My $1000 Blog Post
If someone told me back in August, when I posted the blog-post, that it would cost me $1000 by mid-December, I would have said: “Nah, don’t want that!”
Actually, it’s over $1200 as you read this, I just rounded it down for you.
It all started on a beautiful spring day in 1976. When a chubby and happy boy came to see the light of day. This was in Tønsberg, Norway’s oldest city. Home of the Vikings.
Let’s forward a bit
This January, in the year-we-do-not-mention, I started blogging.
As a paying subscriber (aka reader) for two years on Medium, I had devoured everything. Mostly articles on writing and flash fiction /short fiction stories.
A fantasy short-story idea had been churning in the back of my head for some time, but I didn’t want to write it in Norwegian. I am an avid reader of English literature, but reading doesn’t automatically translate into writing well. Unfortunately.
So I started blogging.
It was probably the best way of learning the language, and the immediate feedback when I put my words “out there” gave me the tools I needed to improve, immensely. Fast.
Of course, I still have the occasional NorwEnglish mixed in, but it’s getting better for each day, each word. Even Grammarly’s red lines are farther between, and I don’t always take its suggestions anymore.
One day I read a brilliant short story on Medium that I thought was a true story. Everybody did. So much so that the author had to caution the readers it was fiction at the end of the story.
That gave me an idea.
I am a mystery writer foremost, and the genre for my Norwegian books are cozy mysteries. Or geriatric crime, if you will.
I wanted to trick my 6–700 followers by writing a short story fiction, appearing to be a blog post from my actual life.
The blog post
The story was about me, a struggling writer, drunkenly placing an ad on Norwegians equivalent to Craig’s List, offering my services as a Private Investigator.
When the alcohol had left my nerves and the ad my memory, I got my first client:
“I need help. Alfred has gone missing.”
The blog post — A Dog Named Alfred — was born
7 minutes ago
That’s when I wrote this.
I have now written 17 more stories with this fictional me. Writing the fourth season as we speak, to be released sometime next year. I hope.
You might think: ‘What is all this gibberish about. I clicked the post to see how you spend a grand on a blog-post!’
Don’t worry, my dear Watson. I will now connect this information together in a way that makes you nod slowly, making the throaty sound of: ‘ahh…’
I went all in. Or, as I like to say: all-out. Crazy. I gave it my everything; in hours as much as money.
I have, when you read this, just released the first season of Viking Private Investigation as a book!
I loved writing my short stories, and the feedback I got was so good that I made it into a book.
My fantasy idea turned into a quirky humoristic episode-based short story cozy mystery thingy…
But publishing my 52 pager was expensive. To get the first season of Viking P.I. out there, I:
- Hired a wonderful proofreader, Sam H Arnold, to help me flush out my NorwEnglish before I published the episodes to my beta-readers.
- Hired one of the best Norwegian Illustrator to make my cover art.
- Hired a professional editor.
- Hired a professional cover designer (well, really three of them, but more on that in a later blog post).
I also did a lot of business stuff like:
- Getting hosting and a domain up and running.
- Hiring someone to design my web page.
- Doing paid courses on promotion and self-publishing.
- Hiring a professional to do Amazon keywords and categories for me.
- Bought a formatting tool to properly format my manuscript.
- And much, much more… I also spent a bunch of money on stuff I shouldn’t have, but I will not mention this here.
The blog post I set out to write became a money drain. But I am super proud of the result:
I hope that one day, down the road, I can look back at the investment as a good one.
If not, I have at least invested in experience and knowledge :)
If you would like to know more about me, the book, and/or the publishing journey I’m on, take a look at my site: tommyueland.com and sign up for my newsletter :)
P.S: When the book got published, I had spent $1400 on it :)
Thank you for reading, and I wish you all a safe and Merry Christmas!