Why You Should Write a Book
Episode #10 of the course How to build a strong writing habit by Frank McKinley
You’ve spent the last 10 days learning how to build a strong writing habit. I hope you’re putting what you learn into daily practice!
You build habits with action. While education and knowledge represent power, it’s worthless if you don’t apply it.
How Far You Go Is up to You
If you’re committed to building a strong writing habit, the next logical step is to take on something big. If people get to know you as a writer, they’ll start asking, “Are you working on a book?”
You may as well tell them yes!
Right now a book may seem impossible. That’s okay! Build up a portfolio and a reputation first. Then your book will be easier to write.
Boiling It Down to the Basics
Why should you write a book anyway?
First, a book gives you a chance to do a deep dive into your topic. It’s a place where you can share what you’ve learned, and how it all fits together. And it’s a pretty sweet credibility builder.
Second, people consider authors experts. You may not feel like one, but a book makes you look like one. It’s like having someone else say, “That person really knows their stuff.” It also gives you something to promote as you share your wisdom on popular podcasts, blogs, and writing platforms.
Third, finishing a book will give you the confidence to try even bigger things. If you can get through a project that big, you can get through most anything!
How do you write a book?
Here’s a very basic writing plan that works well:
1. Pick a topic that people ask you about.
2. Write down 10-15 questions.
3. Answer one question per chapter.
Arrange the chapters in a way that makes sense. Ask someone with experience to edit your manuscript. Polish it enough so it looks professional.
What if you’re writing a story? Here’s a basic outline for that, inspired by the Hero’s Journey:
1. Show the hero’s everyday world
2. The hero receives a call to adventure
3. The hero resists the call
4. A mentor helps the hero move forward
5. The hero accepts the call
6. The hero is tested
7. The ultimate conflict
8. The hero claims a reward
9. Return to the everyday world
To summarize, the main character experiences personal growth in the toughest way imaginable. Hopefully, you inspire readers to work through their own challenges!
When you’re done, launch it to the world!
Putting It All Together
Here’s a one-sentence summary of each lesson:
1. You write more when you believe you’re a writer.
2. Writer’s block can be beaten by lowering your standards.
3. The key to building a writing habit is setting a time and place each day, and sticking with it.
4. You focus by choosing what to pay attention to.
5. Giving up perfection will set your writing free.
6. Ideas are everywhere you look.
7. Your writing stands out when you put yourself into it.
8. You share because you have something important to say.
9. Growth comes by expanding your boundaries.
10. You should write a book because it’s the next logical step on a growing writer’s journey.
Take these steps at your own pace. Write as often as you can. Learn from your struggles. Over time, you can make all your writing dreams come true!
Congratulations! You now have all the tools you need to build a strong writing habit that will serve you the rest of your life.
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book On Novel Writing You’ll Ever Need by Jessica Brody
Other courses by Frank McKinley
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