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A Surprising Way to Write a Million Dollar E-Book

By Joe Vitale
Posted Monday, January 3, 2005

Ever since Jim Edwards and I wrote our best-selling e-book, "How to Write and Publish Your Own OUTRAGEOUSLY Profitable e-Book --- in as little as 7 days!," people have written to us for advice on how to pick a good subject for their e-book. While we've addressed that question in our book and in other articles, last night I came across a surprising new way to help you pick a million-dollar winner.

Last night I was reading a wonderful old book on creativity. It's titled 'Direct Creativity' and written by Robert Crawford. It's dated and copies of it sell for a lot of money today but it still contains some pure gold. For example, this amazing insight from the book lit up my brain cells:

"Most things you consider have several possibilities, not just one."

At first glance that tip might not mean anything to you. But imagine you're looking for a topic for your next e-book --- and you want to be sure it will be a winner. Crawford explained his principle this way:

"You are an author. You lack a good subject for a book. You have been reading 'Uncle Tom's Cabin.' But are there not other down-trodden people in the world? There might be a story of a down-trodden Indian, or down-trodden African, or a down-trodden Eskimo, or a down-trodden Chinaman, or maybe a down-trodden white person in a northern city. Perhaps you choose the story of an American Indian because you feel that you have a mission in the world to improve his lot."

Do you see how this works? I love this insight into creativity. What it means for you and your next e-book is this:

Search online for the best-selling books of a few decades ago or even of a century or two ago. Just as 'Uncle Tom's Cabin' was a classic and controversial book of the 1800's, and one you could adapt into an original e-book of your own today, there are countless other once mega-hit books out there that time has forgotten. You can find such a book, model it, and write a new e-book based on its basic and already proven concept.

For example, John Bear wrote a book called 'The #1 New York Times Best-Seller.' It was a reference book consisting of facts about the 484 books that had been New York Times best-sellers (up to 1992, when the book was published). You could flip through it, look for a book that was successful decades ago, and then write an e-book based on the nature of the best-selling book. The chances are extremely high that your new e-book would be a success, too.

Why is this so? The truth is, there are only a finite number of topics available to us as authors. I once read that there are only 36 possible plot situations. You can have millions of novels and screenplays written, but only out of those 36 plots. (See 'The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations' by Georges Polti.) The same holds true for nonfiction. The key is to find a winner from the past and update it with your own style and your own message for today.

Of course, you still have to write a good book. That's where the e-book Jim and I wrote can help you, too. But for a creative way to determine your next e-book, this brilliant method is priceless.

In short: Do a little research, find a successful book of the past, and model it to write a winner of your own today.

Go for it!

About the Auhor
Joe Vitale of ( is author of numerous books, including the international #1 best-seller, "Spiritual Marketing," the best-selling e-book, "Hypnotic Writing," the best-selling Nightingale-Conant audioprogram, "The Power of Outrageous Marketing," and the best-selling e-book (with Jim Edwards) "H


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