23 tax write offs for independent writers ✍️

Whether you're an indie author, a freelance journalist, or a content writer for a site like Compose.ly, writing can be a fun and fulfilling way to pay the bills. One potential downside? Doing your taxes. Luckily, Keeper Tax is here to help. Start by looking at all the easy tax write-offs you might be missing! Keep track of these, and you might just see a good chunk of that money come right back at tax time.

Creative Assistance Costs

If you need to hire an editor, designer, or set assistance to help you, write it off!

Writing Software

Word and other editing software are 100% necessary for your job, write it off!

Dues & Subscriptions

Pay to be a member of any writers organizations? Write off that annual fee.

Relevant Books

Write off any books that help you manage your business or that are relevant to your field!

Electronics

A new computer, cell phone, keyboard, printer, monitor, mouse, it all counts!

Website expenses

Website hosting fees, plugins, stock photos, and themes are tax deductible!

Phone bill

Your monthly phone bills are expensive! Good thing the cost is partially deductible.

Online Advertising

Every dollar you spend on Facebook Ads, Google Adwords, etc. is a tax deductible expense!

Legal fees

If you've had to set up an LLC or have other legal fees for work, that's tax deductible.

Health insurance

If you are self-employed, you can write off your medical and dental insurance coverage.

Transaction Fees

If PayPal or another payment method charged a fee for buying your book, write it off!

Conferences & classes

Conferences and classes that help you keep up with the industry are tax deductible.

Data Storage

Storage to handle heavy digital files (business related) such as Dropbox or a hard drive.

Research materials

If you write about ancient Greece and buy an urn, it's deductible! (and weird)

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If you drive for work ...
If you are driving to meet with clients for to research a current project, be it right downtown or a bit further, you can deduct some of those driving related expenses.
Note: It's also possible to report the miles you drive for work instead of actual car expenses, but unless you drive a lot for work, you'll save more time & money with tracking car expenses. Learn more
Gas

Gas is expensive! A portion of your gas station fill ups are tax-deductible.

Car maintenance

Oil changes, repairs, and regular checkups are all tax-deductible if you drive for work.

Insurance & registration

Car insurance, roadside assistance, registration costs, etc. are all tax-deductible.

Parking

Parking for a meeting downtown or other work trip is tax-deductible!

Tolls

A toll while driving to or from a work destination is tax-deductible!

Vehicle depreciation

If you drive your own vehicle, you can write off the annual depreciation of its value!

If you work from home ...
As a freelancer writer, more often than not you will be using a part of your home as a designated workspace. Luckily enough, almost all expenses related to this home office can be completely or partially deducted!
Note: you don't need to work from a separate room to claim these write offs. A dedicated desk is sufficient. Learn more
Home office furniture

A desk, chairs, lamps, and other home office necessities are all tax write offs.

Wi-Fi bill

Your Wi-Fi bill is a tax write off. You need internet to do your job!

Property insurance

Whether rental or homeowner insurance, you can write off a portion as part of home office.

Power bill

Gotta keep the lights on in your home office! A portion of your electricity bill counts.

Water bill

It'd be hard to work in an office without running water, huh? You water bill counts.

Part of your rent

Whether you pay rent or own your home, a portion of those expenses are tax deductible.

If you discuss work at a restaurant ...
The IRS considers any restaurant expense tax deductible as long as the conversation is work-related. This includes discussing industry trends, and even a chat that could turn into a referral. Learn more
Meals for work

If you discuss work with a coworker, client, or even a friend, it's a write-off!

If you leave town for work ...
While courses and conferences can be written off, you can also write off related travel expenses. Go ahead and include these also if you need to travel a bit further to meet clients.
The IRS considers any restaurant expense tax deductible as long as the conversation is work-related. This includes discussing industry trends, and even a chat that could turn into a referral. Learn more
Transportation

Planes, trains, and car rentals are all work-related travel costs that can be written off.

Lodging

When you travel for work, lodging expenses like hotel rooms and Airbnbs are write-offs.

Meals while traveling

When you're traveling for work, all meals are tax-deductible. Even takeout!