Own Informatione Products CREATE YOUR OWN INFORMATION PRODUCTS! Millions and millions of full sized books and small booklets are sold each year. Most are produced by the large publishing houses. However, there are also several million books sold every year by small, unassuming, one-person publishing companies. Many of these one-person publishers operate from a home-based office. And, surprisingly, some home-based publishers earn excellent incomes.
(What’s more, some are even becoming very rich.) In this report you’ll learn how to succeed as a home-based publisher, producing books, booklets, reports and manuals on nearly every subject imaginable. And, if you have no desire to write your own material, you’ll learn how to get authors to write for you. Many authors have chosen to by-pass the usual publishing routes and, instead, self-publish their own books. Admittedly, this requires more work, but it could also mean more profits. There are many reasons authors decide to self-publish, including: 1. It’s very difficult to get a manuscript accepted by the giant publishing houses, unless you are a personality in some field, or are already a successful author.
2. Often, the large publishing companies will want to edit a manuscript in such a manner that is unacceptable to the author. 3. Often, the author can market his own book more effectively than a large publisher will. This is especially true if the material is of a non- fiction or of how-to nature. 4.
Self publishing allows the author to keep all of the profits. 5. There is plenty of opportunity for the author/self- publisher to set up other profit center products that are related to the topic of the book. So, as you can see, there are many compelling reasons why thousands of authors have chosen to self-publish. Also, the availability of low cost microcomputers have made self-publishing much easier than in past years. This report will give you a step- by- step approach to self-publishing your own book.
Note: this report is not about writing. It is assumed that you will write your own booklets, or hire a ghostwriter to do the job for you. So the following information will focus only on the steps you need to take to succeed (make money) as a self- publisher. HOW IT WORKS AND HOW TO DO IT STEP-BY-STEP (1) Generate book ideas and proposals, either your own or by hiring authors/ghostwriters. (2) Evaluate these ideas and proposals as to the feasibility of producing a valued book, and reaching a large group of prospective customers.
(3) Evaluate the size of the market and determine how you’ll reach that market. Also, research any competitive books. (4) Consider various related products that you could sell to the people who buy your book. (5) Write and edit the book, pay royalties to an author, or hire a ghostwriter to do it for you. (6) Produce a camera-ready copy for the printer.
(7) Begin your marketing effort by designing ads and brochures. (Often, this step comes before, or during, writing the book. Your sales material can give you something to live up to.) (8) Launch a full scale marketing and publicity campaign. (A full-scale roll-out should follow a test marketing campaign. You want to make certain you have a truly salable product, and should spend little money to test the waters.) (9) Get printing quotes and have the final version of the book ready to print and bind as soon as you’re sure there will be sufficient sales to warrant these costs. (10) Sell follow-up products to your customers. All of these steps can be carried out quickly.
You could easily have a fast-selling book on the market within 6 months, or less. SELECTING A TOPIC The best, and easiest, subjects for self-publishers to produce are of the how to genre. Books, reports and manuals that tell readers how to do something are among the liveliest sellers. It’s very difficult for a small publisher to be successful with novels, or poetry books. So this report will focus on how to books. However, you can apply many of the techniques discussed here to market other kinds of books as well.
To begin, you should publish material on topics which you are most familiar. You should also have a market targeted and a plan for reaching that market. Example: you may have in mind to produce a book about how to make money with crafts — to be sold in small craft shops, craft fairs, craft magazines and through direct mail to people who make craft items. It’s not necessary for you to be an expert on a topic if you aren’t writing the book yourself. But you do need to be knowledgeable enough to evaluate the book proposals that are submitted to you. Otherwise, you’ll have to hire an expert to evaluate the manuscript for you.
Most small publishers specialize in one general topic. For example: crafts, income opportunities, computers, a particular hobby, gardening, health and others. A home-based publisher, like you, will then produce several books on the same subject. Thus, greatly increasing sales because you’ll have related books to offer to the same customer. Once you have a few potential topics, these ideas must be evaluated. The most crucial question is, can I sell a book like this and, if so, how will I sell it? First, you need to evaluate the size of the market.
