Why you should hire a writing coach

What is a writing coach? (14 reasons why you should hire one)

Writing a book is an investment. A lot of time, money, and effort need to be spent to finish a manuscript and get it published. When it comes to making decisions and planning a writing roadmap, how can authors new to writing ensure their success? This is where writing coaches come into play.  A writing coach is a professional who can assist in the overall book writing process. For a newcomer in the publishing world, there are a lot of uncharted territories that need to be explored and for this reason, it is advantageous to hire a writing coach.

What are the roles of a writing coach?

To better understand the reasons for hiring a writing coach, it is best to learn what roles they would take in helping you get through the writing process.  

Understand why you are writing a book

You have a book idea, and you decided to write it. That is a good starting point for any author. At the same time, one question most new writers forget to ask themselves is why they want to write a book in the first place. We make decisions based on our goals.  Without clear goals, it is difficult to make informed decisions. This is why you should understand why you want to write a book in the first place. 

Identify your target audience

Knowing what you want to write about is one thing. Knowing who you are writing for is another. A book is a product. Just like every product, it should have its target market. Your target market, your book’s audience, is the group of people who you intend to help or entertain with your book. This is the group that will most likely follow your book’s call to action. A writing coach has extensive knowledge of various types of audiences and can help you identify who you should write for based on your goals and your reasons for writing.

Achieve the right mindset

Writing is much more complicated than sitting down and typing what is on your mind. You may have a lot of ideas brewing in your mind, and rich experiences that you want to share, but putting them down on paper is not always that simple. Writers, from newbies to seasoned ones, at times get stuck staring at a blank piece of paper. There are times when the situation spirals down to writer’s block, where writers run out of things to say, feel insecure about their writing, get uncomfortable with their writing voice, feel fatigued with the process, and even lack the motivation to write. A writing coach can help you get back on track and overcome fears blocking your way. A good writing coach can help the writers feel motivated, confident, and self-assured by enabling them to achieve the right mindset.

Set realistic daily or weekly writing goals

It is really easy to set ideal writing goals. Especially for business leaders who are driven and results-oriented, we always aim for high productivity and efficiency. This is a common pitfall to leaders who want to write. While you know for a fact that you can write 1000 words in one sitting, and your schedule would permit you to have 3 writing sessions a week, it does not necessarily mean you should set your weekly writing goal to 3000 words. There are a lot of factors to consider because writing is not simply writing words. While 3000 words may be the ideal weekly target, is it a realistic one? What factors should be considered when setting goals? What obstacles can hinder the consistency of achieving the ideal word count? Writing coaches have worked with different types of writers who have careers and companies to juggle. A realistic goal could mean a lower target word count. However, in the long run, it could help you finish at an earlier time.

How much does a writing coach charge?

Now that we know what the roles are of a writing coach, you are probably thinking how much a good writing coach would cost. Online research will give an idea of typical writing coach rates. At the same time, every coach is different and prices vary depending on their experience, the knowledge they can impart, their authority and credibility, and the services they provide. 

Usually, writing coaches charge billable hours and can cost around $50 to $300 per hour. The cost will not just depend on what the writing coach can provide, but on what you need as well.

It would be best to look for writing coaches who offer a free consultation to determine if they are a good fit for the writer.

What do I need to look for in a writing coach?

Each writer is unique, and the same can be said for writing coaches. No writing coach bears the title of the best of them all because they offer varying methods, specializations, and techniques. Instead of looking for the “best” writing coach, look for one who is a good fit for your needs.

Someone who has an established reputation

Coaching is a paid service. And hiring a writing coach is an investment. It would be best to look for reputable coaches who have the credibility and authority in their field of expertise. While browsing online, check reviews and see what previous clients say. Join writer forums and post questions about writing coaches and see who fellow writers recommend. Check out who among the authors in your genre worked with a writing coach and get their names. To be successful at writing, you need to hire a writing coach who has proven methods and has helped writers achieve their goals. 

Can help you write more honestly and authentically

Hire a writing coach who will allow you to feel safe about being honest. The best way to write is to write honestly and authentically. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be able to write in your voice. Think of it this way, in a normal conversation, can you speak truthfully if you have a lot of reservations? Chances are, even your tone of voice and word choice will be different.

Has coaching style that works for you

Writers have different personalities, communication styles, and motivating factors. Some writing coaches use one or several of various recognized coaching styles. However, some use their own approach or model. It is worth noting that most successful coaches recognize the need for tailor-fitting their style to their clients.

Different people respond to different coaching styles. A coaching style that works for you will help impact your writing positively, and help maximize your writing potential. Before scheduling a free consultation, prepare a list of questions to help you understand the approach of the writing coach. Ask about potential challenges that you will be facing, your fears about writing, what aspect of writing you feel uncomfortable with, what you find difficult in the writing process, and take note of how the writing coach would address your questions. Ultimately, hire a writing coach that you find easy to communicate with and who makes you feel at ease with sharing your thoughts.

Can help you feel excited about your book

It is exciting to become an author! Launching a book, getting it out there, earning the title of an author – not everyone can achieve such feats. It is wonderful to enter a room with a crowd of readers waiting for the person who wrote the words that changed their lives. But sometimes, the journey to getting published can make authors feel overwhelmed. The excitement wanes and is replaced by fears and insecurities. Hire a writing coach who can help you set your eyes on the prize and keep you feeling excited and positive about the writing process.

14 Reasons why you should hire a writing coach

Writing coaches are invaluable partners not just for writers at the onset of their careers, but even for seasoned authors as well. If you are aiming for success, you need a partner that can elevate your writing skills. Writing should be an enjoyable process but oftentimes the learning curve becomes the biggest barrier to new writers. Because of this, many aspiring writers gave up on their dream. Should you hire a writing coach? Here are 14 good reasons why.

1. Clarify your writing goals

There are business leaders and entrepreneurs who want to publish a book because they want a legacy piece. Some aim to establish their authority and credibility in their field. Others intend to use the book to generate more business for their organization. And some target speaking engagements. Why are you writing a book? What do you want to happen after writing your book? What do you want your readers to do after they read your book? Hiring a writing coach can help you set your writing goals. What is the purpose of writing in the first place if the writer has no goals?

2. Learn more effectively through one-on-one sessions

A lot of writing classes are available online. Aspiring authors can take these classes to learn more about the basics of writing. Some classes even help address writer’s block. Writers can also learn different writing styles and techniques by attending workshops. However, there is no denying that the best, and fastest way to learn is going through dedicated one-on-one sessions with an expert. Hiring a writing coach can help shorten your learning curve and address your personal writing needs that online classes cannot provide.

3. Create and implement a realistic development plan

A realistic and solid writing development plan is the blueprint for a successful book. Writing without a plan is journeying without a map. You can still reach your destination without a map, but it might take you more than twice the time if you have one. Hiring a writing coach will not just inspire, excite, and motivate you to write. While a simple writing plan includes writing session schedules, due dates, deliverables, a writing coach will help create a plan that encompasses how schedules and deliverables can be met on time, and with utmost quality. If the goal is to write 2000 words per session, a development plan will include how the writer can realistically reach 2000 words. If there are 3 sessions scheduled per week, a development plan should indicate when and where each session should take place, and how each session can be done without delay.

4. Brings accountability to your book development plan 

Any writer can draft a book development plan. However, executing that plan, being diligent in finishing the weekly goals, and having the discipline to follow due dates are all easier said than done. Having someone who will monitor your progress, keep you disciplined in following the schedule, and hold you accountable for your deliverables will ensure that your manuscript gets finished and target dates do not get pushed back. There are no arbitrary deadlines when it comes to writing coaches.

5. Manage your time more effectively

It is easy to fall off-track on your schedule. While writing a book is a priority, business leaders and entrepreneurs have a lot of other important things to prioritize. Aside from helping writers create a successful book development plan, writing coaches help in managing time more effectively. If a writer has allotted 10 hours a week for writing, how should those 10 hours be spent? Hiring a writing coach will help writers determine how much time should be spent in research, writing exercises, one-on-one sessions, and the actual writing? 

7. Identify challenges to your book’s success

A writer’s main task is to write. Getting immersed in the writing process takes a lot of time and oftentimes, reflecting on challenges takes a backseat. The danger here is that obstacles do not get addressed properly like poor writing quality, moving deadlines, writer’s block, disorganized ideas, and many more which can lead to mediocre writing and an even more mediocre book. A writing coach has a view from the outside that writers do not have and can help identify what the writer needs to address to finish the book seamlessly. Let’s face it, sometimes, we do not know that we need help. We oftentimes do not know that there are problems up ahead and only take notice when it’s already there. Do you know when writer’s block is on the horizon? Have you gotten the perspective of your potential readers?

8. Avoid getting burnt out

Writing can be both enjoyable and tasking. While there are times when writers are in the “zone” and words keep flowing out endlessly, there are also times when writers write for the sake of following the writing schedule. This is when writing becomes a task and the tedium of following the schedule can become exhausting. The mind gets saturated, the body gets tired. Suddenly, the excitement is gone and is replaced with weariness and fatigue. Prevention is better than cure and a writing coach can prevent writers from getting burnt out. As discussed earlier, writing coaches help writers keep a positive mindset. 

9. Overcome writer’s block

Writer’s block is every writer’s nightmare. It can impede writing for days, weeks, or even months. Even seasoned writers get afflicted with it at times. In 1981, Michael V. Barrios and Jerome L. Singer published a study on what causes creative blocks and how to treat them. According to the study, the four main causes of writer’s block are:

  • Excessively harsh self-criticism
  • The anxiety of comparison to other writers
  • Lack of external motivation such as positive attention and praise
  • Lack of internal motivation such as the desire to share a story

Their study, The Treatment of Creative Blocks: A Comparison of Waking Imagery, Hypnotic Dream, and Rational Discussion Techniques, identifies these causes and provides ways on how to overcome and even prevent them from happening. While reading their published work may help, hiring a writing coach is a more efficient and effective way of dealing with the problem. Writing coaches who have dealt with the condition can provide interventions that have been proven and tested with other writers.

10. Assess your drafts and manuscript

Self-editing is good practice. However, you are so used to your writing style that it is difficult to have an unbiased opinion about your work. Writers tend to either be too lenient or too harsh in criticizing their work. Self-editing your work for spelling mistakes, vague sentences, and grammar errors may seem a pretty straightforward task, but it is easy to overlook errors because the brain automatically fills the gaps of what the writer is trying to say. 

