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Orna Ross

Hello! I'm Orna Ross, self-publishing novelist, poet, and founder-director of the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi).

I'm on a mission to see indie authors and poets become creatively and commercially independent. One of the ways I do this is through a small-group Publishing for Profit Planning Program for writers who want to make a living from their writing and publishing.

The planning program is based on more than a decade of working directly with thousands of indie authors (see testimonials below), as well my own indie author Go Creative Monthly Work & Profit MarchGo Creative Monthly Work & Profit FebruaryCreative Business Planning Process ColourCreative play practice monthly ma adventures. It takes the holistic and creative approach to running a profitable publishing business outlined in my book, Creative Self-Publishing.

This recognises that learning to publish profitably is not a matter of downloading good tips, but of creating and implementing a publishing plan that works for you. And it understands that every author is unique.

Learning to publish for profit is a process, akin to learn to write, or to produce a book, or to do any other high-order creative task. It's challenging but it's also very doable. There is no quick fix or magic bullet. You just need to know what to do and how to do it.

I can't say exactly what you need to do next–every author-publisher is different–but I can offer a simple process that will uncover it and give you a plan to work (and play) with. As well as a monthly planning workshop, live or in replay, around a publishing-for-profit theme–together with planners and other resources that keep your publishing business growing and expanding.  See below for more details of the upcoming workshops and how the program works.

April 2023 : Small Group Check-ins

There won't be a full group workshop in April. Instead I'll be running small group “check-in and charge-up” sessions throughout the month, to explore your upcoming plans, see how your ten-week turnaround went (if you did it), review the previous quarter and, most importantly, focus your creative energies for Q2 2023.

Patrons can book a time that suits on Calendly. Log into Patreon to get the link to book your session
Full group workshops will resume in May. I've had a few requests to shift our workshop day from Friday, as it's a day that a number of people have family and fun obligations. So I'm thinking of running the workshops on the first Thursdays of the month instead of first Fridays, from May onwards. The time (5pm UK time) and duration (90 mins) would remain the same. Let me know if you have problems with that (sorry Australian friends, it's not possible for me to run them earlier but all are available in replay to patrons).

If you'd like to attend, you need to register as Publishing for Profit Patron. Once registered, you'll be provided the link you need to attend.

Planning for Profit Program

This program is my way of offering more personal attention to authors than is possible through the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi), which now has many thousands of members worldwide.

At ALLi, I see every day how so many indie authors are working hard but, from a profit perspective, standing still, or barely inching forward. Their books are not selling. Some are unclear about the time, investment, skills or resources they need to succeed. Some don’t pay themselves a salary, or even enough money to cover their tax bill, when the time comes round.  Some are stressed, confused, overwhelmed. Others are depressed, even despairing.

I want to see all authors profit, creatively and commercially, from their publishing but I know that most won't. Not because they're “not good enough” but because writing and publishing books are big creative challenges. If we don't know how to respond creatively, the inevitable mental and emotional challenges can derail us.

I believe that, for an indie author, business development is personal development. To grow a profitable publishing business asks us to go deeper and reach higher. What I'm offering is not a conventional business planning but a unique, holistic program that:

  • emphasises the links between your values as an author and the value you offer your readers
  • draws deeply on your creative passion and mission as an author and as a publisher
  • recognises that self-publishing authors must wear three very different hats: that of maker, manager, and marketeer
  • incorporates creative rest and play into your weekly plans as well as creative work.
  • encourages a growth mindset and pay-yourself-first policy

By returning you to core publishing-for-profit principles and practices, the publishing-for-profit program dissolves resistance and procrastination, busy work and overwhelm, enabling you to go deeply into your own publishing values and motivations, set good creative intentions, and build on successes.

Be prepared to surprise yourself as you devise plans that align with your highest priorities, then map your intentions and log your accomplishments each week.

Planning for Profit: Patron Program

I offer these workshops as part of a suite of monthly benefits for a small group of creative planning patrons, that includes monthly planners, a weekly accountability group and more.

Making a living from writing books is a big creative challenge. This planning program was devised to empower you to meet and master that challenge.

As a Planning for Profit patron, you'll receive a variety of resources that will enable you to plan a creative author-business that is uniquely yours.


  • Creative Self-Publishing ebook, as a welcome gift
  • Monthly Planning Workshop: Last Friday of each month at 5pm UK time. This is not a large webinar of thousands but a small-group, private workshop on Zoom, where you can ask questions and receive direct advice.
  • Personal attention and feedback.
  • All questions answered. Nobody left behind policy!
  • Replay video available for a week (one-off) or a year, together with previous monthly workshops (patrons)
  • Worksheets: Downloadable printable PDFs of the worksheets used in each workshop.
  • Monthly downloadable Planners – Downloadable printable PDF planners for the coming quarter, month, week and day
  • Accountability group: A private Facebook group for weekly intention mapping and accomplishment logging.

