By : Vaughn Smith
If you are retired, you likely are concerned with your level of income. Costs continue to increase and even if you are frugal, and lucky, you may see threats to your income level. While you may not want to get a part-time job, have you thought about writing for profit? Amazon has created the Kindle sales platform that anyone can use for self-publishing. You can write an ebook and start selling it right away, earning some extra income. Best of all, you can write when you want, publish when you want, and earn money regardless of where you live.
Retirees make excellent authors. You have a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be shared with a willing audience. Your knowledge is likely extremely useful to young people in similar careers. Even your general business experience can be extremely helpful to others. It is a fact that many young people today do not get as much training as people once did in similar careers. You may have completed many courses, seminars, or work groups in your career. You have knowledge of what worked, and what did not. This is the type of information that can be invaluable to people who need it.
You may wonder whether you can write an ebook for distribution on Amazon. The process is actually quite easy. Amazon does not charge any fees for those who want to self-publish ebooks. There is a large number of categories that you can publish for. If you were a plumber, or other trade, a business manager or a financial analyst, there are places for you to publish your work. Of course, you can write a fictional novel as well.
Once you have found a suitable category, you can start to develop your ebook. Think of the type of information that you could convey to someone just starting a career in your field. Perhaps there are realities that will face a new person. You can list problems to expect, and solutions that work. Such content would be worth real money to an interested reader. How much? It depends on how much information you provide.
Organize your thoughts into an outline of chapters. In just a few moments, you should be able to think of five points that you can discuss in your ebook as chapters. Quickly expand each chapter with relevant notes. Each chapter will need at least ten pages. A five chapter ebook will be at least 50 pages in length. This is not a difficult amount of writing. Each page will likely have 500 words. With practice, an author should be able to write 500 words pertaining to their career, or personal interest, in about 30 minutes, (perhaps 60 minutes at first). Very often, you can include photographs or images in your chapters. These will expand the page count and provide good visual appeal as well.
You should plan on writing an ebook that sells for a certain amount of money. While there are no hard rules, you can use the following guidelines to the ebook price to length ratio, the perceived value. If your ebook sells between $2.99 and $9.99 on Amazon, you can earn a 70% royalty, less a delivery fee of between 25 cents and $1. Ebooks with lower, or higher, prices earn only 35% royalties. Thus, you should produce ebooks according to this value chart:
Notice that the minimum length is suggested to be 60 pages, or 5 chapters. Some authors produce shorter works but ebooks priced as above will be returned for refund less often. Purchasers have the right to ask for a refund, which they will do for a book perceived to be of low value. 60 pages for $2.99 is not likely to be returned, provided the information is of high quality.
Notice, too, that an ebook with a selling price of $9.99 should be rather lengthy. In fact, many authors find it difficult to sell an ebook at this price level without incurring a substantial rate of return. The main factor is quality of information and perceived ebook value. In order to successfully sell ebooks at the $9.99 level, you must provide a lot of information, (200+ pages), and there should be little competition from other authors. While you may make sales at this high level, you should certainly offer lower priced titles as well. If you position your ebooks correctly, you will be able to sell inexpensive titles that naturally lead your purchasers towards your higher priced listings.
Both the page and chapter counts are guidelines. Many successful ebooks sell for a particular price with fewer, or more, than the number indicated above. Check out some of your favorite books to get a feel for how many pages and chapters they have.
When you self-publish ebooks, you enter a new profitable world of revenue earning possibilities. Imagine producing a simple ebook which you can retail for $4.99. Of this, you will receive over $3.00. If you make ten sales in a month, you will earn $30. If you have a few ebooks at this price, you can easily earn $100 per month. Of course, once you write and publish these ebooks, they will earn revenue month after month requiring little or no effort on your part. You just have to get started.
Vaughn Smith, PCMP, PMP, has been publishing ebooks for about a year. He has authored over a dozen titles, ranging in price from $0.99 to $9.99, which have sold hundreds of copies. While his main focus has been non-fiction business guides, he has also authored cartoon and children’s stories. Mr. Smith produces EZ Ebook Creator, an all-in-one ebook publishing application that simplifies production tasks.