EMAIL NUMBER 20
Finished 1st Draft of Book, But Need Your Advice (Bad)
Scott P. Scheper
Downtown San Diego, CA
I finished the first draft of the Antinet book two days ago!
Whew! I'm surprised I finished the first draft this quickly. I initially set out to have the draft completed in October. I'm ahead of schedule!
Next is a phase that stands just as critical. It also stands as potentially even more painful! I'm talking about… the editing phase.
As of today, the book sits at 191,786 words. I started research for the book in June of last year, and I started writing it in February of this year. It goes to show how the Antinet Zettelkasten can turn you into a publication machine.
I have an excellent copyeditor and fellow Antinetter, Wendy "The Wonderful". Wendy is actively working on the copyediting right now.
I hope to have the editing complete in mid-August.
Now, here's something important I want to ask your advice on…
Up to this point, this project has been a labor of love. I began writing the book because I believe in it. I believe in developing the mind using analog tools—specifically, I believe in Luhmann's system in its original form, the Antinet Zettelkasten. It just plain works.
However, I'm now at a crossroads.
While writing this book, I've been living off of my investments and savings. This has allowed me to focus on writing the book. Yet, I can't keep living off of my investments and savings.
What I'm saying is this: I'd like to begin generating value while being compensated for the value generated.
I'm faced with a decision: Do I (1) try and turn this project into a business, or (2) do I let it remain a passion project (a book only, which is totally fine).
Allow me to detail these two options now:
Option 1: Turn the Antinet into a Business
The first option is going "all-in" and turning this Antinet project into a business.
This is a niche business in the productivity space. The mission is to help researchers, writers, creatives, and academics produce genius-level work. The main vehicle by which to achieve this is the Antinet Zettelkasten.
The products and services I would provide:
The Antinet Zettelkasten Book: (Price: Free Online Version or Physical Book Version $24-$34)
A private community with exclusive Antinet content (high-quality videos, tutorials, support, and networking). I would hold a weekly live webinar session to help with anything and everything related to the Antinet. (Price: $54-96/month)
A monthly physical newsletter of hard-hitting content for productivity. It would contain the entertaining and amazing knowledge on the Antinet, creativity, writing, and growth (Price: $54-96/month)
An all-immersive 6-week online course taking you through every aspect of creating genius-level work with an Antinet. (Price: $1,100)
Perhaps other services: 1-on-1 coaching for an extended period of time; or a multi-day in-person conference.
I've started businesses before and have a tendency to do everything myself. I've learned the hard way that this isn't wise. My goal would be to offer best-in-class products, support, beautifully produced videos, and content. Therefore, I would look to do the following:
I would hire an operations person to help with design, fulfillment, customer support, and other items: a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-one.
I would raise a small amount of funding via an angel round ($250k). The goal is not to become a billion-dollar company but a stable company that produces great results for customers forever (in any economic environment).
I would also enlist an advisor on strategy and direction (it gets lonely at the top).
In brief, it's a big commitment. I would take it very seriously and commit my life to it. Yet, I would want those three resources to make it happen.
Option 2: Keep the Antinet a Passion Project
The second option is quite simple: I treat the Antinet as a passion project.
My craft is copywriting and marketing, and I love helping companies I believe in. There are a lot of overlaps between copywriting and writing, which is why I decided to write the book.
When you write copy, you write with the objective of inspiring people. When you read my Antinet Book, you'll get a taste of this. I don't seek to merely inform; I seek to inspire.
Anyway, a different route I can go is to have the Antinet project remain a labor of love.
I would see through that the book gets published and is beautiful. I would also continue making YouTube videos and checking Reddit. However, my time would be much more limited in nature.
Instead of spending 100% of my time on the Antinet project, I would spend maybe 20% of my time on the Antinet project.
The remaining 80% of my time would be allocated to my craft of copywriting and marketing for client(s) I take on.
Of course, my secret weapon in copywriting would remain, as always, the Antinet.
A Question I Have For You
I would like to ask you something which can help make my decision easier:
Do the products and services I outlined in Option 1 appeal to you?
That is: Could you foresee yourself investing in a $54-96/month community dedicated to helping you create genius-level work?
How about a $54-96/month physical newsletter?
Or a 6-week online course with amazingly produced videos teaching the Antinet for $1,100?
Which ones, if any, appeal to you?
And if none appeals to you, what does appeal to you?
What is your goal? What problems and pains are you currently working through with regards to learning, writing, creating, research, or other knowledge work?
There are other personal knowledge management 'gurus' that offer high-end courses. But they teach digital notetaking stuff (yuck)! I'd be entering that market. Yet I'm not sure if it's even worth it, or if I should keep the Antinet a passion project.
Your insights will greatly help me decide.
Please reply back to this email with your thoughts on these questions I posed above.
Thanks for being a part of this journey. I'll now be entering the editing phase for the book. I look forward to getting this book in your hands some day soon!
And as always,
To stay crispy, my friend.
Scott P. Scheper
"A Man Who is Having a Mid-life Crisis Trying to Figure Out Whether to Build a Business Out of Notecards"