The Business of Romance Writing

The Business of Romance Writing

Table of Contents

Most authors I meet start their journey with two focuses; writing and getting published. Perhaps there is a dream of becoming a bestselling author with a huge bank account. Maybe even a TV or movie deal.

But when you start writing, the steps to get from finished book to author career aren’t usually mapped out. I can’t tell you how many new authors I’ve spoken to who say, “I finished my book, but I’m not sure what I do next. How do I find a publisher? How do I put it on Amazon?”

As writers start to navigate these next steps, they begin to understand that making a living as an author requires so much more than simply writing books. In fact, successful authors understand that to make a living with their books, they need to see their writing as a business.

This is true even if your goal is traditional publishing. As a traditional author, you’ll still have tasks and expenses related to selling your book. For the self-published author, seeing your efforts from a business mindset will be crucial to your success.

For many would-be authors, this sounds daunting, even scary. It’s not what they envisioned being a successful author entailing. But running a small, one-person author business isn’t hard. Here’s what you need to know and do:

The Mindset Shift from Author to Authorpreneur

What is an authorpreneur?

An authorpreneur is an author who takes an entrepreneurial approach to their writing career. This means treating your writing not just as an art form but as a business that requires planning, strategy, and execution. An authorpreneur understands that writing the book is just one part of the equation; the other crucial parts involve marketing, branding, networking, and financial management. In essence, an authorpreneur combines the creative process of writing with the strategic mindset of a businessperson to build a sustainable and profitable career.

Developing an Authorpreneur Mindset

The authorpreneur mindset combines both the creativity of authorship with the business mind of entrepreneurship. These two “minds” usually operate on two different sides of the brain, although businesses can benefit from creative thinking. You need to see your book writing as the creation of your product, and the packaging, marketing, and distribution of that product as the business side.

The big difference between being an author and authorpreneur is that the authorpreneur has set up goals, systems and routines for the purpose of writing, publishing, and selling books. Like any other business, they have a plan, track their progress, use data to make informed decisions, and adjust strategies as needed.Regularly reviewing goals and outcomes ensures that the author stays on the right path and continually moves towards greater success.

Further, they embrace ideas of scalability and growth. Sure it would be nice to have a book go viral on TikTok and have publishers reaching out to you to publish your book, but for most authors, like most businesses, you start small and grow. Scalability refers to the ability to expand and grow without being constrained by limited resources. For authors, this could mean creating multiple income streams, such as expanding distribution options (direct sales, subscriptions, etc), offering courses, or speaking engagements.

Growth involves continually building on past successes, expanding reach, and increasing profitability. By embracing these ideas, authorpreneurs can ensure that their career is not static but dynamic and evolving, allowing them to reach new heights and achieve long-term success.

Becoming an Authorpreneur

Let’s dive into the nuts and bolts of strategic planning for your writing career. Think of this as your roadmap to success, guiding you through the journey from where you are now to where you dream of being.

The Big Dream: Vision and Mission

What would be the ultimate dream for your writing? Want a Big 5 publishing deal? To see your book on the shelf of bookstores? To have your book made into a Netflix series?

Your vision and mission are the heart and soul of your authorpreneurial journey. They define why you write and what you hope to achieve. A clear vision keeps you motivated and focused, especially when the going gets tough. Your mission outlines the steps you’ll take to turn that vision into reality. Think of your vision as your North Star and your mission as the steps on the path leading to it.

Take a moment to write down your vision and mission. They should reflect your deepest aspirations and be specific enough to guide your decisions.

For example, your vision might be to write swoony and heartfelt HEAs for entertainment and escape. Your mission would include specific actions like publishing a new book each year, attending writer or reader conferences, and engaging with your audience through a vibrant online presence.

Set Author Goals

If you were in New York and wanted to go to Florida, you could get in your car and head south, but not all roads lead south. Some start south and head west. It’s much easier to get from New York to Florida with a map. And within that map, you have a plan from getting to where you want to go.

Long-Term Goals:

In our analogy, your long-term goal is to get to Florida. In terms of writing, long-term goals are things like:

  • Publish your first book within the next year.
  • Achieve bestseller status on Amazon or another major platform.
  • Build a mailing list of 5,000 engaged readers.
  • Transition to writing full-time within the next five years.

