Writing an eBook
In this post we’ll focus on how to write an eBook. eBooks are such an effective marketing tool that they have exploded in the last decade such that the way forward is looking to become a hundred percent digital literature market. This is both a blessing and a curse. It will remove barriers for budding writers that might have struggled to get published in the world of paper backs but the flip side is that we may see a serious drop in quality due to the accessibility for virtually anyone to write a book. The hope is that eventually the wheat will be separated from the chaff and only serious writers will succeed at writing an eBook. If you are one of these ambitious writers, then the advice in this blog might prove helpful in your journey. Organisation is of course always key when undertaking projects such as this but there are other factors that you should take into account.
What’s the story?
What is the core message of your eBook? Non-fiction eBooks generally showcase the author’s area of expertise and set out to answer questions or offer solutions to the reader. Make sure you know your subject matter thoroughly. Even if you think you know it all, do more research. Keep in mind, there are many eBooks on the market, and you want yours to stand out. Can you offer something in your book that differs from other books with similar subject matter? Your eBook is a commodity that you want to profit from so you need to view the content objectively. Yes, it is your baby that you have put lots of time and effort into but is the content interesting enough for your readers? You can enlist the help of friends or family to review your content. Make sure that you chose someone who will give you an honest opinion.
This is the easy part. Block off time, be it daily or weekly and stick to it. There is nothing more exciting than watching your very first eBook mould before your eyes. Once a blank page, now a feast for the eyes. Keep your end goal in mind. Envisioning your name on the bottom of a book cover (even if it is on a computer screen) should keep you motivated.
This is obvious but nonetheless very important. Make sure your spelling and grammar is impeccable. Nothing says unprofessional like not knowing the difference between “their” and “there” (or “your” and “you’re” – this one drives me crazy and I see some really high-profile publishers making this mistake!. Another common one is ‘alot’ (see here for the funniest article about this phrase you will ever see :)).
Remember – treat your eBook in exactly the same manner that you would if you were producing a paper version. You need a table of contents that sets out the book so that the reader can quickly get an insight into what information they can expect to absorb. Design is important too. Often, shoddily put together eBooks are creeping their way into the market due to the lack of investment into the design and cover. First impressions count – your customer is going to form an opinion already based on your cover. It might pay literally to enlist the assistance of a professional to design your cover. If you do not want to spend much, perhaps you can design one yourself. There is lots of design software programs out there – just do a bit of research and find the one best suited to you.
Research shows that eBooks priced between 99 cents and $5.99 sell best. Think about the market that your book is aimed at and price accordingly but make sure not to undersell yourself either. Sometimes pricing too low can impact on the consumer’s perception of the quality of the book.
When’s the sequel?
This is probably the most important note. Create a book that allows for a follow up. You might be bursting with knowledge and eager to share it with your readers but save a little for book two. If your first book is a good read, you have a readymade customer base for the sequel so ensure that you have saved up some fodder for round deux! Also, non-fiction eBooks have proven to engage the audience better with the less is more approach so no need to re write the bible.
Choose your platform
You need to do a little research into the eBook market and where you want to publish your book. Kindle Direct Publishing is perhaps the most user friendly and extremely quick; you can be a published author in a matter of minutes! You do however need to be aware that books published through this medium are only available for sale through Kindle.
Ok, the book is published, but the sales are not rolling in. You need to become something of a marketer. Firstly use every medium available to you that is free. Think word of mouth, social media, and your blog. Don’t have a blog? Well the folks at Twoggle can set you up with one for free. Read more about product sales page strategy here.