You know you need to do it.
It’s been on your to-do list for years.
Your business coach has told you over and over again that this is the year you have to get your book in print.
So…where is it?
It’s not that you don’t recognize the benefits, or that you don’t want to put “published author” on your resume. It’s just…a struggle. You’re probably resisting for the same reasons many other professionals resist writing. So which of these is you? “I just don’t have time.” I get it. You’re busy. I’m busy. We’re all busy. But we’re talking about growing your business. Getting clients. Bringing in cash. Lack of time just isn’t a good excuse.
So, rather than whining about lack of time, you need to prioritize your time to ensure there’s you can get to the important things, like writing your book. Perhaps that means getting up 30 minutes early every morning for a focused (albeit rather short) writing stint. Or turning off the television after dinner so you can write. Or maybe even setting aside a whole weekend to get your first draft done. One of the things I’ve discovered after writing 11 books for myself and my clients, including 6 best-sellers (and that’s just the ones in my own name!) is that you can actually get a 100-page book done—80% of the way to publication—over the course of a single weekend if you know what you’re doing.
The point is, you have to make this a priority. Block out the time in your calendar, and treat that time as sacred. Pretend it’s an appointment with your most important client, and do not allow anything to get in the way of keeping it.
“But I can’t write.” It’s funny how many people will tell you they can’t write; yet when you look at their blogs, there are hundreds of posts. What “I can’t write” often means is actually, “I don’t like to write.”
Luckily, you have plenty of options for overcoming this particular hurdle. You could hire a ghostwriter. Repurpose your blog posts into a book (that’s how Darren Rowse of Problogger.net wrote Problogger, one of the bestselling books about blogging of all time).
If you’re someone who prefers to talk, rather than write (and let’s face it, many of us do) then you could speak your book and then have it transcribed.
“But I can’t organize a long project like a book.” Ok, so you’re great with individual blog posts or articles, and you don’t mind writing them, but every time you sit down to write an entire book you end up staring at your blank screen like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car.
Well, the fact is if you can write a blog post, you can write a book. In fact, you can write a whole series of books. Ultimately, it’s the same process: put words into sentences, put sentences into paragraphs, repeat until done.
OK, I may be grossly oversimplifying, but if you really feel you can’t manage a long project, an outline is going to be your best friend. Start with a broad overview of your book, break it down into sections, then break each section into chapters. If you’re a mind mapper grab some big sheets of paper. If you’re not then get a word processor and write bullet points. However you prefer to do your planning, make notes about the points you’ll cover in each chapter, and then it’s just a matter of filling in the blanks. That’s how I was able to write my last book—62,000 words, or about 280 pages—in a week.
There are dozens of reasons to write a book. It will establish your expertise, grow your audience, and solidify your message. But none of that will happen if you don’t actually write it. So it’s time to get over your hurdles—and yourself—and get ‘er done.