6 best books for bloggers to improve their writing and income

If you’re building a blog, you probably want to learn how to increase traffic, build a community of readers, and scale the organic keywords you’re ranking for.

Most blogging advice is online, including on other blogs (hello!) and communities like r/juststart on Reddit.

But what about the best books about blogging and cultivating the skills you need to succeed?

Many of the specific books about blogging are outdated (unsurprisingly, considering how fast things evolve), so many of the books in this list aren’t directly about blogging and writing online.

But they are about tangential topics that will remain more timeless. Think writing, creativity, focus, and entrepreneurship.

Read on for the best books for bloggers to read to turn your writing into a brand, a source of income, and a valuable resource for your community.

The best books for bloggers about writing well and building an online business

How to Make a Living with Your Writing: Turn Your Words into Multiple Streams Of Income by Joanna Penn

Joanna Penn is one of the most popular voices on self-publishing and writing online – and the author of a huge number of books. How to Make a Living with Your Writing is one of her best (and most relevant for bloggers).

Although the book was first published back in 2015, the third edition was released in 2021 for a total refresh. It’s full of useful advice about making money as a writer, being more productive, and creating a diverse range of income sources.

More specifically, it talks about how to make money with books, affiliate income, online courses, physical products, consulting, and more.

If you need a kick in the pants to make changes in your life, this is also a fantastic book to read. Joanna shares her story of quitting her job “as a cubicle slave in the corporate world” to follow her creativity, writing books and blogging.

Show Your Work!: 10 Ways to Share Your Creativity and Get Discovered by Austin Kleon

Show Your Work is an excellent little book that’s big on ideas and inspiration to kickstart your creativity (exactly what I need when I’m procrastinating).

Read it when you need a motivation boost to share your work, let others into your process, and embrace the communal nature of creativity.

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport

Deep Work is one of the best books for bloggers to read – or anyone who wants to stay focused and not only get work done, but do the right work.

Cal Newport is best known as the author of bestselling non-fiction books like this one, but he started out with his popular blog Study Hacks. (He’s also a professor at Georgetown University.)

Cal’s previous book, So Good They Can’t Ignore You, is also a great read to help you figure out how you can stand out from the crowd and double down on that.

Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Ann Handley

Everybody Writes is Ann Handley’s guide to creating the kind of content that will make your business (and blog) thrive.

It will teach you how to choose the right words, style, and messaging to connect with your readers and give your audience the gift of your true story.

Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller

If you struggle to control your blog’s bounce rate, write compelling copy, or convince readers to make purchases on your blog (or click on affiliate links), Building a Story Brand is a great book to read next.

It’s full of lessons to help you stand out in a sea of content and distractions and win the attention and love of your readers.

Simple Business by Lucy Fuggle

If you made the jump to writing full-time and treating your blog like a business (or want to), you probably value your freedom. And your free time.

After all, what is the point of working for yourself if not to work less and live more? Being a business owner can be your road to ownership of your time, location, creativity, and peace of mind. But you need to design your work that way – and protect it.

Simple Business is my book about building a business that’s designed around the rest of your life and what matters most to you. Read it to get clear on the work you want to be doing, the life you want to be living, and how to achieve both without sacrifices.

For more of the best books to build your blog (and treat your blog like a job, you might like…

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