Here’s the bad news: Books are not big money makers–especially not nonfiction books. They can provide a nice trickle of income, but they aren’t going to make you rich like J.K. Rowlings or Amanda Hocking.
Here’s the other bad news: Nonfiction authors are stuck spending a ton of their time building platform or promoting themselves so they can sell those books to make that piddly amount of money.
If you are a nonfiction freelance writer, you often have to work long and hard to get those paychecks in hand, and not all magazines pay well. With the state of newspapers, those assignments and paychecks can be few and low paying.
I know many of you, like me, have turned to blogging for a variety of reasons (including to relieve your Frustrated Writer syndrome). With a blog, you can do what you do best–write–while promoting yourself and getting your work read. A blog increase your exposure online and solidifies your platform. That means you have more potential readers and more likelihood of getting published or turning out a successful self-published book. A great blog also helps you land freelance writing gigs; editors can see your great writing. Plus, publishers expect aspiring and published authors to have a blog. The only problem is that you don’t tend to get paid when you blog to promote yourself and your work. Yes, you can place some ads on your blog, but unless you have tons of traffic, you won’t see a check for a very, very long time…if at all.
Here’s the good news: There are some ways to make money with your blog that don’t involve advertising and that do involve writing and sharing your knowledge. For example, you can:
- produce short books on the topic of your blog.
- repurpose your content into books.
- write white papers, workbooks or guides and sell them.
- create teleseminars and webinars.
- begin coaching and consulting.
- offer other services related to your area of expertise.
- speak or teach.
- develop home or online study programs.
The majority of nonfiction authors who make a good living do so by incorporating more than just books into their tool box. That’s right; they aren’t just authors. Or they put their writing and expert status to use in other ways. That means they enter the “expert industry.” They use their expertise in a variety of ways that go beyond their printed books.
How might you do the same? Take some time today to brainstorm this idea. Think about the categories above and how your blog content or book lends itself to producing “information products.” Leave me a comment…let me know what ideas you came up with.
If you want some help and would like to put some solid, concentrated time into this exercise so you can start making more money as a writer, author and blogger, register for my Writer’s Digest Bootcamp this coming weekend. But don’t wait to long…there’s only room for 25 participants in How to Build a Business Around Your Blog Bootcamp, and there are only a few spots left as I write this post.
- existing books and books in progress
- shorter pieces of work, such as tips books, booklets, e-books, etc
- information products such as webinars, teleseminars, podcasts, and courses
- speaking services
- coaching and consulting services
On Saturday, August 25th, you’ll take what you learned during the webinar to create a rough draft of the business plan for your blog. I will provide you with special worksheets to help get your plans down on paper. You’ll identify what you know that makes you an expert. And you will identify short books and information products to create and sell that:
- support or establish your expert status
- promote your existing fiction and nonfiction books
- increase or develop revenue
On the morning of Sunday, August 26th, you’ll email your business plan directly to me for review. I’ll spend the next two days going over each submission and provide personalized feedback on what you’ve done well and where your plan could be improved. You will have your feedback by end of day Monday, August 27th.
Here’s the thing: With a blog that you monetize with books, information products, services, and speaking, you become part of the expert industry. Whether you write fiction or nonfiction, you can take your expertise and communicate about it from the page, your blog, the podium, and beyond—and expand your earning potential as a writer and author.
And you don’t want to leave all that potential money sitting on the table…or wait for it to come in from a royalty check. So, if you want to join me at the Writer’s Digest How to Build a Business Around Your Blog bootcamp, click here to register.
Photo courtesy of Boaz Yiftach