Will writing a book make me lots of money?
Writing a book is a little like going to Las Vegas - we hear about the big winners but there is no story about the average participant who breaks even, had fun and goes home tired and broke. In the book world, we know about J. K. Rowling, Stephen King, Wayne Dyer and the small percentage who have had "big wins," but what can the average author expect and what can they do to create some financial success? Unless the stars align and lady luck shines bright, it is unlikely that an author will get wealthy from their first book or two - that's reality.
The money is not in the book - it's in what the book brings.
When it comes to non-fiction books, an author needs to look a little further afield to find the money tree. Keynote speeches, workshops, audio books, DVD's, online courses/webinars, workbooks, coaching, follow up books, foreign language rights, film rights, card decks, consulting, T-shirts, tours, foreign workshop weekends, MP3's, affiliate groups and more. Yes, you might be that one in a million winner and I don't want to rain on your parade, but the practical side of authoring your first book or two means that you may not be able to live the lifestyle of the rich and famous just yet.
Knowing what some of the ancillary opportunities are and planning to get involved in them will help in creating the original book, because it should cause the writer to include for these possibilities when they are writing. There is no honor in poverty and you do not need to suffer financial hardship for your art, but you do need to have an eye on the horizon for creating financially viable products that will flow from your book. Regardless of your publishing platform, you are responsible for the marketing of your books and creating a livelihood - what could you do today to leverage your book as a starting point for more income?