Financial experts say that turning a hobby into a profitable endeavor is one of the best ways to build wealth. But some hobbies can be quite difficult to convert into a business.
Book lovers for one, have difficulties trying to map out a plan on a home business out of their love for reading. What heavy readers should understand is that finding income from being a bibliophile is not (and should not be) as daunting as it might initially seem.
All it takes to turn your reading hobby into a business is some creativity and hard work, and you will soon start making money from being a book lover.
Here are some home business ideas perfect for people who just love reading for long hours.
1. Review Books
You spend hours reading a book, spending sleepless nights just to finish one. Why not read a book, make a review and get paid for it?
Start by creating a blog where you can post your book reviews. You can write a review of a book that you have already read or get a new material to criticize. There’s an advantage in putting all your reviews in a blog, namely, it allows you to put together a portfolio of your work.
You can also capitalize on social media to promote your blog. For example, you can use your social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn to let your network know of your blog and the reviews you’ve posted. Speaking of LinkedIn, you may want to update your profile to indicate your new role as a book reviewer.
The goal of promoting your blog is to have as many visitors in your blog reading your reviews. This is because you can make money by selling ad space in your blog to publishers and authors.
Building your portfolio also means that you can offer your services as a freelance book reviewer to publications such as magazines or your local newspaper.
What’s great about being a book reviewer is that you can start without any small business funding for it. Starting a blog, promoting them on social media and selling your services or ad space can be done for free.
2. Write and Sell Your Own Book
While easier said than done, writing your own bestseller is totally possible—with enough commitment and talent. And that can be a very rewarding and lucrative business idea.
They say that a person can never be a good writer if he or she isn't a heavy reader. This means book lovers already have an edge in writing over those who don't enjoy reading as much.
If you're into books, why not dabble into writing as well?
Reading books is an investment as readers get to widen their horizons, and end up having a great grasp of grammar, language, and style.
Arguably, being a book author isn't the fastest way of earning from being a book lover. Many books don't sell thousands of copies, especially for authors who are self-publishing. But if you have a great story to tell, complete with well-thought-of plots and characters, then why not give book writing a try?
Think of J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series. Rowling is now a billionaire, thanks to her phenomenal book sales. It never crossed her mind that the book she started writing on a piece of tissue would sell millions worldwide.
3. Open a Little Free Book Library
“The idea behind Little Free Libraries is simple: a book lover builds a small “library” in their front yard — either a box, a crate, or a larger dollhouse-like structure – and fills it with used books, which their neighbors are encouraged to freely borrow from and add to,” explains the University of South California (USC) on their Library and Information Science blog.
Perhaps with time and the increased popularity of your little, free library, you may be able to monetize the venture by, say, offering advertising space on the library structure, or maybe running related promotional events in your neighborhood sponsored by some local companies.
It is, however, important to get all the necessary legal permits in order because in some cities little, free libraries are illegal, and in those cities the authorities have been reported to spare no resources to clamp down on the little libraries.
Apparently, the issue seems to be that the libraries are considered “obstructions” and “that you can’t do anything that might block emergency vehicle access, obstruct motorists’ views, impede pedestrians or make it hard to open car doors” lest you be subject to fines and penalties.
That being said, reports also indicate that some city spokespeople are of the view that if there is no clear obstruction, it might be possible to open a little, free library if the owner is willing to apply for a permit. And that it's possible for city arts funds could be tapped to pay for the permit.
Be sure to check your city authorities’ stance on the Little Free Libraries movement and clear with them first before implementing this novel business idea for book lovers where it's necessary.
4. Provide Editing Services
If you're not ready yet to start being a book author, then you may consider being an editor. The publishing world has greatly transformed given technological advances.
In the past, authors could only get their books out in the market via traditional publishers. These days, authors only need small business funding so they can self-publish. This, in turn, created the demand for more editors.
You have the option of starting as a line editor, a task that only requires a person to correct punctuation and grammar. You can also choose to be a line editor, which requires you to also check for word choice, sentence and paragraph flows and sequence, and paragraph structure.
There's also developmental editing. This is a job perfect for those who want to evaluate content as a whole. Developmental editors criticize the flow of the story and the development of the characters.
You can start by offering your services as an editor in freelance writing sites. You may want to provide a sample edit for a potential client to land a job as an editor. Over time, you can build your portfolio of edited work and command a high fee.
5. Buy and Sell Old Books
If you're a book lover, then chances are you have accumulated a good number of books. Why not rummage through your collection and sell some of the books online?
If you are already running out of bookshelves or space for storage, then you would be decluttering your home while making money at the same time.
You also specialize in selling specialty books such as textbooks. If you know of good quality and cheap sources of specialty books, then you can engage in the business of buying and selling used books.
You can start your online selling beginning with your old books through BookScouter and Ebay. Then you can use the proceeds to acquire specialty and other books to diversify and increase your inventory.
And now you know there are options to turn your love for books into a rewarding business.