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Publishing Master Course Outline

Consider a Sample Book

We all want to jump right into the deep end and publish an awesome cookbook, but doing a smaller, less visible book is great practice. It will help you learn the publishing process, discover what works for you and your writing style, and iron out many of the wrinkles you will run into.

For example, if you have been blogging for over a year do you still have the same blog design, recipe layout, writing style, and color scheme as when you started? Almost no one does. Because our style, design, and layout evolves as we get more familiar with producing content and the tools available to us. The exact same thing occurs with publishing cookbooks.

That's why we recommend doing a smaller, sample book first. Do a "best of" collection of recipes from your blog. Put together your favorite 25 family recipes and write a book around them. Showcase your top 30 food photographs and write about the circumstances that went into creating them. The book only has to be 50 to 100 pages, nothing major.

Take that simple idea and go through the whole publishing process. Write the book, test the recipes, photograph whatever is needed. Then design the book and publish it on Amazon. Create an ebook and publish it for the Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords. Sell a PDF version on your site. In other words, really treat it like a full cookbook, but your goal isn't to be #1 on Amazon, it's to get practice for your next cookbook.

You will learn so much during this process that your next cookbook will be an order of magnitude better than it would've been otherwise.

My second book was much, much better than my first book. I really don't think my books were professional quality until after my fourth one. Even my latest two books are markedly better than my previous ones. Trying to learn how to write, format, design, and publish a cookbook, all at the same time, will result in a lot of stress and you most likely won't be happy with your first result anyway.