I’ve self-published more than 20 cookbooks since 2005 and every so often someone will say to me, “Oh, I would love to write a cookbook of my family recipes.” Is THIS the year you actually do it?
I would love to help you. I’m going to create a series of posts that outline the steps to take to publish your own cookbook.
Today, let’s decide what your book will look like.
First, decide what kind of book you want to create. Recipes, sure, but do you want to add pictures to the book? Pictures of food? Or pictures of family members? Do you want to add family stories? Will you be the only author? Or will family members be submitting contents as well?
This year, my husband and I created a cookbook of favorite recipes from my family and his, including recipes he used to make for his daughters. BUT we also included devotions suitable for those who might have questions about Christianity and what it is to be a believer. We created this book specifically for his daughters and my nephews and niece. We completed a version for his family that included pictures of that side of the family and then changed out the pictures for my family version.
Who is your audience? Is this just a family cookbook? Or will it also be for friends? Will it be for sale in your community?
I used to sell cookbooks at my local farmer’s market and even created a cookbook from the market with seasonal produce recipes and recipes submitted by the other vendors. Another cookbook I created was for a RV dealer to give to customers who purchased an RV. That book contained a lot of grilling and one pot meals suitable for RV life. Maybe you have a lot of knowledge of cooking for young children, so your book is going to help moms everywhere.
If you’re going to sell your book in your community, start to consider who might purchase it and where you might be able to market this book.
Another thing to consider is whether you need printed copies or will only want digital versions. Again, who is your audience and what type of book will suit them best?
So, your first step is to think about the type of book you want to create, who will receive it, and how they will access it.