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Monday, January 31, 2011

Writers: Save $$

Paperback Writer has a good post today on how writers can save money.

Ten Things to Help Writers Save $$$
Attend Local/Regional Events Versus National Conferences: Here are two examples of actual lodging and registration costs for attending national conferences: RWA National: $1175.00; Romantic Times: cost $965.00 (and these figures do not include airfare or other transportation costs, meals, parking etc., which can run an additional $500.00 - $1000.00.) Skipping national conferences and attending a regional or local event will cost considerably less, such as Lori Foster's Annual Reader & Author Get Together for $332.00 lodging & registration. Author Shiloh Walker (who kindly provided the figures for me) also mentioned that at Lori Foster's event writers are given plenty of time to interact with readers, attend workshops, and have appointments with agents and editors (and my thanks to Shiloh for sharing the financial info and advice.)

Barter for What You Can't Afford Now: Offer to barter for something you need with another writer friend. It can be an even trade, i.e. "You proof my manuscript, and I'll proof yours" or an exchange of specialties, such as a techno-savvy writer making a flash web site for an artistic writer who trades an e-book cover art design. The idea is for you both to end up with something of equal value that you need but can't do yourself and/or afford to buy. Your specialty doesn't have to be writing-related, either -- I once restored an heirloom family quilt for a friend who paid me in some hard-to-find research books I needed.

Brew Your Own Coffee: I know how much writers love coffee and convenience; the first place they go to when they want to write in public is a bookstore coffee shop. But buying that $2-$3 cup of coffee can over time add up to a major expense, as per Barbara Thau's article Savings Experiment: The Perks of Brewing versus Buying Coffee over at Wallet Pop: "A 6-ounce cup of coffee made at home, at about 17 cents a cup per day, adds up to $1.19 a week and $62.05 a year. A 16-ounce grande coffee from Starbucks, at $2.29 per day, adds up to $16.03 per week, and a hefty $835.85 per year -- the price of a mini vacation." Or a new laptop, for that matter.

Read the rest at her site.

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