The Career Author Podcast: Episode 61 – Should I Write For or Offer Services to Authors? (Part 1)

Services for authors

In many past episodes, the guys have discussed the importance of income diversification with multiple revenue streams. In today’s episode (part 1 of 2), Zach and J. dive deep into potential ways authors can help other authors while earning money. You will learn how to decide whether or not you should provide services for authors and more:

  • How face-to-face conversations can produce major creative breakthroughs
  • Why J. and Zach are doubling down on minimalism, both in their digital lives and their physical lives
  • The power of getting out of your comfort zone and the importance of building relationships outside of the writing community
  • A variety of ways to away from the screen
  • Why the guys offer services for authors
  • How to decide whether or not you should offer author services
  • The realities of trying to sell author services in today’s marketplace
  • The challenges of building an income through podcasting or blogging
  • Pros and cons of public speaking, coaching clients
  • Why you should never try to build a business by chasing trends
  • Some of the factors you need to consider before you offer courses for authors
  • What’s coming up in the second part of this discussion + the question you need to keep in mind as you listen to this conversation

The Career Author Podcast is a podcast where co-authors J. Thorn and Zach Bohannon share their struggles and successes as full-time authors, advice for improving your writing craft, and honest discussions of what it takes to build a successful career as an author.

Thanks to our newest Patrons: Brian Winston, Roland Denzel, Lynda Washington, Sharon Finster, Gavin Collinson, Holly Storck, Karen Rafinski

Get exclusive bonus content by supporting The Career Author Podcast on Patreon at www.patreon.com/thecareerauthor

Want to work with us? Get the details at https://thecareerauthor.com/services/


What about blogs? – https://shows.pippa.io/thewriterswell/episodes/ep105

The Author Life (J.’s new blog/podcast/YouTube) – https://theauthorlife.com/

The Career Author – http://www.thecareerauthor.com

The Career Author YouTube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmIYVcr1UdWgSvYpb3Ol3xg

StoryLevels – http://www.storylevels.com

Molten Universe Media – http://www.moltenuniversemedia.com

Events – https://thecareerauthor.com/events/  

21 thoughts on “The Career Author Podcast: Episode 61 – Should I Write For or Offer Services to Authors? (Part 1)

  • Hi guys great show today. Love the new website – I prefer this way of accessing your podcast. Interesting chat about getting out and away from the screen. I’m more of a loner than an introvert; maybe I would be happy being “Legend” or “Omega Man” but without the zombies although I’d probably still go mad (OK more mad than I already am, thanks lovely wifey Denise 🙂).
    Not interested in podcasting but if Seth, Jo, Mark and Chandler et al come calling I will unpack my Yeti. I’ll happily talk in public having spent 35 years in front of a class, or group of trainees. But I don’t want to do 200 talks a year. I would happily guest appear to promote my non-fiction book when it comes out and do other occasional appearances if requested but not as an income stream. I am going to contact a local annual Writing Festival at Winchester University where I got my MA in Creative Writing, to see if they would be interested in me doing a 1 hour session next year.
    The one thing I am interested in is running writing retreats, maybe only one a year and not for financial gain although I would want to break even. I thoroughly enjoyed my experiences on Authors on a Train and I was trained to organise in the military – “tomorrow morning everyone will parade at 0500 outside the front of the hotel for kit inspection and assault course training and you, yes you J, get your bloody haircut before the morning, and no Zach, I don’t care if it’s raining”… maybe I need to tone that side down a bit 🙂. Perhaps I shouldn’t do it on my own.
    Looking forward to next week’s show.

    • Hee hee. Interesting topic. Does hair contribute to personality? Have you ever had short hair as an adult? When I was in the army in the 1970s most civvies had long hair so I felt alienated and promised myself I would never have short hair when I left. But when I grew my hair I hated it. Now if I let my hair grow too much it makes me feel down and when I have it cut I feel alive and like a new person. 😉.

  • Zach – now I want to know that band name. I alway wanted start a girl punk band called Chopstick In My Eye. Probably because I can’t sing, but I love to belt along with anything metal, stoner, grunge, or punk.

