Chapter One. Why Write an eBook or Other Short Book?
Whether you are a speaker, seminar leader, consultant, coach, writer, author, or in another field, the book you write with your unique, useful message will expand your life at least ten-fold. Each of you has reasons to write. You also have advantages. Here are seventeen reasons and advantages to spur you on to write your book! Check the ones that are important to you.
Benefits to the Author:
___ 1. Recognition--people value your message.
___ 2. Fame--authors are in the top 10% of professions.
___ 3. A book creates a stimulating life full of adventure and opportunities.
___ 4. You express your personal mission to help others.
___ 5. You standout from the crowd and bring in more business.
___ 6. A book gives you more credibility than anything else, including videos or cassettes.
___ 7. It provides a profit center, and you can charge more for talks.
___ 8. It brings you a form of immortality.
___ 9. Authors can live anywhere.
___ 10. Talks reach 100's; books reach 1000's.
___ 11. You will always be in business.
___ 12. Books are a cost effective way to multiply sales.
___ 13. A book provides ongoing passive income--your product is always working for you.
___ 14. Working One on One yields an hourly wage, limiting what you earn, and requires a lot of prep and recovery time.
___ 15. Radio and TV shows, Corporations, and Internet businesses can't survive without you and your book.
___ 16. Your book is your best business card.
___ 17. People need and want your unique, special message.
Author's Tip: A book brings you more credibility than any other product--tapes, cdrom's, videos, or games.
The one question most book clients ask is "But will my book be good enough to interest my audience?"
Of course you don't want to waste your time writing a bad book. One important ingredient in your book is your passion. So, if you love your topic or you're anxious to learn more about it--that's passion enough! An author starts with passion, then adds other ingredients to make their books captivate their readers. Take the test below to discover whether your book will be significant enough.
Test Your Book's Significance
1. Is it filled with action? Is it Exciting?
2. Is it fun to read? Does it have humor?
3. Does it teach the reader something interesting? New?
4. Does it present useful/original/unique information?
5. Does it have the potential to positively affect the reader's life?
6. Is its message said in a unique way?
7. Does it answer an age-old question like the meaning of life?
8. Does it create a deeper understanding of human nature?
9. Does it give skills and information to help individuals?
10. Will the book's particular audience want or need its information?
Of the ten significances it takes only...
- One for a newspaper or magazine article
- Two for a book
- Three for a best seller
- Five for a Pulitzer prize
- Six for a literary classic
So, be encouraged and start writing!
How Can You Write a Book That Sells?
Your book has enough significance. You have something valuable to share with the world. You have a personal story that others can learn from. You have a business and know a book will make you more credible. You are ready to take the next step to join the top 10% of professions--authorship.
Will your book sell? To see if your book has got what it takes, check out the test below.
Seven Ways to Select a Topic That Sells
1. Write what you are passionate about. Write what will still interest you in the next two years. Your book is an extension of you, your talks, and your profession. If you don't love your topic, you won't be successful. One big mistake authors make is to put attention on writing another book before their first one has been promoted.
2. Write down five topics you are passionate about. Ask your inner author which one should you pay attention to first. After choosing, gather and organize everything you already know and want to know about that topic. If you need, research it. Read other authors' books in your field, check out related web sites, and subscribe to newsletters. You become the expert as you write.
3. Write a book your audience needs or wants. People want how to's and skills. Three special reports on memory and a speedreading manual I wrote have sold over 45,000 in the past 15 years. Business books sell well. People need writing, reading, speaking, computing, communication, math, sales, marketing and Internet skills. Nonfiction how to's sell best. When your nonfiction books sells well, you can finance your novel.
4. Research your target market. Who is your preferred audience? Who will read and buy your book? Who will pay the $10-$25 price tag? How many possible buyers are there? How does your book stack up to your competition? What is your unique selling proposition? What benefits does your book bring its readers? How many in your audience? According to Dan Poynter, author of Writing Nonfiction, an audience of 200,000 to 700,000 are best. Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul sold three million copies more in one year than the original Chicken Soup sold in three years.
5. Compare your book with other reputable, good sellers. What way is your book like theirs? What way is your book unique from others? How? How is your book better? If you think your book is the only one of its kind, it may be, but it will much more difficult to sell. Check out where your book fits by visiting your local bookstore. Ask the bookseller to help you. Turn to the back covers--look at the upper left side to see the two or three categories usually listed there. Which ones do your book fit under? Let your book develop a new angle on the problem to be solved. A book on breast-feeding sold far more copies when the author aimed it at working mothers.
6. Survey your market. Brainstorm with and ask for feedback from friends and associates. Let them vote on the best of ten titles and subtitles, chapter titles, back cover information. While some get their title instantly and know it's the right one, many of us need help. When you use the synergy of more brainpower, you receive so many more ideas. Don't be attached to your choices. Feedback helps build a better book.
