Power Up Your Nonfiction Book: Essential Content to Include when Writing Your ManuscriptAs you write your next book, you will likely follow some sort of outline and include some of the usual elements like footnotes and appendix. But there are some additional items you may want to consider adding to your manuscript in order to maximize the reader experience while building your mailing list and revenues.

Free Bonus Downloads – In my humble opinion, every single nonfiction book should offer the reader something to download for free. This creates a win-win situation since readers feel like they are receiving added value, and you can build your mailing list by requiring readers to register with a name and email address in exchange for access to bonus items.

Giving your readers added incentive can help you build your community and keep in touch with them after they’ve read the book. Bonus downloads can include any or all of the following:

  • The appendix or list of resources from the book in a printable PDF document.
  • Checklists or worksheets.
  • Companion workbook pages.
  • Charts or graphs that may be hard to read in the book or ebook.
  • Any reference material the reader would like to have separately from the book.
  • Templates or pre-formatted spreadsheets.
  • Companion coloring sheets or printable art.

Request for Reviews – You might be surprised by how people respond when you simply ask. In a couple of different places throughout the book, you could add a line like this:

“Like this book? One of the best ways to thank an author is to post a review on Amazon, Goodreads, your blog or social media.” Feel free to spice it up and add your personality to your request.

List of Previously Published Books – You can boost sales of previous titles by simply listing them in your book. “Other books by the author include…”

Blank Page Fillers – When a book interior is typeset, there will inevitably be blank pages throughout because always chapters start on the right but don’t always end on the left. While blank pages don’t hurt anything, why not take advantage of this real estate and send your typesetter a list of potential page fillers. You could use:

  • Inspiring quotes.
  • Quick tips for doing something better.
  • Graphic images or cartoons.
  • A funny note from the author. Don’t be afraid to be creative!

About the Author – At the end of your book, include a brief bio about you as the author. This is an important place to engage your readers and introduce them to other products and services that you offer. Be sure to include a link to your website and any other contact information you want to include (like an email address where readers can contact you).

Sales Page – If your book is a natural companion to your training course, coaching services, digital products, or other revenue streams, don’t be afraid to include a sales page that promotes your offering to readers. After enjoying a book, readers often want to know how they can work with the author.

Think about the books you’ve enjoyed. Wouldn’t you have appreciated being made aware of ways you could connect with the author and keep learning?


If you like this blog post, you’ll love our Author Toolkit with templates, worksheets and checklists for writing nonfiction. Check it out!