There are sites like creativenonfiction.org where writers can submit and get feedback on their work. The site also provides writing coach services.

A writing coach can give insights when the draft does not clearly express what the writer is trying to say. Authors need honest, unbiased feedback with a healthy dose of constructive criticism. Most coaches provide page-by-page comments on the manuscript which helps the writer learn better ways of expressing their thoughts.

11. Create and submit convincing book proposals

A nonfiction book proposal is aimed to convince publishing companies to subsidize and publish a book. An effective book proposal presents a summary of the book idea, some sample chapters on the topic of the book, and a marketing plan for the book. Some writers, no matter how good they are at writing, are not well-equipped in selling themselves, nor are skilled in crafting marketing plans for books. 

If you are planning to self-publish your book, you may still need to write a book proposal for independent bookstores if you are aiming to get help with distribution. On the other hand, if you are not looking for traditional publishing, but want a professional way of getting your book distributed and marketed, Leaders Press provides hybrid publishing services that can help get your book published and launched into a best-selling book

Some writing coaches include book proposals in their list services. It would be wise to consider a writing coach that can help you draft your writing proposal especially if you are aiming to get published traditionally. 

12. Maximize your author platform

A writer’s platform is the combination of a writer’s social media and online reach, relationship with media outlets, connections with published authors, and network of publishing influencers. The strength of a writer’s platform depends on the writer’s ability to influence readers to buy and read their book. For nonfiction writers, the strength of the platform plays a critical role in getting a book deal with a traditional publishing house because it is an indicator of their book’s potential in becoming a best-seller. Although not all writing coaches provide writer’s platform-building services, hiring one who can adds a lot of value.

13. Learn the ins and outs of the publishing community

Successful business leaders and entrepreneurs are experts in their industries. But the publishing world is a different arena and learning the ins and outs of the community may not be as straightforward as it seems. A writing coach is like a sports agent or who is in the know of the culture, the influencers, decision-makers, and certain circles within the publishing community. While writers can learn this on their own, it is best to have someone who has extensive experience in publishing. 

14. Finish what you started and succeed in your goal

Starting a book can be easier than finishing it. It is a long and tedious process and many writers have ended up putting a stop to their project because of all the obstacles and drawbacks they experienced. Hiring a writing coach can help clear the path to an enjoyable writing experience and most importantly a successful book launch. 

Should I hire a writing coach?

A writing coach is an invaluable partner in the book creation process. As mentioned in this article, a book is an investment and for an investment to succeed, the investor should make sound decisions and execute careful planning. Based on the reasons stated above, a writing coach will not just help you write your book but make it successful as well. At the same time, a writing coach is an additional investment. There are other ways of getting your book published and knowing your options first is the best way to start.

a photo of a happy woman who just learned how to publish a book

How to Get a Book Published: 20 Ways(#6 Will Shock You)

A lot of business leaders and entrepreneurs have brilliant stories that deserve to get published in a book. Startup businesses, up-and-coming entrepreneurs, striving leaders want to learn the secret to success and a lot of these people turn to business books to unlock the secrets to success.

After deciding to write a book, aspiring authors usually ponder whether to self-publish or aim to get published traditionally. The thing is, there are more than two options.


What’s the difference between self-publishing and traditional publishing?

Traditional book publishing

In traditional publishing, a book gets published by an established publishing company. All an author needs to worry about is finishing the manuscript. Once submitted, a team from the publishing company will take care of the editing, book cover design, layout, sales, marketing, and promotion.

Authors who secure a deal with a publishing company usually get a book advance or an advance against royalties. This could either be a percentage of the projected book sales, or an advance on expected royalties. This is an excellent way to kick things off, especially for authors who are yet to finish their manuscripts.

How can a business leader like you get a book published with a traditional publishing company?

Manuscript/book idea submission

This is a tedious process and requires a lot of effort. An author needs to get in touch with different publishing companies in the hopes of submitting a book pitch. Publishers get tons of book pitches daily, which is why a book pitch or query letter should stand out from the rest.

Work with a literary agent

A literary agent represents the business interests of authors. In the most basic sense, they act as the middleman between authors and publishing houses to get the writer’s book published. Moreover, literary agents can also help writers get deals with movie producers or theatrical producers

Enter a contest

Instead of actively looking for a literary agent or publishing house, another strategy is to get noticed by these people by joining writing contests. Agents and publishers are always on the lookout for the next best-selling book and one of the best ways to get noticed is by participating in these contests. 

Smaller publishers

Utilizing the services of a small publisher is an efficient way to get a book published. However, most of these publishing houses do not have the financial capability to provide book advances. Their objective is to publish potential best-selling books and grow their brand to get more business. It could be a win-win for a new author and the publisher, but at the same time, due to financial limitations, these publishers may not have the capacity to market the book successfully.

Self-publishing

Self-publishing, plainly put, is getting a book published without the involvement of an established publishing company. The author is responsible for the overall book creation process, from writing the book, having it edited, designing the book cover, having the pages laid out and formatted, publishing via online platforms, and marketing the book. 

There are two options to get a book printed and published. The author can work with a printing company or use a print-on-demand service

Working with a printing company gives the author a lot of freedom and control. As this is self-financed, the authors can choose the materials used and print quality based on their designated budget. Also, this could be a profitable venture as the author has full ownership of the book, hence, the full net profit from the published book.

This is a high-risk, high-reward venture and requires the author a huge upfront investment. While there are book stores that cater to self-published authors, it would require a lot of marketing to reach a buying audience. If the author chooses to put up a storefront, all the legwork such as packing and posting the book will have to be done in-house.

Print-on-demand services like Kindle Direct Publishing are low-risk and more budget-friendly options. Individual copies of the book are printed and shipped per order. All the legwork of printing, packing, and posting is done for the author. However, getting a book published this way has downsides in terms of profit margin and consistency of the book quality. 

Self-publishing does not mean an author has to cover the whole book creation process to get a book published. Services can be outsourced to minimize the workload:

Ghostwriting services

It is natural for most business leaders to have book-worthy ideas. The extent of experience and list of achievements acquired through the years make a recipe for a best-selling book. But having prowess in the boardroom does not usually equate to prowess in writing. Not all successful people are gifted to write. 

To get a book self-published, hiring a ghostwriter can be extremely helpful. There are a lot of freelance ghostwriters advertising their services on online platforms like Fiverr. There are also self-publishing companies and hybrid publishers that provide ghostwriting and publishing services. 

Getting a book written by a freelancer is more economical than contracting a self-publishing company. However, there are risks associated with quality, turnaround time, and security. Self-publishing and hybrid-publishing companies are more expensive, but authors are protected by signed contracts. Furthermore, these companies have established processes that guarantee quality and efficiency.

Book editing

A professional book editor can help identify what a manuscript is missing, what should be taken out of the manuscript, how to tie everything, and what needs to be re-done in the text to get the best possible version of the book.

While authors can self-edit, it is good practice to have another set of eyes, preferably from professionals, who specialize in editing. After having written fifty to sixty thousand words, by the time you are done, you are so immersed with your writing style it becomes difficult to identify mistakes and rewrite phrases to make them look better.

Also, while there are tools like Grammarly to help correct spelling mistakes and grammatical errors, there are times when corrections are too mechanical that the message the text is trying to convey might get lost due to the changes. Situations like these call for human judgment and intellect to write comprehensible iterations of the text.

Layout design

Typesetting or book layout design is the process of formatting the text onto the pages of the book to make it print-ready. Best-selling books have one thing in common aside from having amazing content – they all provide an amazing reading experience. 

Reader experience does not just rely on what’s written, but how the text is presented – fonts, spacing, chapter heading style, margins, side-boxes, footnotes, etc. While these things do not matter much on ebooks, there is still a huge market out there for a physical book reading audience.  

It would be best to leave it to the professionals if you are planning to publish a book with printed copies. 

Book cover design

Self-published authors need all the help they can get to drive sales. Authors, ideally, should give their undivided attention to writing. Some aspects like book cover design are best left to experts. Not everyone is trained in creating designs that attract readers and drive sales. Would you want to spend countless hours researching trends, design do’s and don’ts, and design fundamentals? Or would you prefer focusing on your content while a seasoned pro takes care of creating a book cover that will appeal to your target audience?

Professional book cover designers can translate your message into a book cover design that can captivate your audience. Whether on shelves or online, an eye-catching cover design will turn heads and grab attention.

How to get a book published

1. Ask yourself why you want to publish a book

Before beginning the long and tedious process of writing a book and getting it published, first, ask yourself why. What is the purpose of your book? What action do you want your readers to take after reading your book? And how would this action from your readers add value to your life, your career, and/or your business?

2. Spend time and money on your book

May it be self-publishing or hybrid publishing, getting a book published requires time and money. The only difference with traditional publishing is the money comes from the publishing house.

Self-publishing requires the author to finance the whole process and cover a lot of legwork. However, compared to hybrid publishing, the investment is not as much.  Hybrid publishing is more expensive but it takes a lot of load off the shoulders of the author in terms of legwork. Either way, publishing a book requires an investment of time and money.

3. Immerse yourself in the publishing world

Getting a book published is one thing, but what comes after? To reach your goal, may it be to expand your business, get speaking engagements, earn royalties from book sales, or improve your brand value, you need to immerse yourself and become a part of the publishing community. Be in the know of the successful authors in your genre, publishing companies that specialize in your niche, which podcasts invite guests, which conventions you can join to further your network, and the key people that can help you reach your targets.

4. Do your research and know everything you can about the publishing process

The a to z of getting a book published differs between traditional publishers, hybrid publishers, or if an author were to self-publish. Business leaders have tight schedules and are usually juggling tasks. Engaging in publishing will take time, and will be one of those items that need to be juggled.

5. Determine your book’s audience and genre

There are many genres and subgenres in the non-fiction category. Each genre has its audience with distinct behaviors, preferences, and expectations. Not everyone considers the audience in mind while writing. While it is not a necessity to do this, at the end of the day, it is important to think about who will be picking up the book and reading it. 

Is the book meant for a general audience looking to improve their career? Or Is it for professionals in your industry? Does is cater to c-level business leaders? After identifying the audience, what value should they get from the book? Which aspect of their life is the book meant to improve? These questions will help you determine which genre to target and which audience you will be writing for. If done properly, it will be a lot easier to run marketing campaigns.