Short-term Goals

Short-term goals are your immediate checkpoints on the road to your long-term goal. In our analogy, it would be drive to the interstate. As a writer, your short-terms goals might include:

  • Write 1,000 words a day.
  • Finish your current manuscript in three months.
  • Grow your social media following by 10% in the next month.
  • Send out five queries to agents or publishers this week.

Authorpreneur Business Plan Basics

Please don’t click away thinking this is going to be boring or hard. Having a business plan is like having a GPS for your authorpreneurial journey. It helps you stay on track, avoid detours, and reach your destination more efficiently. Here are some key benefits:

  • Clarity and Focus: A business plan keeps you focused on your goals and the steps you need to take to achieve them. It prevents you from getting sidetracked by distractions or overwhelmed by the big picture.
  • Informed Decision-Making: With a clear plan, you can make decisions based on your overall strategy rather than reacting impulsively. This leads to smarter choices and better outcomes.
  • Accountability: A written plan holds you accountable to yourself. It serves as a constant reminder of your commitments and helps you stay disciplined.
  • Motivation: Seeing your goals and plans laid out can be incredibly motivating. It gives you a sense of purpose and progress, driving you to keep pushing forward.

Business plans don’t have to be complex tome. The idea is for you to:

  1. Get clarity on your business (your goals and your products)
  2. Understand the marketplace and how to find your readers
  3. Develop a system for writing, publishing and marketing
  4. Create a budget
  5. Find areas you need to learn more, get support, or other holes in your plan

Here are the essentials of a business plan:

Business Summary (Short paragraph of two)

  • Business concept. What does your business do?
  • Business goals and vision, which you did above.
  • Product description and uniqueness. What do you sell, and why is it different?
  • Target market. Who is your ideal reader?
  • Marketing strategy. How will you reach readers?
  • Current financial state. What do you currently earn or have on hand to support your business
  • Projected financial state. What do you foresee earning in the future?
  • The team. Who’s involved in the business besides yourself (e.g. PA, cover designer, agent, etc)

Description of your author business

  • Your brand (see below)
  • What you do (write books, publish books).

Ownership of your author business

  • This is you and your official business set up (see below).

Market Analysis

  • Who is the ideal reader? Who are they (demographics, interests)? What are they reading? Why are they reading it? Where (e.g. what platforms) do they go to find these books and interact with authors?
  • How many of them are there?
  • What genres and themes are popular in your niche?
  • A SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats)
  • Competition (other authors in your genre and subgenre)
  • How do you fit into the current market, and what sets you apart? Any business is all about being the same yet different. You provide what readers want, but with a new twist.

Products/Services (what you sell)

  • Books (print, ebook, audio)
  • Subscriptions
  • Merch
  • Courses

Distribution (where can your books and other offerings be found?)

  • Book retailers (online and off)
  • Author website
  • Membership/subscription (e.g. Ream or Patreon)

Pricing Strategy

  • Price for format
  • Price for distribution source (For example, I charge less to buy directly from me versus other book retailers.)
  • Subscriptions
  • Merch

Financial Planning:

  • What are your expected expenses (editing, cover design, marketing)?
  • What are your potential revenue streams (book sales, speaking fees, merchandise)?
  • What money do you have available now?
  • How will you budget for these expenses and manage your income?

Production Schedules

  • What is your writing and publishing timeline for the next year?
  • How will you manage your time to ensure you meet your deadlines?
  • What resources or support (e.g., editors, cover designers, beta readers) will you need?

Marketing Plan (see below)

  • Brand
  • Platform
  • Strategies


This looks like a lot, but many of the above are simple answers. Below is a sample plan. Please note that this is just an example. You’ll need to tailor the answers to your goals. The below might be for an author is brand new looking at focusing on book sales through Amazon. But that’s not your only option.

Business Summary (Short paragraph of two)

Sally Sue is a sweet historical romance writer. She’ll publish one lead magnet and 3 novels and build her email list to 2,000 in 2024. Her romance novels are set in 1920’s southern U.S. and will involve quirky and humorous heroines with dashing leading men. Her readers are women ages 25 to 80 who enjoy historical romance, romcoms and are avid romance readers in the KU program. The books will be in KU, and will be set to free one per quarter. Currently, Sally Sue has $500 for business startup, but anticipates earning $1,000 per month by the end of the first quarter.

