Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Perception versus reality

What one thing do you wish you could write off against tax, that you (legally) can't. Make your case.

by Dietrich

Image courtesy of Pixabay
Accountants likely have all sorts of great stories about people trying to write off all manner of things against their taxes. Since we’re wishing, let’s consider the kind of writer’s income where a major tax write-off would be just the thing, oh yeah, and legal.

Since my stories are set in a variety of locales across North America, I think it’s only reasonable that I should visit each of these places so I can better write about them. I’ve used settings from the west coast, from Los Angeles up to Alaska, and right across Canada, and the Great Plains. 

So, I think it would be within reason to make myself mobile as well as comfortable. I happen to like the look of those big Airstreams, let’s call mine a thirty-foot Flying Cloud. It’s just the thing for the writer who’s looking to do some tapping on the laptop while the miles clip past, on route to some hands-on research, visiting story settings in both comfort and style. This thirty-footer’s got a kitchen, lounge, bedrooms, bathroom, and a closet big enough for my glittery writing ensembles, in case I do a reading event while I’m on the road.

The question asked for one thing, but I’ll need something to haul the Airstream around. So, although I’m not a big SUV guy, I’m kind of partial to the Mercedes G-Class, one matching the Airstream’s silver, please.

And so I can work while I hit the open road, I think a chauffeur would be within reason — somebody to drive while I think up the next scene. And to show the taxman I’m reasonable, I’ll go bare bones and forego the personal trainer, assistant, and sushi chef.

And while we’re at it, let’s remember to stock the pantry and fridge. Writing is hard and thirsty work. And let’s keep all the receipts.

One more thing I’d like to add: there’s nothing worse than that endless road noise while I’m writing, so to avoid it and increase my output, let’s add some high-end audio. I’ve mentioned in past posts that I play my tunes while I write, you’ve all heard me say that. And Bang and Olufsen makes some fine audio gear, and I’m sure the tax man will have no problem with that.

Obviously I’m no accountant, and I understand expenses related to leisure items aren't normally deductible. However, by the taxman’s very definition of a home, meaning anything with a kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom (which my Airstream has), there should be some legit deductions and perhaps some business-related tax breaks to boot. It’s the kind of logic that likely explains the need for people like me to have accountants in the first place.

Well, let’s start with that list, and I hope I’ve made a reasonable case for some write-offs. Now, where’s that tax form.


Paul D. Marks said...

I like your way of thinking. And if you have a spare bedroom in the Airstream maybe I can hitch a ride.

Dietrich Kalteis said...

Of course you can come along, Paul. There's plenty of room. We'd have lots to talk about, and I know we have similar taste in music, plus I can always use a witness.

Brenda Chapman said...

I wasn't thinking big enough! A great idea, but I wouldn't nix the Sushi chef or personal trainer ... in for a penny ....

Dietrich Kalteis said...

Good point, Brenda.

Robin Spano said...

Ha ha. That’s awesome. I would like to be able to write off childcare and house cleaning because hiring both out is the only way I can create time to write.

Dietrich Kalteis said...

Thanks, Robin. Childcare and house cleaning also sound like reasonable deductions.

Frank Zafiro said...

Dude. You think big. I like it.

All that travel is tough on the body. A few massages keep the mind clear, and you need your mind to craft your work, so... deduction.

Great take, Dietrich!

And I know I said it a hundred times, but thanks again for inviting me to the NatB at LCC. I was thrilled you asked.

Dietrich Kalteis said...

Thanks, Frank. Yeah, the masseuse will have to come along, the sushi chef too. And it was great to see you at LCC.