13 Feb Do you have a book in you?
Do you have a book in you? A story that you feel you must tell or thoughts that you’re scribbling on bits of paper here and there and ‘one day’ you’ll turn them into a book? [Tweet “Is writing a book on your ‘bucket list’ or do you have other mountains to climb? “] What’s on your bucket list? (Something you want to do, see or experience before you die?) Click here to check out my Goals, Resolutions & Bucket List board on Pinterest.
I always knew/thought that I would write a book one day. Click here to see my campaign on Kickstarter for my Parenting book that has 2 days left!
A few years ago, after doing my Masters in Environmental Education, I thought it was going to be an ‘eco’ type book. Then I had kids… And I just couldn’t help myself. Thoughts were swimming around in my head. Questions were being raised and answers sought. Not so much about ‘how do you settle a baby to sleep’ or ‘when do you start feeding solids’ but more around ‘are other people blown away by how hard this parenting thing is? Awesome but tough!”. So I started writing. And as soon as I’d said it out loud… there it was! It just took a few more years than I originally expected to go from concept to hard copy.
I recorded a podcast on this very topic on my parenting podcast If Only They’d Told Me. Click here to listen to episode 94 ‘Do you have a book in you?’. Here are some of my tips:
From Concept to Hard Copy
Depending on the type and style of book that you’re writing and your goal, this can take years (as it did for me) or a matter of months.
Finding the time to write while raising the kids
I wrote my book using ‘stolen moments’ coupled with the odd half day here and there. It really depend what type of writing journey you are on and what type of book you are writing. Jacqui and I wrote it as we lived it but other people may have their story all sorted so it’s just a matter of putting pen to paper or sitting at the keyboard and getting it out! I recommend finding a friend and do a week or week about swap with the kids to give you time to write. Or arrange a regular time with a grandparent. Otherwise book your child into childcare. *This of course will partly come down to finances and timeframe. Dedicated weekend writing retreats are also a great way to really get stuck in to your writing.
Have a Plan
Brainstorm your ideas, mind map or list the concept and potential chapters. Then tweak it as you go. Things will change and that’s ok.
The Publishing Question
When we first started writing we were keen to go to the ‘big guys’ (the Publishing Houses). But then as we shifted our goalpost back and as technology embraced the iPad, iPhone and kindle, self-publishing became more of a viable option. It’s often a matter of ownership and control vs distribution. We went the ‘professional editing’ route as well as professional layout and design and that obviously costs money. With a publishing house there is automatic credibility and assistance with distribution and a bit of PR but you’re a bit more restricted with the editing and contracts.
I would love some comments from anyone who has published or is considering. What path did you go down? Publishing house or self-publish?
Getting the Word Out
Facebook is your best friend here! And of course Kickstarter is the crowd-funding platform that is becoming quite a popular way to get funding for your idea (book, invention, project) as well as getting a bit of PR. We had a fabulous experience with Kickstarter and for Kiwis, Pledge Me is another great option! Social Media is a great way to tell people about your project via Twitter, Pinterest etc. Traditional media is also an option and you can target specific magazines, radio shows or newspapers. We hired a lovely PR person Lise who got us on TV as well as on the radio and in many magazines!
How are you going to tell people about your book and to sell some? Writing a book is fab for credibility or to get a story or idea out there but it’s not the most efficient path to earning money.
If Only They’d Told Me video Those are just a few of my tips for writing a book. For the full story, be sure to listen to my If Only They’d Told Me Podcast. I would love to hear your tips and comments.
And of course… please buy my book!
Cheers, Nat (Go to Girl)
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