Description of your author business: Sally Sue, Making Sweet History through humorous historical romance

Ownership of your author business: Sally Sue

Market Analysis

  • Who is the ideal reader? women ages 250 to 80 who enjoy historical romance, romcoms and are avid romance readers in the KU program
  • How many of them are there? 20 million (I don’t actually know this…you’ll have to research.)
  • What genres and themes are popular in your niche?
  • A SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats): Won RWA contest. Don’t know how to market. Prohibition romances are gaining popularity, but so far don’t have much competition. Amazon can terminate account.
  • Competition (other authors in your genre and subgenre): Wren Gray – Prohibition Mafia romance, Marilyn Marks – Prohibition Fantasy romance
  • How do you fit into the current market, and what sets you apart?: Real life setting, lighter tone with humor

Products/Services (what you sell)

  • Books (print, ebook, audio) – Book One: Oh My Darling ebook, Book two Oh Suzanna ebook – all in KU

Distribution (where can your books and other offerings be found?)

  • Book retailers – Amazon KU

Pricing Strategy

  • 99 cents first two weeks, $4.99 thereafter
  • Free for 5 days once per quarter

Financial Planning:

  • What are your expected expenses: Editing $500, Cover $100, Ads $300. Monthly expense: Ads $300 for first 6 months, scale up to $1,200
  • What are your potential revenue streams: Sales: $300, Page reads $1,000 first quarter, $3,000/month by end of year
  • What money do you have available now? $500
  • How will you budget for these expenses and manage your income? Sell clutter on ebay.

Production Schedules

  • What is your writing and publishing timeline for the next year? Book 1 March, Book 2 May, Book 3 July
  • How will you manage your time to ensure you meet your deadlines?: Write 2k per day, 5 days per week
  • What resources or support (e.g., editors, cover designers, beta readers) will you need? Editor, cover designer

Marketing Plan (see below)

  • Brand: Sally Sue Sassy Sweet Romance
  • Platform: Website, TikTok, Discourd
  • Strategies: Social media, email, ads

The above is done off the top of my head, but you get the idea. The plan is simply to organize and get clarity on all the mov9ing parts of being a successful author.

Setting Up Your Author Business

Let me preface this by saying that I’m not a lawyer or accountant or other business-expert professional. This info is given as an overview and guideline. Consult an expert or professional for your particular circumstances.

Also, this is mostly for U.S. writers. Authors outside the U.S., consult your local government business authority for details on setting up your author business.

Establishing your author business is a crucial step in treating your writing career like a true entrepreneurial venture. This involves choosing the right name, deciding on a business structure, and ensuring you have all necessary licenses and registrations. Let’s break it down step by step.

Choosing a Business Name or Author Name

Your business name or author name is your brand’s first impression. It’s how readers will identify you and your work, so it should be memorable, unique, and reflective of your style or genre. You can simply use your given name, a pen name, or creating a publishing business name, which would be ideal if you plan to write under multiple names.

Considerations for Your Name:

  • Memorability: Choose a name that is easy to remember and spell.
  • Relevance: Ensure it reflects the genre or tone of your writing. For example, a fantasy author might choose a more whimsical or mystical name.
  • Availability: Check that the name isn’t already in use by another author or business. Also, verify that the domain name is available for your website.

Deciding on a Business Structure

Choosing the right business structure is essential for legal and financial reasons. Here are the most common options for authors:

Sole Proprietorship:

  • Pros: Easy and inexpensive to set up, complete control over the business.
  • Cons: Personal liability for business debts and obligations.
  • Ideal for: Authors just starting out or those who prefer a simple business model.

Limited Liability Company (LLC):

  • Pros: Limited personal liability, flexible management structure, potential tax benefits.
  • Cons: More paperwork and higher setup costs than a sole proprietorship.
  • Ideal for: Authors with significant income or assets to protect, or those collaborating with others.


  • Pros: Limited liability, potential tax advantages, easier to raise capital.
  • Cons: Complex setup, more regulations, and higher costs.
  • Ideal for: Authors with large-scale operations or multiple income streams.

