The Q: What Would You Buy With a 7-Figure Book Deal? (Plus, Win a WD Subscription)

The QWhen I see books like Harry Potter fly off the bookshelves, I can’t help but think, What if that were me? What if my hard work paid off and I landed a seven-figure book deal? Aside from passing out (multiple times) from excitement and throwing up (multiple times) out of nervousness, I’d want to do something special with my first purchase from that check.

The problem is, I have no idea what I’d buy. I like my house. I just bought a new car a year ago. And my wife wouldn’t be too happy if I brought home any wild, exotic animals.

So here’s what I want to know: What would you buy first if you landed a seven-figure book deal? Something big? Something small? Something that’d be special to you?

Post in the comments section and I’ll randomly select one person who suggests something to receive a free 1-year subscription to Writer’s Digest. Deadline is Friday, August 5 at 3pm Eastern Time. The winner will be announced shortly after that. As a bonus, I’ll give a second free 1-year subscription to Writer’s Digest for the most creative answer (I love creative answers).

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73 thoughts on “The Q: What Would You Buy With a 7-Figure Book Deal? (Plus, Win a WD Subscription)

  1. mtcrbond

    No contest…help my niece pay for college…then on to more mundane things like quitting the ugly day job to write full time and pay off debt and help my brother financially…would be way cool to be able to help the ones I love.

  2. mrsbockmann

    If I were a writer making seven figures, I’d need to look like a real writer. I’ve seen enough real author photos on enough dust jackets to know that if I want to look like a real writer, I’m going to need a couple pairs of prison-issued prescription glasses and a sweater collection with its own zip code. I’m pretty sure I could accomplish most of that with seven figures. That would be the responsible writerly thing to do.

    Irresponsibly, I would take my book characters on an all-expenses paid trip around the world and let them tell me their stories while I ride a smelly bus on a bumpy road into the mountain villages of Kenya…or slip my Columbian cab driver some money to take me to the Museo de Orro and pray that his .38 Beretta is enough protection for both of us…or sneak past the sexist guards to poke my own prayer into the cracks of the wailing wall…or pull my scarf around my face while I stand on the deck watching penguins play in the cold waters of the Antarctic…or lay on the sun-soaked beach in Phuket with my snorkeling gear while beads of ocean water evaporate off my darkened skin…

    Decisions, decisions.

  3. Andres Marin

    I would buy a subscription to Writer’s Digest in the case I don’t win one in this post…

    I would write full time, buy a big house, travel a lot and open an online school (I will do this one even if I don’t earn a dollar for my writing).

    Good luck to everyone!

  4. Virginia Wood

    I’d quit my job so I could write full time. And I’d use the money I didn’t need for day to day living expenses to fund my research. Specifically, I’d spend it locating, preserving, and uploading all the old Civil War diaries and letters and other artifacts I could dig out of attics in Virginia and North Carolina–which is where my book takes place. And if there was any money left over, I’d try to save some old farmhouses and outbuildings in my home county of Rockingham, NC, which is where the book begins and ends.

  5. CompLitGradLife

    I’d probably invest now while stocks are low and (with a portion of the money) start an endowment/program for literature graduate students to supplement funding/offset day-to-day expenses and provide additional advising/emotional/job-hunting support.

    Personal purchase? I’d probably buy a new ‘cello.

  6. happyhill

    I would not purchase anything; I would simply write. This kind of experience is an incredible artistic device that would yield a profound writing opportunity: the chance to give a fictional and non-fictional voice to a pivotal moment in the evolution of my life’s emotional and social structures. I’ve never experienced this type of defining moment—the abrupt severance from my current life and the nascent limitless possibilities of this new life direction caused solely by an increase in capital assets. I would now be different somehow because of a substantial increase in money and I would want to explore that. So the money would sit there as I contemplated its control. I would rejected it and hunger for it. I would watch how it transmuted my once single-paned relationships into multi-faceted prisms, revealing new character I had never seen before in the people around me: my family, my-coworkers, and new acquaintances. As a writer it would be my natural duty to give voice to all of it.

  7. brammgirl

    I have a huge family in a small house. We were displaced because of an electrical fire in our home and just ended up where we are because there was nowhere else to go, not a lot of options in this town. So, I would buy a home that was adequate on the inside and outside for my family. It would be in the same city and state that my parents and siblings live in so that we could be close to family. We really miss having family nearby and being able to celebrate holidays together. It’s really lonely in this small town in the middle of nowhere that we are trapped in right now. It would be nice to finally be settled and secure.

