I think the writing of the book is the easy part. Whether you have a body of work ready to repurpose (such as a blog you’ve maintained for several years) or a ghostwriter at the ready, or you just really like to write, getting your book on paper is simple.
Publishing and selling it is another matter altogether and you have four options available when it comes to publishing your book, and each one has its pros and cons.
PDF Ebook. Probably the simplest method to publish a book, all that’s required with an ebook is to click “Save as…” in your Word document and choose “PDF.” Then you can sell the resulting file on your own website, list it on ClickBank or E-Junkie, or upload it to a number of other ebook marketplaces online.
Ebooks don’t quite have the authority that printed books carry, but if you’re on a budget and don’t have the skills to format your book for print, then this can be a viable option to get you off the ground. It’s also a great way to share your book with advance readers to get those all-important testimonials.
The only time I use this method is for my guides and handbooks since I want you to be able to print them. And I may use this option by sharing a chapter of a book but probably not something you’d find in my own shop.
Kindle. The darling of the self-publishing world, Amazon’s Kindle marketplace makes it easy for you to publish your book. In fact, with just a few minutes of formatting, and other several minutes spent on their step-by-step uploading system, you can have your book on their virtual shelves in less than an hour.
With its incredible popularity and the ability to offer “free days” during which anyone can download your book at no cost, Kindle is a great way to build a buzz quickly.
I’m an avid Kindle user or is that reader? From fiction to nonfiction books I can be found with my nose on the kindle screen. Technology has its upside.
Print on Demand. The best choice for self-published authors is a relatively new technology that allows for a single book to be printed on demand. Until just a few years ago, if you chose to self-publish, you’d likely have to shell out for hundreds if not thousands of copies up front, leaving you with a garage full of books to sell on your own.
Print on demand is different. Buyer’s order your book from sellers such as Amazon (whose Create Space arm is itself a print on demand enterprise) and the book is printed and shipped the next day. This makes it easy and cost-effective for everyone to become a published author.
Traditional Publisher. The most difficult and time-consuming option, getting published with a traditional print publisher will also get you the most audience and press. The drawbacks are many, though. To start, it’s extremely difficult to get a traditional publishing house to take on a new author. If you do manage to get the attention of a publisher, your royalties (the amount you earn from your book) will be very small—maybe as little as 8% of the net cost. Finally, the length of time it takes from manuscript submission to final publication can be years.
All that said, a book with a traditional publishing insignia on the spine does carry a bit more weight when it comes to press opportunities than does a self-published book.
My challenge always with traditional publishing has been that it was holding me back because I couldn’t figure out my way in, though I know if I dedicate my time and research, anything can happen. And my message has always been don’t allow anything to stop you from forging your own path or write that book of course.
Many new authors initially choose the ebook format and then move to Kindle and print on demand. Given enough buzz and sales, traditional publication becomes easier to attain as well. The important thing is to get your book written, and then publish where you’re most comfortable. The rest will come naturally.
So don’t allow yourself to be stopped in sharing your message, instead choose the path that makes the most sense to you!
You know that a book is a powerful tool for an entrepreneur. You know that it not only helps to establish your expertise in your market, but it can also exponentially expand your audience.
Not only that, but it’s the single best way to get the attention of mainstream press outlets, influential bloggers, and podcasters, and to land paid speaking engagements. There’s virtually no downside to writing a book.
Except for the actual writing of it.
But your message is bigger than any excuses you could ever come up with. And if you don’t consider yourself a writer, you may think that the benefits are out of your reach, but even self-avowed non-writers have options.
Repurpose. This easy and popular option makes use of the hundreds or even thousands of pages of content you’ve already created, so there is almost no writing involved. You may need to edit a bit for flow and to update ideas, but otherwise, you probably have a ready-made book sitting right on your blog.
And before you start thinking, “Why would anyone pay for a book that’s just pulled from my blog?” know this: People will pay for information that is organized in a way that makes their life easier, even if that same information is available for free elsewhere. In fact, Darren Rowse of ProBlogger.net used this technique to publish his wildly popular “31 Days to Build a Better Blog.”
And I have used it for my Dream, Believe, Take Action. The idea came to me one day while driving on a country road and within 2 weeks I had a book ready to be published. And I am literally working on a new book right now, using the same concept with fleshing out the chapters in a way that it makes sense.
Use Private Label Content. Not enough content to repurpose? No problem. There are companies such as Listmagnents.com that specialize in creating content you are allowed to license and use as your own. It’s called private label rights content, or PLR, and (depending on who you buy from) it’s high quality, well-researched content that makes the perfect jumping off point for your next book.
Two things you need to know about PLR: First, because it’s sold to more than one person, it’s important that you edit the content to adapt it to your voice, your unique view of the industry, and to include your personality. Second, you cannot use PLR to publish a book on Kindle, as this is a violation of their terms of service.
Outsource. Want a book that’s all you without having to do the work? Hire a ghostwriter. These professionals will work with you to create a book that is uniquely yours, and in the end, you’ll have a well-written book with your name on it, all without typing a word.
