I’ve read quite a few blog posts recently on similar subjects, such as when do you think of yourself as a writer, things authors don’t hear about what it’s really like to get their book published, and how to protect yourself against the demands, disappointments and uncertainties of the publishing world. They have all been fascinating and enlightening, and I’ve learned many interesting things. Some of the posts were more relevant to my own experience than others, and some were eye-opening – mainly those concerning the personal feelings of the post’s author. I do admire people who wear their hearts on their sleeves and who can lay their deepest emotions so open to the scrutiny of anyone who happened to read their post. I don’t think it’s something I could ever do.
All these different yet similar posts naturally got me thinking about how I feel on the subject of finally being published after nine or so years of trying. Excited, elated, vindicated; nervous, unsure, apprehensive. All of these things. Yet I never doubted right from the start that I was a writer. Today, however, I realized something else. Today, I realized just how real this all is. Why? Because today I opened a business bank account. Today, I am a sole-trader, a self-employed person. Today the business that is “Cas Peace” became official.
I actually registered as self-employed a few weeks ago. It was necessary for tax reasons, and British National Insurance payments. But the fact that I’d done so didn’t really mean very much at the time. It was all mixed up with other legal stuff, such as visiting a tax consultant and applying to the IRS for a Temporary Tax Number. Don’t get me started on this ITIN thing though – it’s a minefield! Still, I’ve got one now, so that’s ok.
My husband has been self-employed for years and owns three consulting companies. I help him with each company’s VAT returns, which is extremely funny when you learn that I’m someone who can’t do math. So I’m very used to seeing business accounts with the name “Peace” on them. But I never imagined I’d see one with “Cas” in front of it! Just that simple act of opening a new account (all right, it wasn’t simple and it took far longer than it should!) suddenly brought the whole thing home to me. My name is now a brand – albeit an unknown one yet – and I own my own business! I came home from that meeting with a big cheesy grin on my face. My meeting with the Small Business Advisor also ended on a good note when I offered him a signed copy of King’s Envoy. His face lit up and he said I’d made his day. Well, he’d made mine, so it was smiles all round!
All I need now are some royalties to offset the start-up costs I’ve had to pay out. Anyone like to help a starving author?