Buchanan's significance to me greatly outweighs my knowledge of him, because that report became the source of a valuable lesson that has served me well for over fifty years: You can sell the same words more than once.
I also wrote a report on Warren Harding and used it in two classes. I think my brother recycled it, too.
Ironically, U. S. News & World Report ranks Buchanan as the worst president ("He refused to challenge either the spread of slavery or the growing bloc of states that became the Confederacy.") and Harding as second-worst ("He was an ineffectual and indecisive leader who played poker while his friends plundered the U.S. treasury."). Was there a sunconscious pattern to my picking?
After college, as a freelance writer, I often sold variations of the same article to multiple magazines with different audiences, such as Rolling Stone and Country Music, or Esquire and Ingénue.
It works the same way with books.
A year ago, I published Become a Real Self-Publisher: don't be a victim of a vanity press, which was written for people who don’t use self-publishing companies. In the middle of this month, a spinoff--aimed at writers who do use self-publishing companies--will go on sale. It's called Get the Most out of a Self-Publishing Company: Make a better deal. Make a better book. I'm also updating the original book for publication by the end of the year as Independent Self Publishing: the complete guide. This weekend I started another spinoff, Brainy Beginner's Guide to Self-Publishing, aimed at writers who are unsure of their path to publication. Parts of the first book were also used in my Stupid, Sloppy, Sleazy book about Outskirts Press.
All of those books include material originally posted on my blogs, and some material written for my books eventually shows up on my blogs.
Look at what you've already written and figure out how you can Recycle, reuse, repurpose, revise, sequelize and serialize.
My first book about phone equipment has had two spinoffs, and two more are coming.
My funny memoir has had one spinoff, so far.
A book you’ve already written may be perfect for use by an association, corporation, government, charity, foundation, university or a political party. Perhaps a book you’ve written needs just slight changes and perhaps a new title and cover to become perfect. Maybe information in your book is fine, but the book needs a new point of view or emphasis. Make a deal.
(Buchanan portrait is public domain, from the White House)