doing some actual writing. It's a tough balancing act.

  3. Schriver seems over-whelmed with the task of being a famous writer. We don't have to be famous to feel over-burdened with the many hats we writers wear.