  8. Sapna

    Brian, if I bagged a 7-figure book deal, I’d throw loads of sizzling parties for single men so that I’d find someone as handsome as you. Once I find him, I’ll craft myself a sparkling diamond and amethyst ring. (Since, diamond is my birthstone and the violet amethyst, my favourite stone). I’d have a grand wedding and a theme party to follow at a Marriott Hotel. The theme will be actual ballroom dancing from the Victorian era, interspersed with modern dances from all over the world. (No, it’s not inspired by Harry Potter’s Yule ball). I will wear a Cinderella styled gown and he can wear whatever he wants- I’m very flexible. Outside the ballroom, under the stars, my hubby will go on his knees and slip the ring through my delicate fingers. He will kiss my moonlit hand and say that he loves me. And knowing that today’s men are a different breed from the Victorian gentlemen and that the aforementioned behaviour may cause them humiliation, I’ll reciprocate. I’ll give him a ring of his choice. We’ll have a perfect marriage where we’re always there for each other and yet give each other space. And that, no money can buy.

  9. shane

    First, I would pay for my mother’s cancer treatments. It is remarkable how expensive it is to undergo treatment even with insurance. Next, I would send a nice fat check to the college instructor that got me started in writing.

  10. Hitman4ever

    “Wait! Stop the car! No, really! Stop the car! Was that a castle off that road back there? Oh c’mon, have some fun! Let’s go down that dirt road. Quit whining, we can wash the car when we get back to town!” Watching the trees whip past a second time in reverse. “Sweet! Look! You can see it in the distance.” Several bumpy miles pass. “Check it out! That’s how I imagine it in my book! No, I’m not being sarcastic, that’s really how I picture it!! Let’s look inside. I’m sure those walls are sturdier than they seem.” Gazing in wonder. “Look at that! Someones kept up the gardens! What a wonderfully open room to admire them from! Those must be the training yards! Of course I know it. I told you it looks just like it does in my book. No, I haven’t been here before…maybe….maybe it’s magic! Stop laughing!” Stomping off in a huff. “I’m going to the throne room.” Unerringly finds the throne room. “Told ya so. All the bright colored tapestries on the walls…oohhhh…and the private meeting chamber door! It’s even there too!” Turning circles, staring with open mouth glee. “I want it. Now you stop laughing?? Yes, I’m serious. How am I going to pay for it? I just landed a seven figure book deal…that should at least be a down payment.” Watches with eyebrow raised. “Well, are you going to stop hyperventilating and take me to the bank or not?”

  11. NRTomasheski

    I’m pretty conservative. I’d sock a big piece of it away, catch up on bills, and feel some comfort for the short – no, medium! – term. But yes, I’d have a Big Celebration Night Out, too!! A bottle of Bushmills 116 and some sort of delicious meal.

  12. MarthaReynoldsWrites

    A seven-figure book deal is huge! It would mean buying health insurance, yes, but in order to keep being productive, I’d find a little place for writing – in the mountains, by a lake, just a spot where my creative energy could be unleashed. Nothing else material, but defintiely some peace of mind.

  13. novels2write

    What would I buy first if I landed a seven-figure book deal? I would buy an enormous team of scientists to find the cure for writer’s block. Once that was done, I’d make them keep working until they eliminated the use of the words “like” and “you know” in everyday speech. It’s, like, really annoying, you know?

  14. ctimoti

    The normal answer: I’d buy a big house with a room that I can use as my own office & library (and have wall-to-wall bookshelves), buy my husband a better car, help my brother pay off his house, and buy my mother a house of her own. I’ll take my family on a round-the-world trip, donate some money to charity. And of course the 7-figure book deal would give me the financial freedom so I can quit work and write full-time!! (although at this rate I’d probably spend all the money already)

    The creative answer: I love bags so I’m going to start my own brand of luxury leather handbags (watch out, Gucci and Louis Vuitton!) and sell them cheaply so everyone can afford it. Then I’ll also start my own airline with cheap tickets as well so everyone will have the chance to travel around the world!!

  15. Nathan Albro

    What would my first purchase be after signing a seven figure book deal? This is a ponderous question as the global economy is unstable and quivering like a lime flavored jello mold, U.S unemployment is nearing ten percent, and five days a week on my drive to work I see the same homeless man begging for food at the intersection. Recently I found out that I am going to be a father, so naturally I start to dream about how I could use the money to support my wife and child.

    With a faltering economy, unemployment, and homelessness on one side and my wife and unborn child on the other where does my money go? I will not neglect my family as my wife and child come first, but I think seven figures is a large enough that I can help out the local community as well. But, I haven’t answered the question. What would I buy first?

    I would take my wife out to a nice Italian restaurant and spend time with her and no one else. I would let the world fade away and focus on my beautiful bride. I would talk to her and listen intently. I would notice her dark flowing hair, her wondrous eyes, and soft pink lips. I would cherish her and show her that I love her.

    The world’s problems will be waiting but I can let them go for one meaningful evening.