6. Get it done for you

Back in the day, to get a book published, writers needed to get noticed by publishing companies to get publishing deals. Then came self-publishing, which is perfect for authors who can finance their venture and for those who want more control over the overall book creation and marketing process.  And that was it, black and white. Two opposite ends of the spectrum, until hybrid publishing came into play.

Hybrid publishing is an umbrella term used for indie publishing, author-assisted publishing, co-publishing, etc. It has common ground with traditional publishing as well as self-publishing. It can be said that hybrid publishing is the middle ground between traditional and self-publishing. Many authors, especially in the business world, are venturing into this model to get their books published.

Some commonalities between traditional and hybrid publishing are the availability of professional editing services, book cover design, layout design, distribution, and marketing. Hybrid publishers provide these services just like traditional publishing houses. These processes are what self-publishing platforms lack. At the end of the day, no one can tell the difference between a hybrid and a traditionally published book.  The only difference is the source of funds.

What’s common between self-publishing and hybrid publishing is that authors finance the book creation process. Authors treat their books as investments when they get them published with hybrid publishers.  Furthermore, getting a book published with a hybrid publisher allows the author more control. Authors are treated as partners and cover more footing in terms of creative ownership. Signing a book deal with a traditional publisher means most authors are at the mercy of these big companies in terms of design, editing, schedule, and marketing.

Have a hybrid publishing company like Leaders Press do the whole thing for you. 

7. Read similar titles

Successful books are those that stand out from the rest. What better way to find out how your book can offer more value to your readers than learning how competing titles became successful. 

Take a look at the charts and understand how the books are performing. If possible, check the web presence of the book and analyze how marketing was done for it. It’s not enough to just pick a copy and read it. There are a lot of masterfully written books out there that have faded into oblivion because the author, or the publishing company, failed to write a good title, design a highly-converting book cover, and market the book properly.

8. Choose a book title

The book title is synonymous with a product name. Huge companies invest millions of dollars annually just to come up with the names of their products. Why? Product names affect conversion. The same goes for book titles. An example is  Alexandre Dumas’ The Mystery of the Man in the Iron Mask which sold 30,000 copies in its time. This is not the original title of the book. The original title was The Mystery of the Iron Mask, and under that title, the book only sold 11,000 copies. Experts say audiences can relate more with a mysterious man wearing a mask, rather than a mysterious inanimate object. Here are some guidelines on how to write an effective book title 

9. Create your book outline

Successful and established authors know the importance of writing an outline before starting with the writing process. It helps not just in writing, but in keeping a clear direction for the book, and maintaining a proper flow of ideas. Furthermore, some authors claim that their outline has helped them overcome or even prevent writer’s block.

An outline will help you identify what topics you want to cover, the chronology of your ideas, and the subtopics that you want to dwell on. It prevents scope-creeping, and it helps authors expound on more important topics.

10. Establish a writing calendar

The next logical step in getting a book published is to establish a writing calendar. Why is this important? Most authors, especially new ones, have a lot of things to do other than writing. Not everyone has the luxury to spend hours daily writing and it is essential to determine how long it will take to write the book.

Establishing a writing calendar is not as simple as plotting dates on a calendar. Before even looking at dates, authors need to determine how many words they want for their book. For example, the target word count is 60,000 words. The next thing to do is set realistic goals for writing sessions. 

How many words can you write in a session? It would depend on your capacity as well as the time you can allocate. Let’s say you can write around 1500 words per session.  That means you need 40 sessions to finish 60,000 words. 

Now, how many sessions can you dedicate each week to writing? One? Two? It is up to you. If your schedule can accommodate 2 sessions per week, then you can finish 60,000 words in 20 weeks or 5 months. If not, then it will take you roughly 40 weeks or 10 months to complete a draft. 

Now that you have your numbers, you can plot them in your calendar, whatever calendar you are using, and as much as possible, diligently follow your schedule. Use project management tools like Asana or Clickup to plot your writing calendar.

It is never advisable to put arbitrary dates in your calendar. With a tendency to push dates back, the target date of completion will be pushed back over and over until the project gets delayed.

11. Start writing

Most authors prefer to have a designated writing space. Ideally, the space should be comfortable, free of clutter, free from distractions, has proper lighting, and can help stimulate the mind. These of course are just preferences and at the end of the day, each author has their own unique space

Should an author start with the synopsis? The final chapter? While there are no absolute answers here, the most common starting point is the first chapter. And an outline will greatly help in beginning the writing process. 

Focusing on just the main topic and subtopics of the first chapter can help prevent an author from feeling overwhelmed with what to write. Certainly, there are a lot of ideas that need to be put on paper but some ideas can be tackled later.

Start with the first sentence. It doesn’t have to be amazing, captivating, grand, or immensely moving.  It doesn’t have to be anything but a first sentence. Then move on to the next, and then the next, and just keep on writing without looking back.

12. Attend writing workshops

Authors who choose to write their books can benefit a lot from attending writing workshops. There are a lot of basic and advanced writing techniques that can help writers improve their writing.

You should not just invest in your book, but in yourself as well. Writing is a skill and it can be taught and improved.

13. Do not self-edit after every sentence or paragraph

As mentioned in the previous paragraph, write without looking back. Self-editing while writing is a common pitfall for new writers. Instead of focusing on letting those ideas out, the writer’s thought process gets put on hold because the mind shifts to self-correction. The worst thing that could happen is early writer’s block.

Authors and writing coaches alike suggest that writers do not stop writing until finishing the goal for the day. Once done, it is safe to look back on what was written and start editing. If you need help editing, try installing Grammarly in your browser or try a plagiarism checker application.

14. Do not mind an awful first draft

The first draft is awful. All the time. There is no need to get discouraged by how rough a first draft looks. Sometimes, sentences may even seem incoherent. What’s important here is that, no matter how disorganized the initial draft looks, the ideas are there. When editing, read your work aloud. 

It helps to hear yourself and it helps to check if what you have written sounds like you. It also helps because you would be able to identify if what you have written has the tonality that you are aiming for.

Do not be hard on yourself when editing. Grammatical errors, word choice, structure – these can be improved on. What’s important is the content is out of your mind and is already in the manuscript.

15. Get feedback on your manuscript

Even seasoned writers need a set of extra eyes to get feedback while writing. Getting so immersed in writing helps to get some fresh insights on how ideas can be conveyed in a better way or how phrases can be said in ways that readers can resonate more.

Feedback can help authors understand the audience better. Similar to market research, companies get a temp check from their target consumers. It would be beneficial to understand how readers may react to what has been written.

This way, authors have a better perspective when it comes to rewriting and editing. 

16. Do not get discouraged by rejection or feedback

The purpose of getting feedback is to help an author with the editing process and make better iterations of paragraphs and chapters.  At the same time, not all feedback is valuable. This is why writers should choose who they get feedback from.

Ideally, while still in the writing process, writers can get valuable feedback from fellow authors, editors, or people belonging to the target audience. 

Think of it this way, if you are writing a book about international trade, would it be beneficial to get feedback from someone not familiar with that industry?

Some people are straightforward and can be harsh in giving feedback. It is only natural to feel a bit disheartened with negative feedback. At the same time, it might be helpful to understand where the feedback came from. Why was it negative? What was it pointing to? Did someone take offense at what was written? Do any of the statements need to be fact-checked? Is there a way to improve the language?

17. Write a brilliant synopsis

A lot of authors find it difficult to write a proper synopsis. There is so much that can be included it is almost impossible to determine which ideas to leave out. Which are the most important and unique salient points that readers would find valuable?

To begin, the first two to three sentences should capture the overall essence of the book. What problem or question does your book address? Why is it an essential reading material for the audience? 

Next, showcase what readers can achieve from reading your book. What solutions do you offer? What life-changing lessons are you providing?

Finally, establish your credibility. Why are you the best person to talk about the topics discussed in the book? Who are you? Why are you the expert? You start selling the book by selling yourself. 

18. Professional services

Editing, book layout design, book cover design – these are better left to the experts. Hybrid publishers usually provide these services. That’s an advantage that these companies provide compared to if an author chooses to self-publish.

It is common practice in self-publishing to contract professionals to help finish the book. However, talking to different people for various technical needs raises the complexity of the process which in the end may affect the quality of the book. If the layout designer is not coordinating with the book cover designer, there is a possibility that the two design elements may not complement each other.

Moreover, each of these contractors has their schedules and it may be challenging to fit everyone’s schedule in your working calendar. Whereas, a hybrid publishing company that employs project managers, writers, editors, and designers can seamlessly process your manuscript.

19. Market the book in advance

Marketing does not start once the book has been published. Marketing should start months before the launch date. Sending out advanced reader copies to get reviews helps in getting higher conversions during the launch week. It also helps in building hype around the book.

Pre-selling also helps as it can build anticipation. Utilizing incentives during pre-selling encourages readers to grab a copy even before the book gets released. 

When working with a hybrid publisher, it would be best to ask about what type of marketing is covered in your book deal before signing the contract. 

20. Build an online presence and get your book published

While printed books still have a bigger market share, most readers purchase their books online. The best way to widen your reach as an author is by building an online presence. 

Utilize various social media platforms, reach out to podcasts and do some appearances, Write blogs about your book, build a funnel for sales, join online platforms to get your book noticed, and submit your book to review platforms and independent bloggers.

It is not enough to just get your book published. There are no guarantees that people will take notice of it and start recommending the book to their peers. 

21. Build your writer’s network

A writer’s network is more than just getting inspiration to improve one’s writing skills. A book is an investment and a product and it needs exposure. The author also needs exposure especially if there are more books along the way. 

It also creates new opportunities. Networking with other authors can help you pass leads and get leads in return. Which podcasts offer guesting to authors like you? Are there organizations can you tap to get speaking engagements? Which conferences should you attend to get more exposure? 

Having a network of authors with similar interests can help you improve your chances of getting known in the publishing world. 

How do I know which one is right for me?

Deciding which path to take to get a book published entirely depends on what your goals are. Why do you want to publish a book in the first place? Do you have business-related or personal goals? Are you intending to publish a legacy piece? Is the book meant to increase your brand value? How about generating leads for business growth? Are you looking into getting speaking gigs in the future? Or are you planning to get published because you want to establish/strengthen your authority and credibility in your field?

