Right now I have four “Top 10 in Category” e-books at the Kindle store…but I didn’t write any of them.
You see, you don’t have to be a writer to get in on this game.
Sure, the e-book made it possible for writers to publish their own work…but it takes a strategist to make money. If you figure out the strategies—and I’m prepared to share mine with you right here—you can always get a writer to do the writing.
You can go to one of the hundreds of websites where freelancers hang out…and hire someone.
That’s exactly what I did when I decided there was money in self-help health books.
One of my first books was about diabetes even though I don’t have diabetes nor am I a health care practitioner. My youngest son had just been diagnosed with Type II because of his college eating habits. As I began to research the topic I noticed that it was hard to locate one source that listed a large selection of foods that were diabetic friendly.
I didn’t know anything about those foods and I wasn’t too keen on doing that kind of research. So I sat down and wrote out the specifications for such a book. I wanted the book to contain 7,500-8,000 words about the 101 Best Foods for Diabetics (which happens to be the title) and I wanted 4-6 original sentences about each food and their health benefits from a diabetic’s perspective. I also wanted foods that were commonly available from grocery or health food stores and I wanted to include condiments, spices, and oils that help diabetic conditions like regulating blood sugar.
With the specifications in hand (it took me about an hour to come up with them) I went to a freelance website and searched for a qualified health professional who had a substantial portfolio of previously successful work. Finding one, I fired off the specifications to her along with my maximum budget of $500. Later the same day she responded with her bid of $400 and promised delivery in two weeks.
Ten days later she sent the first draft to me. It turned out to be closer to 9,000 words and with a few changes we had finalized it within 24 hours.
As it nears its three-year anniversary on Amazon it’s consistently maintained a Top 5 ranking in the Diabetic & Sugar-Free category and has garnered 53 five-star reviews. I earned back my freelance investment in the first couple of months and then tripled my monthly income when I had it published in paperback. My monthly royalties are 100% profit at this point. Since I made the decision to publish information that is evergreen (the information will likely be just as relevant in five years as it is today) I can look forward to many months of 100% profit!
One of the biggest questions my new students have is how can I sell a book that’s just 9,000 words long. And that’s a valid question since many print books run 65,000-75,000 words with some novels exceeding 100,000 (Tolstoy’s War and Peace is a whopping 544,000!).
I focus on providing “how-to” or specialized information books for niche audiences that are looking for a quick read with specific information. They don’t want to wade through a bunch of fluff to get to what they’re looking for. As long as you strive to provide great content and they close the book with the feeling they learned some new and valuable information, you’ll be fine with the shorter format of 7,500-15,000 words. Amazon has even introduced a new master category, Kindle Short Reads, to highlight the good works in the shorter format.
If you’ve been keeping up with our daily articles on e-books I hope one thing is becoming increasingly clear to you—YOU CAN DO THIS! Find out more about my strategies for success in the e-book market right here.
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