  16. NitaFern

    The FIRST thing I would buy after signing my 7-figure book deal would be a Starbucks iced decaf Grande Cinnamon Dolce Latte! While I sipped away on that, I would consider what comes next…maybe an Americano for my husband. 😉

  17. TheSpiritGuide

    Well, after paying off bills and the mortgage, I’ve always wanted to do something really outrageous and fun for my kids and their friends, like surprise them with a Katy Perry concert for the school. Haven’t the slightest clue what that would cost, but their expressions would be priceless. Other than that, my sisters really want new boobs, I suppose I’d have to dish some out for that. lol 🙂

  18. vicki.orians

    If I’m being honest, the first thing I would do is buy a new house. My husband and I bought the one we’re in now and it ended up needing a LOT more work than anticipated. Then I would probably pay off our debt so that we could live comfortably while I write full time!

  19. LovesKangol

    I’d buy a bookcase. One of those fancy, modern ones; something you don’t find in everyone’s house. A bookcase with an eccentric design because I like things that stand out. Possibly a wall bookcase. I have no bookcase for my books. 🙁

  20. LeighDude

    The very first thing I would buy is my friend’s spinning wheel so she can complete her adoption application for her two newest children. I would then buy a whole mess of other things from her so she could perhaps speed up the process and be able to pay for the airfare to Africa. They have 3 natural birth children; one son and two daughters, and five adopted children; four boys and one girl, all from Africa! God has blessed them with a farm and much more patience than a person normally has. The two girls they’re waiting on are special needs children from Africa and they are so very excited. They’ve even redone their home so they’ll be able to have more room for the new children when they get to go get them.

  21. heavenlygurl

    Wow! Like the good girl that I am, I would take Dave Ramsey’s Financial Freedom course, so I”d be sure I’d have some left a year from now *gasp* LOL! Nah, I’d buy that black Bugatti they had on How Much is This! Come to Mama baby…!

  22. writeroseschroth

    My first buy?
    I would buy a copy of my book right off the shelves of a Barnes and Noble and a hammock. So I can rest in the hammock and read my book.

  23. rebelmommy91

    What would I buy? I would love to take the high road and say I would buy something meaningful or beneficial to the world. But I know me, and I would low-road it first. I would buy air time on TV. My own commercial: As it opened on a smiling picture of me, the screen would scroll the words: “For all those who doubted me: NEENER NEENER!! “

  24. KimSparks

    Landing a seven-figure book deal would be absolutely amazing! I would definitely pay off my house and travel to see my grand kids (which I have only seen once because they live out of state from me). But first and foremost, I would take my family on the BEST family vacation EVER because we’ve never been able to afford to do ANYTHING with one income. My husband is a wonderful provider and he works so very hard to take care of us. Jobs are hard to come by around here and he has never actually taken a vacation before because he always ends up working through his vacation just so we can have a little bit more money to try and stay on top of the ever growing stack of bills. I would definitely try and go back to school and stash away some money for my children and their college educations. And maybe, if I really worked hard, I could learn to write so well and get many book deals and my husband could quit his job so that we could all spend more quality time together! Thank you for asking! 🙂

  25. mizlydia

    I have it all planned out, and I know exactly how the money would be spent. But since you’re asking for something new I’d purchase, rather than old debts I’d repay – or charity plans, my response is that I would buy a motorhome and top-quality musical equipment so that I could take my music to every town in America. Not just any old mothorhome, either… I’d get the most luxurious and comfortable RV imaginable! (And brand-new, of course… with that kind of money, why settle for someone else’s secondhand stuff?)

  26. CajunLady05

    If my work sold 7 million I would use the money and rebuild every home I could that was destoryed by Hurricane Katrina. Now I am survivor of that storm as well. Then if there was anything left over I would set up a fund for those students that wanted to become writers in the future. Then I would stop long enough to go on a cruise only because I had never been on one. Then back to work I would set up a way to help the homeless in America. With day centers and free meals and clothes and other things they would need also put guide them into some education as well.

  27. RyanWrites

    I’d happily pay more in taxes. That’s what I’d do.

    Then I’d quit my day job and focus on the next book. Maybe I’d send my family on a vacation so I could concentrate.

  28. blkhrt911

    If I were to receive a 7 figure book deal there are many things i would purchase, that is after I stopped bouncing up and down and screaming! One thing that stands out that I know I would purchase is a piece of jewelry. Not obnoxiously huge, but something discreet that can be worn daily. After each of my degrees, I decided to purchase a piece of jewelry that I can wear daily to remind me that when I set my mind to a goal, I can and will accomplish it. When I am stressed out, self-doubting, or overwhelmed it is reassuring to look at those pieces of jewelry and remind myself that I can!

  29. Patty Newbold

    Such a big book deal would surely mean a lot of required travel. I would buy a small plane, maybe a used Cessna, to keep myself out of airport security lines. My private pilot husband would then be tickled right down to his toes to escort me on every trip, too. Now you’ve got me ready to race back to my writing, Brian!

