un cours en miracles on Top Vacation Destinations by Booking Online, I was speaking to a colleague in a different industry who was considering writing a book. She asked me if I could give her some tips as an expert. I admit that I had never thought of myself that way before and I was somewhat taken aback.
After being recovering somewhat, I realized two things.
First, I really hate the word expert when applied to a writer. After all, every book is a new adventure both for the reader and for the author. Even after a half-dozen or so books, (real books not the extended report types that masquerade as eBooks), I realize that I’m still not comfortable with the concept of being an expert writer.
The second thing I realized was that as a newly promoted “expert” (must buff my fingernails a little more) I keep forgetting some of the things I’ve learned. Even as a so-called expert, there are some tips that I need to remember.
So in this article, I’m going to explain two tips that I believe are critical even for the expert to remember.
1. Follow the system
As a new writer, you will hear the command “use a system when writing a book”. You’ll hear in a million different ways from a hundred different writers. Some of whom sell a real system for writing a book and some of whom — well, my mother taught me to say nothing about those people. A system must help you to start, write and finish your book. Or it isn’t of much use. Cool. That’s great advice for a new writer.
But what about us experts?
Your first book, you may be able to bull through without a system. Or, you may be smart and learn a system before you try. Your second and third books, you’ll most likely use the system. And probably improve it. Or more correctly, make it your own. But somewhere around the fourth or fifth book, an interesting phenomenon takes place. Trainers know it as the “Expert Phenomena” or “Sliding into the abyss”. You see you’ll start believing you are better than your system and you’ll stop using it. Or at least cut back. The result is that the system won’t give you the result you are expecting. In short, your book will take longer to write and will be much harder to write. All because you got lazy.
It’s a normal problem. Expect it. But don’t fall prey to it. Learn to recognize the signs and then force yourself to follow the system.
2. Selling your book begins before you write
When writing a book, there is a tendency to fall in love with the idea behind the book. It’s the writing and the idea that you are in love with. It’s the writing of a book and the concept that drive you.
Unfortunately, that drive doesn’t affect the reader.
A book that languishes on the shelves — electronic or physical — is a sad and lonely thing. And a waste of the writer’s time. It doesn’t matter how much you love your book or the idea behind your book. What matters is the reader’s desire to read that book. Creating that desire begins even before you design the book. And it continues long after you finish the final edit. (And the formatting if you are self-publishing).
In short, you need to develop a marketing plan — including verification of a market — before you begin to write. And you need to be prepared to market that book after you’ve written it. That can mean internet traffic generation or it can mean book releases and signings. However you do it; it will take time and energy. And you need to include that effort in the allowance for writing a book.