Enter Taxman (self assessment for newbies)

The week in Creative Money - 11 May, 2021

Creative Money aims to have an open conversation about finances in the creative industries. 

It was founded in July, 2020 in an attempt to address a frustrating lack of relatable financial guidance for creative workers and is written by me, Matt Parker, a music journalist and lecturer.

Hello! Can you remember how you felt when you realised you needed to be self-employed? How long did it take you to figure it out?

This week I’m sparing a thought for those new to sorting their own taxes – in particular anyone who might be leaving education in the coming months and having to get their head around the requirements of self assessment.

It gets easier, of course, particularly once you get some professional advice, but I’ve tried to present the guide below in a way that offers a little clarity for anyone who’s confused about the process of becoming self-employed.

Read the new post: Finances for first-time freelancers - tax and self assessment

I’ve been doing this a while, but found writing this cleared up a few foggy patches in my own mind. So check it out and if you know someone who might benefit from reading it, please pass the piece on and ensure my head has not pounded in vain!

Useful personal finance course run by nice people

On the personal finance side, I wanted to flag an online course that a friend/mentor of mine Alan Donegan is running, under the banner Rebel Finance School.

Alan and his wife Katie both retired early, having achieved financial independence by 40 and are currently running this course on Mondays at 8PM BST.

It’s completely free – there are no strings attached and they have no affiliations, no products to push, or anything to gain from it really – they’re just trying to help people. It’s been going a few weeks now but it’s no problem to join part way.

If you’re interested, you can find out more and sign-up here: Rebel Finance School.

This comes with the usual caveats: investing carries risks, always do your own research and seek independent financial advice where required.

I did it last year and found it really helped me spot some gaps in my own principles and approach to money.

Until next time,



P.S. Bonus points if you’ve spotted the newsletter has moved to Tuesday. I read that the old slot – Friday afternoon/evening – is about the worst possible time to send a mail-out, which makes complete sense, so I’m trying out this new slot!

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What do you need to know this week?

  1. New music finance company aims to help artists raise funding while retaining rights (MusicWeek)

  2. Anna Codrea-Rado discusses setting prices and organising your finances as a freelancer (The Wallet)

  3. Re-opening the arts: behind the scenes, all is not well (The Guardian)

  4. The govt has launched a new debt respite scheme ‘Breathing Space’. Here’s a useful thread about it from Claer Barrett (Twitter)

  5. Producer/fundraiser Dais Hale is hosting a Q&A re: Arts Council Developing Your Creative Practice applications on 13 and 17 May 2021(Google Form)

And finally…

Grants and funding opportunities for UK creative workers

CLOSING: Sound and Music Covid-19 Composer Award

Awards 15 small-scale grants of £500 to composers and music creators, in the UK and outside of London, looking to purchasing essential equipment or develop skills during this continued time of restrictions and uncertainty, particularly with a view to supporting individuals’ longer-term ability to sustain themselves and their careers. Deadline: 13 May, 2021

CLOSING: Getty Images Grants: Community Resilience

Getty Images is offering three grants of $5,000 each to photographers and videographers reporting stories of community resilience in the wake of the Covid‑19 pandemic. Deadline: 15 May, 2021

CLOSING: Wigan Borough Dance Festival commissions

WigLe Dance are looking for 5 different artists to create outdoor site specific dance performances to be filmed and join our Digital QR code trail as part of the Wigan Borough’s Digital Dance Festival. We are looking for dance artists to respond to the following £1000 commissions. Deadline: 21 May, 2021

CLOSING: Literature Wales participatory lecture opportunity

We are looking for a Lead Creative Practitioner / Writer to devise, develop and deliver a participatory literature project with year 6 pupils across Rhondda Cynon Taf.
The fee will be £2,500 for full delivery of the project. Also offers a paid shadowing opportunity with a fee of £500. Deadline: 24 May, 2021

Arts Council Developing Your Creative Practice (Round 10)

The fund supports creative practitioners thinking of taking their practice to the next stage to research, have time to create new work, travel, training, develop ideas, network or find mentoring. Grants of £2,000 to £10,000. Deadline: 27 May, 2021

OPENING: Unscripted TV Skills fund

A new fund going live on 1 June 2021 which will address skills gaps and shortages in unscripted television across the UK and build a bigger pool of off-screen crew and talent in the nations and regions. Deadline: TBC, opening 1 June, 2021

PageMasters Publication Fund

£500 in-house production budget for a new or existing publication or zine focusing on themes of gender, race, disability, care, class, politics and/or art. Deadline: 1 June, 2021

Creative Freelancers: Shaping London’s Recovery

This new programme from the Mayor of London will enable a diverse group of freelancers in the culture sector to come together to explore and make recommendations on the future of freelancing. Offers fee of £4,000. Deadline: 4 June, 2021

Society of Authors Sunday Times Young Writer Of The Year Award

Prize of £5,000 is awarded for a full-length published or self-published (in book or ebook formats) work of fiction, non-fiction or poetry, by a British or Irish author aged 18-35 years. There are three awards of £500 each for runners-up. Deadline: 22 June, 2021

Elan Valley Creative Wales Fellowship Award 2021-22

Offers established creative practitioners, based in Wales, a chance to experiment and develop their practice, while giving them time away from usual commitments in a beautiful, inspiring setting. The Fellowship includes six months’ accommodation within a one-year period, and a £9,000 bursary. Deadline: 25 June, 2021

DRF Writers Award

An award of £10,000 will be presented to a first-time prose writer whose submission demonstrates literary talent and who would benefit from financial support to complete their work. Deadline: 1 July, 2021

Royal Television Society Bursaries

Awarded to students from less-affluent backgrounds who demonstrate potential and determination. They must be studying TV Production and Journalism or related subjects, or degrees such as Physics, Maths and Computer Science. Offers mentoring and £1,000 per academic year of study. Deadline: 1 September, 2021

Society of Authors Contingency Fund
Helps writers, illustrators, literary translators, scriptwriters, poets, journalists and others, whose author-related activities make up a substantial amount of their annual income. Grants range in value from £500 to £2,000. Deadline: ongoing

ArtCry grants
ArtCry is setup to provide a rapid turnaround of funding for art works responding to current events. Grants of up to £5,000 with a panel of artists, activists, creators and producers making decisions on applications within a week. Deadline: ongoing

Help Musicians Hardship Fund
The third phase of one of the major support funds for musicians is now open and will support successful applicants with a monthly top-up until March 2021. Deadline: ongoing

Actor's Children Trust hardship grants
ACT continues to pay Corona-crisis grants of £300 per family per month towards food and bills, as well as specific grants for children’s costs.  Please use the contact form so we can check your eligibility as an actor under ACT’s criteria. Deadline: ongoing

Royal Variety Charity Financial Assistance grants
The Royal Variety Charity is uniquely positioned to provide financial assistance to anyone who serves any facet of the Entertainment Industry. Deadline: ongoing

The White Pube Writers Grant funded by Creative Debuts
£500 given out monthly to a working class writer based in the UK. This grant has been set up to support writers of all ages who are early in their careers and would benefit from this no-strings attached financial support to help them in whatever they like. Deadline: ongoing

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