I know it’s a morbid question, but one I have thought about.
Perhaps it’s my legal background (I teach Law Clerks and Paralegals at a college in Canada) or perhaps I want to be sure I leave behind something for my children. Probably a bit of both.
In any event, what will happen to my books once I’m gone? I’ve got over 70 books published and probably the same number of journals, with many more on the way (I hope!). I’ve been traditionally published and my textbook continues to bring in royalties each year. My books on Amazon, CreateSpace, ACX, and the other retailers bring in royalties every month, and I regularly get affiliate income from a variety of sources.
So, what happens to all of that after I’m gone?
Well, the good news is that most of it is already automated. If I did nothing for the next six months on my publishing business, I’m sure it would still be earning money each and every month. I choose to do marketing and write new books in order to increase that income, but my children should be able to benefit from my publishing income, if they so choose.
I’ve put together a “Publishing Manual” that is printed in a binder on my desk. There is also a copy of it in my safety deposit box along with my Last Will and Testament and Powers of Attorney. So, should anything happen to me, there is a place for my family to start. I have included all of the passwords and pertinent details of my business. I have also included a section entitled, “The Bare Minimum” which (I hope) is where they’ll start.
If you are in the same boat and would like some reference material for your loved ones in the event of tragedy, here is a skeleton version of my manual. I hope it helps you streamline your publishing processes or at least gives you an idea of what you could leave behind so your family can benefit from all of your hard work.