I wrote my first ebook about a year after I started blogging. Learning how to write an ebook is something I always wanted to do. Why? Because I saw a lot of bloggers sharing their knowledge and helping others this way, and that’s important to me. It was a simple way to teach via the written word, plus it had the possibility of providing passive income!
One part of making an e-book is writing. The other parts are figuring out:
- What to use to write an ebook
- How to make it look good
- How to make it available online
- How to process payments
I did a lot of research on how to write an ebook and eventually pieced together two solid solutions that work great. One is quick, the other even quicker.
Let me pay it forward and show you what I discovered!
DISCLAIMER: Some products that I mention here and link to are affiliate links. That simply means that I’ll earn a small commission for any purchases you make using the links provided (there is no extra cost to you for using the link). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
First, let’s go over producing the content.
What you choose to write about in your ebook is totally up to you, of course. As a blogger or marketer, you know what your niche is and you know what you want to share with your audience.
With that in mind, just write.
Don’t beat around the bush and procrastinate, just start, and pretty-it-up later. Here are some tips I recommend to get you off the rock you’re sitting on.
These are tried and true methods I’ve used repeatedly over the years. They work whether you’re writing an ebook or writing a blog post, and I’ll expand on each of these below.
- Define your end goal
- Choose a ‘canvas”
- Free stream
- Organize and pretty-it-up
Define Your End Goal
What do you intend to teach or cover in this e-book? Like driving a car, if you look down the road, “aim high in steering” and focus on the destination, your writing efforts won’t wander all over the place.
Say you want to teach people how to make origami bird figures. Your end goal is to bring them along on the journey, showing them the folding steps, clever techniques, etc. You may want to wander a little about the history of origami, best paper types and where to buy them (offer your offer your affiliate link, even using Pinterest), but dwell primarily on how you make the origami figures. That is your end goal. Write with the end goal in mind.
Choose a “Canvas”
What will you write with? The logical choice is to use a good word processor like Word, Pages, OpenOffice, or Google Sheets. (I’ll show you BETTER choices, though.)
If you don’t have ready access to one, simply use your computer’s text editor. In Windows, this would be Notepad and WordPad. For Apple, this would be TextEdit.
You can copy everything from these to a word processor later and format it, spellcheck it, and save it as a PDF so it’s ready to publish and download (I’ll show you some better ways in a minute.)
The key, though, is to just start.
Free-streaming is just typing whatever your mind is thinking about, relating to your topic. Things like:
- What you want to teach in your e-book
- Examples that you want to show
- Images you want to use
- Places to get products that’ll help your reader do what you’re teaching them
It’s kind of like the TV shows where you get $1,000 and you have 5 minutes to get as many groceries as you can during that time. Not quite that frantic, not a race, but the idea is to get things down on paper that are filling your mind. You can organize them later.
Like a great song-writer who keeps a paper and pencil nearby to jot down lyrics and melodies when they strike, you’re capturing the stuff while it’s floating around in your head. It wouldn’t be there if it wasn’t meant to form an important part of your content!
For example (you can’t see the mess now), but this blog post was an exercise in free-streaming as I put down the first draft. It’ll be the same for your e-book.
Take the time to capture those basic nuggets of information (your framework) and “build an awesome house” in subsequent steps!
Organize and “Pretty-it-up”
Now that you have that big pile of thoughts written down, it’s time to make them look like something. This is where you’ll move words around, restructure thoughts, tie things together, and build the great story you want to tell your future readers.
Proofreading is the “sanity check” you give your e-book content before you get ready to publish. Your ebook needs to be easy to read and understand. It needs to make sense. Proofreading is the place you knock off the rough edges. One great tip: go away from your content for maybe 15 minutes and then come back. You’ll see things more clearly when you’re not immersed in the heat of writing!
I recommend Grammarly to help you with proofreading, It’s an easy-to-use tool, has an easy-to-use browser extension, and comes in FREE and paid versions. With Grammarly, you get a lot of help with your proofreading, fast!
You have to publish your e-book before it reaches anyone. Duh. So, here’s where I got stuck the first time. I wrote my ebook on a word processor and manually placed images and formatted it based on a few nice-looking examples I’d seen with other e-books. In the end, though, I realized all I had was a version of the ebook written with a word processor and saved in PDF format.
So, how was I going to put it somewhere where people could get to it? How would I sell it?
I needed some good tools!
Good Tools – How to write an ebook the easy way!
Sign up, write, format and be publish-ready with Reedsy
Reedsy is one quick-and-easy way I discovered to write and save my e-book in publishable formats, either PDF or e-PUB for e-readers.
I chose the free version to start with, and it works great. You write your ebook using the Reedsy editor. It’s very easy to enter content in exactly the right places, and their interface guides you along the way. You can easily add chapters and new parts like Table of Contents, Copyright, Dedication, and more. When done, you can make a downloadable PDF or an E-PUB version of your ebook. It couldn’t be easier!
Another thing I love about Reedsy is how they help by teaching you useful things to help you get going. This is especially comforting if you feel a little under-prepared for writing.
