Tips for Turning a Blog Into a Book

1182879_woman_writing_in_the_agendaEveryone is always looking for ways to monetize a blog, especially bloggers whose sites require daily or near-daily postings. I post daily on my creative writing blog, and I love doing so, but I’m ready to branch out and do something more with the backlog of articles and posts I’ve accumulated here. Well, making and releasing a “blog book” is one great way to do that.

I’m in the process of using my posts here as a basis for a writer’s handbook called “Writing For You.” As I go, I’m discovering lots of tips for crafting a book from a blog. Here are some of the most useful ones.

  1. Make sure you add new content. This is a no-brainer. You can’t–and you shouldn’t–expect people to pay for material they can get for free. While you definitely can, and should, recycle a lot of informati0n, you also need to expand on what you have and even add a chapter or two, if possible, with material that’s not available on your blog.
  2. Combine and arrange your content in new ways. This will help you and your readers draw new conclusions and get even more use out of the material. For instance, my favorite chapter so far of “Writing For You” is titled “The Cardinal Rules of Writing.” While a few of the rules come from posts I’ve written, most are much broader. They are based on overarching themes that run through the blog but that I don’t necessarily write specific posts about. For those rules, I combine the information from posts that might otherwise seem unrelated. Also, the idea of “rules for writing” is not something that appears here, so it’s a fresh arrangement and a new way of approaching the craft of writing.
  3. Remember a book’s tone is different from a blog. Blogs work well with an informal tone, short sentences, and short paragraphs. When you go to book form, it’s your time to really shine: you can be more formal and a bit more professional. Also, your space (and your readers’ attention spans) are far less limited.You can really delve into your material. You can provide build-ups, examples, and respond to contrary points of view, perhaps,ย  when on a blog, it’s generally better to just get straight to the point.
  4. Presentation and arrangement matter more. Each post on a blog is its own entity. It doesn’t necessarily have to relate to the post that comes before or after. But a book needs a method in its organization, both within and among chapters. Each unit should transition in some natural way to the next.

So, that’s where my mind has been these last few days. Hope you guys like this post. I’m really having tons of fun putting my non-fiction break together. It’s a nice break from the madness Herezoth!


30 responses to “Tips for Turning a Blog Into a Book

  1. I love the information I have received from your post Victoria. I am thinking of turning my blog posts into a book and this information is very vital which I got from you today. Thank you so much. I am learning every day from your blog and I owe so much thanks to you. Looking forward to more. Take care.

  2. angel7090695001

    I would love to read your “blog book” when would you publish it?

  3. Great info! I’m going to turn my NaNo how-to posts into a book this summer, so this is good info for my back burner. ๐Ÿ˜€

    • oh, yea!!! that’s a fabulous idea, Jennings!!! I definitely don’t know anyone who’s more of a fan and more experienced with NaNoWriMo than you are. Your insight would be a great aid for first timers. I know I benefited from it last Nov ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Thanks a lot for this. Maybe one day my blog will turn to paper ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Thanks. I’ve been thinking of doing this. Please keep posting on what you discover. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. What a terrific idea! I hope to see your blog-book published soon. I’d love to read it and I know many writers who could benefit from it.

  7. Looking forward to reading your book!

  8. As always, great ideas Victoria. I can’t wait to see what you do with your blog book

  9. When you think about it we write so much information on our blogs. I’ve been on a number of webinars lately where they talk about re purposing what you have. Turning your blog posts into a book is the perfect way to re purpose:)

  10. I hate when I download a book and it’s obviously just blogposts slapped together, definitely add more content and restructure!

  11. Pingback: How different is blogging from writing fiction? | Creative Writing with the Crimson League

  12. Great tips on “booking a blog”! I’d add this: Have a plan for how to write the best book possible on your topic. This means a table of contents and chapter summaries or an outline. Then go back to your blog and see if you can repurpose any content to fit the requirements of your planned book. If so, great! If not, oh well…start from scratch. You will likely need to fill in some gaps anyway and revise and edit the posts you have written to make them work and fit the requirements of the book you want to write.

    You might try “blogging a book”–writing it from scratch on your blog. Same process, but take that plan and then write the book post by post. I wrote about this on my blog as I blogged a book on the topic! The book was later published by Writer’s Digest Books. That’s the point…promote as you write so create a platform and attract a publisher or produce a successful book.

    Best wishes and keep up the super work!

    • that’s a great tip, Nina! I started with a list of chapters, now that I think about it, but said nothing at all about that. Everything you mention here is really helpful advice for converting blog posts to book form.

  13. The first blog book i read was “Just a geek” by wil wheaton. not only have i had a crush on him since i was nine; i also like to read stories from authors perspective. he touched on many subjects such as being a child star that had a bunch of haters eventhough his character was very relevant to storyline. we hashed out his personal struggles while shedding skin of wesley crusher boy genius and possible love child of capt picard and dr crusher. I could go on about how that would be impossible but digress. now, Wil wheaton worlds first blogger, novelist, but he embraced his past and that he is just a geek.and helped bring the geek culture into the mainstream. another book i care for, is rebel without a crew by robert rodriguez that was written before blogging even existed but he kept a diary about how he funded and made his first full lenth feature film el mariachi. that was an interesting story if you havent read it already ide highly recommend it. .

  14. im sorry about the grumatical and spelling errors. i havent had much sleep.

  15. Pingback: Why turning a blog into a book makes new blog posts difficult | Creative Writing with the Crimson League

  16. Hi outstanding blog! Does running a blog similar to this take a great deal
    of work? I have absolutely no knowledge of coding however I was hoping to start
    my own blog in the near future. Anyways, if you have
    any recommendations or tips for new blog owners
    please share. I understand this is off subject but I simply
    had to ask. Many thanks!

    • Hi…. no coding is necessary to blog, at least not on wordpress. Blogging takes a lot of work and preparation, but it’s a blast. I’d recommend Molly Greene’s book “Blog It” if you want to start blogging.

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