for more articles
A Profitable Idea for Writers
Mary Anne Hahn
|To say that I read a lot is perhaps one of the greatest
understatements of all time. I read chronically, obsessively.
Articles, books, magazines, newspapers, newsletters--you name it.
Whenever I am alone, if I'm not actually writing something, I make
certain I have something to read with me. I carry a large purse
precisely for this purpose; my partner, John, calls the one I hoist
on my shoulder these days "carryon luggage," which should give you
some idea of its size :-).
Although I have a great love for novels, most of my recent reading
involves topics that inform and/or inspire. Of special interest to
me is anything that can show me new ways (or new slants on old ways)
for writers to make a comfortable living using their skills, things
that I can share with the readers of my ezine, WriteSuccess.
One area that continues to look especially promising and profitable
for writers is ebook writing and publishing.
For readers, the convenience of ebooks can't be beat; you can
purchase your book and be reading it moments later without getting up
from your PC or Mac.
For writers, benefits abound. Ebooks are relatively inexpensive and
easy to publish. You don't need to shop around for an agent.
There's no yearlong wait between having your manuscript accepted and
seeing it in print. And you can do some neat things with ebooks that
you can't with the traditional print variety--include your own clip
art and graphics, add hypertext links right in the pages of your book
that take you readers to related Web sites, and other fun online
You can't just slap an ebook together and expect to find an instant
road to riches, however. Finding and developing a book on a topic
that people care about, and will pay for, is key. You will also need
to decide whether to self-publish, or go through an ebook publisher.
And the success of your ebook lies in how willingly, and how well,
you market it.
Probably the most sought-after type of ebooks, and hence the most
profitable avenue you can pursue, are the ones that contain information.
These run the gamut as far as content, from how to develop a gorgeous
perennial garden to how to balance one's work and family life. If people
are passionate about the topic, and feel it will enhance their lives, they
will buy a book about it.
You say that this information is already readily available for free? You're
right, much of it is. But if you write engagingly and well, and if you can
save people hours of searching and sifting through useless information in
order to find what will help them, then you can sell your ebook. Do the
research for them, include the best links in your ebook, and you have
something of great value to offer.
Let's take a look at a real life example: Matthew Lesko. For those who
haven't heard of him, he has put together over 70 books on how individuals
and businesses can find free US government money, grants and cash loans
to finance nearly any venture you can imagine. His books sell like hotcakes,
and I daresay he lives comfortably because of that.
Could people have found this information on their own? Absolutely. But are
they willing to buy Mr. Lesko's books if it will save them hours and hours
of trial and error research? You bet they will.
If the idea of writing ebooks for fun and profit appeals to you, the absolute
best guide on the Web for how to create, publish and sell your own ebook
is "Make Your Knowledge Sell!" This ebook is so packed with information,
you'll be biting at the bit to start writing before you're even a quarter of
way through it. Even visiting the product's Web site alone will provide you
with ideas. You can check out "MYKS!" here:
Another *excellent* resource on this topic is Neil Shearing's "Internet
Success Blueprint." Written for Internet marketers, it is a
superb step-by-step guide to developing and writing ebooks that we
non-marketing type writers could definitely learn from. From
selecting topics to choosing an electronic publishing format for your
books--plus guiding you through the ebook marketing process--this
one's about as complete as you'll find online. Plus, it's a fun
read. Read more about Neil's book here:
If you love to write and want to make your living from it, I
strongly believe that ebooks are a fantastic way to go.
Here's to your writing success!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mary Anne Hahn is editor and publisher of WriteSuccess, the
free biweekly ezine of ideas, information and inspiration for
people who want to pursue SUCCESSFUL full-time writing careers.
To subscribe, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org .