How To Write Your Book – Most authors can figure out (without help) that they need to write a bestselling book to become a bestselling author.
What does it really take to write a bestseller?
Some authors think it’s about art, inspiration, and authenticity. Others believe you need a business mind to analyze trends, patterns, and hot topics. While others believe it has nothing to do with books at all, and everything to do with connections or luck.
Here’s my take on it (based on my experience working with bestselling authors both as a literary agent and as a Marketing & Licensing Manager for a well-known publisher).
There are hundreds of ways to write a bestseller.
But there’s only one way for you.
My job as a Bestselling Author Coach™
is to help you figure it out.
This article is part 3 of 6-part series about
How to Become a Bestselling Author.
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How to Write Your Book – 5 Questions
Of course I’d have to spend a day or two with you to do that well (or, at the very least, an hour on the phone or Skype), but here are a few questions to help you get started.
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How to Write your Book – Question #1 What are you most qualified to write?
I can’t tell you how many authors I’ve spoken with who are extremely knowledgeable in one or more areas, but want to write about something else entirely. Sometimes this is understandable, but other times it makes no sense at all. Take an honest look at who you are and who you’re trying to be as an author. Are those two personas in alignment? Or is there a conflict?
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How to Write your Book – Question #2 What are you best at as a writer?
Are you a natural researcher? Journalist? Teacher? Storyteller? Philosopher? Evangelist? Entertainer? Comedian? Every writer is born with his or her unique author DNA. Your brain operates differently. The way you process information, organize it, and share it with others. The more aware of this you become, the easier it will be for you to find your flow as a writer. And find a following.
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How to Write your Book – Question #3 What do you enjoy most as a writer?
Simply put, writing is hard as hell so you better find a way to write something you enjoy… and do so in a style that you enjoy. Usually, if you’ve done your homework with the previous two questions, this is a lot easier. Just remember, even if you’re writing about something you love (and you’re doing so in a style that’s appealing to you), it’s still going to be a grind sometimes. If you’re not writing about something you love (in a style that’s appealing to you), it’s always going to be a grind. Oh yeah, one more thing. Don’t forget that you’re going to be promoting this book of yours for several weeks, months, or years. Or the rest of your life. It better be something you’re passionate about!
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How to Write your Book – Question #4 What do you want people to think (and feel) when they read your book(s)?
This question often gets a big reaction from writers. That’s because they haven’t though about it nearly enough. Especially when I ask them what they want the reader to think and feel about them. Not just their book. But readers are real people with brains and hearts. They have emotions and agendas. They’re going to think and feel something. The more aware you are of what you want that to be, the more likely you are to create that outcome.
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How to Write your Book – Question #5 What do you want people to do when they finish reading your book(s)?
Most authors will say they want their readers to rush to buy their next book (or ask about it). Good answer. But that’s not what I mean. As a bestselling author you’ll have tremendous power. Readers will give you more trust and respect than you deserve. I know because authors used to do it to me all the time as a literary agent. I even had one woman faint when she met me during a writers’ conference after I gave a presentation. If you’re writing a book about global warming, you might want readers to use less energy. If you’re writing romance novels, you might want to spice up your readers’ sex life. And, if you’re writing a memoir about your abusive childhood, you might want to help your readers heal their own troubled past.
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Okay, now that I helped you figure out how to write your book, let’s talk about the decisions you’ll need to make when it’s time to publish your book.