    I know you were recommending social time not related to writing, but I love my writer’s group. We’re, small, juried (aka snobs who only let in people who are a good personality fit and serious about writing) and love each other like a family. We meet every two weeks to give feedback on each other’s writing, but it is hugely social. We spend a good chunk of each meeting catching up, joking, laughing, and eating. One of our members owns the restaurant where we meet.

    Hockey is great. I played house league the last two years in a row. Taking a break this year because the husband is tired of watching the kid for three hours every Sunday night. I play left wing, and shoot left-handed, even though I’m right-handed! What do you gentleman play?

  • First: weird website thing—it says there are 7 comments and I only see three. On mobile.

    Second! I’m eagerly awaiting part two, and my comment is more a side trail chasing a bunny…

    Meeting in person: I completely agree that meeting in person adds a layer to relationships and interactions. I do think that we live in a day and age where that spontaneity and closeness is hampered much less by distance, due to 1. (For better or worse) our constant online connection and 2. The different levels of messaging technology.

    Because I live in [not the US], my co-writer and I, who is one of my dearest friends, did not meet in person until November 2018. We had been friends since summer of 2017, and writing together since April 2018. Because we can’t count on “oh, we’ll see each other in [x] months,” our situation has forced us to throw the little thoughts at each other constantly, to have phone calls and vid calls and treat them just like we were sitting across from each other doodling in notebooks. Our circumstances have trained us to eliminate the pain points as soon as possible, because it’s just not possible to have quarterly or even yearly meetings. And our co-writing series is the thing that brings in the greatest percent of both our incomes, compared to all our other series.

    There is totally nothing that compares to sitting, drinking coffee with Real Live Humans, and if you can get together, that’s an awesome priority. I just want to throw in my flip side view and caution that folks shouldn’t let the inability to get together IRL keep them from pursuing opportunities with friends/business partners. (But also pursue IRL events, as the guys say.)

  • This was a very valuable episode for me. It’s a stark reminder of the dangers of putting the cart before the horse. I know for myself that one day I am confident that I will be a voice creative people can turn to for inspiration, explanation, insight, etc. It’s in my DNA; it’s a big part of my macro “why.” But I can’t get over excited. Even though I’ve honed my craft diligently for nearly a decade, I don’t currently have any authority, so to speak, to speak about such matters. I don’t have a book published, I don’t have social proof of my expertise. Again, I have studied for a very long time on many of these things, and I’ve gone through a lot of the process involved (working with editors, designing marketing, etc.), and I believe that one day I could contribute to the voices like yours and others out there. But I have more work to do in order to reach that mark. So for me, while “building a platform” is tempting—because, again, it plays into the long tail of my “why”—I always have to remind myself that I’m not really there yet. This podcast helped remind me of that. It was honestly very reassuring (and refreshing) to hear someone in your sphere say “you don’t have to do this stuff” and to remember WHY one might do this stuff in the first place. So thanks a million for that. Great show as always, guys!

  • Thank the heavens comments go here now! Posting to Patreon always feels like a hassle.

    Zach, if I shave my dreads off someday, I’m going to have them made into a wig that I can put on whenever the longing strikes. I may also offer it for rent like an AirBnB place, only nattier. It would arrive in sleek, Apple style packaging and be upgradable over WiFi.

  • @Geoffrey – Awesome! So glad that it was beneficial to you and brought you some clarity! Thanks for listening!

    @William – If you shave your dreads, you’re dead to me.

  • Catching up on all my podcasts and I will admit I get excited when J and Zach are about to impart knowledge to me.

    As someone who has to pay an arm and a leg to play pickup hockey (living in SoCal) I was wondering if price came into your ideas behind non digital hobbies? Also I feel wood working like many hobbies tends to be one where you can spend quickly to get all the right gadgets. ( Bob Villa always made me envious of his workshop.)

    Also thanks for the discussion on reasons to not sell to authors. Along with targeting your back catalog first before expanding your revenue streams.

    If one is already moonlighting from their day job and writing is their 3rd revenue stream can they still be a career author?

    • Hey Chad! Yes, cost is definitely a factor when it comes to hobbies. I can play pickup hockey in Cleveland for $10 so that works for my budget.

      I believe anyone can become a career author. Like anything, the more time and energy you dedicate to it, the better your chances become.

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