If there are only a few thousand people who would be interested in your book, you may want to reconsider. Many small publishers recommend that you have a potential market of at least 50,000 people who would be interested in your topic. Next, you need to determine if these people are easy to reach. Are there magazines, trade associations, or mailing lists that you can use? Example: Book — HOW TO USE LOTUS 1-2-3 SOFTWARE Market — 2 million owners of Lotus 1-2-3. How to reach — mailing list of Lotus owners, special magazines for Lotus users, computer bookstores You’ll find that most self-publishers suggest that you find a market niche that is not being adequately covered.
Here’s a sampling of marketing model railroading, self-publishers, writers, Apple computer owners, computer programmers, gardeners, health enthusiasts and hundreds of other narrowly defined interests. Each of these topics may only have a potential market of 50,000 to 200,000. But this is often enough for you to be successful. It’s especially true if you have a good way to reach these people, and if you publish several books about the topic. Most publishers are recommending that you stick to special subject books rather than broad coverage books. It seems as if the day of the high page count, broad topic books are about over.
There are also many groups of people who are interested in all kinds of narrow, specialized topics. Other factors to evaluate include: are there any similar books already on the market, how is your book different (more valuable), are there people who really want your book, is your information up-to-date and can you produce exciting promotional material to sell your book? It’s important to consider your book’s selling points. If it’s easy, write an ad for the book, that is, your material has many selling points, the book will be easier to market. More about book marketing later. BOOK TITLES The title of your book can have a big effect on sales.
A good title will often result in increased interest as well as higher profits. Example: HOW TO GET RICH IN MAIL ORDER is much better than HOW TO GET STARTED IN MAIL ORDER. Here are a few more good examples of lively book titles: HOMEMADE CASH, CASH FROM YOUR COMPUTER, IS THERE A BOOK INSIDE YOU, QUICK CASH — (129 WAYS ANYONE, ANYWHERE CAN MAKE $200 RIGHT AFTER DINNER), HOW TO WRITE A MILLION- DOLLAR OPPORTUNITY BOOK, WHY S.O.B.’S SUCCEED AND NICE GUYS FAIL IN SMALL BUSINESS, CASH COPY, I’LL BUY THAT!, HOW TO MAKE PVC FURNITURE FOR FUN AND PROFIT, CASH IN BY CLEANING UP, $200 A DAY WITH YOUR PICKUP, ADS THAT SELL, HOW TO MAKE YOUR ADVERTISING MAKE MONEY, HOW I MADE $1,000,000 IN MAIL ORDER, HOW TO MAKE MAXIMUM MONEY IN MINIMUM TIME, SECRETS OF HOW TO BECOME A SUCCESSFUL MAILING LIST BROKER, HOW TO WRITE A HIT SONG .. AND SELL IT!, HOW TO ADVERTISE FOR LESS THAN THE COST OF A POSTAGE STAMP! And so on. A good book title should: grab the attention of the customer, clearly reveal the book’s subject, arouse interest, define the area covered by the book and promise benefits to the buyer/reader. Many books also have a subtitle.
The subtitle is usually about 6 to 15 words long and should reveal even more about the book. For example: QUICK CASH! How Anyone, At Any Time, Anywhere Can Make At Least $200 Right After Dinner. One more thing about book titles: If you’re planning to produce ads or direct mail pieces to promote your book, you should consider a snappy, upbeat title which can be also used as your headline. The above book title, along with its sub-title, in national full-page advertisements has sold thousands of copies of the book, Quick Cash. It’s attention-getting, informative, captures the imagination of the proper prospect and offers a benefit.
BOOK LAYOUT There are several basic decisions you must make concerning the layout of your book. These decisions will influence the cost you pay for printing. For example: (1) Stick with standard sizes — 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches or 8 1/2 x 11 inches. (Some printers may have slightly different book dimensions.) But just make sure that you request a standard size that your printer can easily produce. Odd sizes will increase the overall cost of printing.
(2) Number of pages — All book printers have optimum number of pages that they can produce. These are usually increments of 4, 8, 16, or 32 pages. You’ll want to make sure your book falls on these increments or you’ll pay extra for blank pages. The page count does not include the cover. Example: It may cost 10% more for a 161 page book than it does for a 160 page book.
