Business Skills for Artists

Introducing Helena Vyvozilová

Helena Photo

Helena has shared with my her ideas on business skills for artists. One of the privileges of my job teaching creative students is the wonderful and unique individuals I have been taught. In my newest book, Entrepreneurship for Creative and Cultural Organizations, I start each chapter with advice from one of my former students. I had asked each what they wished they had known before they went into business.

Helena doesn’t think of it as selling, but her company provides music groups and ensembles for any type of occasion. In addition she also organizes events for clients; anything from team buildings to galas. Helena markets online but gets most of her new clients through personal recommendations. She prides herself on providing a service that is highly personalized. The business skills Helena wishes that earlier she had been:

Business Skills Needed by Artists

  1. More patient as business builds over time.
  2. More proactive in raising funds.
  3. Less idealistic and more insight into cruel reality.

You can see Helena’s work at

I suggest that you click ‘player’ in the upper right hand corner and listen to some wonderful music with lyrics in both English and Czech.

I hope that creatives who read my new book before starting a business will find reality a bit less cruel!

Writing update

The new book is underway! I meet my word goal which means that I have a little over half a chapter written. Of course, it is not very good writing.

diamond-in-kimberlite-with-round-brilliant-cut-diamondThe first draft of a book is the equivalent of the first cut of a diamond. There is still a lot of work to be done before it is a shiny gem.


Writing a New Book in 32 Weeks

Starting a New Book

On Friday I finished correcting the proofs for Entrepreneurship for the Creative and Cultural Industries. I am now writing new book in 32 weeks.

I should have started on my new book immediately but I have been stalling and instead have been working on my new website. I am learning WordPress as I go so hopefully it will continue to improve.

It is snowing outside so I can’t use the excuse that I need to run errands.

So, it is time to get started on writing Strategic Marketing for the Creative and Cultural Industries. Anyway that is the title so far. It is the editor and publisher who determine the final title.

If you are thinking that an author starts out on a new book by staring at a blank screen waiting for inspiration, perhaps you are right.

Blog Post 2 Image

How to Write a Book in 32 Weeks

However, I start with an Excel spreadsheet!

I know that the book must be completed by August 15. I know the number of words that must be written. I know that I must calculate that my second and third drafts of the book chapters will take as long as the first draft. However I must also factor in that I will be in the classroom teaching for the next fifteen weeks so will have less time for writing.

After working the numbers I have calculated that I must write the first draft of 100,000 words in 18 weeks. That’s 5,555 words a week. I will write Monday through Friday, 1000 words a day and then 555 words on Saturday and I get Sunday off!

Since today is Tuesday, I am already behind….

You Start with a Spreadsheet

Here’s what my spreadsheet looks like. Each day I log in the number of words I have written, my total number of words written, the percent completed and if I am on track to meet my weekly word goal.

I will check in on Friday to let you know how it is going. Editors LOVE an author that meets deadlines.

Writing Schedule
Date Day Total % Completed Goal
5-Jan Monday – Week One 0 0
6-Jan Tuesday 0 0.00%
7-Jan Wednesday 0 0.00%
8-Jan Thursday 0 0.00%
9-Jan Friday 0 0.00%
10-Jan Saturday 0 0.00%
11-Jan Sunday 0 0.00% 5556
12-Jan Monday – Week Two 0 0.00%
13-Jan Tuesday 0 7.00%
14-Jan Wednesday 0 0.00%
15-Jan Thursday 0 0.00%
16-Jan Friday 0 0.00%
17-Jan Saturday 0 0.00%
18-Jan Sunday 0 0.00% 11112


Writing Goals

HeadshotHappy New Year!

I love the start of a new year as I am always inspired to take action. At the start of this new year I have decided that it is time that I had one place to organize my writing and research life. While this blog will be public, I also view it as a tool to keep myself moving forward during 2015.

Writing Goals

One of my goals for this next year is to see my fifth book Entrepreneurship for Creative and Cultural Organizations through the final production process into print.

I will also be writing my new book for Routledge Publishing. This will be my sixth book and people always ask about the process of turning an idea into a published book. Sharing the process might help to inspire others. Stay tuned as it develops!

Over the years I have taught many wonderful creative students and I also plan on sharing the stories of their creative successes.

Lastly, my research has led me to many interesting places and allowed me to meet fascinating people. My blog will be a way to share these experiences while also saving the memories. This next year will see the start of a new research project focused on artists, musicians, dancers and designers who have successfully started businesses. How these businesses add to the vibrancy of cities has always been of interest. This could be the subject for my seventh book!