You’re blogging. You’ve got a blog, and would like to turn it into a book. I’m coaching two writers who are doing that.
One writer’s been blogging for over a year. He’s using his blog as the basis for his book, revising and updating posts. The other writer hasn’t create a blog yet; he’s blogging his book as he goes along.
Over the past weeks, I’ve received many questions about turning blogs into books, so let’s look at a couple of options.
1. You’ve got great content, which would make a book.
Gina Trapani of Lifehacker was approached by literary agents on the strength of the Lifehacker blog:
That’s the power of a consistent blog that builds its readership over time: instead of my pitching a book to an agent, and agent came to me. Since that initial contact by David (who did become my agent), SIX other literary agents contacted me asking about a Lifehacker book.
You don’t have to wait around for literary agents. Compile some of your content into an ebook. Ebooks are forever:
Trading hours for dollars, no matter how profitable those hours may be, is a dead end. The words you write are paid for and done.
When you self-publish, on the other hand, you’re investing in your future. You may make just a few dollars initially, but if you write good books, in areas which are selling, your income will steadily rise. Your books will sell for years.
Consider this: your enthusiastic readers, if they love your blog, will be only too eager to read your book.
As Gina says in her articles, find a theme which will work as a book, then use your blog posts to create your ebook.
2. You want to write a book, but… it’s scary.
I love writing books. Here’s why: I’ve been doing it for years. It’s natural to me. If you do something often enough, it becomes easy. In a sense, of course. Writing is a slog, but once you know what you’re doing, you can have a lot of fun with it.
That’s a clue: writing your first book is scary. I’ve told the story many times: when I wrote my first novel, I sat at my typewriter day after day, with tears running down my face. My hands shook as I rolled two sheets of paper, with carbon paper sandwiched between them, onto the platen.
All these years later, those memories amaze me. I was a real glutton for punishment.
If you’re scared too, why not sneak up on your book? Blog. In New Blogger? Why Free Services Are Good For Newbies, I said:
… your blog helps you to write every day – this is a wonderful habit… and it’s harder to develop than you might think. Of course, on the other side of the coin, you have those writers who don’t want to write “for free”. If you feel this way, consider that you can DO STUFF with your blog — why not turn it into a book, or a series of books?
Writing a blog post is a lot less scary than sitting down at your computer, and thinking to yourself: “OK, Self. Let’s write a book.”
Try it. Blog. Sneak up on your book, by blogging. Before you know it, you’ll have a mass of material which will make a wonderful book, or ebook.
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