By Tequila Myers 2/26/2017
8 Things I Wish I Knew Before Writing My first Book
We've all had that one journey we set out to conquer only to find out we didnt know as much as we thought we did or think about all the little details involved. I can't even tell you how many times I've been there done that. But you know what? Each and every time I kept moving forward. I learned that what you need to know will come when you really need it- the knowledge you need to get to E, F, and G isn't as critical to learn when you're still at A, B, and C. This taught me to have patience, slow down, and to stop trying to put the cart before the horse.
Everyone has a story and most people want to share theirs but aren't sure exactly how to do it. From the outside looking in, it seems like a daunting process. Well, to be honest it's not rocket science and its actually simpler than you think. The good news is I've already taken the journey and I've brought some great tips with me that are going to make conquering the journey even easier for you. Now, I took the self publishing route so some of the tips are from that perspective, but I wrote these tips to help all authors and trust me, you'll thank me later. So, grab a pen, take some notes and get to writing your first book! Cheers to writing your first book.
1. You don't need a title to start. Start with a running title and it will come to you later. Spending a lot of time on your title will only delay your project. Write your book and let the title come to you naturally. Trust me, it will come.
2. Don't be afraid to self publish. I know it can seem scary and like you're on the journey alone, but let me tell you it's super easy. Most self publishing platforms walk you through the process step by step. If you're going to take this route, pay attention to each step and follow instructions. If you have questions, Call customer support- most reliable platforms have service centers at your fingertips.
3. Don't try to become a graphic designer overnight. Listen, I don't care if you use canvas and pic monkey to create all the beautiful graphics for your website- your cover and any other images NEED to be professional. Good news is- there are tons of super affordable ways to get your graphics done for the low low. Fiverr- a personal favorite, upwork,guru.com, and scriptlance.com are some great sources for getting graphics and other design projects done on a budget.
4. Find a free form template to use when writing your book. Using a free form template will allow you to write your book in book format and give you a feel for how your words look on paper. You don't want to get all comfortable writing your book only to find out your chapters are out of alignment and your page numbers are off. Start the right way and end with less stress and headaches.
5. Know your ideal target audience. Who are you expecting to buy your book? Create an ICA- ideal client avatar with clear details of your target audience. What do they look like? How old/young are they? Where do they live? How much is their annual salary? Do they have jobs? Where do they live? Not all of them will apply but these points are critical when it comes to your marketing strategy. How can you become a best selling author if you don't know who your audience is?
6. Watch other authors, rinse and repeat. As Tony Robbins says, "success leaves clues".
What are other authors doing to leverage their books? Are they hosting webinars around the content in their book? Are they creating a movement around their book?
Maybe they're going live on facebook or periscope every week to share a quote or paragraph from their book to entice and draw in potential buys? Watch what they do and put your own spin on it to leverage your book and increase sales.
7. PRESELL!!! Can I say that again....presell, presell, presell. You should be promoting and preselling your book six months in advance. By preselling your book you can cover some of the costs of getting your book ready for release. Whether it be graphics, publishing, or any other associated cost that come up when writing your book- preselling is a great way to get things done when you don't have the extra cash available.
8. Partner with bloggers to get the word out!!! Connect with bloggers within your niche- bloggers who write about topics similar to the content in your book. Create an overview PDF about your book and send it out to bloggers/podcasts and allow them to write a review of your work. Give them 2-3 free books as a thank you and to host promotions. This will not only help you build relationships but you will also get more readers interested in your work.
Cheers to writing your first book!