Formulating Ideas — Book Proposal or Business Plan?

21 Sep

The next step in my class is to create formal one paragraph proposal or plan for my idea. Matt Cutts, a Google employee, makes a point in this here blog post about how if you have some sort of irritation or frustration in your life, chances are others do too, and that it’s a great starting point for developing your idea. I couldn’t agree more. I think I have a basis for an idea down pat, but the question remains: where the hell to go from here?

Originally I envisioned the idea of gathering together under $10 dollar meals in the city to be a great jumping off point for a book proposal. I mean, food guides are still decent sellers, right? The blog I’m interning at right now is putting one out in the near future, and many exist already. I can’t help but be skeptical, however, as to if this is a viable option. Here’s why:

  1. The target audience isn’t going to be able to afford the friggin book to begin with: Who wants to throw down $13 (at least) for a paperback book. Better question: who can throw down $13 for a paperback book, let alone a cheap eats guide? Yeah. Exactly.
  2. Do people even go to books for this information anymore? With the advent of sites such as Yelp and Broke Ass Stuart, it seems as if no one is going to buy a book that contains information that they can get for free online. Then again, Stuart has not one but two books. Hmm.

A dilemma indeed. On the business plan front, I wouldn’t even know where to begin. How would I structure the website? How would I budget things out? How about web design? Coding? What’s that? Clearly there are many issues that need to be sorted out, but not at midnight on a Tuesday evening. I have until next Thursday to finalize my structure and almost an entire semester to flesh it out. Hopefully that will be enough time.

On an unrelated note, look forward to an interesting Q&A with some friends of mine to be posted sometime tomorrow! Hooray blogging!


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