Traditional and hybrid published books offer better distribution and sales. Furthermore, having labels of established publishing brands on your book cover helps in brand image, authority, and credibility. They may however be more costly. Self-publishing can be costly too, however, you have more control of the financial flow. Self-published books also have opportunities to become best-sellers, but let’s admit it, working with established companies can help guarantee sales which is the main requisite for best-seller status.

If your main goal is to become an established best-selling author, the best way to go is to work with a hybrid publisher. Some of these companies guarantee a USA Today or Wall Street Journal bestseller status for your investment.

How to Make Money as an Author

Ever wondered how the likes of John Grisham, Stephen King, and J. K. Rowling make money? Ever thought about what their journey might have been like from humble beginner to world-renowned author?

One thing that should be your guiding star is the understanding that you will make money as an author, not from the proceeds from the sales of your book, but from the good relationships you create with your books.

Therefore, make sure you use your book to create rewarding and lasting relationships with readers. Let your book introduce you to your readers and help them get to know, like, and trust your content and you as an author.

Even the likes of Grisham make more money when TV and film companies run adaptations of their books than they do from book sales. Producers pay authors a lot of money just for the opportunity to capitalize on the loyal following authors forge with their readers. Producers also use this rare chance to give the author’s fans a deeper experience with the stories and characters they’ve come to know and love.

While it’s great to be inspired by the success of other authors, comparing yourself to them and falling short can be a “thief of joy,” as President Theodore Roosevelt put it. The best approach is to be aware of your competition while you focus on producing the best book, not just for yourself, but especially for your readers. You will see your efforts paying for themselves over time.

Figure out a win-win strategy where what you do for your audience ends up benefiting you, too. What can you do to make this process worthwhile and enjoyable? How can you sell not just your book but your brand also? How can you guarantee your book will produce long-term gains?

Think up creative ways to take the relationship forward and make your readers stay in your corner permanently. When you have a great relationship with your readers, you can experience a lot of growth through book sales and cross-selling. 

So what’s the best way to make money as an author?

The trick to making money as an author is to position your book in the perfect light for your audience. Put your readers (who will become your fans) first,  and then the rest who may need to take note of your book for other purposes.

a.      Write to market

The most important thing you do as an author is tailoring your book so it speaks directly to your market. Once you identify your target audience, you will be able to work out their preferences and nail them in your book. As you do your research, consider reader reviews for previously published books in your niche and capitalize on addressing the shortcomings their readers complained about. Also, remember to pick up on what the readers liked about the competing titles, and ensure your book meets those needs as well. Looking up related keywords on various social media platforms will help you understand what readers really want and help you align your work accordingly.

b.      Invest in professional editing and cover design

A well-packaged book will go a long way in selling itself. Quality begins with the cover design and goes on to include the content. Invest in a professional editor and cover designer. An experienced editor will polish your text so it really shines. But make sure you edit your manuscript yourself first, before passing it off to a professional. That way, you can iron out any obvious errors and minimize editing costs. Do not underestimate the power of a professionally designed cover in getting your book to fly off the shelves.

c.       Consider writing a series

The more books you can present to your market and sell, the more money you’ll make, and that works best when those books are part of a series. Especially if you are writing fiction, remember your audience will always be eager to find out what happens next in the lives of their favourite characters. If you decide to publish a series, be sure to capitalize on character building and suspense to ensure your readers remain glued to your story. For non-fiction works, readers are likely to want to know what other insights you have in the area. Begin by introducing a topic in your first book and, towards the end, hint at what more is in store for your readers in the next book.

d.      Offer related services

As I said earlier, most author income comes not from direct sales of books but from related services. Apart from having your book adapted for reproduction in different formats (audiobooks, translations, screenplays, etc.), you can offer one or more services based on the topic(s) you write about. For example, if you write non-fiction self-help books, you can provide services such as these:

i)                   Coaching or consulting

If you are an established author, you can offer guidance to budding authors to help them along. This could be in the form of developing project work plans, giving honest feedback on their writing, and helping them sail through the publishing process. You can also offer consulting services on a non-fiction subject you wrote about, as being published presents you readily as an expert.

ii)                 Courses and seminars

This is quite like coaching or consulting, but instead of doing it on a one-on-one basis, you engage with groups of people in workshops and seminars. This not only saves time, but also ensures you make more money per session, as you will be hosting more than one person at a time. During these sessions, your audience can pick your brain on a number of issues related to your theme—and who knows, you might just get an idea for your next book!

iii)               Ghostwriting or editing services

If you have a few hours to spare on a weekly basis, you can consider writing for other authors to pick up some extra cash. Ghostwriting and editing can be lucrative, but these activities can be very time consuming. Be sure you have enough time available before taking on such a project.

iv)    Speaking Opportunities

With an established brand, you can begin building your rate card and cashing in on speaking at various events. This is an especially profitable option for best-selling authors. For beginners, fees range from $5,000 to $10,000. You can begin to create your niche around your market and establish the kind of speaking events you would like to be invited to. Be open to pro bono speaking events to cement relationships, show off your knowledge, and build referrals.

e.       Give out freebies

What is better than a good book? A free good book! One way to reach an even wider audience is by giving your book away for free. What does that mean? Well, it means exactly that. Today, books are available in many formats. For example, on Amazon, you can sell your book as a paperback, an audiobook, or an e-book. How about giving away the e-book for free to readers who are willing to share their email address with you? You can use these addresses to build your mailing list, and then capitalize on this avenue by sending your subscribers regular marketing emails to promote your other products and services. This could easily translate to significant additional revenue!

Start Making Money

The key to making money as an author is positioning your content to the right audience in such a way that they not only like and believe in what you publish, but they trust you and have confidence in all of your work, not just your book. Once you have cracked the code for the kind of content your audience likes and packaged it correctly, you will be one step closer to their hearts. The next step is to keep building your relationships to create ongoing loyalty. If you follow this proven process, you will be well on your way to achieving your revenue goals as a published author.

Become a Best-Selling Author

Do you want to discover the steps that can take you from a book idea to a six-figure funnel? At Leaders Press, We can show you how to position your book as a best-seller, turn your ideas into an amazing manuscript, optimize your book for online sales, and many more. Excited to take the next big step in your journey? Chat with us today!

How To Write a Self-Help Book

There are a lot of self-help books in the market and a decent number of them are best sellers. One reason for the popularity of the genre is that self-help books have transformed the lives of millions of people around the world. Have you ever thought of writing one? In this article, I will show you how to write a self-help book that has the potential to be a best seller.

Why Should You Write a Self-Help Book?

People read self-help books because they want to improve a certain aspect of their lives. Self-help books can help build a greater sense of confidence. People turn to these books because they want to learn new skills, have more successful careers, or simply become better at what they do.

Many people find themselves lost and unable to determine their life’s purpose. Grabbing a book that will help you be successful in life seems like an obvious first step.

After more than two decades, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey is still wildly popular because people resonate with its process of personal and interpersonal growth, and many claim it has had a lasting impact on their life.

Stephen R. Covey was like you: a business leader.

How to Start Your Writing Process

As I mentioned in my article, How to Begin a Book, there are five steps to beginning your masterpiece:

1.       Find a Safe Workspace – Find a comfortable spot where you can be yourself and write down your innermost thoughts.

2.       Research Competitive Titles – Browse the web for books in the niche you are targeting to gain a better perspective on your market.

3.       Create an Outline – Make a list of your topics and subtopics. Plan the sequence in which you will introduce your topics. Visualize the journey your readers will take when reading your book.

4.       Plot Your Schedule – Based on your outline, set a target completion date for each chapter of your book. Do not set arbitrary dates because you may end up pushing them further. You want to establish a firm deadline for finishing your manuscript.

5.       Begin to Write – Once you have planned and outlined your book, write your first chapter. Do not self-edit while writing. You do not want to get stuck on your first paragraph for hours. After you have written your first sentence, keep it going.

Here are some additional points to consider when starting your writing process:

  • Research – Who is your audience? What kind of information are they looking for? While you can easily think of generic answers to these questions, it’s important to research your target market. I mentioned above that you should find competitive titles. Look at data from Amazon, Google, and various social media platforms. Find out what worked and what didn’t for these books. Who reads them? Check their demographics, social status, location, and any other relevant information you can gather.
  •  Choose a Strong Title – The first thing readers see is a book’s cover. The most important element on the cover is the title. A catchy title will not only get a prospective buyer’s attention, it will inspire them to buy the book and read it. Here is an article on how to choose your book title.
  • Keep Your Paragraphs Short – People look to self-help books as a guide, so you want your readers to find their way around your book easily. Use short paragraphs and structure your book so a reader can conveniently go back to a topic when they want to review something.
  • Establish Your Credibility – Before you read a book, you want to know that the person who wrote it is an authority on the subject. Readers will want to know your credentials and professional expertise, so establish who you are not just in the author bio section but on your marketing campaigns as well

Additional Writing Tips

Now that you know how to prepare for writing your self-help book, here are some writing tips that can make your book not just helpful, but enjoyable as well.

  • Start with a Captivating Story – Draw the reader in from the very first sentence. Use anecdotes from your own life or interesting stories about people your readers can relate to. You can lead with a laugh by writing a funny opening, or keep the reader hooked by starting with a thrilling story. The point is, you want your reader to be engaged from the very beginning.
  • Include Exercises – After each chapter, provide an activity or exercise to help the reader apply what they learned. The best way to design exercises is to start at the end. What skill or competency should your reader gain after reading your book? Your activities can be as simple as those in Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life, which gives the reader a point to ponder, a verse to remember, and a question to consider in each chapter.
  • Do Not Overuse Quotations – This is your self-help book, not someone else’s. You are the subject-matter expert, so offer your advice. If you quote others excessively, your book would look like a collection of other people’s best practices, and that will undermine your authority. Your self-help book is not an anthology.
  • Talk to the Reader – Make your readers feel you are talking to them, that your words are guiding them. Avoid using “we” because your readers are not learning this information along with you. They are learning it from you. Don’t say: “We need to be diligent about observing the trends in the stock market.” You already did this, you were successful at it, and now you want your reader to do the same. Instead, say:  “Be diligent about observing the trends.”
  • Use Casual Language – People read self-help books because they seek guidance. It is not helpful to use long, complicated sentences they might need to reread several times in order to understand.
  • Use Active Voice – Instead of saying “The best way to build a mining rig for cryptocurrency is by…”, use an assertive, action-oriented statement like “Build your mining rig with multiple GPUs.”
  • Provide a Game Plan – Offer your readers clear, actionable items. Numbered steps and bulleted lists are easier to absorb than lengthy narratives.

