To me, writing really can be an incredible experience for your personal development and make a tremendous difference to your world.
When I started writing in 1999, I recall coming across Susan Page’s “How to get published and make a lot of money”. I followed the advice and did manage to get published. Although I did not make a lot of money from writing it, people did love it! It also enabled me to write and earn much more from later books, including two books being published with MX Publishing in 2012.
The world of publishing has, however, changed quite a lot in the past decade. eBooks have opened up a whole new world of possibilities for authors. While you may not be afforded the promotional power of the big publishing houses when you self publish a book, there are many freedoms and advantages that you don’t see in traditional publishing.
Publishing in the Digital Age
As Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch say in their new book APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur, the publishing world has gone through a transformation in the past 20 years.
APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur discusses the traditional route of publishing including publishing houses, editors, designers, agents, publicists etc and contrasts it to the phase of Publishing 3.0, where we can now publish and read books electronically, as well as get printed copies on demand.
I’ve done the traditional/historic route myself and you really need to get used to rejection! I recall it took be 100 approaches for my first personal development book “Don’t think of Purple Spotted Oranges” before it was taken on by Marshall Editions; and I very much agree with Guy and Shawn that you end up marketing your books yourself in any case.
Benefits of Self Publishing
As an alternative, however, ‘self publishing’ you will very much determine the success of your book in every which way! It used to be seen as a back up plan for those who didn’t get a publisher, and yes, with self-publishing you don’t get an advance (i.e. money upfront from a publisher) BUT (yes, a big ‘but’) as Kawasaki and Welch discuss in their book, there are many advantages to self-publishing, including:
- Content and design control
- Longevity – e.g. you can kindle the efforts in marketing.
- Revisions – very simple to amend
- Money – 10%-15% margin with traditional publishing, up to 70% with eBooks
- Price control – you choose the price
- Instant access
- Highlights and annotations
- Global distribution and analytics, and many more
Check out Guy’s video for a great, quick overview:
If you are reading this blog post, you are almost certainly interested in writing. Quite possibly you are looking at what you will get from writing a book – like credibility, consultancy offers, something to impress your cleverness upon your ‘non-authoring’ friends. Are you, however, looking at what the reader will get from it?
Step 1: Good reasons to write a book
The authors say “Good reasons” to write a book include:
- Writing a book to Enrich Lives = knowledge, understanding, entertainment and laughter
- Writing for an intellectual challenge – a skills to master
- Further a cause – which Kawasaki and Welch say “must go beyond explaining something to promoting a point of view and action”
- Catharsis – writing is therapeutic. (Hey, this could be cheaper than therapy!)
Do you have any of these reasons? If so, read on…
Step 2: Buy the book
Currently at about $10.00 for the Kindle version (the printed one is about $25), this book includes EVERYTHING a budding author, publisher and entrepreneur needs – even down to details about formatting/style of the book, with what computer programs- something, as it happens, Guy Kawasaki gave me on an early draft of “The Art and Science of Google+”. It will take you through all of the process you’ll need to publish and make money from your work as well. This is the key point you will learn from a master!
What else? Well I have a very special event planned….
Step 3: Watch the Hangouts!
On the 13th January 11am PST (2pm EST; 7pm GMT) come and hangout with myself and Guy Kawasaki and you’ll learn much more about how to not only write a great book but also how to publish and market it as well.
Click HERE for the event! Check out the video from the first installment here:
From there I am planning some very cool events to help you along the way to publishing your first, or next, book the Kawasaki and Welch way. I know, this is something you will want to get involved in for sure!