How to publish your graduate thesis as a non-fiction book

Firstly, let me tell you a story.

A few years ago I had my MA in Literature and a self-published book I was proud of. I brought that book into a job interview thinking it would impress them.

It didn’t. I’d written a popular (though sensationalistic) non-fiction book and this was a very conservative literature department. It felt like I was on trial (one of the many reasons I decided academic life wasn’t for me).

Now however, I publish books to build my online businesses and also earn some profit; and since I had my PhD Thesis sitting around, I decided to put it out as a non-fiction book.

I made a video about that process (sorry the sound isn’t great).


Basically, there are two paths to publishing your thesis. Either you go traditional, get into libraries, which is good for your academic CV but probably not great for earnings; or you self-publish, which could earn more money if it’s a popular nonfiction topic and you don’t need to worry about your academic resume (I write full-time now, so I’m not looking for teaching jobs).

paradise lost study guide

Since my thesis is basically about Paradise Lost, though also about much more – and should have popular appeal – I set it up this way. Since very few academic books or publishers know anything about book marketing, SEO, or Amazon, it’ll be pretty easy for me to get my book to show up first for anyone searching for a Paradise Lost Study Guide, or books about The Devil or the History of Evil.

It probably won’t earn that much, but a few hundred bucks a month would be nice. More importantly, people will actually be reading my PhD thesis, instead of it just being stuck in a library somewhere.

If you need more help publishing or marketing your graduate thesis I have book design resources available, or you can visit my main site, www.creativindie.com

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