6 Home Business Ideas for People Who Love Books

1
Get Paid to Read Books

Get paid to read books
Turn your love of reading into a home business. Credit: Phil Ashley | Getty Images

One of the advantages of starting a home business is being able to turn a passion or hobby into a profitable career. Some interests, such as reading, might seem hard to convert into a home business. But with some ingenuity and creativity, even bibliophiles can make money doing what they love. Here are 6 home business ideas for people who love books.

2
Start a Book Blog

Start a book blog
Get paid blogging about your favorite books. Credit: lechatnoir | Getty Images

Book blogs are very popular among readers and writers who need exposure for their books. The challenge is that it’s a crowded marketplace, so you’ll need to find a way to stand out from the crowd. This can be done in a variety of ways from choosing a specific niche (i.e. YA dystopian novels or cozy mysteries) or a market group (i.e. best books for pre-teens).

You can make money from book blogs in a variety of ways including:

The key to success will be in generating avid readers to your book blog. To that end, you’ll need to develop a marketing plan, that includes social media and an email list.

More on Starting a Book Blog

3 Ways to Make Money from a Book Review Blog

How to Start a Blog

3
Become a Book Reviewer

Book reviewer
Get paid to review books!. Credit: CareyHope | Getty Images

Getting paid for reading and reviewing books is a possibility, but it requires patience and diligence. The best way to start would be to have a blog on which you leave reviews (see above on starting a book blog).  This not only gives you practice, but also, provides a portfolio of your reviews so media outlets that pay can see your work.

Once you have experience, you can begin pitching yourself as a freelance reviewer to your local newspaper or magazine. You can also search for review jobs on freelance writing job sites. Kirkus is often looking for reviewers.

More on getting paid to write reviews:

Be a Book Reviewer

4
Write Books

book author
Become a published author. Credit: Yulkapopkova | Getty Images

It is said that 81 percent of people have a book in them, but only 1 percent write it. Perhaps you’re the one percent who wants to share your stories or knowledge with the masses. Authorship isn’t the best way to make a living. The reality is that most books don’t sell 5,000 copies and for many authors it’s way less, especially when self-publishing. However, with a great story, that’s well-written and prepared, and a marketing plan that reaches your target market, writing books can be profitable.

You have several choices when selling your books. You can go the traditional route, seeking an agent or pitching publishers directly through a proposal (non-fiction) or synopsis (fiction) and a query. Or you can self-publish your book through many of the free and affordable e- and print book services. A final option is to work with a hybrid publishing company, which offers a little of both. While you pay for hybrid services as a self-publisher, hybrid companies vet authors as traditional publishers do, and give access to their editors, cover designers and marketing experts.

More on writing books:

Self-Publish Your Book for Profit

How to Get Published by Major Publisher

5
Start an Editing Service

editing services
Help others whip their books into shape. Credit: Maica | Getty Images

Amazon has completely changed the publishing field. Today, with little investment, authors can get their books out to the world without agents and traditional publishers. However, these authors need help in making sure their books are readable. As a result, there is a growing need for editors.

To be an editor, you need to have a strong command of language, grammar, and styles of writing that fits the genre of books you want to edit (i.e. Chicago Manual of Style).  You can offer basic copy editing, in which you simply correct grammar and punctuation. You can also offer line editing, which also looks at paragraph structure, flow, and word choice. Finally, there’s developmental editing, which refers to evaluating the content. Does the story flow, are the characters well-developed, is the pacing right, etc.

The more in-depth your editing service, the more you can charge. But you need to have a good understanding of story developing and the craft of writing to offer developmental editing.

To get started, create a website or at the very least a LinkedIn profile, outlining your services, and if possible, references and samples of your work. Then start networking with authors to get referrals. If you’re brand new, you might want to offer a free sample edit to help get new clients to try you out. You can also check out freelance writing sites for editing jobs.

Most freelance editors earn about $25 per hour, more for more in-depth editing services. Some prefer to charge by the page, anywhere from $4 to $7.50 depending on the type of editing.

Learn more about becoming a freelance editor:

How to Become a Book Editor

Making the Leap into Freelance Copy Editing

6
Start a Publishing Service

Publish books
Help writers get their books into the world. Credit: Jacques LOIC | Getty Images

Many writers want to get their books out into the world, but they don’t have the time or knowledge to get their books ready. That’s where publishing services come in. You can offer a range of services including:

  • Editing
  • Formatting for ebook and print
  • Cover Design
  • Submission to publishers such as Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing

If you don’t have the skill or knowledge to do each of these services, you can hire contractors to perform the tasks while you operate as the project manager and CEO.

You can charge one-time fees for your services, or you can start a full-fledged publishing company whereby you publish the books under your name, paying your authors’ royalties.

More on publishing services:

How to Start Your Own Publishing Business

7
Sell/Rent Used Text Books Online

Sell Textbooks
Help students get affordable textbooks. Credit: Image Source | Getty Images

There was a time when it was fairly easy to make several hundred dollars a week selling used books through services such as Amazon. Now that many used books are sold for a penny, it’s a little bit harder. The exception is specialty books, such as text books.

It’s no wonder students struggle financially when a single text book can cost $300 or more. The answer is find the books used or to rent them. If you can get a selection of used text books, you can sell them online through places like eBay or BookScouter.  

More On Selling Used Textbooks:

How to Make Money Selling Used Books