What to Avoid

  • Imposing Your Beliefs – You can’t just state your beliefs and expect readers to accept them. You have to gain their trust if you want to convince your readers that your book will help them become successful. Share your story to help them understand why they should follow your guidance.
  • Cliches – As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, there are tons of self-help books. Rehashing old ideas or repeating tried-and-true formulas are risky, as you may end up with a run-of-the-mill book. Offer readers something new or reinvent what’s already out there. Do not be afraid to question or disrupt the status quo.
  • Condescending Tone – Treat your readers as your equals. No one wants to feel they are being lectured or spoken down to by an author. Instead of preaching, use a compassionate and friendly tone.

Deciding to Write

Now that you have a better idea of how to write a self-help book, what are your thoughts? Business leaders like you have all the ingredients to publish a best-selling self-help book. So, what’s keeping you?

I have worked with a lot of authors and most of them initially told me they simply did not have time to sit down and write 1,000 to 2,000 words a week. Some of them even admitted they do not have a knack for writing.

Those business leaders are now best-selling authors. Do you want to know how that happened? They outsourced their book creation process to Leaders Press.

Let’s have a chat and discuss how you can turn your thoughts into a Wall Street Journal/USA Today best-seller in the self-help niche.

How to Write a Memoir

Writing any type of book is a lot of work. A memoir based on personal experience is harder than most. For a reader to stay with you, you need more than a good overarching story. It is imperative to have a dramatic hook that leaves the reader wanting more after reaching the end of each page. If you are planning to publish your story, stick around and I will show you how to write a memoir that can become a best seller.

Importance of Memoirs

Memoirs can teach readers about culture, lifestyles, places, events, and experiences that are completely different from their own. A memoir offers a gateway to another person’s world, and reading one can help you gain a better understanding of those around you.

Memoirs can also help people who are living through the same challenges the author experienced. They show that someone else has felt the same pain. Sometimes, memoirs even help readers get back on their feet.

Memoirs are Powerful

Personal life stories are powerful because they touch the heart. This is why memoirs are so compelling. They come from real-life stories, making it easier for readers to resonate with the characters. Not only do memoirs make readers think, they let readers feel.

How to Start A Memoir

Engage from the Start – A powerful memoir draws the reader in from the very first sentence. Carlos Eire opens his book, Learning to Die in Miami, with an unrealistic line: “Having just died, I shouldn’t be starting my afterlife with a chicken sandwich, no matter what, especially one served up by nuns.” The irony is, how can a dead man write a memoir? From the get-go, the book makes you want to keep reading.

Draw Out Emotions – Write your lines from the heart. This may sound like a cliché, but memoirs should be written in a language that resonates with readers on a deeply emotional level. Take, for example, the first line of Liz Murray’s Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey From Homeless to Harvard: “The first time Daddy found out about me, it was from behind glass during a routine visit to prison, when Ma lifted her shirt, teary-eyed, exposing her pregnant belly for emphasis.” Pregnancy is a very emotional topic. Pregnancy in prison draws out even more emotions.

Lead with Humor – People react positively to humor. Leading with a laugh can help captivate your audience. It may not get them as invested as when they are emotionally hooked, but making them laugh or smile even a little will keep them engaged longer. An example of a funny opener is from Ali Wong’s Dear Girls: “Your dad is the (if we are divorced by the time you read this, please skip to the next sentence) best, but I didn’t just find him overnight.” You can almost feel the atmosphere of a standup comedy bar while reading this.

Save The Best for Last – Write your opening last. Why? After everything is said and done, you will have a full perspective of what’s included in your memoir. Only then will you be able to think of the best way to open your story. Think of it as a controlled start. With the emotional ride you are giving your readers as they take the journey through your memories, how do you want them to feel at the start of your book? Should you start with a funny line? An emotional line? A dark and brooding landscape? Or a surprising sucker punch?

Tips to Keep in Mind While Writing Your Memoir

1.    It’s Not an Autobiography – Just as when you share someone else’s story in person, you focus on one event. The same approach should be taken with your personal memoir.  An autobiography is your life story in its entirety. Memoirs, on the other hand, have a more limited scope, which usually centers around a time period or event from the writer’s life. There may be millions of details and experiences that you think might be interesting to your readers, but do they support the central theme of your memoir? If you are writing about your journey around the world during a gap year, does the reader need to know about your antics in middle school and high school?

2.    Readers Sense Honesty – You are the writer and you get to decide what stays and what goes in your memoir. Still, you need to be true to your narrative. The promise of every memoir is a true account of what happened in the author’s life. Stay true to your events. There may be instances when you need to censor names of people, places, or institutions, as they have a right to privacy; but as much as possible, refrain from using creative license to fabricate parts of events just to make them more interesting.

3.    Keep the Reader in Mind – Write for yourself and, at the same time, write for your reader. Choose your words without swaying from the truth. Even if you are telling real accounts, you can be creative in choosing your words. In Born on The Fourth of July, Ron Kovic wrote: “A soldier lies in the sand, bullets cracking all around him. Blood pours from a wound in his flak jacket, and he can’t move his legs.” He could have easily said, “A soldier lies in the sand and he can’t move his legs as blood pours from his wound.” Kovic’s choice of words painted a more detailed picture of what was happening in that situation.

4.    Do Not Edit While Writing – As much as you want to reread your sentences, edit them, and make them sound better on the spot, do not, at any cost, give in to the temptation. This is a huge mistake beginners make. It is only natural that we want to rewrite our lines to make them better. There is a proper time for that, but it is not during the initial writing process. Here’s a tip: do not read as you write. Just write, write, and write some more. Once you start editing while you write, you will get stuck and hung up on one story. Doubts will start flooding in, and you will lose your writing mojo. More often than not, this is what prompts first-timers to quit writing.

5.    Do Not Focus on Lessons – Your memoir is not necessarily a self-help book. You need not pressure yourself to write about the lessons you learned from your experiences and what readers should do if they were to experience the same situations. While you can include lessons, your main focus should be to write about your experiences and make readers see your world from your perspective. Take them on a journey without preaching.

6.    Keep your Head in a Silo – Do not worry about what other people will think while you are writing. Do not think about editors commenting on your lines. Do not think about how readers will react to a punchline. Write as if you are writing in your journal, which you would not dare share with anyone else. Only then will you be able to bring out what you really want to say. Your memoir should be a detailed account of your innermost thoughts with intimate details. Give yourself the benefit of a safe and private space to pour your heart out.

7.    What you Felt Before and How you Feel Now – Sensory details make a good story. Dig into your emotional memories while asking yourself these questions. Memoirs are full of emotions, and these emotions will help your readers resonate with your story. Do not separate from emotion when you are detailing events. Make your readers feel how you felt before, and help them understand how you feel now, if there are differences. What’s important is that you write from two perspectives: who you were then and who you are now, years later.

The best memoirs are based on real stories. There is no dichotomy of right or wrong, good or bad. Memoirs are honest accounts, full of emotion, experiences, highs and lows.

How Long Does it Take to Write a Memoir?

It really depends on how many words you are aiming for. A memoir can take a couple of months or many years to write as the emotional content can be tough for some. If you feel you need help in bringing out your emotional memories and putting them into words, we would love to speak with you.

We are the only publisher that can guarantee USA Today Best Seller status and Simon & Schuster distribution, which gets your book into bookstores. If you want to learn more about how you can outsource your memoir creation process, let’s schedule a chat.

How To Come Up With A Book Title

Have you been doing research on how to come up with a book title? Are you surprised that most sources offer little useful help?

Some would say browse existing titles. This is good, but you should not limit yourself to that. Others say go with what you feel passionate about. This is dangerous because what you are passionate about may not resonate well with your audience. And the least helpful bit of advice you might get online is that you shouldn’t spend a lot of time thinking about a title. This is terrible advice.

Think of it this way. Huge companies spend millions of dollars annually just so they can name their products effectively. These companies spend even more on how to run effective ads, which rely a lot on finding the right words.

If these companies spend millions of dollars and a ton of effort on ad titles and product names, that should convince you that you need to spend an ample amount of time in choosing your title.

Why Are Book Titles Important?

What is the first thing that potential book readers see? The cover of course! And what is the most important element of the cover? The book title. A good title will intrigue readers to pick up the book and look it over. A great title will inspire them to buy the book and read it.

Let’s get one thing straight, though. The title alone will not determine how successful a book is going to be. But it will certainly help in getting potential readers.

Here’s an example: Alexandre Dumas’ book The Mystery of the Man in the Iron Mask. Under this title, the book sold 30,000 copies.

This book was not originally published with that title, however. It was initially released as The Mystery of the Iron Mask. With this title, the book sold only 11,000 copies. Just by tweaking a few words in the title, book sales grew exponentially.

The 4 Most Common Attributes of a Great Book Title

1.       Evocative – Best-selling titles are often evocative. With compelling wordplay, an effective title elicits a strong response or feeling from a would-be reader.

2.       Attention Grabbing – A boring title will kill your book. You need a title that stands out from the bookshelf. This may sound like a cliché, but you need to make an impactful first impression to set you apart from the rest.

3.       Memorable and Unique – How many times have you browsed for titles, liked some of them, and totally forget them? You lose book sales if your title is not memorable. A lot of people will not buy a book the first time they encounter it.

4.       Informative – Your book’s title and subtitle should give readers an idea of what the book is about. Make it easy for your audience to understand what they will discover inside. In turn, it will make it easier for you to draw them in. Think of it this way: if you were to tell someone your book’s title, do you think that person will ask you what the book is about? If so, you may want to change your title.

3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Book Title

1.       Existing Titles – It’s imperative that you make sure your title is original and hasn’t already been an existing book title. Conduct an extensive search on your working title and see if it comes up in any search engines.

2.       Audience – Who would read your book? What language do they speak? When I say language, I am pertaining to the way they speak based on the industry they belong to. You can’t make your title appealing to everyone. But you can choose which audience you want it to appeal to.

