The $1,000 eBook Experiment

I have this plan in my head I want to get it, and I want you to join me in on the journey.

Experiment: With a $1,000 budget, how much money can I make publishing eBooks in 6 months?

It’s not a massive endeavor, but it will be measurable. After a bit of time, I can also share the pen name with you.

Budget Allocation


Hosting: I will be sharing the HostGator hosting plan with this and all other websites, so that’s a nice juicy goose egg. Under normal circumstances, it would be around $10 per month, so I will be taking that away from the budget.

Domain name: $10 per year from GoDaddy.

Design: I will be using WordPress for the website design, and use a theme from either ThemeForest or Creative Market, upwards of $60.

Total: $80 initially, $130 over the course of 6 months.


Using UpWork, I will commission writers to write either short stories or nonfiction pieces for me. The usual cost for this type of work is between $10 and $20 for every thousand words. I try to aim for works with at least 5,000 words, so that’s $50 to $100 per eBook.

I will be doing my own covers using, using the minimum amount of stock imagery needed. The cost is between $1 and $2, depending on layout and image used.

Total: ~$55 to $105 per book created.


I don’t have a specific budget in mind for marketing, anything left over from the initial $1,000 will be used to find out what works best for the series of titles.

I want to aim for ten books, which is a good round number. If I get ten 8,000 word books created, that will cost $800 and leave a good $120 left over for marketing in the beginning. That’s more than enough to kick off a new author’s first book.

Game Plan

By the looks of it, I can get a few books created and stay in my budget, anywhere from 8 to 16. If I stick with 10, I will have 3 months of content to drip out.

As much as I hate to say it, I will be using Kindle Unlimited. It’s just easier starting out to go with that. There’s only one page to link to, one audience to keep happy, one dedicated mailing list that all goes to Amazon for their eBooks. Groovy.

I have a writer in mind already that primarily does fiction pieces, so I think I’ll go with him for the duration of this project. His rates are incredibly fair, and he provides very nice work. In fact, I think we are about the same age.

My start date will be whenever I get my first book lined up to be written. I just sent the writer an e-mail asking if he had a Skype (we previously only talked through website chats). At that point I will begin creating the pen name, author website, and set up a mailing list.

Let’s see how this goes. Partially to make money, primarily to show I know what I’m doing.

Let’s get it on.