You don’t have to blog your book with only the goal of traditional publishing in mind. Nor do you need to feel you only can self-publish your book. Instead, decide to become a hybrid author and enjoy the benefits of both traditional and indie publishing.
It is possible to be both traditionally and self published. The two types of publishing mix together well and shouldn’t be seen like oil and water.
I began my career as an author with short books I self-published. They were printed books, but I later published a few of them on Amazon as either digital or print-on-demand editions. Later, I became a traditionally published author, but I knew the value of self-publishing. Now I do both: I seek out traditional publishing deals, and I produce self-published works (mostly ebooks). I’m a hybrid author.
It’s About the Work
As you blog your book (or book your blog), consider this:
- The more books you write, the more books you sell.
- The more work you release into the world, the more influence you develop. (Influence equates to author platform.)
For readers to get to know you and your work, you must produce something—and release or publish that work. As Seth Godin says, you must “ship.”
As you develop a body of work, you show potential readers, agents, and publishers that you can write as well as what you can write. This work can consist of, even if this consists of short stories, articles, blog posts, or 4,000-word-long ebooks.
Many writers feel they aren’t ready to release their work into the world. Others save their best stuff for “later.”
What if later never comes?
So, don’t wait until you’ve finished blogging your book or booking your blog to publish a related work. And don’t think the publication of your blogged book or booked blog (to a publisher or by your publishing company) represents the culmination of your work. It’s just the beginning.
Your Blog as a Means to Hybrid Authorship
Assuming you have chosen to blog a book, you also decided to produce work on the Internet. Congratulations!
But don’t wait for a publisher (or an agent) to come along and grab you up. And don’t wait until you finish blogging your book to self-publish your work. Start now with a spin-off (related) book.
If traditional publishing is your dream, as you blog your book, produce short, related ebooks. Also, write for publications. Doing these things gives you published work in addition to your blogged book to show an agent or publisher. And when you get a traditional publishing deal, you can continue on this hybrid path.
If you want to self-publish anyway, do the same. Continue blogging your book but release additional work in the form of articles and ebooks. Have all of these lead the readers back to your blog and your blogged book (and the self-published book when completed). Do this successfully and you might find yourself with the choice of a traditional book deal down the road.
It’s Not Either Or
I don’t feel I need to choose between traditional and self-publish. I continue to seek traditional publishing deals. I have an agent who helps me with this, but I chose an agent who also could help me produce self-published ebooks. My agent provides an assisted self-publishing service. (I can do this myself; I choose not to.)
Here’s our strategy: For each traditionally published book, I write at least two self-published ebooks. The two primary reasons we do this are to promote the traditionally published books and to strengthen or build brand.
However, this strategy also accomplishes the following:
- I publish more books per year.
- I increase my book sales overall.
- I increase my income from book sales.
- I build my author platform.
- I make myself more attractive to publishers.
- I help potential readers and existing readers get to know, like and trust me and my work.
You might find there are good reasons to choose traditional publishing for your blogged book, such as the distribution or clout offered by a publishing house. You also might like self-publishing for the ability to quickly publish a shorter work and control all aspects of the project.
You don’t have to choose one publishing path over the other. Don’t make it an “either/or” decision. Instead, open yourself to both paths. The more work you produce in a variety of ways, the better off you and your career will be.
So take advantage of all the publishing paths available, but don’t wait. Start now—as you blog your book or book your blog. Begin mixing the two types of publishing together and see what type of career you create.