Do I Still Need to Write a Book?

One of my Life goals is to write and publish a book. I have conjured up various materials already and have an idea of what this book figment will be about.

As I get myself further immersed in this new medium of expression (called blogging… hehe), I am slowly, but surely beginning to accept that I may not NEED to write and publish a book.

Then, someone reinforced my thoughts on the above. That’s another link love to Marc Andreessen’s blog…

Here’s what got my attention (5th Lesson for Marc Andreessen):

Fifth, writing a blog is way easier than writing a magazine article, a published paper, or a book — but provides many of the same benefits.

I think it’s an application of the 80/20 rule — for 20% of the effort (writing a blog post but not editing and refining it the quality level required of a magazine article, a published paper, or a book), you get 80% of the benefit (your thoughts are made available to interested people very broadly).

Arguably blogging is better because the distribution of a blog can be even broader than a magazine article, a published paper, or a book, at least in cases where the article/paper/book is restricted by a publisher to a limited readership base.

This of course assumes that you’re not trying to make a living writing magazine articles or books, or you’re not trying to get tenure as a professor by publishing peer-reviewed research papers.

However, at least in the former case, even the money part is changing fast. There are now a meaningful number of bloggers making a reasonable, even great, living by blogging, in some cases substantially more money than they would writing for a magazine or a book publisher.

It is going to be tremendous fun to see the race that is rapidly evolving between blogging on the one hand and traditional forms of publishing on the other hand — there are advantages on all sides, but I think blogging is going to post a lot more challenges to magazines, newspapers, books, and other forms of traditional written media in the years to come, and more so than many people in those industries currently imagine.

It’s also been striking to me how much more fun blogging is versus public speaking — at least for me. And the reach from blogging seems to be much broader than speaking even at the largest conferences. I’m not sure I’ll ever speak in public again — I’ll be at home instead, blogging in my underwear.

I know of friends who are seriously considering writing a book. Hope you get the drift with item # 5 above. 🙂

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One response to “Do I Still Need to Write a Book?

  1. Pingback: Writing Blogs, Books, Articles, Reports…Are They The Same?

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