But I just want to sell a few books … my experience with PayPal Here and sales tax

Author Jane_SteenGuest Post
by Jane Steen

I never intended to get into the business of selling books directly to the public. Yes, the profit margin’s higher — $2 to $3 more per book than selling online or through a bookstore. But a sale online comes with a hike in my sales rank, and vendors take care of sales taxes and shipping — so why should I bother?

But I started getting invited to local events, accompanied by: “And we’d love it if you could bring books to sell.” Fine, I can do that, I thought. What would I need? A receipt book, some method for keeping records, a means of taking credit card payments, and … oh heck. I’m going to have to charge sales tax. I’m an Illinois resident, and in Illinois, there’s no lower limit under which you’re free to sell merchandise without charging sales tax. You’re required to charge it whether you sell goods as a professional or a hobbyist. Continue reading “But I just want to sell a few books … my experience with PayPal Here and sales tax”

Amazon and VAT

Euro_coins_and_banknotesAmericans who publish their books with KDP received an email earlier this month about VAT and how it impacts the prices of their books. If you were a lucky recipient of that email, you might have spent a split second wondering what it was about, just before your eyes glazed over.

VAT is the abbreviation for Value-Added Tax. It’s sort of the same as our sales tax here in the U.S., and sort of not. For the purchaser, it’s more or less a national sales tax. However, for sellers, it’s a tax on whatever they added to the product (or material or service) by what they did to get it in shape to sell. Here’s how Wikipedia explains it: Continue reading “Amazon and VAT”

Year-End Tax Help for Authors

Julian Block tax expertGuest Post
by Julian Block

The only time most of us think of doing something about our federal income taxes is once a year — the hours we spend actually grappling with Form 1040 or when gathering records to deliver them to a paid preparer. What we should do is make tax planning a year-round concern and position ourselves to take full advantage of the many opportunities that are available to lessen the amount that is siphoned off each year by the IRS. The savings can amount to many thousands of dollars. What follows are some tactics that not only can save taxes for 2014, but even provide a head start on 2015 as well. Continue reading “Year-End Tax Help for Authors”

Deduction, Deduction … What’s Your Function?

Whether we want to admit it or not, we are running a business with our writing. Sure, some consider it a hobby, but if you are paying expenses and receiving income, then no matter how big or small, you’ve got yourself a business.

Is this a Deduction?

Last week, I gave you an overview of what your options are in regards to establishing a corporation. Today, we will focus on ways to leverage the advantages to being self-employed. It doesn’t matter whether you incorporate or remain a sole proprietor, all the tips today apply to both. I hope this will serve as a nice checklist for you when sitting down to do taxes. Continue reading “Deduction, Deduction … What’s Your Function?”

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