Self-publish book, Adsense, and monetization of blog

Some of us start up our blogs in our niche, slap on some AdSense ads in all the right hotspots, and secretly hope that the money rolling in. Then we wake up from your “passive income” dreaming and to the reality that it’s not money rolling in, it’s a few dribbles of coin.
The reality is, we will be lucky to cover our online expenses with AdSense, let alone make a decent living from it. You probably know Jeff Jarvis, the pioneer journalist in the blogsphere and owner of BuzzMachine blog. For the last quarter of 2005, his income from Google AdSense and Yahoo Publisher Network combined was less then $168.64 . This number probably set the limit for most average bloggers like you and me.
Technically speaking, we are living on a thread and on the whims of advertisers and Google. Think about it: one slight change of direction from Google in regards to AdSense could cripple the whole professional blogging scene. What happens if click fraud gets out of hand and advertisers stop doing business with Google? What happens if the only way to make decent money from AdSense (ie: blogs on products) become so over-saturated that they dilute earnings for all? What happens if Google twist their search engine algorithm again, and all your hard SEO work goes backwards? It is my observation that most bloggers have dangerously placed their eggs in the one basket: AdSense.
So, how can a blogger, who’s picked a niche, made themselves somewhat of an expert in it, monetize their blog besides Adsense? One obvious way is to try several other types of advertisement programs; another way, which is being tried out only by very few, is to think blog as a book (to be published), as well as the marketing media for the book at the same time. Here is one beautiful example of doing this.


Self publish your blog as an Ad supported book for free

If you are cheap and you don't want to spend a dime for book printing, you can try to turn your blog to an Ad supported book. Some times a small publisher is willing to give you a free ride to nicely print you book on high quality paper, but there are full page ads interspersed throughout your book. You get a small percentage of Ad revenue afterwards. This month, mega-publisher HarperCollins released a web-version of Ad supported book for the first time. The book is displayed in HTML rather than as a PDF, is flanked by clickable Yahoo! text ads.
How successful the Ad supported book will be? Hard to predict. It is obvious tha cost are quite high on the publisher side; but if your book is a gem, and printing cost being constrained, you may have a chance.


Three self published blooks from LuLu.com

1) this blog book contains a thick collection of popular theme-based posts no longer available online. These include The Windy Times, Korean Food, Chongak and the Stray Cats and more. Alive with photos, reader comments and a variety of bonus material, this book is made for anyone remotely interested in a foreigner's life in Korea. It charges $14.99 for a book and $4.39 for a download. Not bad at all.

2) this is a personal blog, free of charge. I think this one is too cheap for anyone to get it.

3) a collection of the articles from the popular blog site, vitualis' Medical Rants along with the original source articles. The articles are mostly news items from a biomedical perspective, sometimes technological, at times ethical and on occasion "rage-against-the-system". Great for some light, and not-so-light reading about many new and interesting developments in biomedicine in Oct 2004 to June 2005. A full preview PDF version is available for download. This is the second edition and hardcopy version of this volume. $24.95 per book. Super.


Book (or Blook) deals for all

Authors of my favorite blog Mister Snitch, are half-way through writing a book. They just started the marketing effort for it. (They realized, however, that pretty much all the posts in their blog require some adjustment to make them suitable for the blook.)
Another well-known blogger, Dawn Eden, also signed a contract last Oct. with W Publishing Group, a division of Thomas Nelson - the largest Christian publisher - to write a book.
It was even rumored that all but few good bloggers have signed book deals.
Congratulations, and book deals for all !


Blurb - a new self-publishing start-up

Blurb, a new comer in the book self-publishing industry, made a news flash in the prestigious DEMO 2006 conference this month. It focus on turning people's blog or other web media into books. Blurb is currently in late stage BETA, with general availability planned for early March.
Blurb CEO and founder Eileen Gittins said "Already we can create our own iMovies, blogs, Podcasts, and playlists in no time. Why not books? At Blurb, we're bringing publishing in line with those dreams and expectations."
What makes Blurb unique will be their free flagship software, called 'BookSmart'. I may write a review on it later. Stay turned.


A thousand authors blogging on Amazon

While some of us want to self-publish our blogs into books, many book authors have turned into blogger. By a recent count, there over 1,000 writers have joined Amazon Connect, the online retailer's initiative to begin hosting author blogs on its site. Amazon will show to users the blogs by writers whose works the users have purchased at Amazon, but visitors can also search for blogs alphabetically. Bloggers will include authors such as ex-wonkette Ana Marie Cox, James Patterson and Meg Wolitzer.
I think this is a marvelous way for an author wanting to promote books (existing or planned), answer critics, or write more details about a book than Amazon's usually posts.


Feminist Press turned Baghdad Burning blog into book

Earlier this year, Baghdad Burning blog was turned into Baghdad Burning book by Feminist Press.
In case you don't know, Baghdad Burning is riveting weblog written by a 25-year-old Iraqi woman living in Baghdad. The author call herself Riverbend, but the real identity remained concealed for her own protection.
This blog recounts stories of life in an occupied city - of neighbors whose home are raided by U.S. troops, whose relatives disappear into prisons, and whose children are kidnapped by money-hungry militias. As the only Iraqi blogger writing from a woman's perspective, she also describes a once-secular city where women are now afraid to leave their homes without head covering and a male escort. Due to its eye-witness perspective, the Baghdad Burning blog is recognized around the world as a crucial source of information not available through the mainstream media.
The book is available at both Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The British version was published by Marion Boyars Publishers .