Often writers and bloggers have an abundance of ideas. They may hit a stumbling block to actually producing a book, however, when they think about writing and publishing a 150-250 page book. In fact, this stops many an aspiring writer in his or her tracks.
No worries. Instead, consider writing a short book – a booklet, tip book, small-sized short book or ebook. These can be anywhere from 16 to 100 pages in length. They are fast and much less intimidating to produce.
Here are five tips for getting started:
- Write a good outline or table of contents. This will help you get going.
- Have a model whose structure you can imitate. Looking at published short books, booklets, ebooks, and booklets will help you visualize what your book might look like and you can even copy the format to a great extent.
- Don’t edit while you create. You can do this later. Editing slows down your content production considerably. Just get the book written!
- Don’t be a perfectionist—have a version 1.0 attitude. These short books are cheaper to produce and often easier to revise. Don’t worry so much about small mistakes. Just get the book done!
- Have a deadline that forces you to complete the project. Deadlines work. Stick to yours.
Don’t write your magnum opus. Remember this is a short book you will write fast. The content should be great, but it doesn’t have to be your best work or your best content. You can save that for you full-length book – the one that will be over 150 pages in length. Therefore, when you write a short book fast, you will want to do the following things:
- Decide on a topic or idea that isn’t your “favorite” or the book “you’ve always wanted to write.” .
- Write something short and easy you know you can accomplish without much trouble (something less than 100 pages long).
- a tip book—10-56 tips, one per page—the fastest possible book
- a booklet—a short version of a longer book you plan to write, a short book on a topic related to a longer book you plan to write, or simply a short book.
- a “step” book—10-20 steps on how to do something
- a book of recycled previously-written work (blog posts, short articles, sample chapters, one chapter, ezine articles, recipes, etc.)
- something you want to test market in a short form
Here are three last tips:
- Don’t forget to have your manuscript edited. Just like any other book. If you want it to stand out from the pack and not appear self-published, be sure it holds up to traditionally published standards.
- Have your book proofread so it has few errors.
- Get a professional cover made for your books. A good cover still sells a book — even a short book.
That said, if your book is very short or is being produced as a booklet or tip book, you may be able to cut corners a bit. Covers on some of these books can be much simpler, for instance and not as flashy. I sold quite a number of saddle-stiched books with not-so-great covers over the years, and I’ve seen many pretty plain tip books that sell thousands per year. However, the more professional your book, the more sales you’ll get.
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