Most authors I know started as a sole proprietor and later created a single-person LLC, which are easier and more affordable to start these days. You can also umbrella businesses under an LLC. For example, you can have your LLC business, and within it, your author business and an author coaching business.

Doing Business As (DBA)

If you decide to use a business name that’s different from your legal name, even in a sole proprietorship, you’ll need to file for a “Doing Business As” (DBA) name. This allows you to legally operate under a different name and is required in many jurisdictions.

Filing a DBA:

  • Process: Check with your local government (city or county clerk’s office) for the specific process and fees. You’ll typically need to file a form and pay a fee.
  • Benefits: Allows you to use your chosen business or pen name for banking, marketing, and legal purposes.

Note, if you have multiple businesses under your LLC, each of those businesses that aren’t your given name will need a DBA.

Obtaining Licenses and Permits

Depending on your location and the nature of your author business, you may need certain licenses or permits to operate legally.

Business License: Many local governments require a general business license to operate any business, including an author business. Check with your city or county government to see if this applies to you.

Seller’s Permit: If you plan to sell physical books directly to customers, you may need a seller’s permit to collect sales tax. This is typically required for authors who sell at events or through their own website. In the US, your state should have an office that you can sign up for a seller’s permit online. Note that this permit can also help you avoid paying sales tax in your state on materials you use in your business.

Copyright Registration: This is not required, but registering your works with the U.S. Copyright Office provides legal protection and makes it easier to take legal action against infringement. While copyright is created when you write your book, protecting it without an official copyright registration can become complicated. Further, mailing your manuscript to yourself will not suffice if you have to go to court to defend your intellectual property rights.

Trademark: This also isn’t required but could be something to consider if you have a business name (not a person’s name) or logo or some other word, phrase, symbol, or design that identifies you or your book world, and distinguishes it from competitors.

Setting Up Business Banking and Finances

Regardless of how you structure your business (sole proprietorship or LLC), separating your personal and business finances is crucial for managing your money effectively and protecting your personal assets. If the tax man comes looking at your business write-offs, he’ll expect to see a separate business account.

Business Bank Account: Open a business bank account to handle all your income and expenses. As a sole proprietor using your given name, this can be a basic account that is separate from your personal account. If you have a name other than your given name or an LLC or corporation, you’ll set up a business account. This makes accounting easier and ensures your business finances are distinct from your personal ones.

Accounting Software: Use accounting software like QuickBooks, FreshBooks, or Wave to track your income, expenses, and profits. This helps you stay organized and prepares you for tax season.

Professional Advice: Consider consulting with an accountant or business advisor to ensure you’re setting up your finances correctly and taking advantage of any tax benefits.

Building Your Author Brand

Your brand is your promise to your readers. It tells them what they can expect from your books and why they should choose you over countless other authors.

  • Nora Roberts > Romance
  • JD Robb > Gritty police procedural set in the future
  • Emily Henry > Romcoms with real life challenges
  • Sylvia Day > Erotic romance

What should readers know they’re going to get when they read your books? That’s your brand.

Building a strong, recognizable brand is essential for standing out in the crowded publishing world.

Elements of a strong author brand:

Voice: Your unique voice is what sets you apart. It’s the personality that shines through in your writing, making your stories distinctly yours. Whether your tone is witty, dark, romantic, or adventurous, your voice should be consistent across all your works. Think about what makes your writing style unique and ensure it resonates in everything you create, from your books to your social media posts.

Visual Identity: Your visual identity includes your book covers, author photo, logo, and any other visual elements that represent you. These should be professional, high-quality, and reflective of your genre. A cohesive visual style helps readers instantly recognize your brand. For example, if you write sweet romance novels, your visuals might include soft colors and elegant fonts, whereas a dark romance writer might use darker tones and bold typography.

Online Presence: Your online presence is where your brand comes to life. This includes your website, social media profiles, email newsletters, and any other online platforms you use. Make sure your profiles are updated regularly and present a consistent message about who you are and what you write. Engage with your audience in a way that aligns with your brand voice and values.

Consistency across all platforms and works: Consistency is key to building a strong brand. Your readers should have a seamless experience whether they’re reading your latest novel, visiting your website, or following you on social media. This means maintaining the same voice, visual style, and messaging across all platforms. Consistency builds trust and recognition, making it easier for readers to connect with you and your work.

