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Invoices for Authors

As a children's author, I'm often asked to provide an invoice so I can be paid for my services or products. An invoice is basically an itemized bill. Invoices are an important business document for authors.

So far in 2024, I have provided invoices related to
- author visits
- book sales through author visits (when the school could not work with a bookstore)
- wholesale book sales for a local small business
- fulfilled book contracts
- travel reimbursement 

Read on to learn more about invoices and what authors should consider when creating them.

You can see my invoice below. Though personal information has been removed, this example invoice is very much real. You should also know I'm not a business expert. As always, I'm sharing from my personal experience because I like to help writers.

How to Create an Author Invoice

I created my invoice as a Word document. Just like the author event contracts I shared before, I always save my author invoice as a PDF before emailing or printing to ensure that the copy I send is the same copy that is received and on my computer.

What to Include on an Author Invoice Template

You can see all of these elements in this author invoice example.
At the top of the author invoice, is the heading. This includes my name, address, phone, email, website, and logo. (A logo doesn't have to be fancy. It can be simple such as your name in large letters in a font that reflects the genre you write.)

Next comes the invoice number and the date

Then include who you are sending the invoice to. I include my contact person's name, organization, and address.

Now it's time for the terms. Why does the organization need to pay you? Whether this is for the sale of books, a fulfilled writing contract, or an author event, I use a chart to show details of what I need to be paid. This chart also includes discounts which may have been discussed in detail in the event contract or wholesale prices.

Another chart provides additional information. As seen above, I include
To (organization)
Event Contact (name and available contact information)
Date(s) of Service (Just like the contract, I like to include the day of the week so there is no confusion.)
Service and Products
Payable To (my name and mailing address)
Total Due and Terms (The terms here match the contract. I expect payment on the day of events, but allow seven additional days unless discussed otherwise. For products such as books, checks are often mailed to me so I allow 21 days. Invoices for writer critiques and consultations would require payment prior to service.)

How to Save and Share an Author Invoice

I highly advise you to have a digital folder for your invoices. My is simply called "Invoices." I have subfolders for years to help me find an invoice easily. 

Save the author invoice as both a Word document and a PDF. Name them with both the invoice number and the organization. This invoice might be named "0203 School Name." 

Share the invoice by printing the PDF or by emailing the PDF as an attachment. 

How to Use the Author Invoice Template

Each person may have their own preference for using an author invoice template. When I began using invoices, I had the basic information filled in and personalized it for each invoice. Now I prefer to edit a previous invoice. 

Learn More About Author Documents and Events

Want to see another business document? Check out this article.

Want to know more about events? Check out these articles. Both have become some of the most popular blog posts on this site.

Was this helpful to you? I love to help writers! I'm available for consultations, critiques, and as a workshop presenter. Tell your local writing group or conference director about me if you think I'd be a good fit for a presentation. I present both online and in person.

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