Steps to Publishing
by: Zaak O'Conan
Even if your best friend owns a top publishing company, giving you an
immediate "in," this does not guarantee publishing success.
First, you have to write a quality book that has a clear target
audience. And your book must answer a common problem or need that audience
shares. Then you have to develop a marketing plan, and stick to it for at
least two years.
Let's begin with the process that should commence before you write your
first word. Begin by reading A LOT. Read both books you passionately love
and books you can't seem to make it past page five. Then figure out what
the author did in the book you loved, and what was wrong with in the book
you couldn't finish. Write down these points so they are crystal clear to
you. Read other people's books for inspiration and to discover what you
should avoid as a writer.
The next step is to plan out your book. Narrow down your subject, and
then divide it into chapters. Each chapter should address a specific
aspect of the problem your book is going to solve. In each chapter, break
the specific aspect down into several parts. This will help your readers
take in your information a bit at a time instead of overwhelming them with
every bit of information clogging up the pages until they feel like
they're about to go blind. It's not quite spoon-feeding the information to
your readers, but it's close.
The next two steps are obvious. Write your book and then revise it. And
then revise it again. And perhaps again. Of course, writing is extremely
hard, and writing a book can seem like an impossible task. There are many
books out there that give you guidelines to help you become familiar - and
even love - the process of writing and revision. Find a number of books
about writing. Better yet, find a number of books about writing the
specific type of book you aspire to write. These can serve as roadmaps on
your writing journey.
Once you've written your ebook and revised it at least twice, show it
to someone else whose opinion you respect. If you're lucky enough to know
a good editor, see if you have something to barter for him or her to go
through your manuscript. Or join a writing group and let the other members
critique your work.
Then take all these ideas from other people, and revise your manuscript
one last time. And then stop! Put down that pen! Get your hands off the
One of the most important steps to actually producing a book is to know
when to stop writing and tinkering with it.
You've finally written your ebook! Pop open the bubbly! Give yourself a
night out on the town!
Okay, now that this necessary celebration is out of your system, what
do you do next?
How to turn your ebook into Profits
Ebooks are a revolutionary way to publish your book without incurring
the costs of print production. All you need is a relevant and targeted
subject and some inexpensive software, and you can transform your
manuscript into a book.
The problem, in terms of actually seeing any profits from your ebook,
is that the market is overwhelmed with ebooks, and many of them are not
worth the time it takes to download them. Just because the ability exists
to easily produce an ebook, doesn't make it good writing.
Make sure your book does not simply rehash old material. You will
injure your credibility as an author by claiming to offer valuable new
insights and disappointing your audience with material they've read a
zillion times before. So spend enough time writing and revising your book
to make sure it's of the highest quality and presents the most current
information. A good book will eventually sell itself; false claims about
your book will make it extremely difficult to sell any future books you
Assuming you have determined that you do indeed have a quality product
that answers some question or need of your target audience with NEW
information, how do you know how much to charge for it? Rule number 1: Set
a price for your book equal to its value. An under-priced book will only
give the impression that your book isn't worth very much.
To figure out a fair price, estimate how much time you put into
creating it and how difficult it was to transform the necessary
information into understandable and engaging writing. Figure out how much
your time and effort is worth, and then price it accordingly. The goal is
for you to be adequately compensated for your talent, your time, and your
Once you've figured out a price that is high enough to convey the value
of the book, but not so high as to be out of the reach of your target
audience's mean budget, then it's time to offer it for sale on your
website. To attract sales, you will need to develop a promotional
campaign, particularly if you are an unknown author.
There are multitudes of books about self-promotion that will guide you
in your efforts. Choose a plan that is both creative and professional.
Learn how to write a catchy yet informative press release, and send copies
of your ebook to sites that specialize in ebook reviews.
Learn how to write powerful sales copy, or hire someone to write it for
you. This is an essential. You absolutely need excellent sales copy to
sell your book. Make sure the copy includes all the reasons your target
audience needs your book, and the benefits they will derive from buying
Use graphics in your promotional materials. Beautiful graphics have the
power to instantly convey the quality and value of your ebook. Graphics
can also convey the amount of valuable information the book contains, and
your careful attention to detail. Professional graphics sell professional
books. They reassure the customer that the product is what it claims to
Consider excerpting chapters for articles. You can offer these tidbits
for free on your website as a sort of demo of your book. Include an order
form for your ebook at the end of the excerpted articles.
Finally, when you set-up your download link, make sure to simplify the
process. It's a good idea to offer a few bonuses that make your book even
more enticing to purchase, but make sure the bonuses are valuable and high
quality. Too many bonuses that are basically a load of useless stuff will
compromise the impression your audience has of your ebook. The goal is to
convey to your audience that they are getting a quality product for a good
deal. That means applying restraint, especially when it comes to adding
bonus items. Too much free stuff offered diminishes your credibility.
Make sure your book is a quality product. Make sure it is relevant and
current. Develop an effective marketing plan that includes excellent sales
copy and excerpted articles. Then offer your book for sale, and wait for
your audience to discover you!