Many options exist today on ways how to publish online. The Internet has opened up the world to the possibility of being published, taking the focus off print publications and onto online formats. Some options for publishing online include writing blogs, providing content for websites in the form of articles, and writing electronic books, also called ebooks.
- Writers can begin a blog for free at various websites. With just an idea and a computer, ordinary people can become writers of a diverse range of topics such as their babies, selling goods and services online, food addictions, vegetable gardens, garage sales, and local and world travel, to name just a very few of the varied blog topics. An Internet search for "free blog" nets millions of hits.
- Online content providers offer information to web searchers. These companies need content for their websites and often hire freelance writers to generate the content they publish online. Some of the more popular websites for freelance writers are Constant Content, Suite 101, and Demand Studios. Writers are paid for their articles in several ways including up-front pay per article, residual income from ad clicks on their article pages, and bidding by other website owners looking for content for their website and blogs.
- Ebooks are written on just about every topic, just like blogging. Ebooks can be downloaded and read on an ebook reader like the Amazon Kindle, on a cell phone, or on a computer screen. Many mainstream publishers now also offer their novels and nonfiction books that are printed in hardback and paperback as ebooks as well. Self-published writers use the ebook format to publish their own books in several ways: on their own using their own software to format the ebook then advertising the ebook for sale through online venues such as Amazon.com or through their own websites; through online publishers that solely publish ebooks and charge a fee to writers for formatting, placement in an ebookstore, and distribution to customers.