So… you want to write a book

You’ve been thinking about it on and off for a long time. A few times you’ve found a friend or family member say ‘you should write a book!’ and you’ve liked the idea, but never acted on it. You’ve occasionally thought about what you might say, or even what to call it. You like the concept of introducing yourself as an author. But you always think ‘one day’ rather than ‘now’. Yeah writing a book sounds great, but you’re already busy, you don’t know anything about getting published and there’s still plenty of time, right?

Did you know, according to the New York Times 81% of people asked wanted to write a book, but only 1% actually did?

Will you be part of the 1%? What’s stopping you from starting to write today? If you’re being held back because you feel overwhelmed at the idea. Perhaps you feel some imposter syndrome – who are you to write a book? What do you know about writing? Maybe you feel that your ideas have already be told or because you simply have no idea where to start, it’s totally understandable! And I’m here to help. Firstly, I’d like to say that it’s totally normal to feel overwhelmed at times and imposter syndrome happens to us all, even seasoned writers. There are also a million different books out there with the exact same plot – but no one tells a story in exactly the same way. Your unique take deserves to be told. Below you’ll find some TOP TIPS to getting started writing your book. Ask yourself these questions…

  • Am I writing fiction (a made up story) or non fiction (factual, based on real events)?
  • Why do I want to write a book? (let your passion/motivation guide you)
  • Do I already have an idea? (write it down!)
  • Which authors inspire you? (this can be any kind of book)

Once you’ve asked these questions – remember to give them plenty of thought, don’t rush for the easiest answer – you can then give these exercises below a go. The hardest part is always getting started. A blank page can be debilitating. Overcoming that obstacle is vital. Getting past that first sentence makes writing a full book all the more achievable. You can edit a page of rubbish prose. You can change your ideas completely, throw out what you’ve done and start again – but you can’t improve on something that doesn’t exist. This writing doesn’t need to be seen by anyone but you, and you WILL improve with every sentence you write.

  1. Try some free writing. Take a pen and some paper and just write – it doesn’t matter what you say, it can be a story, your shopping list, rambling incoherent words. The point is getting it out of your head and onto the page. It frees up your creative muscles and gets rid of that blank page.
  2. Use some writing prompts! Search the term on Google or Pinterest, pick 2 or 3 prompts that you find interesting and give it a go. Write a little based on the prompt – it can be just a paragraph, a short story, recounting personal experience or knowledge.
  3. Read some traditional fairy tales or fables (if you’re writing non-fiction find a very short non-fic book!) Pay attention to how they play out. What are the beats of the story, the main events. Make notes on the main parts: CHARACTER, PLOT, SETTING.

Remember that if you enjoy doing it, that’s the most important thing! Your writing can always improve. Your understanding of story structure. What makes a good tale and holds people’s interests.

If you’d like more support in starting this journey to author-dom then hop on a call with me! I’m offering free half-hour calls to anyone looking to get some advice or feedback on their writing. The group programme Write. Publish. Impact. is currently open for a new intake, if you’re serious about writing that book and achieving that dream then this is for you! A 3 month intensive programme of weekly modules to teach you everything you need to know to go from IDEA to PUBLISHED AUTHOR taught by S. M. Mitchell Author and Little Crow Marketing, along with guest experts from across the industry. Over the course of this programme, we take your hand to guide you through the process of getting into the right mind-set, writing your story, getting it ready to pitch, your publishing options and how to market it. You’ll also get access to a multitude of resources including lifetime access to the exclusive W.P.I. community, workbooks, mini trainings, writing sprints, guest talks, promotion opportunities & support from the experts and your fellow writers. Doing this course is the first step to helping you realise your dream of writing your story. You will always be part of our online and email community for continued support, encouragement, useful tips and connections. And I’m always at the end of a phone or email or message if you want to run something by me or get guidance. Book a call today to discuss if this programme is right for you!

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