It’s a great time to be alive.
Traditional publishing is dying out, and the gatekeepers have lost their grip on the industry. Now, you can be anyone and write a book, and have it published on the Amazon Kindle market in a matter of days.
Writing a book doesn’t have to be a long, arduous process either. You can put up a book that’s 20 pages long, and teaches one specific thing that people may find helpful. Or maybe it’s a short story….or several short stories.
Do you have some knowledge in a specific area but don’t want to spend months building a business online? Are you ready to start profiting from your idea next week?
Putting a book together and publishing it in the Kindle store is NOT hard. Trust me, I’ve got 4 of them and didn’t even break a sweat to get them up online and making my first sale! In fact, one of them I didn’t even write myself and knew nothing about the topic, but even with that one I’m bringing in around $35 a month passive income!
Here are 5 steps to publish your first Kindle book:
1. Pick a topic. Start with your hobbies, interests, and things you may be an expert at. No idea is too small for Kindle! Browse through the Kindle market and see some of the book topics that are getting good reviews. A 28-page book on butterflies and caterpillars sells for $2.99. And this book is ranked #2 in the Kindle market for the “butterflies” category. If you’re unsure of a good topic, just start noticing things around you like- what is starting to catch on socially? Before the urban bowling trend happened, I wanted to do something on bowling because I saw that coming. I never did, but it’s fun to see things happening and figuring out a way to do a book about it. Think beer brewing. Star gazing. Tea. Efficient workouts. Then there’s the genius idea I read on James Altucher’s blog of combining ideas. Just pair up two things you are interested in. Jogging and singing. Poker and yoga. Dieting for atheists. I don’t know, just keep listing these things out and you will likely come up with a niche that hasn’t been covered on Kindle.
2. Write a series of articles. Depending on how big your book will be, just commit to writing 1-2 articles per day on your topic. If you do 2 a day and you have 10 chapters, you’ll be done with your book in 5 days. An easy way to start writing these articles is to think of lists, i.e. publish a Kindle book in 5 easy steps. Maybe, however, you don’t like writing. No problem! Outsource it. You can even outsource the research. The first book I had ghost written cost me $700 back in 2009. But books are much cheaper to get written these days. And mine was 100 pages with some artwork. You can probably get a good writer to do a 50-page book on your chosen topic for around $200-$300. oDesk.com is a good place to find ghost writers, and there’s no commitment!
3. Format your book. This part is a little tricky so I highly recommend outsourcing it. Find someone on oDesk that knows how to format Kindle books. They should be able to make sure the book will look nice on a Kindle device and give you the .mobi format that you can upload to your Kindle account to be published. You may even try fiverr.com to get someone to do this for $5 or $10.
4. Design a cover. This is probably the most important part as far as your sales go! You definitely want your book to stand out in the Kindle store, and it won’t if you have crappy artwork to show off your book. Make sure the title is clear, you have a compelling subtitle, and everything looks professional. Find some designs you like in the Amazon Kindle market that are in the top 10 in their category, and send those to your hired designer. Again, I would use oDesk or eLance for this. You might get lucky on Fiverr, but I wouldn’t cheap out too much here.
5. Register your account & upload your book. There are a few things you need to do here (ok, I took some liberties to make this all one step, but it’s pretty straightforward!). Make sure to proof read your book so that there are no typos or errors. There’s nothing worse than getting bad reviews because of sloppy work. Then, register an account at kdp.amazon.com. Follow the steps and upload your .mobi book and the cover art. Then fill in your description of the book On the next page, you will be given the option of what to charge and what to give Amazon. Go with $.99 and the 35% option. Don’t worry, you will raise your price later. Click publish and you’re done! It usually takes a couple days to get approved.
After you publish your book, focus on sending it to people to read and post a review. Once you get about 8-10 reviews posted, you can raise the price from $.99. Longer books tend to go for more but never go above $9.99. People just don’t typically pay over $10 for Kindle books.
So that’s it! Now you have everything you need to create an income stream that can pay you monthly. Even if it’s just beer money, passive income is so much more satisfying than any other type of income.
And in this case you can tell people at parties that you’re a published author.