Deciding to Write a Book
You have thought about it and you have dreamt about it, but the task of writing a book may seem monumental - so monumental that you don't even know where to start. I know. I have been in that exact same spot, and with a lot of practice, I have learned to overcome the anxiety that goes along with deciding to write a book.
The trick I learned was to break down the task of writing a book into smaller bits. As I was reading books on setting and accomplishing goals, I decided to apply the same formulas to writing - break larger goals down into smaller, simpler goals that you can easily accomplish.
As you go through each step, each broken down goal, you will gain a tremendous sense of accomplishment. Writing a book is not difficult. It merely demands that you approach it step by step.
Step 1 - Decide What to Write
Writing non-fiction books is an exciting learning experience. There are endless things to write about, but you are going to choose just one topic. Decide what you want to write about and then check out the books that are already available on the topic. For example, let's say you love yoga. Research the books that are already available on the subject. There are a lot of basic yoga books already on the market.
What you want to do next is decide on an angle. How about a book on yoga for men or yoga for 10 minutes a day or for busy moms? Break down your main topic into something smaller and angle it towards a specific audience.
Step 2 - Plan It Out
After you have chosen your niche, you need to decide how you will organize your book. Will you cover:
- What is needed to start - supplies, equipment, space
- Why this topic is important - health, monetary, spiritual, etc.
- How to
- Which is best
Organizing your book and planning it out gives you the most basic of outlines to work with and will give you an idea on what to name your chapters.
Step 3 - Research
After you have planned out what you will be including in your book, it is time to do the research. I have found that by researching each section I come up with more chapters to add to my books. This is great because you are creating a full outline and fleshing out the sections of your book.
Your research is extremely important to the quality of your book. For many topics, I recommend using local libraries. College and university libraries are also immense sources of information that haven't been tapped. The reason why I recommend turning to books first is because you don't want to publish a book where all the information is already online for free. People keep rehashing the same information over and over again, and it is refreshing to learn something new that either comes from an untapped source or from personal experience.
Step 4 - Personal Experience
Your personal experience on the niche you are writing about is valuable information. After you have done the hard core research on your niche, continue to flesh out your outline by adding your own, and other people's, personal experiences. By the time you are finished, you will be ready to begin writing your book.
Step 5 - Begin Writing
You now have a fully working outline of your book. The next part is to write each chapter using your outline as a guide. I find this to be the easiest part of writing a book. With everything in front of me, I just need to string my notes, ideas, and personal experiences into sentences and paragraphs. For this part, break the task down into chapters. Plan on writing out one chapter a day or a week, depending on your schedule. Do not do edits. Just write.
Step 6 - Rewrites and Edits
After you have completed writing the chapters of your book, it is time to head back to the beginning and reread it. Make changes and edits as you go. Flesh out more ideas and make sure everything is fully explained.
Most of us also need the help of an experienced editor. After you have gone through your book, consider hiring an editor to fix mistakes you may have made and to help you catch any half formed ideas that need to be edited.
Publishing on Kindle
There are many places to publish your books thanks to the internet. My experience has been only with Kindle Direct Publishing. I have also heard good things about other platforms, but I have not yet tried them out.
I find that Kindle is a very easy place to publish my books. I now write under 4 different names because I enjoy writing about a wide variety of topics. The process of publishing with Kindle did look daunting at first. However, by the time I published my second book with them, the process became easy. For me, the most difficult part has been making the book covers. Many writers are turning to Fiverr.com to get their covers made and many are getting good results with this process. I have not done this yet, but I plan to after researching a few of the popular cover illustrators.