Platform Development

My favorite definition of platform is from Jane Friedman, which is that plaform is an author’s visibility, authority, and reach to a targe audience.

Visibility refers to who knows or is aware of your books? Where do you and your books appear and how many people see it. Essentially, where do people see you.

Authority has to do with your credibility, normally through education or experience, but in fiction, can play a part in terms of popularity. For example, Nora Roberts has more authority than me in the romance world simply based on the number of books, her longevity in the industry, and how she’s revered.

Reach goes beyond visibility (where you can be seen) to who is actually listening. This could be your email list, website traffic, social following, etc. This also includes reviews or testimonials or blurbs.

Target audience is your ideal readers. Your visibility, authority, and reach should be to these people.

How do you build visibility, authority and reach? Through an author platform.


The first thing you need is a place for readers to find you (visiblity). That starts with a website. You should absolutely have a website that you own. You don’t want to have a Facebook Page or other social media as your main hub. If they decide to take you down, then you no longer have a place for readers to find you.

Your website is your home base on the internet. It’s where readers can learn more about you, explore your books, and stay updated on your latest news.

Professional Design: Invest in a professionally designed website that reflects your brand. It should be easy to navigate, visually appealing, and mobile-friendly.

Key Elements: Include an engaging homepage, an about page with your bio and photo, a books page with descriptions and purchase links, a blog or news section for updates, and a contact page.

Regular Updates: Keep your website fresh by regularly updating it with new content, such as blog posts, book announcements, and event information. This is an area I really need to improve in.

Social Media

Social media and blogging are powerful tools for building your brand and connecting with your audience.

  • Social Media: Choose platforms where your target readers are most active, whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or TikTok. Post regularly and interact with your followers by responding to comments, participating in discussions, and sharing relevant content. Social media is a great way to showcase your personality, share behind-the-scenes glimpses into your writing process, and promote your books.
  • Blogging: A blog on your website can help establish you as an expert in your genre and provide valuable content to your readers. Blog about topics related to your books, writing tips, book reviews, or personal anecdotes. Regular blogging improves your website’s SEO, making it easier for new readers to find you.

Marketing and Promoting Your Books and Author Brand

This is the part that many authors don’t like. They want to write, not beg people to buy their books. Whether you are traditionally published or self-published, you have to market your books if you want to sell them and make money.

Remember we talked about platform including visibility and reach to a target market, that’s where this happens. Through marketing and promotion, readers find and read your books, which then helps build your authority as well as your bank account.

Marketing is a HUGE topic, too big to cover in a few paragraphs. But some basic strategies include:

  • Social Media
  • Newsletters
  • Launch plans
  • Outreach (e.g. blog tours, guest on podcast, etc)
  • Ads

You can check out the Write with Harte Marketing category for more posts on marketing tips and ideas. Be sure to check out Write with Harte’s free Marketing Calendar for tips on creating your marketing strategies.

Continuous Learning and Adaptation

Why have bookstores struggled over the last 20 years? In my mind, Barnes and Noble wasn’t paying attention when Apple changed music through iTunes, followed by Amazon’s pushing the concept of the ebook. If they had, they might have done better with their ebooks and Nooks.

It’s nice to create your plan and hit a stride, but times change, if you’re not paying attention, you’ll get left behind. This idea always makes me think of TikTok and how important it is to selling romance books. It’s a no-brainer to be there, and yet, me and so many other authors don’t want to. But I can’t help but think by not being there, I’m hindering my writing career.

Especially in this ever-evolving world of publishing, staying informed and adaptable is key to long-term success. Embracing a mindset of continuous learning and being open to change will keep you ahead of the curve and help you grow both as a writer and a businessperson. Let’s explore how you can stay informed and adaptable in your authorpreneurial journey.

Staying Informed

Industry Trends

The publishing industry is dynamic, with new trends, technologies, and reader preferences emerging constantly. Staying informed about these changes ensures you remain relevant and competitive. By keeping your finger on the pulse of the industry, you can identify new opportunities, understand market shifts, and adapt your strategies accordingly.

  • Market Insights: Know what’s popular in your genre, what readers are looking for, and how other successful authors are engaging their audiences.
  • Technological Advances: Stay updated on new tools and platforms that can enhance your writing, marketing, and distribution processes.
  • Publishing Trends: Be aware of changes in traditional and self-publishing, from submission guidelines to royalty structures.

