It’s Linda on post duty today. The Boss asked me to do the post—more like ordered, actually. She claimed JJ and I should do our share; Rey can’t take over every time some other “duty” calls her away. Fine. So I miss a day of surfing on the North Shore. <sigh>
Continuing with the theme of making money via your blog, let’s touch upon selling e-books as a potential way. Given The Boss has three, with a fourth coming out soon, I thought this might be worth discussing.
There are two options re selling e-books on your blog. #1: look for ones to sell. #2: write your own and sell. Let’s opt for the latter and touch upon the other another time. As JJ might [like to] say: easy-peasey. In theory, it is. Create your e-book. Proofread/edit. Format it. Create an appealing cover. Convert it. Add the e-book to your blog. Promote it.
Writing an e-book is super easy. Writing a great e-book is not. Depending on what you’ve been writing/blogging, your e-book could serve as a diary or journal, how-to guide, the chapters of a book or work of fiction, or a “package” of your posts, among other things.
Determine what you’re going to write. Maybe a popular genre or about a popular topic? If you don’t know much about either, be aware: you’re going to have to commit a lot of time and effort, and research. If you’ve got all three to give, have at it. If you don’t, consider writing about something you know or are comfortable with.
A how-to guide or instructional manual can certainly prove profitable—if it’s of value to your readers/viewers. Fiction, unless you have a name and/or large following, could prove more difficult, but again, as JJ often asserts: never say never.
If you have a reasonable number of followers, you may want to ask what they’d be interested in. Get a feel for what direction to take and take it. Do an outline. Follow it. Finish it.
Once completed, consider hiring an editor or proofreader; some are very reasonably priced. You can also hire someone to design your cover, but give thought to creating your own; there are good, easy-to-use tools out there and many are free!
The world of e-books is different from that of traditional publishing. There won’t be an agent or a publisher to provide insight or advice, but with some due diligence, you can learn all that’s necessary to carve out an e-book niche—like marketing and promotion, two vital components.
Think about sales: how are you going to make them happen? The Boss would likely say this in itself is a full-time endeavor. Maybe yes, maybe no. But definitely, you will have to dedicate a substantial amount of time, so determine a set schedule (this will enable you to remain committed and focused).
An e-book launch is part of the equation, so contemplate how you’d like to handle that. (I’ll let The Boss post more on this.) Price? Yes, it will make a difference. Take a look at what other e-book sellers/writers are asking.
If I’ve tweaked your interest re e-book selling on your blog, I’ve accomplished my mission. Truly, an e-book could be written solely on e-book selling, there’s just so much information to share. It’s really about determining what you want to do and then assembling the “building blocks” to make it happen. Nothing comes easily . . . for most of us. The success of any endeavor is a result of trial and error, learning what works and what doesn’t.
Look at Rey, JJ and I—we’re still fairly new to the private-eye game. Our methods can be clumsy, brash or rash, and sometimes quite ineffective. Ultimately, though, we accomplish what we set out to do. Blogging and making money at it—through whatever forum you ultimately choose—is no different. It’s all about gaining knowledge and acquiring experience. Nobody need be a newbie forever.