Today I received a call from a writer looking for help writing a book. Although our conversation started out as a discussion of the details of an upcoming Dan Poynter workshop my writing club is hosting, it quickly turned into a laser coaching session about how she should write and market her book.
This particular writer is not a native English speaker. She was grappling with whether or not to write her book in English and translate it into her native language–Chinese–or to write it in Chinese and then translate it into English. Additionally, she felt that her primary audience consisted of Chinese speaking people. She not only wanted to have these people purchase her book once written, she wanted to market coaching and workshops to this same group of people. However, she hoped to have a broader market for her book, which fell into the motivational subject area.
Therefore, it seemed clear to me that she should write her book in her native language and market it first to her primary audience. In this way she can create a niche for her book and her business.
This way of writing her book felt easier to her than doing so in English, especially since she felt uncertain of how to even write a book and start her coaching and workshop business. Once she achieved some success with the book and some acceptance for her speaking, coaching and teaching, she I suggested she then have the book translated into English, edited, and published in English. At that point she could even look for a publisher if her book had achieved a good sales record and she had developed a strong platform.
I’d recommend this to anyone who came to me with the same scenario. If they had a market that encompassed English speakers as well and planned on approaching a broader group of people for coaching, speaking and workshops, then I’d suggest writing the book in the native language and translating it to English at the same time so the author could promote the book and business to as many people as possible.
The other issue for this particular writer, however, revolved around subject matter. Many books have been published in English on her topic. That may not be the case in Chinese. I suggested she do her homework and research competing books and then hone her subject to fit a hole in the market. This would give her and her book a better chance of success.
And she received all that information in just 15 minutes!
If you are interested in laser coaching, please contact me. It’s a great way to get your publishing and writing questions and concerns addressed quickly and inexpensively each week.