Susan Grossey

Riches (are still) beyond my wildest dreams

At this time every year, I have to face learning whether I can retire to a glorious chateau somewhere and devote myself to my Art, to my Muse, to my Writing.  For non-UK readers, we have a bizarre situation where our tax year runs from 6 April of one year to 5 April of the next.  (It’s all to do with an ancient new year’s day being on 25 March, and then the Gregorian calendar getting involved.)  And so around the start of May I dig out all of my records to find out whether I have made any money from being a writer over the past year.  Last year, you may recall, I made a loss of £44.87 – in other words, for the honour of spending hours and hours and hours on writing and trying to sell the blasted things, I had to hand over nearly fifty quid.

Would this year be any better, I wondered?  I added up all the royalties I have received from Amazon, Smashwords and ACX (for the audiobooks), and the lovely cheques I have received from bricks-and-mortar bookshops.  And then I subtracted all the things I pay for in order to create these books.  (I should say that I don’t charge myself anything for office space, heating, lighting, printer cartridges and so on, because all of that is charged to “other Susan” for my day job.)  But I do include, for instance, paying for the design of book covers and bookmarks, and ordering copies of books from CreateSpace to deliver to those bricks-and-mortar bookshops, and subscribing to the Society of Authors.

And I can report – taxman please take note and pity – that this year I have increased my loss to a rather worrying £288.71.  I have gone a bit mad on the covers this year (two paperbacks and two audiobooks), but still, it’s rather sad, isn’t it?  What I shall do is divide it by twelve, and reason with myself that my hobby is costing me only £24 a month.  Ho hum.

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  1. Roy McCarthy Avatar
    Roy McCarthy

    My losses eclipse yours many times Susan. Our taxman pities me so much he doesn’t even ask for the calculations 😦

  2. ihatemoneylaundering Avatar

    Tee hee! Ah well, neither of us went into this expecting to make a fortune, and it’s at least nice to be proved right!

  3. Graham Avatar

    Dear Susan

    I am sorry to hear that you have had to postpone your dream chateau escape for another year but I do think that your reasoning of this being a very modestly priced hobby is a good way to approach things.

    You also have the intangible rewards to factor in …. sharing the wonderfully descriptive and interesting world of Sam and Martha with your various appreciative readers (via the very positive Amazon review ratings, HNS awards etc).

    Best wishes


  4. ihatemoneylaundering Avatar

    Hello Graham

    I think the proof is in the pudding: my husband asked whether, with this grievous loss of £288.71, I wanted to give up “Planking”. I think the horrified look on my face gave the game away! You are so right: there is much more to this than money, and I don’t think I could stop if I tried. And knowing that there are some people enjoying the books is all the encouragement I need. Thank you for reminding me.

    Best wishes from Susan

  5. Which is your preferred Plank? | Susan Grossey

    […] could – the rules permit me to – enter more than one, but each entry costs £25 and we all know how much profit I am already making as an author…  Back in 2013 I did enter this competition – unsuccessfully – with “Fatal Forgery”, so I […]

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