I’m happy to report that most people really enjoy the process of writing a book, with some guidance and hand holding of course. It’s always beneficial to have someone leading the way on a new venture. Typically, the first step is discussing the possibilities on a large scale –
- What is your goal?
- What are your passions?
- What is this book going to say?
- Are you going to build your brand and market yourself or your business?
- Are you going to provide your business story?
- Are you going to tell your personal story to educate, motivate, inspire and even entertain?
- Are you going to share your expertise to teach people how “it’s” done? (“It” being what you’re good at.)
Once we have honed in on why you are writing the book, it’s time to explore the possibilities within your subject of interest. We start by creating an outline and even a timeline of events. We break the topic down into the sum of its parts – these sub-sections will eventually become your Table of Contents.
This is where most new authors begin to get excited because as we talk (once or twice a week usually) we come up with all sorts of great possibilities that they may explore in the book. Some are “must haves” while we may decide that other ideas do not fit the book at all.
Once we have an outline, and a rough Table of Contents, we proceed chapter by chapter.
Chapter by Chapter
This is where we talk through one chapter at a time, again roughly twice a week. As a ghostwriter, my job is to pull from our conversations all of the key materials to write about in the chapter while maintaining your voice in the process. The best part about working on each chapter is that it is a smaller sub-section of the larger project and we only need to focus on the 10, 15 or 20 pages that is a chapter. We need a beginning middle and an end, but it’s a smaller chunk in which to focus on.
We then review the chapter to make sure we’ve covered that which you want to include, and we touch it up to make sure it remains in your voice. Final edits will come at the end of the book, but this is a place where we can fine tune each chapter
As we proceed through the chapters the book grows and most authors get more excited.
One of my tasks, as we move forward, is to make sure we maintain the continuity, avoid repetition and stay on track (without going off onto tangents).
Outside input can often lend a lot of credibility to the book.
Some books include interviews with various sources to strengthen the points being discussed or add color to the story. I’ve conducted hundreds of interviews in the course of writing books and as a journalist.
As a side note, I really enjoy interviewing people and have talked to a range of people from CEOs of major corporations to celebrities like Jane Fonda, Sandra Bullock and Ray Romano to friends and associates of the author.
Do I Have the Time?
People are often concerned that they won’t have enough time to write a book. You can put in as little as 3 hours a week or as much as you like – I’ve coached, consulted and edited for authors who want to do most of the writing themselves and served as a ghostwriter for the authors who do not have the time to do so or want to put the writing in the hands of an expert. It’s up to you.
Not unlike finding time to exercise, there are always a few hours in the week that can be dedicated to doing something that is important to you.
Conclusion, Editing and Rewriting
The writing process concludes once the story is told or the book has achieved the intended goal.
Sometimes it is a 60 page e-book and other times it is a 200-page printed book.
The choice is yours as the author.
Next we have the rewrite. This is the back and forth stage in which we review everything carefully to fine tune it and “make it sing” as I like to say. After that, there are usually a lot of last minute tweaks and a full edit to make sure everything reads in the manner intended.
I also strongly recommend an outside proofreader take a look since by this point both of us are usually so close to the project that we may miss something. It’s hard to proof your own work and I can recommend relatively inexpensive proofreaders.
A book can take anywhere from 5 or 6 months to one year+. Sometimes we intend to get the project done quickly but life gets in the way. On other occasions, we move along at a brisk pace. One nice thing about having someone to work with on a book is that I can “politely” nudge you along.
And finally, we try to find the best place for you to self-publish your book and/or e-book. Some self-publishing houses are better than others.
Yes, you can also go to traditional publishing houses, but you need a book proposal (which is a whole different animal) and two sample chapters plus a very strong platform. I’m always happy to discuss book proposals – unlike many writers I actually enjoy writing them BUT they need to fit certain parameters.
For a free 30-minute consultation, email me and we can set up a time to talk.
I look forward to it –