From Blog to Book

November 2, 2007 at 2:57 pm | Posted in Analyst biz | Leave a comment

A few weeks ago I wrote an entry about all the reasons I blog.  But one I apparently skipped was the idea of monetizing the blog later by turning it into a book.  One can make money directly by selling the resulting book (with the convenient market testing being done for free from commenters on the blog) or indirectly by self-publishing it to appear like an expert to future clients. I predict this will be a trend that grows over the next few years until there is a backlash at the number of quickie books published from blogs.  

One prominent example is Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame), who has just published Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!: Cartoonist Ignores Helpful Advice.  It’s worth noting that in the 11/2/07 WSJ he writes that he has gotten large amounts of flak for taking free material and trying to make money off it (especially once he deleted it from his blog archives).  That will probably be a common complaint, but it’s not a well founded one as anthologies of previously published material have existed for a long time and the fact that it is easy to get a hold of the old material shouldn’t make a difference.  At least you got to read the material for free for a while if you wanted to, which is better than an old fashioned anthology.

Another well-publicized example is Daniel Lyons with Options: The Secret Life of Steve Jobs, a Parody.  The popularity of his blog (one of my personal favorites) is likely to make this book a best seller.

But why wait for your favorite blogger to publish a book when you can publish your own blog yourself!  I did a search on “blog to book” and found some tools out there already.  Here’s a video: http://news.zdnet.com/2422-13568_22-154597.html that talked about a tool for doing this.  They call it “slurping” your blog entries. Yuk.

Give it another a few years for the amount of blogging to hit critical mass and then look for the tools and services that will automatically compile a first draft of a book from your blog postings, organized by category and ready for editing and sale on booksurge.com.  If Andy Rooney and Dave Barry could make money by re-selling their singular takes on life, why can’t everyone else? 

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this blog entry while you could.  Next week it’ll cost you $19.99.  Just kidding.

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