3.       Controversial Topics – Make sure that your book title does not inadvertently reference controversial topics. It would be difficult to market your book if readers associate its title with something contentious.

6 Tips for Creating the Best Book Title

1.       Use Literary Devices – Many attention-grabbing non-fiction titles and fiction titles use literary devices to spice up their titles. You might consider using alliteration, like Gillian Flynn used in Gone Girl, or another device like double entendre to produce a catchy title that hooks a reader’s interest.

2.       Popular Phrases – Using popular phrases works! Take a famous phrase and make some alterations to make it fit the theme of your book. Why does this work? You are borrowing the popularity of the phrase to capture the attention of readers. Sex, Drugs, and Rocking Code: The Uncensored Autobiography of an Anonymous Programmer by Paul Carter is a good example from our best-seller list. Borrowing the phrase “Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘n Roll” makes the book interesting, as it doesn’t have anything to do with music.

3.       Use Numbers – Numbers bring in credibility. Even Google loves this. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is one of the most popular non-fiction business books out there. This also worked for my book, Supreme Leadership: Gain 850 Years of Wisdom from Successful Business Leaders, which is a #1 Best-Seller and currently in the top in 3 of its subcategories on Amazon.

4.       Target Curiosity – It is always effective to pique the curiosity of readers. How? Use phrases with paradoxes, unusual contrasts, fantastical, unusual, and unexpected. Play Bold: How to Win the Business Game through Creative Destruction by Magnus Parker catches readers’ attention by using the paradox of “Creative Destruction” as part of the title. How can destruction be creative? It doesn’t give an answer right away, but it makes you wonder.

5.       Offer Your Solution – Tell the reader what problem your book addresses. What challenges does your book cater to? Click to Transform: Digital Transformation Game Plan for Your Business by Kevin Jackson solves digital transformation problems that a lot of companies face in the current business landscape.

6.       Coin a Word – What better way is there to gain popularity and pique curiosity than coining an attention-grabbing word? ShePreneur: Business Lessons for the Determined Female Entrepreneur by Kristin Cripps is among our best-sellers that employ this technique.  

Steps to Writing Your Book Title

a.       Identify Your Goals – What is your goal for writing a book? Do you a want a legacy piece? Is the book meant to be your business card? Or do you want to generate leads for your business? Find out what action you want your readers to take after reading your book. Once you know what your goals are, choose a title that serves them.

b.       Build a List – Brainstorm. Make a list of titles that you think fit your content. This is a long-term process. Bright ideas cannot be forced, so we suggest you keep a list on your phone or in a notepad that you can carry in your pocket. Don’t be afraid to write poor-sounding titles. Just like in writing your first draft, keep on writing until you have a long list of titles to choose from.

c.       Keyword Research – Search matters for non-fiction books. Your audience would usually Google book topics and subjects rather than titles. However, do not restrict your main title with keywords as it may sound very artificial in the end. Keywords are usually included in the subtitle. What you want is for Google and Amazon to recommend your book to people searching for topics in your category.

Coming Up with a Book Title

Yes, it is a long process, but book titles should not be taken for granted. You can do this on your own, but it would also be beneficial to seek the help of professionals. At Leaders Press, choosing a strategic and highly converting book title is one of the benefits that you will get when outsourcing your book creation process. Schedule a chat with us and find out more!

Why Write a Book

Have you been told that you should write a business book? Perhaps a friend or a colleague has encouraged you to try.. Or maybe you have been targeted by online courses to engage yourself in starting to write one. But have you ever asked yourself why write a book in the first place?

Is writing a book a critical move for your career?

What you might be thinking right now is that there are plenty of successful people who do not have a bestselling book under their belt.

To begin with, you are not a writer. So what are the odds of attaining best-seller status for a book you have written yourself?

To help you understand that question, let’s check the cost of writing a book and how it can help you further your career.

Costs of Writing a Book

As a business leader, you know it is imperative that you look into the financial aspects of writing a book.

1. Time 

How long would it take to write a book? How much of your time should you invest?

It depends on two factors–word count and your commitment to writing. Most full-length business books are around 40,000 to 60,000 words. 

Let’s say you can write an average of 500 words per session. That means you need eighty to 120 sessions of writing. And this does not include the editing process.

That is roughly twenty-seven to forty weeks if you can commit to three writing sessions per week.   

At Leaders Press, we recommend that you write around 250 to 500 words a day.

Remember, that 27 to 40 weeks only includes the writing portion, and we don’t recommend you get started until you’ve done some preliminary work to find out what it is exactly you want to say.t.

Before working on your very first page, you should identify your book’s central theme, and outline each chapter to ensure a smooth writing process.

Research, brainstorming, and outlining can take a month or two.

Furthermore, once your draft is finished, you’ll need to edit it. Of course, you can hire a professional editing service, which we will discuss in a bit. 

Even after you’ve edited your draft, you’re still not finished. Once you have a publication-ready manuscript, you need to work on the cover, title, description, author bio, and marketing plans.

Seems like a lot of work? It is, but it’s possible. Many business leaders have done it. You can, too.

2. Finances

Self-publishing can cost you anywhere between $1,000 to $100,000, sometimes more. This of course depends on how much of the book creation process you plan to do yourself.

It’s fairly simple actually. If you cannot afford to invest a lot of time, then you need to invest money. 

As mentioned above, you can hire a professional editing service to turn your draft into a manuscript. For your book cover, you can work with a graphic designer. The biggest chunk of your budget will go to a marketing agency if you want a best-seller guarantee.

Professional editors, graphic designers, marketers–these people are experts in their field. They can make your book look professional.


You may be thinking, “I’m good at grammar, why should I hire an editor?” Of course, you can self-edit, but you will still need a professional to provide the final touches. Why? Think of it this way: even professional editors hire editors for their own writing.


You are too familiar with your own writing. One of an editor’s essential functions is to serve as a fresh set of eyes on your work..

How about your book cover? Perhaps, if you have an artistic side, you can come up with your own design. But there are more aspects to consider than mere aesthetics. Functionality is also involved. Professional graphic designers are experts in creating content that relates to people. 

People say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but most of the time it’s the cover that piques a person’s interest while browsing online or in a bookstore.

And then there is marketing. Yes, you can publish your book yourself on Amazon Kindle Direct. It’s certainly cheaper that way. But we have seen many authors try this and fail. There is more to publishing than simply putting your book up on Amazon. You can’t just wait for traffic.

These are just a few of the things you need to consider when publishing a book. We haven’t even tackled book printing, layout, advanced reader copies, reviews, etc. 

All of which entail costs. And again, you will decide how much you want to do yourself. 

3. Intellectual Investment

Writing a book is not just about pouring your heart out into a piece of paper. As mentioned above, the writing process does not just involve writing. You need to decide on a central theme, brainstorm, and outline your chapters.

More than that, you need to do a lot of learning and research. Yes, you are writing a book about your own experiences, and you are the best person to ask about the topics included in it. However, even if you are the subject matter expert, you need to learn how to present your ideas, your knowledge, and your experiences in such a way that your readers can relate to.

You need to learn how your readers think, what your readers appreciate, and what your readers want.

Furthermore, you need to be equipped with different methods of presenting your ideas through a story.

All of these require intellectual investment.

Why Write a Book?

Right now you may be thinking about how tedious it is to write a book. We are not discouraging you. We just want you to appreciate the book creation process and how much work was done on the best-sellers that you may have read.

But you know what? All the hard work needed will help you reap considerable rewards. Why write a book? Let us take a look at the rewards.

1. Money

Is there a more obvious reward than the return of investment from your book?

Right now you may be crunching numbers in your head thinking of how many books you need to sell to turn a profit from your investment.

Can you make millions out of it? Yes, you can. And not just from book sales.

Your revenue is highly dependent on what action you want your readers to take after reading your book, which is aligned with your goals.

For example, exposure can help you generate leads. Let’s say your company is in trade and finance. 

A best-selling book can help you get new clients which can add millions of dollars to your top-line revenue.

And this is just one of your potential revenue streams. Speaking gigs rake in a lot of money. With proper marketing and exposure, you can get tons of speaking opportunities within six months of launching your book.

If you want to learn more, we can chat about it.

2. Authority and Credibility

Not everyone can write a book and get published. Accomplished writers account for a small portion of our population. 

So the moment you publish your book and people learn about it, your name will carry a certain prestige.

With a published book, you become an authority in your field. Your credibility goes up, you get attention from the media and your readers, and people in your circle will talk about you.

What do you get for this boost in your authority and credibility? New opportunities. You can even pursue a career in academia.

Speaking gigs like TED talks, appearances in podcasts and talk shows, invitations to conferences and social events–all of these become opportunities for an accomplished author.

More than ROI, you get intangible rewards from writing a book. Wouldn’t it be wonderful for people to know you even before meeting you?

3. Legacy

Who are your favorite authors? Are they still around? Some probably are, and long after they are gone, their names are carved in history, with the rest of the authors who made an impact on society.

You could be one of them. Your book can inspire people, change lives, help open opportunities for this generation and the generations to come.

Are you still asking yourself why you should write a book? 

Your Decision

Now that you know the cost of writing a book and the potential rewards of having a best-seller as a business card, we hope we helped you answer the question, “Why write a book?”

For most business leaders like you, the biggest challenge is taking the time required to finish writing a book. We understand that, and we can help.

One of our specialties is helping business leaders get their books written, published, and launched into best-sellers. 

At Leaders Press, we will be with you from ideation to post-publishing promotions.

We know you are interested, so let’s schedule a chat.

How to Write a Non-Fiction Business Book

Business books are the new business cards, and every business owner or entrepreneur considers publishing a book at some point. But writing a book is not as easy as ordering a batch of business cards from the printer. Most business leaders are not writers by profession, and few know how to write a non-fiction business book.

How to Begin

One of the most difficult parts of the writing process is staring at a blank piece of paper. Believe me, I stared for a full hour at the monitor before I even wrote the first sentence of this post. 

Don’t worry. You don’t begin the writing process by dumping everything you know about your industry on a blank page. I know you have plenty of ideas that you want to share with your audience, but you won’t do your message justice if you don’t carefully craft your story into a journey that is worth taking.

Let’s take a look at some of the steps that you need to take to successfully publish a non-fiction business book.

