Have you thought you would love to write a book and help people from all around the world solve their issues? You might be a psychologist, a therapist, a healer, a coach, or generally a self development expert, and you understand that the world needs your knowledge. Admit it, you definitely have thought about it. Either way, it is nothing to brag, or to try to pretend modesty about. Every Self Development professional dreams of writing their own self-help books. You had been impressed by other people’s writings before you decided to walk the path of helping the ones who are in need, and now it is your time to do the same: help, heal, coach and write… but so many people never manage to finish a single book even though they have so many great ideas… why is that so? And why haven’t you already written and published your first book?
Here are some of the greatest excuses that most “aspiring authors” use for not having written a book yet:
- Writing takes too much time and I am already too busy
- I am not a writer, I don’t write well
- A proper book is more than 250 pages and it analyzes a subject from all perspectives… this is a really tough project.
- Books need to be printed and this costs a lot.
- It is extremely difficult to be approved by a proper publishing house and move forward in publishing your book, so, why should I start writing anyway?
- You need to be a real – established for years- authority in order to dare and write a book on any subject.
Do you find yourself procrastinating on writing your own self-help book just because of one or more of the above reasons? If yes, keep on reading, as these misunderstandings are nothing but unquestioned myths! So, let me take those myths one by one in order to totally bust them!
1. Writing takes too much time and I am already too busy:
There are many ways and tricks on how to write a nonfiction book, and actually the best sellers have been written within less than a week! Oh yes, you heard me correct. You might say that I am saying nonsense, but I am not. I myself have already written 3 books each in less than 3 weeks in 2 different languages.
2. I am not a writer, I don’t write well.
Probably that is true. I understand. If you learned how to write in school, it is obvious that you have been drained from spontaneity and inspiration. Here is what I mean: you sit down to write and you think “how should I start properly the paragraph…” then you think “let me check, does my phrase have a noun, a verb etc?… no-no, this is not the way you write properly. The best way to write is to write as if you talk to a specific person – your target reader. I have found that there are two ways to write as if you talk (if you make a quick research you will see all bestsellers are the ones whose writing style is the “casual chatting style”) you either:
Learn blind typing and start writing without really thinking a lot. Also, do not review what you have written – not until you have finished the entire book (or at least the entire chapter)– yes, that’s the way, or
You get a friend, give him a bunch of questions (titles of your chapters) with bulletins (starting of your paragraphs) and you record the entire conversation. Keep chatting with your friend for more than 2 hours. Then transcript your recording and edit it in a way that it looks a little more like a book than a totally casual chat (cut off the aaagh… eeee… etc.) – in case you have no time on doing all this transcript and edit, pay someone to do it for you. It won’t cost you a lot.
3. A proper book is more than 250 pages and it analyzes a subject from all perspectives… this is a really tough project.
Oh really? Do you really believe that true bestsellers are PHD treatises? Of course not! Nobody cares to read such a big and with so wide information book. People are searching for solutions to their problems. This is why, if you go and check to Amazon.com you will see in the nonfiction area books entitled as “how to stop smoking” “how to say no” “how to smile more” “how to lose weight from your belly” etc. one problem, one solution each time. These are the books everyday people buy. So, before starting writing your book, answer this question: What do you want more? To help your audience, or to get your PHD colleagues’ congratulations? If you are dedicated in helping people in need, you will write in simple language and about one problem at a time. Really – One problem at a time. Otherwise, your readers will get overwhelmed with useless information and their problem won’t be solved. If you want to find out how to know what your best prospect clients (or patients) want to read about, check this article: “3 tricks to find out fast what your audience needs to read about”
4. Books need to be printed and this costs a lot.
We live in the digital era. In our days, EVERYBODY has their own laptop, tablet, smartphone and many of us own a Kindle device as well. Most magazine publications have already stopped printing and they are only posting online. In Amazon.com more than 60% of the books that are sold are digital. So, why do you still believe that you need your book to be printed? Do you feel it is more prestigious? Ok, you may promote your work digitally, and you can print some copies “in demand”. So every time a buyer wants a printed copy you can have one and at the same time you will be rest assured that your “$ 5.000 cost copies” won’t lie in your basement or garage for ever.
