As I said last time, this series will cover things I've learned as I've prepared for, written, launched, marketed and sold my ebook Tell Your Time. As is always the case with online business ventures, your results may vary, but I hope these tips will steer you in the right direction. Let's get right to it.
Why write an ebook?
- For the sake of being "published" (because traditional publishing is dying). If you long to be an author and you don't want to go through the long process and uncertainty of traditional publishing, this might be an excellent bet. Publishing as we know it is changing. Check out my series called Why I Turned Down a Book Deal (And the Lessons I Learned) for more.
- To sell for profit.
- To give away for free. Perhaps you'd like to use it as an incentive for people to subscribe to your feed or sign up for your mailing list. Or maybe you want to use it to stand out in your niche by offering something tangible to those who visit your site. Maybe you would just like to enrich the lives of others, no strings attached. All are great reasons to offer it for free!
- To get your feet wet in the digital book market. Did you know digital book sales have now surpassed hardcover book sales on both Amazon.com and BN.com (Barnes & Noble)? That alone is an outstanding reason to dive in. Get in on a trend that's sure to continue.
- It's quick, easy, cheap to produce and potentially more profitable. As far as publishing goes, it's not complicated at all. Really, anyone can do. As far as profits go, again, see the article Authors see e-books as escape from publishing houses (also linked to above).
So, should you write an ebook?
I posed this question last time because I think it's helpful to address it at the get-go. Keep these two things in mind:
- Even though it's not particularly complicated, writing and publishing an ebook does take work.
- Finding people to buy your ebook is not necessarily as easy as it sounds. At this stage in the ebook game, by and large, connections with people drive ebook sales.
So, if you already have an online presence and/or some great online connections, I say go for it. If, however, you're relatively new to the internet and you haven't spent much time networking, I recommend you devote the majority of your time to building relationships, while you write your ebook on the side. You'll be glad you did.
The 1st thing I wish I did differently
I wish I had established a habit of focused project time.
I don't recommend squeezing "writing an ebook" into the cracks and crevices of your life. Unless you're a master at project planning and follow through, I suggest dedicating a chunk of time every day (or several times a week) to your ebook project.
If there are days you have more time to spend on it, excellent! If not, at least you'll see steady progress, even if it's only 15 minutes at a time.
In my case, there were days and sometimes weeks when I didn't touch my ebook — life happens, you know? It was discouraging and a bit defeating. It also caused undue stress toward the end of the project when there was a deadline looming and I had to make up for lost time.
I guess my point here is, don't let this ebook thing become a beast in your life. Work on it slowly, deliberately and steadily. Be purposeful and focused. Determine beforehand how much time you're going to devote to it on a regular basis. By establishing a habit of focused project time, the whole experience is likely to be a lot more enjoyable and empowering.
Perhaps more importantly, once this ebook is done, you can keep that chunk of time in your schedule to start on your next ebook or project, ever increasing your income streams.
So what makes a good ebook topic?
I'm glad you asked…
Read the next post in the series: How to Write an Ebook: Choose a Sellable Topic
Other posts in this series
- How to Write an Ebook
- How to Write an Ebook: Why It's a Good Idea
- How to Write an Ebook: Choose a Sellable Topic
- How to Write an Ebook: Preparing to Write
- How to Write an Ebook: Writing Tips from a Non-Writer
- How to Write an Ebook: Editing and Naming
- How to Write an Ebook: Formatting
- How to Write an Ebook: Setting Up Accounts
- How to Write an Ebook: Pricing
- How to Write an Ebook: Distribution
- How to Write an Ebook: Creating a Sales Page (or Site)
- How to Write an Ebook: Preparing for Affiliates
- How to Write an Ebook: Taking care of your affiliates
- How to Write an Ebook: Paying your affiliates
- How to Make Your Ebook Available on Kindle & Nook