Ongoing education (courses, books, webinars)

The best way to stay informed is to make continuous learning a part of your routine. Here are some valuable resources:

  • Courses: Enroll in online courses on creative writing, marketing, business management, and technology. I’m a course junkie, and have signed up for courses recently on TikTok for Authors, Direct Sales for Authors, Subscriptions for Authors, and Serializing for Authors.
  • Books: Read widely, both within and outside your genre. Industry-related books on writing, publishing, and entrepreneurship can provide deep insights and practical advice. You can check out a handful of books listed here.
  • Webinars and Conferences: Participate in webinars and attend conferences (both virtual and in-person). These events often feature industry experts who share the latest trends and best practices. I’ve got a post on why authors absolutely should attend events.


Adaptability is about being flexible and willing to embrace new ideas and methods (that means TikTok 😖). In both your writing and your business practices, innovation can lead to greater efficiency and success.

Writing Practices: 

  • Experiment with different writing techniques, genres, and formats. A fun why to do this is through fan fiction. This can help you discover new strengths and keep your creativity fresh.
  • Be open to feedback and willing to revise your work. Constructive criticism can lead to significant improvements in your writing. Sometimes it can be hard to deal with critique, but here’s a post to help you take it and use to improve your writing.

Business Practices:

  • Stay agile in your marketing strategies. If something isn’t working, don’t be afraid to try a new approach. Test and tweak strategies to make them work better.
  • Embrace new technologies and platforms that can streamline your workflow, reach a broader audience, or enhance reader engagement.

Learning from failures and successes:

Every experience, whether it’s a triumph or a setback, offers valuable lessons. By analyzing what worked and what didn’t, you can refine your strategies and grow stronger.


  • View failures as opportunities to learn and improve. Identify what went wrong, make necessary adjustments, and apply those lessons to future projects.
  • Don’t be discouraged by setbacks. Every successful author has faced challenges—what sets them apart is their resilience and determination to keep moving forward.


  • Celebrate your wins, big and small. Take time to understand why something succeeded and look for ways to replicate that success in other areas.
  • Share your successes with your readers and peers. Not only does this build your credibility, but it also helps inspire and motivate others.

A Day in the Life of An Authorpreneur

Every author is going to have their own schedule and tasks. But to help you see how to integrate your writing with the business of authorship, here is a sample day. Note that this is someone who is a full-time author. Below, find another sample for someone who has a another job or obligations during the day.

Full Time Author

This is a little pie in the sky, I know. I tend to spend more time writing and don’t edit until the book is done. I focus on one book at time (versus editing one book and writing another). But you can get a sense of all the tasks that need to be done in a day to both write and take care of business.

Morning Routine

6:00 – 7:00 AM: Personal Time

  • Wake up and start the day with a routine that sets a positive tone, such as exercise, meditation, or reading.
  • Have a healthy breakfast to fuel your day.

7:00 – 8:30 AM: Writing Session

  • Begin with your most creative work while your mind is fresh.
  • Set a word count goal or a specific writing task to complete.
  • Avoid distractions by turning off notifications and creating a focused environment.


8:30 – 9:00 AM: Break

  • Take a short break to stretch, grab a snack, or take a walk.
  • Use this time to reset and prepare for the next block of work.

9:00 – 10:30 AM: Marketing and Promotion

  • Schedule social media posts using tools like Social Bee.
  • Engage with followers by responding to comments and messages.
  • Work on a blog post or newsletter content.
  • Check and analyze your social media and website analytics to track engagement and adjust strategies.

10:30 – 11:00 AM: Administrative Tasks

  • Answer emails and handle any business correspondence.
  • Review your schedule and prioritize tasks for the day.
  • Pay bills, manage invoices, and update your financial records.

Late Morning

11:00 AM – 12:30 PM: Editing and Revisions

  • Spend time editing your current manuscript or revising based on feedback.
  • If you’re not in the editing phase, use this time for research or planning future projects.

12:30 – 1:30 PM: Lunch Break

  • Take a proper break for lunch to recharge.
  • Step away from your workspace to relax and refresh your mind.


