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Establishing Your Self-Publishing Business

Journal Entry: Sat Jan 5, 2013, 11:50 PM
Continuation of "So You Want to Self-Publish?" (…)

Last Man Standing by merrak

Here's some prerequisite reading for you, today.

Seven Signs That You're Not Ready to Publish. (Thanks to raspil for posting this link in a journal.)

This is important reading. If you answer "doesn't apply to me" to all 7 questions, and feel you're ready, then it's time to put some money on that. Thousands of dollars. Let's start by spending some of that on

Incorporating Your Self-Publishing Business.

Unfortunately, this will be pretty US-focused, since I'm not aware of international variations. In fact, laws vary even state-by-state. So, for the record, I live in North Carolina.

If you are going to self-publish, this step is highly recommended. First, establishing your operation as a limited-liability corporation (LLC) provides some legal protection (say, if you get sued). It also makes your operation more professional. This is definitely a good thing. Readers may not care who the publisher is, but media outlets, reviewers, and such will - and you should want to make your best impression.

Of course, there are some drawbacks - namely cost. The filing fee in NC is $125, plus $200 per year to file the required annual report - not a grand sum by any means, but keep in mind NC is not the highest in the nation. In Texas, for instance, the filing fee is at least $300.

Steps to Take to Form an LLC:

This is a good step-by-step general outline I found:…, walking through the basic steps establishing your publishing business.

As far as the legal end, I'll refer you to this site:…
Note: change "north-carolina" in the URL to your state of residence.


An LLC is not the only type of corporation. Another popular choice appears to be an S-corp. There are notable tax benefits to an S-corporation.

This post explains the different pretty well:…

Still Confused?

Local resources may be more advantageous here. Don't forget your region's small business association. You may be able to find some help from them.

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KWhipkey Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013  Professional Writer
Excellent resources as always. I especially liked the one that details the steps for creating a self-publishing business. I was already aware of most of them, but there were a few new ones. I bookmarked that article for later reference, since I'm not as close to needing it as you are. :)
merrak Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013  Hobbyist

What I still need to find is a good reference on how to file taxes after establishing a business. I think LLC simplifies that (by just taxing all your money :P). I'd like to avoid the necessity of hiring an accountant, and I think others would, too.
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