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April 4, 2014 4:25 PM   Subscribe

I want to sell what I write as a 'packaged' article or essay. Best spots to do this?

I've grown weary of writing and publishing articles on my website for free. I'm a professional (really, I am) so it's not like I do half-ass stuff, it's hard work and, well, I'm tired of this business model of "give it for free and maybe they will come." Or whatever.

I'd like to do a mix now. Some freebie posts but then, also, the more meatier, involved work I'd offer for sale as a download.

Where is a hip, smart, modern spot to do this sort of thing? Or should I just do PayPal and email people PDF versions after they have paid. Seems hokey that way.

Or does someone have a better alternative? I'd considered Amazon, but Christ, they take a large cut. It's prohibitive.
posted by zenpop to Work & Money (11 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
Patreon?
posted by kagredon at 5:20 PM on April 4


Are you looking to publish on a website that will pay you for your articles, or publish them yourself behind a paywall?

If the former, it would help to know what kind of stuff you write.
posted by third word on a random page at 5:26 PM on April 4


Gumroad handles selling digital files fairly seamlessly. Might be good to offer it as a ZIP with ereader book formats plus PDF, so people can put things on their ereaders.
posted by foxfirefey at 5:27 PM on April 4


I've seen some folks selling ebooks via Gumroad lately (notably Jacob Clifton in the wake of the closing of Television Without Pity). Looks like the fee is 5% plus 25 cents.
posted by bcwinters at 5:27 PM on April 4


I write metaphysical articles -- third word on a random page, and have my own website, with a 'following' and large FB presence (ugh, did I just write that?). I'd considered setting up a password protected sort of arrangement on the website, but like the idea of PDFs or something of that ilk better.

Thank you for the other suggestions folks. Will check them out.
posted by zenpop at 5:35 PM on April 4


If you have your own website, which I presume is WordPress, there are about 70 million plugins that will let you sell digital downloads. Of, you know, PDFs. This is just one.
posted by DarlingBri at 5:58 PM on April 4


Selling content is a tough slog, since so many people are willing to write for free, and publishers these days are not concerned with quality.

Another model to consider is to use your written content as a marketing asset to sell your services that solve a problem. Or you can host a webinar where people pay to sign up.

I am not sure how to monetize metaphysics, though.

This is one reason why so many writers teach - it's how they can support their writing.
posted by KokuRyu at 6:10 PM on April 4


Yes, plugins DarlingBri -- tho, what folks don't realize about plugins is that they up the chances of a WordPress site being hacked -- in fact they actually invite the problem. So I can't go that route (I've had to deal with two toxic code injections into the server, over the last two years, from bots entering via a plugin.) But thank you for that suggestion.

KokuRyu, yes, of course. And I do well with employing the free content I generate to also promote my skills as a counselor, in a non-obnoxious way. So that is already in place. Thanks.

I'm going to explore Gumroad some more.
posted by zenpop at 9:58 PM on April 4


Constant Content. They do the marketing and invoicing for you.
posted by Jacqueline at 10:55 PM on April 4


How about E-junkie or Payloadz?
posted by Dansaman at 4:12 PM on April 5


Constant Content is a content farm (I know the founders).
posted by KokuRyu at 6:22 AM on April 6


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