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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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…