4 More Tax Lessons Learned in 2014

finance foundations, financial religion, taxes

Some predictions I got horribly wrong:

  • Selling APPL stock in 2008
  • Selling AMZN stock 2009
  • The demise of this whole “smart-phone-craze” thing

Finally, though, I got something right:

You gotta keep learning about your taxes.

Here are 4 more lessons I learned… as I filed my 2013 taxes: [click to continue…]

Is Los Angeles the Unfriendliest City in the US?

career, moving to los angeles

I asked myself this question after a reader (living in Los Angeles) emailed me and mentioned how “unfriendly” LA seemed.

I haven’t visited every major city in the United States, nevermind lived in many of these cities. So I can’t say how friendly/unfriendly LA is, relatively.

(I bet that’s true for the participants of this survey that decrees LA as the least friendly city (out of a list of 35), thought that obviously didn’t stop them.)

The survey above — along with these listicles below…

…all missed a particular detail about living in Los Angeles…
[click to continue…]

Why You Shouldn’t Pay Your Dues

career, writer's room, zen assistant
work frustration

We’re all paying our dues.

Just read any “millennial struggle” article, about the challenges in breaking in, standing out, or moving up.

Like, this one in the NY Times:

This is especially true in more creative fields, whether it is filmmaking or publishing. “It’s fashion,” said Dawn Joyce, 24, when asked why she has gone through four internships since 2010. Those include unpaid stints at a major fashion magazine, where she mingled with Zooey Deschanel and Julianne Moore at photo shoots, and at a public relations firm, where she held front-row seats for late-arriving celebrities like Selena Gomez. “I consider myself to be pretty jaded already.”

“I have seen a lot of people beside me quit,” Ms. Joyce added. “It’s sort of like, ‘Let’s see who lasts the longest.’ ”

Yes, the industry is tough.

Yes, it’s easy to feel jaded.

Ms. Joyce sees internships as the endurance test to pay her dues.

Which is a mistake. She shouldn’t be paying her dues. 

I’ll explain what I mean, but first here’s what I don’t mean..

[click to continue…]

Life Beyond Taxes


In this Fighting Broke series, we covered

  1. Tax Tips for Hollywood Freelancers: An Introduction
  2. Best Tax Practices for Hollywood Freelancers 
  3. 30 Badass Tax Deductions To Take
  4. 7 Mistakes to Avoid When Claiming Tax Deductions

For all the lessons covered here, the most important thing is this…

[click to continue…]

7 Mistakes to Avoid When Claiming Tax Deductions


We covered what qualifies someone as a freelancer.

Then I gave you some best practices and tools to simplify the process.

And then we went over 30 tax deduction all Hollywood freelancers should take.

However, confusion regarding taxes always abound. It took me a long time to wrap my head around the intricacies, and today, even with the help of an accountant, there are still some things I miss.

Consult with your tax professional before you file. Before that, here are a list of 7 common tax mistakes freelancers make…

[click to continue…]