How to deal with crippling self-doubt: advice for authors

Continued">

Every nonfiction author feels it. That moment when you think “I can’t do this. I am not an author. I am helpless. I can’t move forward.” That’s crippling self-doubt. It’s so common, it deserves an acronym. CSD. Do you suffer from CSD? Please have hope. I’m here to help. First, here’s what doesn’t help This … Continued

73 things you can do right now to move your nonfiction book forward

Continued">

“I’m stuck,” I hear you say. “How am I supposed to write a book? It’s such a big project.” Baloney. Every big project is just a series of smaller tasks. And no matter what’s going on with your book, there are tasks to do. You can make time for these. And they will move your … Continued

Do bestselling authors become millionaires?

Continued">

Bernie Sanders, a democratic socialist, explained how he became a millionaire: “I wrote a best-selling book. If you write a best-selling book, you can become a millionaire, too.” Can you, really? Let’s look at the economics. As you read this, recognize that it comes from working with dozens of nonfiction authors and reviewing their book … Continued

Your book is not a book

Continued">

With a nod to RenĂ© Magritte, the book you write is not a book. Magritte’s painting is actually called La Trahison des images (“The Treachery of images”) and includes the words Ceci n’est pas une pipe (“This is not a pipe”). Because, of course, it’s not a pipe. It’s a painting. But enough about Magritte. … Continued

“Competing authors” is an oxymoron

Continued">

Benjamin Dreyer is a copy editor who just wrote a book on English. So is Mary Norris, the “Comma Queen.” So they’re in competition, right? Not even close. Here’s some Twitter repartee between the two: Traditionally, two people in the same space are competitors. But that dynamic doesn’t apply with authors, for several reasons: A … Continued

Write what you know. (But what if all you know is the inside of your own brain?)

Continued">

They tell fiction authors to “write what you know.” The same obviously applies to non-fiction. But it’s all too easy to go from that to “Write about yourself” — especially when it comes to self-help books. If you know about marketing strategy, write about marketing strategy. If you know about startups, write about startups. Just … Continued

The ROAM test for business books

Continued">

There are four questions you really should answer before setting out on a business book journey. They’ll determine everything from your title to your content to your publishing model. I first created the ROAM test for general business writing. It includes four elements: Readers, Objective, Action, and iMpression. If you’re going to work on something … Continued