Nearly two weeks ago, I published a book I haven’t finished writing. In fact, I’m probably only about 15% of the way through it, if I’m honest. But I’ve been experimenting with a website called Leanpub that lets you do that, and people can get the book right up front, and then receive updates as you write them.
What’s interesting – apart from the feedback which has been broadly encouraging and positive – is that people actually seem to be paying for it, even though they don’t have to.
I’ve just posted the first major update to Music in the Digital Age and people should be getting emails about now that tells them how to get the new version. It’ll be interesting to see what people think of that bit of the process, and whether that was enough of an update.
I think I’ll push out an update every few weeks, or whenever there’s a substantial new section all ready to go – whichever comes first. I’ve been writing on average about 800-1,000 words a day on it since the year began. I hope to be able to keep that up for a while if I can.
It’s all planned out in skeleton form, of course – and it looks like it’s going to be quite a substantial bit of work when it’s done. Given that the section that updates the original 20 Things e-book I wrote 5 years ago promises to be longer and more in-depth than that whole book was – and it’s just a scene-setter for this one, the whole thing could be a bit of a doorstop.
Well, it would be if it had any mass at all. It’s an e-book.
Today I hit a bit of a milestone with it. 200 copies have been downloaded. Hardly bestseller list material – but pleasingly substantial nevertheless. What’s more, about a third of those copies have actually been paid for (you can pay whatever you like – from zero dollars to the entire contents of your bank account, though $5 is the suggested price).
Most who did pay money have paid $5, some $1, a few $10, and one has paid quite a bit more. I don’t get the email addresses or names of people who have it, so I have to just be generally appreciative, rather than specifically and personally – but it is very gratifying.
I’m doing a lot of writing these days, so I’ve added a ‘my books‘ page to this site. Go have a look. It’s all interesting stuff (well, I find it interesting anyway).
If Music in the Digital Age sounds like your sort of thing – feel free to download it and start reading. Don’t let the fact that I haven’t finished it yet stop you.