“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Preparation Is EVERYTHING
How much time do you really need to write a book? If you enjoy writing and write regularly now, you can likely write a 50,000-word book in two or three months (assuming your schedule is fairly open for those months). If you don’t particularly enjoy writing (AKA you see it as a task vs. something you look forward to) and/or don’t write regularly, it might take longer to reach the point where you’re consistently producing larger word counts. The key to book writing is to have a plan BEFORE you start writing. This is the process my coaching clients successfully use (and is the process I used to write each of my three books). This process includes figuring out a research plan as well as seeing what content you have already that can be repurposed. With your research is out of the way and an outline (even a rough one, or an organized brain dump), and all you need to do is write new text, the writing process generally goes smoothly. (A caveat: Writer’s block and less-than-productive days can still happen. But with a plan all things are manageable.)
Identify Your Non-Negotiables
Let me walk you through an example. If you want to publish a book about productivity and goal-setting, you shouldn’t plan to finish writing in September. Entrepreneurs start thinking about planning for the following year in November! So your book needs to be available for purchase then, not just written. Rather, you’ll want to finish the writing phase early in the summer. That allows time for the post-writing but pre-publication tasks like editing and design. Building out a time line, based on non-negotiables already on your calendar, allows you to see how your book will actually get written —and then published.
What do I mean by non-negotiables? I mean those things that are already on your calendar, such another launch, whether it’s a course or a new service offering. Or your family vacation, which is already booked and paid for. Or a conference where you’re speaking. Or a volunteer commitment. Prioritize those activities and events; they’re NON-NEGOTIABLE. Build your writing and marketing schedule around them, not the other way around.
Written ≠ Finished
Unlike a course or other new service/product offering, which can be released once you’re finished, a book is different. Once the writing is done, your work isn’t finished. There are several stages left before your book can be released (revising, editing, formatting), and then there’s the actual publishing and marketing of the book.
Repurposing for the Win
With a plan in place, writing and publishing a book this year is absolutely possible! If it seems daunting and you’re thinking that there’s no way you could do it, I’ve created a list of content you already have that you can repurpose to kickstart your manuscript (or at least get your wheels turning). Snag it here. And this is just the beginning. Let me know in the comments what else you have to repurpose.
If writing a book to help grow your business is part of your 2018 plan, I’d love to talk with you about your project! Schedule a complimentary Book Brainstorm Session today.