Today’s guest post is written by book and blog coach Judy Cullins,
author of Write your eBook or Other Short Book–Fast!
You want to make a difference in people’s lives, you are researching a topic and becoming an expert. You want to give your audience answers to their questions on your topic. You want to attract new clients, brand yourself or business, or maybe you want to write a novel to educate and entertain.
You resist! You have doubts. It takes too long. You are too busy. These are reasons, but they aren’t real; they are myths. You can write a profitable book – even a lot of books – fast!
Replace These Five Myths with Options
Myth 1. Takes too much time.
It does take time, but you can shorten that time by focusing on one topic or one book at a time. Ask questions your readers want answered. Then answer them. This part is your chapter middle. When you strategize, you stay on track, and you can write chapters fast that your audience will love.
When you keep your book length under 100 pages, you can write it in less than a month. That’s why you need to do some market-driven pre-planning before you write your book. Why overwrite for a general audience who won’t feel special?
Know your audience before you write rather than look for one after it’s done. Fulfill your book audience needs. Avoid the general or broad audience. Slant your book toward one primary audience. They are looking for your book to answer their challenges or get particular information.
Myth 2. Takes talent and writing ability.
Actually, the less school writing advice you take, the better. Oh, those lame theses for advanced degrees! I just hope no one will find mine! The pedantic doesn’t cut it in books written to be commercially successful. Lecturing and telling is out; showing and dialogue is in. Organic writing is best. In your own voice answer your audience’s concerns and problems. These tips all point to finding your unique voice.
If you can talk, you can write. Readers want books written by a wise and savvy friend who will guide them gracefully to solutions for their challenges. They want conversational and natural writing more than perfect syntax. Remember to include dialogue in your case studies and stories that illustrate your points.
Make your sentences and paragraphs short and be sure to use headings throughout your non-fiction book chapters to keep your readers happy and secure. If you hand hold a little, your readers will so appreciate you.
Myth 3. You must do it alone.
Just the opposite! In my early beginnings I felt I was only a trainer, a teacher, a coach. Not a writer! How would I advance my how-to skills into books my primary audience would buy? Just as I thought that, I also heard this great mantra, “When the Student is Ready, the Teacher Will Appear!”
Since I needed to up-level my writing and book business skills, I studied with some of the great gurus, like Dan Poynter. He and I developed a nice friendship. In a San Diego writing and publishing organization, I volunteered to contact and book speakers like Dan and John Kremer. Positioning yourself can lead to profitable joint ventures.
You’ll want be sure to give to your influential contacts first, such as writing tips for their news letters or articles for their blogs. What comes back to you is their endorsements as a savvy author in your field.
You can join a feedback group of writers in your town. Leading one for 10 years helped me write several new books and from the group emerged 25 published books. Without feedback, your book may die an early death. You can also join many influential consultants, and entrepreneurs on LinkedIn in the different book writing, publishing, and marketing groups. They are free and you can interact with the professionals as well as ask questions to discuss with all the members. Now that’s synergy! Over Facebook, LinkedIn groups are the most interactive and really help their members.
You’ve heard of “see a need and fill it,” haven’t you? Build your book on where your audience is now – their wants, their challenges, their needs. Ask them questions to help you write chapters they will love!
Meet your audience on LinkedIn and Facebook. They may be in groups that you can join, and interact with them.
Myth 4. Takes an agent and traditional publisher.
Do you dream of being onstage and interviewed by a famous talk show host? Do you dream that your publisher made your famous?
Time for a Reality Check! Traditional publishers don’t help the emerging author much. They turn down 99% of you. If you do get their blessing, they will not spend much time and money on your marketing because they spend it on tried and true deals with movie stars and big names.
When you realize publishing takes two years or more, it’s time to become an independent publisher. For cash flow and profits, DIAL DIRECT. Go directly to your audience – get a web site and market your book with social media, content marketing, ezines, articles, and blogs that show your audience what you can do for them and bring them to your site where you sell yourself and services.
Once your audience gets to know you, like you, and trust you, they will help build your profits. Start your self-publishing adventure with step on – write a short ebook to publish on Kindle and in Portable Document Format (PDF). Test your ebook’s success at a very low cost, and if it is, go on to step two – write the print version.
Yes, repurpose. Add more profitable content in seminars, eCourses, and speaking if you like. These lead to lifelong business success!
Myth 4. Takes creativity.
Writing a book takes passion and persistence more than creativity. Creative writing is great, but only a part of what you do for a successful book. Check out books that help emerging authors to put a chapter together with a blueprint and structure. Find out the business side of your book before you write it. Be strategic and know ahead these pre-marketing strategies: best audience, top benefits to this audience, fabulous title that your audience can Google and find easily, “tell and sell” sound bites for your in person appearances, and getting top recommendations from your audience – to name a few.
Keep it simple! Self publishing pro Dan Poynter told me over 13 years ago that information can be repackaged for any particular target audience. It doesn’t take creativity, it just takes some editing, rewriting, adding a few stories, new ideas, and resources. Then, you put it together in an organized, short, and simple format to please the consumer who wants short, easy to read information. Remember that you too want to get information easily and fast. We don’t want to spend too much time reading unless it’s a novel.
Myth 5. The book won’t sell.
The biggest problem writers have is that they believe their book isn’t good enough to sell! That’s FEAR = FALSE EVIDENCE APPEARING REAL. Choose this belief and your book will stall, even fail. Instead, you can join professional book groups at LinkedIn or Facebook. You’ll learn tips from pros and others. The synergy really multiplies your chances for success. You get support from others in these groups just like you.
From what I learned in Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way” is, that taking action usually dissolves the fear. So just keep writing, ask questions of coaches and book group leaders, and put your work out. We all make mistakes. They don’t kill us; they show we took action; they make us stronger. If your book shares new, unique, and useful information, it has enough significance to sell well.
Two Action Steps to Make your Book Sell Well
Action1. Write an audience profile before you write your book, so your book has an angle, and will stand out from the crowd. Include details such as what groups your audience will participate in and what they usually read.
Action 2. Write a “Dear primary audience…” letter saying why you wrote this book and what benefits your primary audience will get from it. You can use the benefits in your short book introduction and these help you write your book’s sales letter to go on your website. Using the same list of benefits in the book’s intro, your sales letter, and future promotional emails saves you a lot of time.
Ray Bradbury wrote “Fahrenheit 451″ in just nine and a half days. He advises us to write short articles or stories. They can become a longer book. He says and if you write a page a day, you’ll produce a book a year. When he lived, there wasn’t article marketing, social media, or blogging. Now you can write informational blogs and turn them into a short free book. You can write three or more books a year then.
Think of the benefits in writing a book! Your book helps your readers, yes. It also brings you fame and fortune. People look to you for your savvy knowledge. Being an author gives status too, often like a movie star’s. Even if you don’t become famous, you’ll love the monthly profits you make from book and related sales. Even if you don’t like to market you can do it online easily in your home based office by writing short articles like this one.
What keeps you from finishing your book project? Please share it here with others and win support for your book. What else do you worry about that relates to your book? Inquiring minds want to nose! So leave your comments, or I’ll cry.
About the Author
Book and Blog Coach Judy Cullins helps you gain confidence and transform your ideas into life-long money-making content. Author of 14 books for business people and authors include “Write your eBook or Other Short Book–Fast!” Judy offers free, up-to-the minute weekly publications on book and blog writing and online marketing at http://www.bookcoaching.com/help-writing-a-book.php.
Photo courtesy of Victor-Habbick