Decide How to Publish

One of the first things you need to do is to ask yourself, “Who is my audience?” It is imperative to determine who your audience is, especially if you are aiming to get a book deal with a publisher. At the end of the day, publishers are businesses, and they offer book deals if they see a lucrative opportunity.

There are other options if you want more free rein in writing your book, however. 

One is going the independent route. Self-publishing can be a rewarding experience, and many successful independent authors have made a name for themselves. There are numerous self-publishing platforms out there like Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, Barnes and Noble, and CreateSpace.

Another option is to outsource. If you lack the experience but you have the finances, then you can work with a publishing company like Leaders Press who can help you get your idea published into a best-selling non-fiction business book. 

Outsourcing doesn’t mean you won’t be involved in the writing process. The content will still come from you. Through strategy calls, interviews with your project manager, and chapter reviews, you still call the shots while the team does the heavy lifting.

The Main Idea

Readers want a unique and exciting idea. . Creating one, however, is easier said than done. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have that lightbulb moment. If you don’t already have an idea,  you will need diligent research, a little bit of organization, and some creativity to generate one.

Search for book titles in the same niche as you are targeting. Buy those books, read them, look at their outlines, and find out what made them successful. 

Now you need to brainstorm. Write down all your ideas, and all the ideas you picked up from your research. Arrange them together and find a central theme. Does the theme reflect who you are and what you want? If not, rearrange the ideas again until you find a sequence that you feel best reflects you.

Book Length

Your book research should give you a better idea of various book lengths. You can either write an outline first, before deciding on a word count,  or you can do it the other way around. 

Consider your timeframe as well. How many words can you write per session? How many weekly writing sessions can you afford? 

If you can write 500 words per session three times a week, that’s 1500 words per week. If your goal is to write 60,000 words, it should take you a minimum of forty weeks to complete your book. 

You also need to factor in extra time for things like rewriting drafts, editing, and removing unnecessary words, before you arrive at a finished manuscript.

Book Outline

As mentioned in a previous paragraph, you should begin with an outline. . When building your outline, go back to the ideas you produced in your brainstorming session. Arrange the ideas based on your central theme to create a story. 

As is true in fiction, the most successful non-fiction books tell an interesting story… 

Think of the journey that you want your readers to take when reading your book. Arrange your topics to guide them in each step of the journey. You can use your own experiences, your life story, as inspiration.

Timeline

You have two options here. Use an online project management tool like Trello or Asana, or go old school with post-its on the wall. With project management tools, everything is in one place. Upload your topics, schedule your writing sessions, set your deadlines, plot your milestones, and even attach your document.

When plotting your schedule, do not assign arbitrary deadlines if you want to finish on time. What’s wrong with arbitrary deadlines? It’s really easy to procrastinate and you wouldn’t want to go down that rabbit hole of extending deadlines and justifying it with your busy schedule. 

As a business leader, you have countless other things to do, so set realistic targets for yourself.

Begin Writing

Now you are ready to face that blank piece of paper. The difference is, you have a list of topics and subtopics to guide you through. 

Don’t pressure yourself too much to think of a brilliant opening paragraph. Just get on with it and write. Let your creative juices flow by freeing yourself of thoughts about grammar, structure, and style. 

Say as much as you want about the topic you are writing about. Then once you are done with your first draft, that’s when you check for grammar, structure, style, etc.

Writing assistants like  Grammarly not only help with grammar, but also with word choice, colloquialisms, misplaced words and phrases, and wordy sentences.

Do not get discouraged if you feel you are starting at a sluggish pace. This is normal. As weeks go by, you will get more in tune with your writing style.

Finished Manuscript

With a manuscript in hand, all you need to do is get published. Look for a literary agent if you want to land a deal with a publishing company. 

Go to Amazon KDP or Barnes and Noble if your goal is to get self-published. Remember, if you take this route, you will have to cover the costs of editing and book cover design.

Or you can book a consultation with Leaders Press if you want to publish your book and hit best-seller status. They will review your manuscript, and, if it meets their standards, all you need to do is pay the cost of services and they will handle editing, book cover design, publishing, and marketing.

There you have it. Now that you know how to write a non-fiction business book and how to get it published, it’s time to share your amazing story with the world… 

How long does it take to write a book

How Long Does it Take to Write a Book

Business leaders and entrepreneurs have amazing stories that deserve to be shared. What better way to reach a wide audience than writing a best-selling book on your professional journey? The first question first-time authors ask is: how long does it take to write a book? The answer is: it depends. What’s your target word count? How committed are you to writing? Some can finish a manuscript in as short a time as 2 months. Others can take two years…or even longer. 

You can pursue different ways of writing the book, too. You can self-publish online or you can outsource your book to professionals and get it published in print as well as e-book. 

Self-Publishing vs. Outsourcing

Before delving further into how long it takes to write a book, let’s explore your two best options: Self-Publishing and Outsourcing.

Yes, you can publish your own book online without an established publisher. There are many self-publishing platforms out there. You can even do this on Amazon, building landing pages or running ads to market your book. 

Why self-publish? First of all, it’s cheaper. Secondly, you have complete control over the writing process. Finally, if you have the luxury of time, it’s fun to learn to how to write a book yourself. 

When self-publishing, you can be flexible with your timeline and make changes even after your book is published. If your cover is not as appealing as you hoped it would be, you can replace it because you have full creative control.

The biggest drawback to self-publishing is that, at the end of the day, you still need professional assistance in getting your book read. It will help to have a graphic designer for your cover, an editor for the text, and even a marketing expert to help your book find an audience. Chances are, these are skills you do not possess. 

This is the advantage you get by outsourcing your book. You can even outsource the laborious task of writing itself. With the help of professional publishers, you can transform your ideas into a book. 

Not only will outsourcing your book take care of the manuscript, it will also give you access to a team of editors to make the content more professional, graphic designers for your book’s cover, a marketing team to sell your book, and a project manager to make sure it all gets done on time and to your satisfaction. All you have to do is share your ideas through a series of interviews!

How do you get the creative control of self-publishing with the professional assistance of outsourcing your book? By working with a trusted company that will be your partner in success. A company that can guarantee you best-seller status. A company called LEADERS PRESS

Before we keep exploring the process of outsourcing, let’s see how long it takes to write a book if you were to self-publish.

Word Count

Generally speaking, the timeframe largely depends on how much time the author dedicates to the actual writing process.

Here is a quick guide to the timing based on word count:

30,000 – 60,000 words: 1000 words/day = 30 – 60 days or 1 – 2 months

60,000 – 120,000 words: 1000 words/day = 60 – 120 days or 2 – 4 months

120,000 – 180,000 words: 1000 words/day = 120 – 180 days or 4 – 6 months

Looking at the numbers, if you write at least 1000 usable words per day, you can finish your manuscript in 2 to 6 months. However, there are other factors that you need to consider such as rewriting drafts, possible changes in your outline, and editing.

Of course, not everyone has the time to write 1000 words per day or the luxury to write on a daily basis.

How Much Time Should I Spend on Writing a Book?

Let us look at a more feasible breakdown for writing a book on a busy schedule. 

30,000 – 60,000 words: 500 words/day, 3 times a week = 20 – 40 weeks or 5 to 10 months

60,000 – 120,000 words: 500 words/day, 3 times a week = 40 – 80 weeks or 10 to 20 months

120,000 – 180,000 words: 500 words/day, 3 times a week = 80 – 120 weeks or 20 to 30 months

If you commit to writing 1500 words per week, it could take you around 20 months to almost 2 years to finish your manuscript, depending on your target word count.

If you are unfamiliar with book length and ideal word count, let’s look at different types of books with varying numbers of pages.

How long does it take to write a 100-page book?

A 100-page book typically has 30,000 words. Following the guide above, you can finish a manuscript in about 5 months. 

How long does it take to write a 200-page book?

You may assume the answer is just twice the length it takes to write a 100-page book since a 200-page book has around 50,000 to 60,000 words. 

However, as your number of target words increases, you need more content, which means more ideas, and more hours spent, which can be exhausting. After writing for a couple of months, you may encounter roadblocks such as writer’s block or other scheduling constraints.

So instead of just taking 10 months to complete your book, it may take 12 or more due to unforeseeable delays. 

How long does it take to write a book with 300 pages or more?

With 300 or more pages, if you can write at least 500 words per session 3 times a week, you can finish a manuscript in 15 months. This means in 15 months, you will have written 90,000 words. 

Usually, memoirs and autobiographies tend to have this kind of word count, similar to that of novels. For a first time author, this will be quite a commitment.

You can look at the numbers all you want, but at the end of the day, your top priority should be quality. How long it takes to write a book should depend on more than your target schedule. Take the time to get the best possible quality, regardless of timeline. It is your name and reputation at stake, after all!

Strategies on How to Write a Book and Hit your Target

If you want to write a book in a more manageable timeframe, here are some tips from Leaders Press:

#1 – Ask Yourself Why you Want to Write a Book

The hardest part of writing is looking at a blank page. Before even writing an outline and scheduling your first session, reflect on why you want to write a book. If you are not clear on your goals, it will be difficult to prioritize tasks later on.

  • Determine your goal. Are you writing a book to share your story to the world, or are you writing it to grow your business?
  • Find out what you want to accomplish. Do you want to capture leads or do you want to be a best-seller?
  • Identify your purpose. Do you want to build your authority and credibility? Do you want the book to be your business card? Do you want to get more speaking gigs?
  • Be honest with your obstacles. What are your current barriers in writing your manuscript?

#2 – Say No to Arbitrary Due Dates

Create realistic targets and deadlines for yourself. How much time can you allot per writing session? How many days per week and which days can you commit? 

Do not pressure yourself and make sure your targets do not clash with your other commitments and tasks.

Deadlines are meant to help you get closer to your goal of finishing your manuscript. Be honest with your expectations and do not make writing a book a tedious job for yourself. It should be an enjoyable time for you! 

We are most creative when we are relaxed. Ideas from high pressure situations may do wonders in the office, but not in your writing process.

#3 – Look at Possible Competing Titles

Look at current best-sellers in the same target niche or audience. Spend some time reading their books to get more insight. Align those ideas with your own and visualize how you want your story to be told. 

This may seem counterintuitive but reading the works of other authors can help you get a fresh perspective and assist you with writing more robust content. Plus, research is one good way of overcoming writer’s block.

