Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Writing Your Book: 5 Ideas to start you off

If you see writing a book as a major task, then you’re not alone. Few business people attempt it even when they think there are benefits to be gained.  It’s one of those tasks that will be done, ’When I have time.’

What if instead of it being a major undertaking you can write it as you write things you're going to do anyway.

Transform it into a game.  Every time you write something, think about it as another five hundred or a thousand words towards the book.  A thousand words sound like a lot?  Breaks down to less than 4 sides of A4.
Here are 5 ideas on what you can use to build up your book... once you have an idea of what you want your book to cover.

How to write blog entries with a purpose
You’re already writing these on a regular basis aren’t you? If not then you should make it a priority because it works for you on two levels. It provides interesting material to send to your contacts and search engines love content. CONTENT IS KING.

Think about constructing your blogs around themes that would provide section or chapter headings for a book.

What's the point of Frequently Asked Questions?

Most websites have sections based around this theme. Sometimes they’re called other things but offer information that people search for on a regular basis. In your business you’ll have something that covers all the basic information. It’s the type of topic often covered in offline brochures.

Adapt the contents of your basic information into a short book. A book carries more weight with readers than does a brochure, no matter how substantial.

 How to manuals
These can be an extension of or an alternative to the FAQ segment. They need to be easy to read and understand for the reader. Comprehensive but not intimidating.

All businesses contain large amounts of information that often goes to waste because it’s in jargon form or seen as ‘internal’ documents.  Sharing how you produce your products or services can make a connection with prospective clients or purchasers.

You may well find that there's enough information buried away in your FAQ answers to create a down to earth manual appealing to your product user who wants and easy to read but more in depth help guide than what's on the product.
Depending on the type of writing you do, or your prospective audience, journal entries you make anyway can form the foundation of a book.

Many books by journalists have started life as regular column entries which at a later date have been turned into books. If you think that a column may be 250-500 words per entry, over the course of a year you may have written between 20-25,000 words. More than enough for a 100 page small book especially when you add in a foreword, an introductory and closing chapter.

 Social media entries
Already this has been done. Maybe you think it’s stupid but if you accept that a book can be any size you want it to be these days and you can produce as few or as many copies as you want then it becomes less stupid.

If you find writing a challenge, follow these two guiding principles:
The more you write the better you'll write
Get smarter about how many times you can use a piece of writing.

Any book can enhance your reputation as an expert, speaker, business consultant or whatever you want it to be. Focus on how it can fit into your marketing strategy. . . before you begin to write it. Check out what you've already written you can include.

Then create your unique take on the book.

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