Succeeding through Spin-offs

June 2003
by Joe Jenkins

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Thanks to PMA Publishing University and other publishing seminars, I’ve learned that spin-offs from existing books, especially nonfiction titles, can provide additional income for a small publisher. These spin-offs could include videos, audiotapes, CDs, smaller publications that are essentially condensations or sections of a larger nonfiction title, or hardware related to the book topic. So far, I have exploited this idea for one of my titles with quite satisfactory success.

I currently self-publish three books, two that are nonfiction niche titles–The Slate Roof Bible, published in 1997, and The Humanure Handbook, published in 1995 with a second edition in 1999–plus one called Balance Point that’s fiction based on factual events, published in 2000. The books are distributed by Chelsea Green Publishing in Vermont, and they’re sold on and all of the other Internet booksellers. We at Jenkins Publishing also sell these titles directly via the Internet and via telephone orders.

The Tools Tie-in

The Slate Roof Bible

is a book about slate roofs with an important “how-to” section that provides information that is otherwise very hard to find (how to repair an old slate roof or install a new one, for example). The tools and materials required for repair and installation of slate roofs are also very difficult to locate. Then it dawned on me; I could offer tools and materials for sa…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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