For example, as I’m making this blog post, they offer free short publishing courses delivered to your inbox, called the “FREE 10-day courses with new lessons each morning” offer. Their Mission Statement even reflects the essence of this as their “full ecosystem for authors and publishing professionals”
Reedsy is easy to use and solved my desire to stay away from word processors for the actual end product. I wanted to use a tool built from the ground up for online publishing.
Honestly, the only shortfall I found was the placement of images in one of my ebooks. When you insert an image, Reedsy’s interface scales it and you have no real control over the size. This is by design to allow for page flow (mostly for e-readers I believe). So the image may seem too big or too small (or just right!), but I found that because everything else works so well, it didn’t bother me.
So take a good look at Reedsy. By the way, when you sign up with my link you can earn 25 “Reedsy credits” to spend in their marketplace. The marketplace offers paid services like these if needed:
Collect your ebook sales payments with Payhip.com
When I first figured out the basics of how to write an ebook, I thought about using PayPal to collect payments. However, I found a better and easier “cart” solution that simplifies the whole process. It’s a solution that is your shopping cart and order tracker. One that also creates a product sales link to share in blog posts and social media. One that even allows the buyer to sample parts of your e-book before buying! It’s called Payhip.
I use Payhip.com and it couldn’t be easier. Here’s what they do for you:
Their pricing is very good, with free and two paid levels that reduce (even to 0%) the already small percentage that Payhip earns from your sale. (Note that all plans use PayPal or Stripe, both of which usually take their own small cut, and Payhip is upfront about that)
The ease of setup and use is really worth the price. It was a no-brainer for me and I think you’ll agree when you take a look.
Following so far? Reedsy and Payhip in combination. BUT, read on, it gets better!
BONUS TOOL – How to write an ebook SO MUCH EASIER !!
Using Reedsy and PayHip together is one of the best ways to write, publish, and sell your e-book.
However, if you’re looking for a time-saving software suite that helps you put out very professional looking e-books and even digital flip-books, there is a solution for you.
It’s called Sqribble
Sqribble is a cloud-based eBook creation tool. It allows you to create professional-looking eBooks, based on templates inside the tool, with a few clicks, saving you a huge amount of time and money.
Unlike other eBook creation packages, Sqribble caught my attention because it has some really useful features that save time and produce very nice-looking products.
Here are a few of the features that blew me away:
Content Production with Sqribble – 4 Options:
- Simply write your own content as you normally would
- Fill your ebook with a selection of 1,000 instant niche articles from the built-in content engine at a push of a single button. You download it into your ebook and tweak what you need… delete, change, add.
- Import any content you’ve already written in a word processor. Then sit back as Sqribble automatically extracts the content from the document and puts it straight into your new eBook.
- Enter a URL and it will import content from that site to serve as starter material. One important note about this option: With anyone’s content you use or copy (with or without this software), you should always have permission or open-rights to use it. You should never steal anyone’s copy, so please use this one option ethically.
Gorgeous eCovers — a lot of eBook tools might save time, but they turn out terrible eCovers for your books. Sqribble is different here. The covers are seriously impressive. They wouldn’t look out of place on Kindle or Amazon, and they instantly look like you’re a professional who commands trust and authority.
Create Flipbooks — this is one of my favorite things about Sqribble. You can turn your “flat” books into interactive flipbooks. This makes your digital book look and feel much more like a real book — with pages that turn (animated like a real book page turning) and make the book look like something you can reach out and grab.
Why does this matter?
- It’s about standing out and grabbing attention.
- It’s a way to engage your readers better. If they enjoy the experience of reading your book (“flipping” the pages) they’re more likely to get value from your content and keep reading until the end where your pitch or call to action is!
- Another thing about flipbooks is that you can embed them on your website with a simple piece of code that Sqribble provides once you publish your book. Awesome!
How to write an ebook? well, let’s See What else Sqribble can do!
Sqribble is a versatile tool, with tons more features I found useful. For example:
— Automatic table of contents
— Automatic headers and footers
— Automatic pagination
— Drag and drop design
— Add or delete pages
— Add your own media
— 300+ Google Fonts
— 50 eBook templates (covering 15 different niches)
— 10 different eBook themes (1 click changes the color scheme of the ebook)
And that’s just the stuff I saw inside the dashboard… there are a ton of features packed into this tool, making it one of the best eBook creators I’ve seen.
Here’s a super demo video, watch this – it will open in another tab, so come back when you’re done (it’s just over 8 minutes long)
NOTE: YouTube has added some new privacy and protection features and because I set it for viewers over 18, you may see a banner that says “This video may be inappropriate for some users.” I just wanted you to know that it’s simply a product demo video, but that’s why the warning.
Summary: How to Write an E-Book
My personal experience and research taught me a quick and easy way to write, publish, and sell my e-book with…
Combined, they make a great starter combo! However…
Quicker and easier – If you want to step things up in a big way, increase the possibilities, produce more professional ebooks, and shorten the time it takes to write an e-book and get it out there, take a serious look at Sqribble.
Have any questions about how to write an ebook? Leave a comment below – and I’d so appreciate a quick and easy social share!