Therefore, you’ll want to reduce your manuscript by one page. (3) Typeface — This is the style and size of the letters that make up the text. The most used typeface for books is Times Roman at 10 point size. If you use 12 point size, more pages are required, 8 point size will require less pages but will be harder to read. Don’t use some offbeat, out of the ordinary typeface. Make your book easy to read.
(4) Type of cover — You can decide to use a plain, one- color cover or a glossy, 4-color cover. If you’re planning to sell through bookstores, you’ll need to design a fancier, eye- catching cover. For mail order sales, customers are buying information, not a pretty cover; so you can put less emphasis on cover design. (5) Other factors that you may need to consider are: pictures, photos, an index, size of chapter headings and subheadings. You can explore various book layouts simply by examining different books.
Pick one that you like and discuss it with your printer. TYPESETTING Once the book, or booklet, is written and edited, your first concern is to prepare a camera ready copy for the printer. The printer must have a good master copy of your book in order to prepare plates for the printing press. The pages of this master copy must appear exactly as you want the final copy of the book to look. In other words, it should contain: headlines, subheads, margins, justified text, any graphics or pictures and, ideally, proportionally spaced letters (typesetting).
The only way to get all of the above features is by having your book typeset. Unfortunately, typesetting can be expensive. You may pay $20, or more, per page if you hire a commercial typesetter. However, microcomputers can reduce the cost of typesetting. Here’s what I mean: (1) Produce the book on computer and deliver a floppy disk to a typesetter who can typeset from your disk. This saves the cost of having the typesetter key in your book’s text, word by word. (2) Send the disk to a computer owner who has a laser printer and desktop publishing software and have him/her typeset the book for you.
They will often do this for a reasonable fee of $1 to $3 per page. (3) Use a modem to transfer the text of your book via a telephone to a typesetter who can handle modem transmissions. (4) Buy your own laser printer and desktop publishing software and typeset the book yourself. If you already own a computer and are going to publish several books, then option #4 is the best way to go. This gives you complete control over the typesetting.
It also allows you to perform editing changes quickly. There are two other options for typesetting your book. The first is to use a high quality typewriter to produce the text. You can also use the rub-on headline type that can be purchased from any office supply store. Unfortunately, this will not produce a very good looking book. And, with today’s competition and readily available desktop publishing systems, this approach will leave you a step behind other publishers.
A slightly better option is a computer system together with a high quality (24 pin) multi-mode dot matrix printer. This will produce near letter quality text, justified margins, columns and proportionally spaced text. These are features you cannot get with a typewriter. So you’ll end up with a fair quality book (but not near as good as that produced with a laser printer). My advice is to get, or rent, a full desktop publishing system to produce several books.
However, if you just want to self-publish just one book, then consider using the services of a commercial typesetter. Or hire someone who owns a desktop publishing system. This will allow you to produce the best master copy for your printer. And will result in a professional looking book. At a minimum, you’ll want the book’s cover to be professionally typeset. BOOK EDITING There are two phases of book editing.
The first step is to edit the book before typesetting, and before a printing master is produced. This step is designed to eliminate the majority of errors. The second phase is to complete a final editing of the book after a master copy has been typeset. The purpose of the second phase is to eliminate any remaining errors. A second purpose of this step is to cut out or add material and to adjust the length of the book, if necessary. You may also wish to adjust the length of a chapter so that each chapter will begin on a right hand page.
You may wish to adjust the length of the book to save printing costs. For example: as I mentioned earlier, most book printers operate in set increments of pages. Many offer 16 page signatures. Therefore, a 160 page book would take 10 signatures. A 164 page book would take 11 signatures and cost extra because of those additional pages.
So if you can eliminate 4 pages, you’ll save printing costs. Editing a book takes a considerable amount of time. There are many things to check for, including: spelling errors, sentences that are too long, misuse of words, punctuation errors, capital letters, nonsense sentences, factual errors, omissions of vital material and so forth. Eliminating spelling errors is usually the easy part. If you have a computer, you can use a spell checker program to catch most mistakes.
I usually make about three passes through the entire book looking for errors. When an error is found, I’ll mark it with a red pen so it is easy to find. …