From blog to book(let): thinking through the process…

On

What can one do with 227 blogs that will let readers permanently share their content and help you (and me) organize the blogs into logical categories, become repackaged and revised as “blog book(let)s,” earn a few bucks, and perhaps coral some of the better updated info into full paperbacks or some kind of oral product?

I know, it sounds vain to want to recycle your own words just to read and recycle them again. But there you are. There’s a purpose to every blog I have written and posted (often it describes a currently applicable process): many are key points now updated (usually using newer technology), and others are practical how-to examples or new ways to do exactly what I propose that the reader to do, which is recombine usable information into components of an empire that one wants to establish and grow.

So I tediously extracted all 227 blogs, marching backward through the Word Press files, saving the digital blog and printing it out at the same time. The search for: ____ function doesn’t work very well and while it’s easy to find the 10 newest blogs (they are listed on the right side of the top blog, as “recent posts”), to dig out an earlier blog pretty much entails going to the “older” link at the bottom of those 10 current blogs and doing that repeatedly until you found the batch of 10 you are seeking. Buried brilliance. (If you knew on which page your sought blog was hiding, you could get there much faster by typing in the blog’s general address and the page, like, in my case: blog.gordonburgett.com/page/6 (or the actual page number).

I then took the pile of 227 blogs and put them into piles by a general topic that the blog addressed. That gave me 13 piles. The least likely to see print again were the 18 “odd blogs” in the “not worth resharing” pile.

Some of the blogs were a complete surprise. I had no memory writing a word of them—and I have a tenacious memory about my writing!

Yet I knew in the piles were two topics on which I had dwelt at great length, even including a numbered series of about 15 blogs each. All along I had in mind rewriting and upgrading one book, my best seller to date. It concerns freelance writing. The second series addressed niche product pretesting before one actually writes a book or creates a product, to see if there are enough (easily accessible) buyers willing to pay enough money to justify the research, writing, and marketing. So in these two piles is the heart of two books I will write in the next year or two, major books with fancy paperback covers and the usual professional layout and the rest.

That leaves 10 more piles of blogs from which I will probably compose about six or seven “blog booklets.” I envision each of them including the earlier blogs (updated when possible) and a running, italicized text that integrates or explains how each blog fits into that booklet’s general theme. (I may write a few new blogs that fill in key gaps in the booklets.) I see these as ebooks, maybe 20-50 pages long, costing about $2.95 each. I’ll probably publish each booklet simultaneously through Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords. I will have a bright front cover designed where I can simply change the title. At some point I will create a wee catalog of all of the blog titles, or a listing by booklet, so a buyer will know where the items sought can be found (and bought).

What are the themes of the other booklets? Ancillary publishing, blogging, manuscript evaluation, querying and interviewing for articles, empire building, niche publishing, publishing one’s own book (self-publishing, paperbacks, and/or ebooks), paid speaking, finding ideas for articles books, empire building, and travel articles.

Why wouldn’t a bright soul just find and pluck out what they wanted, free, from the blog contents at my website? Go to it! My time would be worth more than the cost of digging into the earlier pages. And, heavens forfend, they wouldn’t be mesmerized by having their own copy of my magic new ebook covers.

Why am I poking along here explaining my plans in more detail than all of this deserves? Because many of you probably also have a trove of glittering blogs that you also want to resurrect and actually sell! So you’ll be wandering along this compilation trail and asking the same questions I more or less answer here.

So if this blog helps you make latter-day sense about what you might do with your own blogs, the price is right—nada! Then if you want to see how the converted blogs look in a booklet, pop for $2.95 and they will be there, again.

Best wishes,

Gordon Burgett

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