Books & reading is a passion of mine and it is very much a passion of others, hence why I promote inspirational books on my website and my Pinterest Book Club. Rather than simply promoting my reading list in this article, I thought that I would create an article as a guide to any inspiring writers who wish to write a book. Becoming an author is a dream for many people but it can be a daunting and overwhelming process. However, with the right guidance and resources most people unknowingly can become an author with a little guidance.
If writing a book was something that you seriously considered, the first step you might want to take is signing up to writing courses. I am sure that you have plenty of ideas floating around your brain but writing courses can help you hone your skills and improve your writing abilities. You can take writing courses online or in-person. There are many online writing courses available, such as Creative Writing Masterclass, Writing Fiction, and Writing for Children. You can also check with your local community college or university for writing courses. I have provided a few online courses below to get you started.
There's nothing wrong with going a bit old school so brainstorming ideas for your book will help you create an outline of what you hope to achieve. For example you will need to think about the genre, characters and length of your book. The Writers in the storm blog, gives you a brief guide on how to create a structured brainstorm before you even begin writing up your first draft. Kathlyn Duncan who is an author of multiple books, gives you detailed tips on the video below on how to brainstorm book ideas of varying genres.
Now here is the nitty gritty, you will start writing the first draft of your book. Remember, the first draft doesn't have to be perfect, you just want to get your ideas down on paper. I am aware some people will look at using A.I (Artificial Intelligence) to write their first draft, I won't focus on A.I in this article because A.I is still very much in its beta stage; and I am sure you would still want to keep that organic human element when writing a book. The draft will allow you to outline the structure of your book but its important to note that its also an opportunity to make your ideas flow freely, so it may mean you could possibly start the draft at the different stages of your book. "A rough draft is a version of your novel that is raw and unpolished, containing the main story pieces you’ll need to put together in a coherent way. It’s about making sure your story bones are present and that the plot is laid out clearly (with no story-breaking holes)" Once you have completed your first draft, it's time to get feedback. Find a writing group or a trusted friend who can review your book draft. You can also hire a professional editor to review your book draft. There are several ways to get your book critiqued by editors. One option is to hire a freelance editor to review your manuscript, you can find freelance editors on websites like Reedsy, Freelancer, and Upwork.
Getting feedback on your book draft can help you identify areas that need improvement and make your book stronger. I had a friend that began writing a fantasy novel, I remember him writing numerous drafts and I can assure you there was a lot of editing, chopping & changing. If you look at Reedsy for example, they allow you to: choose professional editors who specialise in specific genres, check over your book's consistency of communication & tone, proof read your draft and ensure there is consistent pacing of your book. There are so many aspects to turning your draft into a masterpiece, it's important that whoever is reviewing your draft can commit to your schedule and budget, as well as having adequate qualifications and experience. If you click on the image below it will take you to a freelance editor I found on Fiverr, there are numerous editors at your disposal so it's imperative you don't feel restricted in your options and choose the right one that works for you.
We will fast forward a bit and imagine that you are now happy with the final draft of your book, and now raring to get your book published. Getting your book published can be a challenge, but there are many options available. You can submit your book to a traditional publisher or self-publish your book. If you choose to self-publish, you can use platforms such as Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (which I used to publish my affiliate marketing Ebook) or IngramSpark.
Self-publishing involves publishing your book yourself, either through a print-on-demand service or an ebook platform like Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing. Self-publishing gives you complete control over your book and allows you to keep a higher percentage of the royalties. However, self-publishing also requires you to do all the marketing and promotion yourself.
Traditional publishing involves submitting your manuscript to a publisher or literary agent. If your manuscript is accepted, the publisher will handle editing, design, and distribution of your book. However, traditional publishing can be a lengthy and competitive process and publishers typically take a larger percentage of the royalties.
In conclusion, getting your book critiqued by editors, creating a launch plan, and deciding whether to self-publish or pursue traditional publishing are all important aspects of the publishing process. The video below talks about the benefit of self publishing as this is becoming more utilised.
Once your book is published, it's time to start marketing and getting creative. You can start by creating a website and social media accounts to promote your book. You can also reach out to book bloggers and book reviewers to get your book reviewed. Traditionally editorial book reviews may have taken some time to break into but online retailers have made this a lot easier (examples of this is NetGalley or BookLife). Consider doing book signings, interviews, and guest posts on blogs to promote your book. Additionally, you can use online advertising to reach a wider audience. There is a plethora of ways in which you can market your book. The Marketing plan will interlink with your launch plan. A launch plan is a roadmap that outlines the steps you will take to launch your book and promote it to readers. Some key components of a launch plan include:
Setting a launch date: Choose a date for your book launch and work backwards to determine when you need to complete each task.
Setting up a website and social media accounts for your book.
Building a launch team: Identify people who can help you promote your book, such as beta readers, influencers, and bloggers.
Creating a book trailer: Create a book trailer to promote your book on social media.
Organising book signings and events
If you click on the image below it will take you to a book that will provide you with a launch planner. This will allow you to implement a marketing method when launching your book and help create continuing sales after publication.
Publishing a book involves various expenses, and the costs can vary depending on the type of publishing you choose.
Writing and Editing Costs: These costs include hiring a professional editor or a writing coach to help you polish your manuscript. The cost of these services can vary based on the length of your book and the level of editing required.
Cover Design: A book cover is the first thing that catches a reader's attention. You can either hire a professional designer or use online tools like Canva to design your book cover. The cost of hiring a professional book cover designer varies based on their experience and skill level.
Typesetting and Formatting: Formatting your book for print or e-book can involve hiring a professional formatter or using tools like Vellum or Draft2Digital. The cost of these services varies depending on the number of pages and the complexity of the formatting.
Printing and Distribution Costs: If you are planning to self-publish your book in print, you will need to pay for printing and distribution costs. Print-on-demand services like Amazon's CreateSpace and IngramSpark can help reduce these costs.
Marketing and Advertising: Marketing and advertising costs include book launch events, book reviews, and paid advertising. These costs can vary based on the amount of marketing and advertising you plan to do.
ISBN and Copyright: An ISBN is a unique identifier that helps identify your book. You can purchase an ISBN through Bowker or your publishing platform. You also need to register your copyright to protect your work.
I tried to condense as much information as possible to help guide you to launching your own book. I didn't want to freak you out too much with information overload but I hope the article will inspire you in achieving your dreams. Writing a book can be a tough uphill battle but hopefully the journey will be worth it once you see your book in books shops or trending online. If you have launched your own book or this article has inspired you to write your own book please drop me a message.