I highly recommend repurposing, or recycling your blog posts into a book. However, you can’t just slap you posts together and say, “Done!”
Just this morning I was reading an announcement about a booked blog, one that was repurposed into a book, and thinking, “Wow. This guy has it all wrong.” The blogger and author, Kevin Shively, admits he did just that–slapped the posts together without editing or proofreading–not even bothering to check for misspellings. BIG mistake, at least if you want your book to meet the quality of traditionally published books–and you do. I personally wouldn’t buy The Handsome Man’s Guide to Being Handsome after that announcement–not that the title, the copy he wrote about how to write a book or his attitude about women enticed me anyway. (But that’s just me…)
Just a few hours later I read a blog post from marketing expert extraordinaire and publisher Seth Godin. In it he basically says the same thing about the quality of self-published books–especially ebooks. And it’s very easy to turn your blogged book or booked blog into an ebook. Here’s most of what Godin said in his post:
When anyone can publish a book, anyone will.
Including people who will collect up public domain articles, paste them into Word and hit publish.
And people who will use keywords to trick you into thinking a book is about something it isn’t.
Of course, there have been counterfeit handbags for sale on the streets of New York for decades. The difference? We trust books. Books are special.
The giant risk (okay, it’s not a risk, it’s a certainty) of the long tail ebook revolution is that without enforced curation due to scarcity, the average quality is going to plummet (it has to) and the risk of buying a bogus book goes way up.
You don’t want your readers to pick up your book and feel they purchased a counterfeit, or bogus, book. You don’t want them to feel turned of by the quality of the book and, therefore, be unable to take in the content–the information–you’ve provided. You want them to feel they got the real deal. You want them to trust you and come back and buy more books and services and products. So go to the trouble of getting professional editing and design for your blog posts when you decide to book your blog or blog a book.
We all miss small errors in our work. We make mistakes. Even editors and proofreaders miss things. But don’t just slap a bunch of posts together and announce proudly, “This is a book–and I didn’t bother to reread my work even once.” That’s not a good way to gain credibility in the marketplace.