#4 – Organize Details into Tasks

In order to write a book in a seamless fashion, establish clear priorities before starting the writing process. How long it takes to write your book highly depends on how you prioritize the details of your overall writing process. 

Turn these details into tasks. You can use a simple spreadsheet or even a project management tool that will help you prioritize. Other than setting your writing schedule, you need to consider writing your outline, determine how often you need to review drafts, spend time for research, and many other factors that affect the overall writing process.

#5 – Find a Support Group

You do not need to do this alone! At the very least, find an accountability partner—someone who can check up with you every now and then to see if you are hitting your goals. 

Sometimes, you may also need some fresh eyes to help review your drafts. Or maybe you just need a change in perspective in case you hit a wall. 

There are groups and forums you can join that allow you to stay anonymous if you are not comfortable letting everyone know you are currently writing a book.

So how long does it take to write a book? The answer is not as simple as entering numbers into a spreadsheet or setting up a schedule in a project management tool. There is a creative process involved and numerous factors to consider.

What if I Don’t Have the Luxury of Time?

Most business leaders and entrepreneurs have jam-packed schedules; dedicating even one hour daily for writing is next to impossible.

If you want to write a book and get published, you should also aim for best-seller status. Your book is your business card. 

But what if you do not have the luxury of time? How long will it take to write your book? How long will it take to write a book that can hit best-seller status?

There is another option for you. As we mentioned earlier, you can outsource.

Leaders Press can help you write your book! 

Outsourcing will get your book written without compromising the quality while also hitting your target date for publishing.

Indeed, self-publishing is quite an achievement but to what end? Are there guarantees that your book will achieve best-seller status when your book goes live? 

Imagine spending a year or 2 doing everything by yourself and, at the end of it all, you write a book that no one reads.

Or you can become a best-selling author, charge very high speaking fees (if you’re on the speaking circuit), and have a book you can be proud of. We guarantee that at Leaders Press.

Become a Best-Selling Author

Get published in a win-win-win fashion. Our team will work with you, write your book under your supervision, and deliver that book to you in 6 to 12 months. After all that, Leaders Press will get you to best-seller status.

This is where you can be next year. 

So how long does it take to write a book? Leaders Press can help you write a best-selling book in a year or less. 

Want to make this happen? Click here to start your journey toward being a best-selling author!

How to Begin a Book

How to Begin a Book

You have finally decided to share that idea you’ve had for ages with the world! Congratulations! 

Everyone has a story to tell. Most business leaders and entrepreneurs have valuable stories the world deserves to hear.

Deciding to write a book, however, can be intimidating, especially if it is your first time.

How do you begin? 

This question can be paralyzing. You have this great inspirational message, and there is no one better to bring your vision to an audience than you. The truth is, the weight of the idea itself can be your primary hindrance in beginning the writing process.

That’s okay! What you are feeling is normal.

Perhaps you’re thinking, what if nobody gets to read that book? What if the book ends up terrible? What if, after months of hard work, no one wants to read your story? 

What you are feeling is natural. Even published authors feel anxiety when working on a new project. We all dwell in that uncertainty. To begin the process of writing a book, publishing it, and presenting it to a global audience can be intimidating even for executives who are fearless in the boardroom.

Rather than thinking about what could go wrong, think of the value that your book will bring the world (or your industry). Think of the opportunities for success your audience will discover. Focus on that and you can never go wrong.

Of course, it’s easier said than done. Aside from the right attitude, strategy is imperative.

We can help you with that!

Yes, beginning a book is daunting. A blank page intimidates—many authors have struggled with penning the first paragraph, let alone the first chapter.

“Where do I begin?”

“What if my first line is boring?”

“Is there a foolproof method for writing the first paragraph?”

These are questions first-time authors ask themselves. 

But you know what? You don’t have to feel that way.

Wondering how to begin a book when you’ve never written one before? Leaders Press can give you expert help on that! 

It takes five steps to begin writing your masterpiece. So are you ready to be an author? 

1.       A Safe Workspace

What does a safe space mean? We are not talking about physical safety so much as a place where you can be confident and free of distractions. A place where you can be comfortable.

It is a designated place where you can be yourself, reflect, pour out your thoughts and let words flow out like endless rain into a paper cup. You can tell my safe workspace includes the Beatles on Spotify.

Your Workstation

Sitting too much can be detrimental to your health, but you can’t stand the whole time you are writing. Standing and taking breaks from sitting can be good for your physical health and your overall concentration. It wouldn’t hurt to stretch those legs while you are in the zone, right?

Whether you use a standing desk, a movable desk, or a motorized adjustable desk, this health-boosting mobile option can help increase your productivity.

How about chairs? Gaming chair with high-density foam, ergonomic chair with mesh for lumbar support, or perhaps an old-fashioned folding chair? The bottom line is, whichever seat makes you feel at ease will be the best for your writing

We highly recommend making sure your desk area is always decluttered. Clutter can be incredibly distracting. The chaos creates discomfort. Dedicate some time to maintaining a workspace that puts your mind at ease.

Lighting

Lighting affects productivity. Bright lights may strain your eyes. On the other hand, dim lights can make you want to doze off instead of write. Warm lighting creates a sense of relaxation. Mid-toned lighting helps you stay alert. Natural light works best but is limited to daytime. 

Find out which lighting works best for your creativity.

Sound

Sound can stimulate as well as distract. Find a serene spot where you can focus. If your options are limited, wear noise-canceling headphones to block out the noise. Maybe play some relaxing tunes while you’re at it. Just not the Beatles, though. I called dibs. 

Scent

Scent also influences productivity. Certain fragrances uplift mood and enhance performance. Aromatherapy has existed for thousands of years. Diffusing essential oils can help you relax and write. Certain scents can alleviate stress and even trigger creativity.  

Medium

The final, most crucial part of your writing workspace is what you will actually write on. Do you write on a laptop or a desktop? Do you go lo-fi with a typewriter or old school with a journal and pen? It is up to you. Once you start writing your book, we highly suggest that you stick to one medium.

2.       Find Similar Titles

Now that you have a comfy spot to write your book, it is time for research. You may have an idea of what you want to write about, but not how you want to structure it. It can help to purchase several titles that you think are in a similar niche or are targeting the same audience as your future book. Before you write your book, study how other authors wrote theirs. Revisit some of your favorite books, or check out the best sellers on Amazon or USA Today.

When reading these materials, note the style of writing, the structure, the font, the book cover—anything that can help you visualize your book once it’s published. 

Do not get intimidated when you read content from other authors. You may ask yourself: “Can I write as well as these people did?” 

Keep in mind the distinct possibility that these authors hired a publishing company to help them write their book. Either way, they started right where you are now. 

3.       Create an Outline

Have you ever wondered how your favorite TV show lasted more than three seasons? Do you think the writers created the story arc over a single cup of coffee at Starbucks? Do you think the showrunners simply tried to wing the plot every episode?

No. For most shows, the ending is determined before the pilot is even filmed.  

Did you know that the same applies to business books? The secret is to begin with what your high school teacher taught you about how to write term papers. Start with an outline.

You don’t start a book by simply putting pen to paper. You start with a framework and a target word count. Your word count will determine how many pages your book will be and your outline is the backbone of your story.

In your outline, you have to headline each chapter, each point, and idea. You may be thinking: “That sounds like the whole book?” It’s vital, but your outline is not the same as your book. 

Think of your outline as a roadmap. That roadmap will determine how your readers will experience each chapter.

How does this help you write a book? For starters, outlining organizes your thoughts so you can figure out where to start.

Without an outline, it will be extremely difficult to pen those first lines. Why? Because you have a ton of ideas occupying your mind and you won’t know which idea to share first.

With an outline, you can design the chronology of these ideas and make sure you remember the important ones. 

The best way to begin your outline is by listing your ideas. They don’t have to make sense yet. Just brainstorm all the topics you can think of without regard to how the outline will come out. Once you have all of these topics, try grouping similar ones and think of a central topic tying those ideas together.

Next, try arranging these central topics chronologically, based on how you want your readers to take their journey. Do not second guess yourself. Once you finish the outline, you can sleep on it.

Then, when you are fully rested, take a look at your outline again. 

Your outline doesn’t have to be absolute. You can make changes along the way. What’s important is that you have developed a working outline and, most importantly, a starting point.

4.       Plot your Schedule

Don’t get too excited yet. Before you begin to write your book, create a writing plan. You need a schedule. Based on your target word count, think of how many words you can write per session. From there, you can determine how many writing sessions you need.

Let’s say you are writing a hundred-page book. One hundred pages roughly amounts to 30,000 words. If your target is 500 words per session, that means you should have around sixty writing sessions.

Then determine how frequently you can write each week. Be realistic. As a business leader, time is a luxury. So ask yourself, is it realistic to schedule at least one writing session every week? 

Once you have committed to your number of writing sessions per week, estimate how many months it will take you to finish your book.

Continuing with our example, if you need sixty sessions to finish your book, and you can write three times a week, then it will take you twenty weeks to reach your goal.

This means you need to plot your schedule on a five-month calendar.

Do not make arbitrary goals. If you can only write once a week, so be it. What’s important is for you to develop a writing plan you can stick to. 

5.       Begin to Write

Finally, here we are. D-day. You have set up your safe writing environment, done your due diligence in researching similar titles, crafted a detailed outline, and plotted your schedule.

Now focus on that first chapter. You will be surprised how useful your outline is. Look at the first item of chapter one, and write your first sentence. 

This is how to begin a book. Make this positive—your overall journey will be quicker because you took these steps first.

Finishing your Manuscript

After months, you are finally done writing. With your manuscript in hand, the next step is to edit it yourself or hire a professional book editor. 

For your book cover, you can use drag and drop graphic design tools like Canva or you can hire a graphic artist.

Finally, you are all set! You can publish your book on platforms like Kindle Direct Publishing or Barnes & Noble Press. If you do not want to self-publish, you can pitch your book directly to publishers or hire a literary agent to represent your book.

You’ve poured your heart and soul into this book and your dream is to make it a best-seller. If you need a little help, turn to experts like Leaders Press and consult on how your book can become a best-seller on Amazon or according to USA Today.

And even if your book idea is still in the idea stage, we can help. 

Your future is at hand.  Can you picture yourself one year from now having a best-seller as your calling card? Let’s talk.