5. It is extremely difficult to be approved by a proper publishing house and move forward in publishing your book, so, why should I start writing anyway?
This is true. Nowadays, it is extremely difficult to approach a publishing house and get reviewed, and get approved, and then be published… but who cares to be published by “big names publishing houses” anymore? There are many disadvantages in this strategy, and here are just a few:
- In order to approach properly a publishing house you need a lot of “inside secrets” that it will take you ages to find out unless you manage to get an agent, to pay a lot for his services, and still not be sure that you will have positive results.
- Once you are approved, you need to show many times your manuscript and they will edit your piece of art in such a way that it will sound a lot more like “the editor’s ideas” than your own heart and soul – who would want that?
- Finally, you are published. Let me tell you something that you might already know: you are not going to get the money. Nope. If you are lucky, you will get between 15% – 20% of the profits, after the books have been sold… and sometimes, they expect you to pay all the expenses… ah… that doesn’t sound so fair, does it?
- Last but not least, they will do nothing to promote your creation. Oh, did you think that they would do all the marketing? No, they won’t. It is in the contract. They expect YOU to do all the marketing. YOU will have to find where you will do the presentations, YOU will find radio shows to speak about your book, YOU will do all the PR…
After all this explanation, does it really seem a fair deal to go publish traditionally? Of course not. But here is what I suggest (and actually a lot of best selling authors suggest the same): Self Publish! Yes, why not? All you need to do is:
- Write your book,
- Give it for editing,
- Find a freelancer graphic designer to create the cover and the interior
- Transfer your “word” document into a “mobi” one for Kindle-Amazon or PDF for all devices
- Create a web site just for your book (sales page, opt in page, your bio and blog)
- Set up a Facebook page or FB group for the social media promotion (you may use more social media strategies if you are really dedicated to hardcore promotion such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube etc.)
- Set up a PayPal account in order to receive payments and add PayPal buttons on your website
- Promote it through Affiliate professionals and JV partners and through any other way you find convenient to your style.
It might sound a little overwhelming, but believe me it is a lot simpler than traditional publishing, and it should also be a lot cheaper. But still, if you can’t cope with all the bits and pieces as listed above, go to my website http://www.succeedyourgoals.com to see if any of our “self publishing packages” fits to your needs and budget.
6. You need to be a real -established for years- authority in order to dare and write a book on any self development subject
Actually, the other way round is the case: In order to be accepted publicly as a real Authority in your field you need to have written and published (or self published) a book of yours. After all, why they call those people who write books “Authors”? Think about it. Would you ever question a professional’s expertise if you read their book and found that their ideas are really good? Of course not. Most people never question a professional’s expertise even if they don’t read a word from their books. They will tell you “Of course they know their field perfectly. They have written an entire book!” But if a Psychologist, Therapist or Coach has nothing to show as writing, not even articles, would you trust them? Probably not. You would first want to find out more about them and to hear testimonials from people you already know and appreciate…
So to sum up, writing a non fiction book is your most important marketing task, because this is what will set you in the market as the trustworthy authority. You should actually have already started working on it, because it is totally doable and easy for the reasons below:
- You don’t need extra time; less than a week is more than enough for you to have a proper published e-book.
- You don’t need to be a writer, you may record your ideas while speaking and then give it for transcription and edit.
- You don’t need to write more than a 60 page A5 size book. This is approximately a 3 hours of talking (recorded) and no one need to read more than that in order to get an idea on how to solve a specific problem. If you have the ability to help people solve more problems, then celebrate: you may write even more books. This is how you hear about best selling authors who have already written 60 or more books.
- You don’t need money to print the book. Nowadays, most people read books and magazines from their digital devices, whether they are smartphones, tablets, laptops or Kindle by Amazon.
- You don’t need to be enlightened or already established as a guru. You may write from personal experience or through great research.
- Last but not least, you don’t have to be approved by anyone from any publishing house. You can self publish digitally, and print on demand.
Please, leave your comments. Let’s start a conversation on this subject!
Here are some of my own Books: Written by Vassia Sarri…