7. Create a winning vision for your book. Know that your book will be published. Specifically name the outcomes you will see, hear and feel. Place this winning vision in color on a card. Put it near your workstation. (Using today's date including the year) Now that my book (title and subtitle) is finished and is a huge seller. For example:
I see (lines of people waiting patiently to buy it)
I hear (applause from multiple audiences affirming it)
I feel (exhilarated, confident and pleased it's such a hit)
What Makes One Book Outsell Another?
1. Write a book that people need and want. People want how-to books, they want skills. Notice the demand today for eBooks. It's best to see the need and fill it rather than have an idea--then look for an audience.
2. Nonfiction books are 90% of total book sales. It makes sense to write and market non-fiction first. You can use your profits to finance a fiction project.
3. Short books in any format, like eBooks, booklets, guides or special reports are faster, easier, and cheaper to write than full-length books of 100-300 pages. They can be as short as five pages (special reports), to eBooks that can be 5-100 pages (even longer). Anne Wayman's Powerfully Recovered, in e and print format, had 205 pages.
4. Women buy far more books than men do, about 75%. If your message benefits women, you'll do well in sales. The Chicken Soup for Women series sold 20 million copies out of 68 million for the total series sold. .
5. Image is almost everything. Choose your title with care. Your front cover and title have around four seconds to impress your potential buyer. Be clear, use metaphor and make sure your visuals connect to your title. Elicit an emotion through your title words (preferably 5-7 words). What solutions and results does your book promise? .
6. Expand your book into a series. Think of the huge success of the Chicken Soup Series. They have one "brand" everyone recognizes. The latest count is 68 million sold as of 2001.
7. Create spin-off products that relate to your book. Some people prefer to learn by listening to a cassette, or downloading a CD-ROM. I recently bought a serial eBook and loved getting two chapters a week--so easy to digest. These formats can actually help you sell more books. Other spin-offs include coaching, consulting, speaking, seminars, columns, or videos.
8. Impress your potential buyer within eight seconds with your back cover copy. At the top put your headliner. It must hook your readers, stir up their emotions, and hit their desire. What benefits does your book offer? How to get more money, heart-centered relationships, more fame, and more health? Include from 3-5 bullets of what your book promises its readers, and those important testimonials.
9. Create your written marketing plan before you finish chapter one. This plan covers your first year's launch period and lifetime plan. The biggest mistake new authors make is that they quit marketing after the initial six months. Word of mouth takes a while. Be patient and market your book for up to three years. Another mistake is that inexperienced authors wait until publication before they think of marketing, losing a great deal of sales. Your plan could include how many books you want to sell, your 30 second tell and sell, book reviews, news releases, the articles to market your book, the book signings, talks, electronic newsletters, and a book Web site. Without a written plan, an author creates vague results. Want help? Go to my web site for How to Write and Sell Your Book Fast Kit which contains the special reports: How to Create A Marketing Plan and Sell More Books With a Media Kit.
10. Put as much time into marketing as you did the writing of your book. Your goal is to have people read and learn from your unique message. Why plant a garden if you don't harvest it? John Kremer, book marketing guru, and author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books, says to do five things each day--calls to the media, creating a press release (see my Power Press Release Special Report on my web site), connecting to web sites to publish and market your book. Or, put your efforts on a combination of tasks. You can purchase Kremer's book at his web site at http://www.bookmarketing.com.
11. Include web marketing to sell more books. While you can sell your books on other peoples' site, such as Amazon.com or Booklocker.com, you eventually will want your own. An author without a Web site is like a person without a name. Your site can contain book reviews, testimonials, excerpts and discussion boards. The more interactive it is and the better the ad copy, the more return visits you'll get. The more visits, the more opportunity for sales.
Author's Tip: I recommend http://www.FiveStarWebDesign.com by Leva Duell, 12-year businesswoman and expert in graphic and web design geared for sales. This site is full of tips, free articles to help you create an irresistible Web site that keeps buyers coming back.
Another big question you may have is "Will my book sell enough copies to satisfy my requirements?
You are already busy. You wonder if you will have the time, know-how, and money to finish the project, and will it be worth your efforts? One solution is to start small with a special report or booklet. They sell very well, especially on the Internet. No one wants to have a storage area full of unsold books, but in today's publishing game, you need print only the copies you sell. One of my clients sold 91copies of her humor book before her books were even printed! The new Print on Demand Technology cuts publishing costs way down. (See Chapter Four)
With a good marketing plan, goals and action plans, your book has a good chance of selling well. In the next chapter, learn how to organize all the pieces to your masterpiece.
Judy Cullins, M.A., Publisher, Author, Book Coach
Write Your Ebook or Other Short Book - Fast!
18 clients published since 1999!