So – you are thinking of writing an ebook and not sure where to start or what to do? I want to help you! We have collectively written over ten books and we have the tips that can help you.
NOTE: This post was written in 2015.
Why I’d encourage you to write a book:
1- They are easy… because you already love to write (if not, you can always just do some sort of “Talk to Text” option and then have it made into a book by someone else!)
2- They bring in money every day, even when you aren’t working.
3- You do the work once and you are done.
4- You can take as long as you want to write it… or you can have it done in a very short amount of time. It’s your book, so it’s up to you!
How do you decide what you are going to write about?
1- Look at your most popular posts
2- How can you EXPAND on those?
3- Can you combine multiple posts and expand on all of them to make an ebook? I took my most popular post, Potty training in 3 days (we did this with all of our kids) and I took all of the posts in that series (5 of them). I combined them on a Word Document. I added to them (I added about 50 pages) to give every detail that someone would need to Potty Train their kids.
I asked people for their struggles (on Facebook) and used those answers to think about how I could help more people in my book. I asked people what hurdles they had and then I answered them in the book. I asked people how they found success and wrote a chapter titled “Advice from other moms”… I made it so that you would walk away with your child potty trained… end of the story.
(And because of this, word of mouth is what is selling my book… friends telling friends that it worked for them.)
How long does it take to write an ebook?
It really depends!
My first book, Potty Train in a Weekend, took me about one to two months. I worked on it for an hour or two every night. My second book, You Can be a Stay at Home Mom on One Income, didn’t take me too long because it was really easy to write. I blog
A LOT about saving money, so for this book, I just combined all of my money-saving posts into one book. I then went back & added details to each post. I wasn’t in a rush, so I took my time (making it easier to write). So, for example, I blogged about doing a toy swap to save money and then I went into the book and talked about how I sell toys at consignments, how I rotate toys in our home… just added to it.
Again, I wanted to make sure that they walked away feeling confident with the tools that I had given to them. This book is also a big seller of mine. My next few books were much easier for me to write.
Do you need a program to write your ebook?
E-book: Many people use CreateSpace, but I just used my Microsoft Word program. I wrote it up, edited it, saved it as a PDF (so that no one else can change it) and then uploaded it into EJunkie (that is how they buy it). It was seriously that easy!
Physical book: I make 50% of my sales from the physical book, so don’t cut that out of your mind just yet. I use Createspace for this and while I had some issues with it, it is worth the time and effort.
Does it cost money to make an ebook?
My first book cost me around $25 for the first one and by the last one, it was a few hundred (for editing). (My sister in law edited my first few as a favor to me).
The cover can be as expensive as you want it. It can be free or even just $1 if you make it yourself. I found someone on Fiverr.com each time and had them make one of the covers. I made the rest myself, including the books for this site.
$20- this is the cost for someone on Fiverr.com to convert it into a Kindle-ready book.
I also pay the fees to Paypal, E-junkie & Amazon with every book sale.
If you don’t have money to spend, you can get around this part. (However, I do suggest trying to hire an editor.)
To get around having to hire an editor, I printed out 5 copies of my book. I gave each copy to different family members, along with a red pen. They went through it and marked it up like crazy and give it back. I fixed the mistakes.
That’s all there is to that. I just saved hundreds or thousands of dollars. That was for my first book. I didn’t have money to spend on editing, but now that I do, I usually hire several editors.
Will I sell a lot of books once I hit PUBLISH?
That depends on the book. My Potty Train in a Weekend book sells a lot of copies, between Amazon and my blog.
I co-wrote a book with my dad on Car Buying, and it doesn’t sell as much because my blog isn’t where you would go to find out about cars, so the advertising isn’t there, whereas I am constantly able to advertise for my own books because I blog about saving money and potty training a lot (and organizing!)
*You can see how much I have made on my book sales in my July 2015 Income Report.
Writing a book… Is it worth it?
In the end… it is worth it!
Yes, it takes time… Yes, it can be frustrating when a day (or days) go by without a sale, but it pays off for me and for my affiliates. (My affiliates make 50% of the sale.) So, yes, I’d say it is worth it… 100%!
So- that is the low-down of writing an ebook. I hope that helped!