How to convert your blog into a book
These days, many bloggers are showing interest in turning their blog posts into a novel or book. While the idea may sound unconventional to some people, it can be quite lucrative. Blogging is one of the greatest ways to connect with people. As an author, to expand your reach, having a blog works wonders. Furthermore, blogging your book acts as an extensive marketing package too. Here is how you can convert your blog into a book.
Blog Book, as many netizens address it, can be of two types:
- Converting an existing blog into a book this can be a fiction or non-fiction.
- Writing a new novel on the blog this is mostly fictional.
Some of the advantages of creating a blog book are:
- Works as a memory
While blogs by themselves are memories of your writing that you can view back later in your life, creating a book that cumulates your best or favorite blog posts can be a good memory that you can hold in your hand and cherish.
- Makes you more responsible and disciplined
By establishing a blog schedule for posting your chapters online, you unintentionally get into a commitment. This method helps you achieve your daily target. You will also stop procrastinating. Finally, you will also have your blog readers and fellow bloggers checking up on you about your progress in your work.
Some of the bloggers choose to participate in blogging challenges like NaMoWriMo, AtoZ Challenge, etc. While some bloggers participate in these contests to stick to a schedule and complete their novel, few bloggers get the inspiration to convert their work into a book because of the good feedback they receive during their participation in these challenges.
- Works well as a coffee table book
As you might know, coffee table books have more selling price than conventional novels. If you are a well-renowned lifestyle, travel, or a fashion blogger, you can curate some of your best works and photographs into a coffee table book.
These days, even parenting, technology, and personal bloggers are cumulating their blog posts as coffee table books and instruction guides.
- Helps you understand audienceâ€™s pulse
Are you are a blogger, who is aspiring to be an author? Compiling the fictional blog posts that you wrote and publishing it as a book is quite beneficial. This book will help you understand if your target audience likes your writing style, narration, etc. Also, anthologies are quite in trend among readers, these days.
Furthermore, when you first blog your stories before publishing them as a book, you will get immediate feedback from your blog readers and fellow bloggers. This way you can modify and edit your work based on the readers’ comments before publishing it into a book. In short, blogs are a way of knowing the commercial appeal of your writing.
One of the examples of a bestselling Indian author whose debut book was a collection of her blog posts is Preeti Shenoy. Her first novel, 34 Bubblegums and Candies, is a compilation of short, real-life incidents that she blogged about earlier in her blog. The author of 8 books still blogs frequently on her personal blog.
- Works as a great marketing strategy
If you are a blogger-turned-author, the chances of your book reaching a broad audience are quite high. You are already connected to a good reader base, and it gives you an added advantage over others. You can start posting a couple of chapters on your blog and see how your audience receives them. If it goes well, you can complete and publish the book, and use these sample chapters to market your book.
If you are looking to convert your existing blog into a book, here are a few tips:
- Pick a theme and then choose your best posts
While you might be tempted to select your favorite posts, it is advisable to choose your most read or shared posts. While you are picking posts, make sure they all fall in the same genre. For example, if you are a travel blogger, who is planning to make a coffee table book on beach holiday destinations around the world, pick your blog posts that are relevant to this topic.
- Edit the post
It is better if you hire a professional editor and edit all your posts. When you post things on your blog, you would have done a rough proofreading, but when it comes to book publishing, your work should be flawless.
- Add some fresh content
Even if you have enough old material, it’d be good if you could write some new content for your book. The new content can be a substantial introduction and conclusion or just a few snippets here and there.
- Structure your work
Structuring your novel’s or book’s flow of content is crucial. In a blog, each post is an individual article. However, in your book, there needs to be continuity in the flow of reading. Your editor will be able to help you with this.
- Contact your publisher
Post editing and structuring, you can send sample chapters to your publishers and take it forward from there.
- Move the blog posts to drafts
Once your book moves to publishing stage, do not delete your blog posts; you can always store them in the drafts.
Some of the other interesting ways to convert blog posts into a book are Blog Tags. Blog Tags are challenges where three or more bloggers collaborate to write one blog post each on the same theme.
Early this year, bloggers from a Chennai-based blogging community, The Chennai Bloggers Club, joined to create a series of love letters on their blogs for Valentines Day.
Each blogger wrote one love letter in his/her blog. They compiled all the blog posts and released a book anthology titled, From Chennai, With Love.
Another classic example where a group of bloggers came together for a challenge was BlogAddas Game of Blogs. In this challenge, the bloggers had to write a fictional novel in their blog, based on various clues and conditions provided by the organizers. At the end of this challenge, the three winning teams got their stories published as a novel titled Six Degrees.
If you are looking to write a new novel in your blog, here are a few tips:
- Decide on the genre and storyline
Similar to how you write a novel, you need to select a genre, storyline, characterization, etc., for your blog novel too. Let your readers know of the genre and the novel summary in prior. Even if you haven’t decided on the ending of the book, it is okay. However, your blog novel shouldn’t become one among the zillion blogs on the internet. Therefore, keep it as elucidated and as unique as possible.
- Start writing as if it is a ritual
Set a blog posting schedule and a deadline. You can announce on your blog that you will post a new chapter every week as this will keep you on track in completing the book before your stipulated deadline.
- Take feedbacks seriously, but do not stress about it
As we said earlier, blog novels get instant feedback from readers and fellow bloggers. While you must take these feedbacks seriously and incorporate relevant changes in your book, there is no need to stress yourself about it. Especially, if you receive contradictory or cruel comments, it is better to ignore it than stress yourself much about it.
- Do not publish all the chapters
New chapters or any particular features that weren’t published on your blog will always drive your book sales. Your loyal blog readers will endorse your book. Furthermore, if your blog novel has more to offer in its print version, then it will make a publisher more interested in your work.
- Edit your manuscript professionally
One of the biggest mistakes a blogger can make while converting his/her blog novel into a book is using quick and easy editing services. While these services will allow you to speed up the whole process, they may affect the quality of your blog. As mentioned earlier, hire a professional editor who will edit, proofread, and revise your complete manuscript. For best results, edit it by yourself first, and then have it professionally edited as well.
Blogger and Author Sharada Subramanians first novel Make It 2 was a blog series that was later published as a novel by Notion Press. In 2014, Sharada started writing a short story titled, Return of the Madrasi. What started as a short story with just three chapters crossed 15 chapters, due to her creativity and her blog readers positive feedback. She finally decided to convert the blog into a novel and finished penning the remaining chapters.
This spicy, fast-paced romantic story is an example of a well-written and well-received blog book that was converted into a classy, full-fledged novel.
Are you inspired to convert your blog into a book? You write the blog posts; we will take care of the rest.