Monday, March 8, 2021

Me and Microsoft Excel—The Fast Easy Way to Keep Track of Writing Finances

 


Using Excel

Udemy dot com offers a Microsoft Excel class for Beginners to Advanced. It has over 200,000 positive reviews. For years I've tried to avoid Excel simply because I never took the time to learn how to use it properly. The worst part is that I was business manager for an engineering company and used it in my job but when I was finally able to make writing my full-time job, I quit using Excel just because I could. I decided it'd be easier to keep track of everything in handwritten ledgers. It wasn't easier.

After years of accumulating piles of good old-fashioned paperwork, I had to admit to myself that everything would actually be simpler if I used Excel again. Step one, I decided, was to LEARN how to use it properly so I didn't dread it. That's how I found the Udemy class. 

The class I'm recommending is by Kyle Pew, Office Newb. Every single lesson is basic (my speed) and thorough. I keep a laptop open beside my computer through each lesson, so I can practice without split screens. 

Recently I mentioned this Excel class to a group of writers. There was a collective groan, EXCEL, NO! It was the old, "Don't make us do math" mentality. My mentality. Yet the fact is, keeping track of your finances via Excel is the easy way. Sorry to be a realist. You know I abhor reality. I have the soul of a fiction writer. Yet what I've learned is that it's an undeniable fact that the best way to deal with keeping track of writing expenses is succinctly. That way you get it over with as quickly as possible. 

Excel can help you with that.

When you write, or simply live, you have to keep track of income and expenses. You have to do the math. It's easier on everyone if you keep good track of expenses and income and know the bottom line in your writing life and in the real world. You'll see in plain old black and white and red what works and what doesn't. It helps you make smart decisions, like what to spend your time and energy on and what is a waste of resources. That's actually important in both worlds—Fiction and Non-Fiction. 



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