Join the Publishing for Profit Patron program (places permitting) if you're ready to commit to becoming a profitable publisher in 2023.

Planning for Profit: The Workshops

Each month, we take a deep dive into a particular topic in a workshop that allows you to address head and heart, creative and commercial, money and meaning, in your own individual way, so you can devise a realistic plan that works for you.

We do the work, there and then in the workshop, so you leave with a completed plan and a clear vision for your next steps. The live event is also an opportunity for you to have your current  questions answered. Places are limited, so all can receive personal attention during the workshop.

If you can't attend live, you can ask any question, any time, through the email facility in Patreon. Other resources–monthly planners, a Facebook group and accountability system–keep you on track, all year long.

If you're tired of muddling through, always feeling like you're behind, if you're feeling stuck or uncertain, if you “love writing but hate marketing”, following this method can change everything for your publishing enterprise–connecting your writing and publishing passion, giving you a sense of purpose, meaning and accomplishment.

This program is not for everyone but if you're ready to expand your writing and publishing as never before, join us for one month and see is it right for you.

Once you are registered, you will receive an online link to attend, together with printable PDF worksheets and booklets to download, 24 hours before the workshop begins.

Next Live Workshop: Friday 7th April 2023, 5pm, UK time.

(That’s 9am PDT, Vancouver, 12pm EDT New York, 6pm SAST Johannesburg, 9:30pm IT, New Dehli and 2am next day in Sydney.  A replay is available for all who can't make the live. Check this world clock to find your time.)

Two Registration Options:


Joanna Penn, bestselling author, award-winning entrepreneur, and host of The Creative Penn podcast

Orna’s events have been life-changing for me. With wisdom, kindness (and the occasional kick in the pants!) she is able to cut through the noise and focus on what’s really important for creatives. Her f-r-e-e-writing exercises have helped me with my books and my business. I highly recommend her.

Mark McGuinness, award-winning poet, creative coach, and host of The 21st Century Creative podcast

Amid all the hype about the latest tools and technologies, we don’t hear so much about wisdom, compassion, and hard-won experience. Orna Ross has all of these in spades, and is generous in passing on her knowledge. I value my conversations with Orna and always come away with a valuable new perspective on things. I’m sure you will too.

Suzanne Power

Orna Ross is a genius. She combines incisive knowledge of publishing, huge appreciation for words, great humanity for the writers producing them, and invaluable materials – all to get to the heart of your writing life, and provide the scaffolding of your writing business. She has worked with me as both mentor and as a facilitator and I think the world of what she does and how she does it. No ego, true presence and a brilliant talent.

Her ethics and her examples are ones to trust and to follow. I will continue to do so and consider myself lucky to have the chance to.

Dave Cohen

I spent nearly four decades working in comedy thinking my precious art should not be sullied by anything as vulgar as marketing. In the last couple of years Orna has taught me that if you can think creatively about it, keeping control of and marketing your work is as important to a writer's career as the work itself.

Karen Dodd, Suspense Author

As the author of two books and one on the way, I feel fortunate to have found Orna and her coaching at just the right time in my author career. She has a way of winnowing in on exactly what the intimate, small group needs as we went through our various challenges together. Orna presents information clearly and through her willingness to answer all questions, she fosters a trusting and compassionate relationship between mentor and participants.

Our group is made up of authors at all stages of the process—some were even traditionally published. After each session, we leave with our handouts and a written plan that we can implement immediately. I can’t recommend Orna’s Go Creative sessions highly enough.


Orna has exhaustive experience being an authorpreneur both from her own personal journey navigating the publishing space as an author and working with/mentoring other authors who are walking the same path. I find these workshops to be a distilled essence of this highly specialized knowledge that she has gathered through time.

As a result, this is highly effective and beneficial for an author in terms of the multiple hats that we wear as an authorpreneur. Orna defines them as – maker, manager and marketer. The pay yourself first approach that I got to learn from the workshop is how I'm going to be structuring my business as I believe it's going to set me up for success. Also appreciate the flexibility of attending only the workshops on topics that I most want to learn about and the Q&A time at the end of the session.

Beth Ball, Epic Fantasy Author

I learn so much in each of the sessions, and I really appreciate all of the work you do to help us with both strategies and mindset on the indie author journey.


Belinda Strotheide, Writer and Business Trainer

I just wanted to take a few minutes to say how much I appreciate your creative planning training. My college degree is in business, I’ve spent years listening to entrepreneurial training, I’ve helped businesses, nonprofits and communities think through the process and formulate their plans and goals. You have helped me see the process in a new way. A way that lets me view it creatively, with the business aspects as a framework rather than the focus of the activities. Thank you! Also, thank you for your sensitivity and respect toward the individuals in the meetings. I also like how you push us to go for the deeper truth of who we are creatively and address the real reasons we may get stuck. A really BIG THANK YOU. What you’re doing is so very helpful.

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