There you have it. No excuses. You have options available to help you write and have a published book can work wonders for your business growth. It will bring you, clients, expand your audience reach, and even attract some press.
But it can’t-do any of that if you don’t write the book in the first place. So take one of these ideas and get to writing. I promise you won’t regret it.
If you are in business, is writing a book part of your marketing plan?
It’s true. This one thing has the power to grow your business beyond your expectations. You’ll experience a whole new world of opportunities simply by having your name on the cover of a book.
I remember my last book where I was so excited to share something that didn’t have anything to do with my son’s transplant journey or even growing up in foster care, even though they are relevant to the work I do.
Having a book out on the market with your name elevates something within you, like confidence, but it does much more.
Imagine you’re at a conference or local networking group and you meet two coaches who both specialize in business branding—something you know you need help with.
One coach says all the right things. She’s been in business for years and worked with some top-notch business owners. She has great ideas for how she can help you solidify your branding.
The other has a similar history and story, with one added bonus: she’s just handed you a copy of her latest book. It’s a professionally printed, substantial publication that practically exudes confidence.
Which coach do you think shows more authority in her field? The one with the book, of course. There really is nothing better when it comes to establishing your authority in any niche than having a book with your name on it.
So why does a book speak so highly of you and establish your authority so well? Because it gives you a platform to show off your expertise. It’s like being invited to present on any topic you choose on the world’s largest stage.
Not only that, but your readers are a captive audience. They’re listening—in that moment—only to you. That’s a powerful position to be in and one that gives you an opportunity to really show off your stuff.
One of the reasons, I wrote books sharing personal journey’s is not just because people thrive on hope and inspiration, or that it can make me relatable to being human. I know I am a master of adversity and what better way for me to show you, other than on my blog?
No matter how many readers Google sends your way, no matter how much traffic your YouTube channel receives, nothing will ever compare to the number of potential readers Amazon and other online booksellers can bring your way.
Positioned correctly, your book can reach millions of new readers, and thousands of potential clients. Combine that with the expertise and authority we know comes with being a published author, and that’s a recipe for success that can’t be beaten.
And the greater the market reach, the greater your income. Think about this, you can write a book, share it with the people and steadily have a stream of passive income.
Better Than a Business Card
If you’ve ever been to a conference, you’ve no doubt collected a stack of business cards. You get home and toss them in a drawer, and six months later you throw them out, without ever having contacted the people who gave them to you.
But if one of those people handed you a book instead, what happened? You’ve likely read it (or at least leafed through it). You almost certainly didn’t throw it away. And you remember it—and the person who wrote it.
The impressions we leave behind with people matter. Anytime I share that I am writing a book or that I am an author, people remember that. They’ll ask me how the writing is going or what new book I may be working on.
Turn on your television to any interview show, browse through Huffington Post, or listen to any of a number of popular podcasts, and you’ll quickly see that most of the guest speakers and interviewees have written a book.
The fact is, interview shows depend on interesting, insightful guests to keep their audiences listening, and there’s no better applicant than an author. Writing a book will open up many, many opportunities for appearances that you may never have without your name on that cover.
Do you have to write a book to be successful? No. But there’s no denying the fact that a published author will find she has a much easier time growing her business than the coach who keeps putting it off until later.
And I don’t know about you, but I love seeing my name on a book cover!
Have you ever thought about writing a book? Is your imagination riddled with plot twists or maybe you’ve overcome challenges worth sharing and you want to show other people what is possible?
And maybe all you know for right now is that you want to write a book because you feel called to do it, or it excites to call yourself an author.
Either way, you’ve been procrastinating because
- you don’t know how to begin
- you worry anyone will read your book
- you don’t know how to get it published
Well, good news because I am going to share with you how to get going so you can stop just wishing and dreaming about a book and get it done!
Find your story
So, let me ask you, do you want to write a fiction or a non-fiction book?
Now that you have an idea of the genre, it’s time to brainstorm.
For fiction books, mind-map your story.
For non-fiction books, brainstorm ideas of the things you want to write about that you have lived through, experiences and maybe you want to teach.
Commit to writing
Now that you have a story to tell and know what you will be writing about, commitment will be key. how many words or pages a day can you and are you willing to write that doesn’t overwhelm your already existing life activities? Commit to that.
Now it’s time to start writing. Whatever you committed to, you need to start taking action. Plan and schedule, it into your week and stick with it. This, not the time to worry about perfection, grammar, and spelling. This is the time to make it happen.
Edit and proof-read your work
Once you have completed your story, it’s time to worry and work through the grammar and spelling errors. Print it out, and read it aloud to yourself. Or you can ask a friend to help you or maybe even hire someone to do this part.
Get it published
The world has changed and we no longer need to wait for rejection letters to our manuscript. Instead, we can self-publish our books through createspace.com or lulu.com and many other places that I don’t know about. The two I mentioned are the ones I use.
Now go and be off and write that masterpiece!
If you want some more guidance about how to write a book, there is a course in the Rebel Soul Connection just waiting for you!