  30. Fantasy

    Renovate the house to install a second bathroom, new kitchen, and a second floor so I can get my own office again. (the boyfriend has taken over mine.) Build up the garden.

    After that? Buy a Zeppelin and travel the world! Then write a book series on it!!

  31. ria1224

    I would buy myself the ability to write full time, and pay off my bills and my parents’ bills so we could all live worry free.

    Creatively, I’d buy a ridiculous amount of stationery and enough “forever” stamps to go with it so that I can continue indefinitely my desire to resurrect the lost art of letter writing one letter at a time. I write cards to people all the time, including complete strangers who have helped me in some way (eg, the barista at Starbucks, the girl behind the deli counter, the cashier at Noodles & Company, etc.). It’s amazing to be able to drop a gem into someone else’s day in the form of a letter. It becomes a permanent reminder for them which they can open again and again, something that tells them they matter and that their job is important. Try it sometime. The ripple effects will astound you.

  32. Shanna

    The first thing I would buy would be a new vehicle for my husband. He has supported me 100 percent in my endeavors, does household chores he loathes so I have more time to write, and is my number one cheerleader.

  33. brumbala

    This is so funny because I was just thinking about this question on my way to work today! Dreams, right? I wouldn’t buy anything extravagant but would use the money to write full-time and fund many future mission trips to Haiti and other countries.

  34. lawgrltoo

    I would buy every piece of True Blood merchandise available. A writer MUST have inspiration, maybe even some one-of-a-kind merchandise from Steven King. Scratch that, I would go visit Mr. King and try to “randomly” run into him at the grocery store. “Excuse me sir, can you sign my Eric Northman life-like bust for me?” Oh the crazy things people with money do!!!

  35. Morilinde

    I’d buy organic food for my kids, a greenhouse surrounding a hot springs in North Carolina for my husband, and Jiu Jitsu and Japanese lessons for the whole family. I’d buy my in-laws a pontoon. For my parents, I’d purchase a large house with a wrap-around porch and a ton of land. I’d buy my sister a horse, horse trailer, and a barn; my bro-in-law would get the world’s nicest keyboard. I’d finally be able to donate a lot of money to organizations that are meaningful to me. And at this rate, I’ve probably spent way more than seven figures. ;D

    For a creative answer, I’d buy all the aforementioned Harry Potter books in this world and make with them a nice large bonfire. And throw in a couple Twilight books as well (I had to go there). Granted, I would have to use any leftover money to invent something to prevent global warming, as that will be one big bonfire.

  36. dixichick

    What would I buy FIRST with a 7-figure book deal?? It’d be hard to tell, the money would be flying out of my account that fast 🙂 Seriously, though, my dream has always been to build libraries in the communities where I live, because reading is an integral part of my life and the earlier you get kids reading the sooner they develop a love of stories & imagination, a global perspective, and so on.

    That, and I would be able to read ALL those awesome books myself…

  37. cjhinesy

    First of all, I would buy a bigger house that has a room that I can turn into my very own office, with my own computer that I don’t have to share with anyone. Right now I balance my laptop on my lap (duh) to do my writing. Having my own spot would be heaven! Then I would give my son and daughter-in-law money to fix up their house so they can sell it and move into a bigger house. After that I would send them on the honeymoon they couldn’t take when they first got married and I would babysit for them while they’re gone.

  38. smartcall

    I would be able to get the procedure done for my son to have his Pancreas replaced. So he wouldn’t have to take so much insulin everyday. After that, whatever is left I would use to be able to write full time in comfort.

  39. SaVanna

    My boyfriend says that I’d buy him “the best [expletive deleted] computer on the planet.” But I would spend the money travelling the world in search of great food, interesting people, and beautiful places.

  40. wynand32

    Basically, I’d use the money to buy everything my family needs so that I could make book writing my living. I’m assuming this would be my first book after years of working full time in a day job while writing at night.


  41. jfied

    I would enjoy being comfortable financially. Pay off the house, and car, and credit cards. There is no big ticket item I’d want. I wouldn’t want a bigger house or to make my kids change schools. Oh, and being able to pay for their college education, not having to make them take out their own loans. Going shopping and not having to count out every dollar I’m spending would be reward enough for me. Plus I’d be so paranoid I wouldn’t succeed with 7 books no matter what they gave me outright I could never spend it frivolously.

  42. 1979jurado

    If I recieved a seven figure book deal, the first thing i would do is, put money aside for my kidney transplant. This way I would be prepared when they called me. God knows it takes money and planning for that day. I have to be able to pick up and go. Medical, travel, hotel costs, they are not cheap. Plus exspenses for the person that will be there for me during my time of recovery.


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