1:30 – 3:00 PM: Business Development

  • Work on business-related tasks such as updating your website, creating promotional materials, or planning upcoming book launches.
  • Research industry trends, marketing strategies, and new tools to enhance your business operations.
  • Network with other authors, join writing groups, or participate in online forums.

3:00 – 3:30 PM: Break

  • Take another short break to stretch and relax.
  • Use this time to do something enjoyable and non-work-related.

3:30 – 5:00 PM: Writing Session

  • Return to writing or work on any creative projects that need your attention.
  • Use this session to focus on a different writing task or continue from where you left off in the morning.

Early Evening

5:00 – 6:00 PM: Reader Engagement

  • Interact with your readers through social media, email newsletters, or your blog.
  • Respond to reader questions, comments, and messages.
  • Plan upcoming reader events, such as virtual book readings or Q&A sessions.

6:00 – 7:00 PM: Personal Time and Dinner

  • Wind down your workday and transition to personal time.
  • Enjoy dinner and spend time with family or friends.

Evening Routine

7:00 – 8:00 PM: Reading and Learning

  • Dedicate time to reading both for pleasure and professional growth.
  • Catch up on industry news, read books in your genre, or study writing craft books.

8:00 – 9:00 PM: Relaxation and Unwind

  • Spend the final hour of your day relaxing. This could include watching a favorite show, listening to music, or engaging in a hobby.

9:00 PM: Prepare for the Next Day

  • Review your schedule for the next day and set goals.
  • Ensure you have a clear plan for your writing and business tasks.
  • Go to bed at a reasonable hour to ensure you’re well-rested for the next productive day.

Part Time Author Sample Schedule

This assumes a normal 8 to 5 work schedule, but you can tweak to better fit your work hours or other daily obligations.

Early Morning

5:30 – 6:00 AM: Personal Time

  • Wake up and start the day with a routine that energizes you, such as light exercise, meditation, or a quick breakfast.

6:00 – 7:00 AM: Writing Session

  • Dedicate an hour to writing before heading to work. Set a word count goal or a specific task to complete.
  • Focus on uninterrupted writing time to maximize productivity.

Commute and Work

7:00 – 12:00 AM: Commute and Job

  • Use your commute time to listen to audiobooks or podcasts related to writing, marketing, or personal development.

Lunch Break 12:00 – 12:30 PM: Business Tasks

  • Use part of your lunch break to handle quick business tasks, such as responding to emails, engaging with social media, or scheduling posts.
  • Review your goals and prioritize tasks for the evening.
  • Or write

12:30 – 1:00 PM: Lunch

  • Take the remaining time to have a relaxed lunch and recharge for the afternoon.


1:00 – 5:00 PM: Day Job

5:00 – 6:00 PM: Commute

  • On your way home, continue listening to educational content or take some time to relax and unwind.


6:00 – 7:00 PM: Personal Time and Dinner

  • Enjoy dinner and spend some time with family or friends.
  • Use this time to relax and transition from work mode to personal mode.

7:00 – 8:00 PM: Writing Session

  • Dedicate another hour to writing. Continue working on your manuscript or focus on editing and revisions.
  • This second writing session allows you to maintain momentum on your projects.

8:00 – 8:30 PM: Break

  • Take a short break to stretch, grab a snack, or do something enjoyable to refresh your mind.

8:30 – 9:30 PM: Marketing and Promotion

  • Work on your marketing tasks, such as updating your website, creating content for your blog, or planning promotional activities.
  • Engage with your readers on social media and respond to messages or comments.
  • Send out your email newsletter or work on drafting future content.

Late Evening

9:30 – 10:00 PM: Learning and Development

  • Spend some time reading industry-related books, articles, or taking online courses.
  • Focus on improving your craft and staying informed about the latest trends and strategies in writing and publishing.

10:00 – 10:30 PM: Planning and Reflection

  • Review your accomplishments for the day and plan tasks for the next day.
  • Set specific goals for your next writing and business sessions.
  • Take a few moments to reflect on what worked well and what can be improved.

10:30 PM: Relaxation and Unwind

  • Wind down your day with a relaxing activity such as reading for pleasure, watching a favorite show, or practicing a hobby.
  • Ensure you go to bed at a reasonable hour to get enough rest for the next productive day.
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