Your book launch hero crew

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If you’re working on an advice book, here’s a way to get a lot of people to hear about it. I call it the hero crew. Do this, right now — before writing (if you haven’t started yet), before you do anything else. Nail down your audience. It might be women entrepreneurs, CIOs embracing the … Continued

Therapy questions for prospective nonfiction authors

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I help authors. They’re all over the map. Some are experiencing the earliest glimmerings of author ambitions, while others have written hundreds of pages (possibly in a productive way, possibly not). By the time they get to me, I become their therapist. It’s my job to figure out their problems and recommend the best course … Continued

For minority authors, a book can generate respect and counteract bias

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Why should older white men get all the respect? I’ve been talking to a diverse collection of executives, thinkers, and authors: men and women; old and young; white, black, Hispanic, and Asian; North American, European, Asian, and Australian. Here’s a shocker: if you’re seeking attention for your ideas, it’s easier if you’re an older, white, … Continued

The 12 immutable stages of business book creation

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A veteran author knows the 12 stages. Rookies often don’t. But if you’re an author, you’ll inevitably experience them, regardless of whether you’re ready. So get ready. 1 Idle flirtation “That’s a cool idea.” “That could be a book.” “I think I could write about that.” Like all flirtations, this one is titillating and intriguing … Continued

Book tips: How many drafts should I write?

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A fellow nonfiction author recently shared that he’d written 18 drafts of his book. That’s probably too many. But how many is the right number? I’ll answer that question, but first, let’s talk about what a draft is. You have a chapter written. You go through and make a change. You save it under a … Continued

Turning blog posts into a book in 6 (somewhat) easy steps

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“I wrote a whole bunch of meaty blog posts. Could I make a book out of them?” That’s the seductive reasoning I hear from many clients. So let’s talk about what it takes to turn a blog into a book. Here’s a comment that appeared on my author survey yesterday: I write a blog, to … Continued

Why books work: A rebuttal to Andy Matuschak

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Andy Matuschak wrote a thoughtful piece called “Why books don’t work.” I think he’s a bit off-target. But his arguments will get you thinking about how your book can work better. If you’re an author with any capability for introspection, Matuschak’s essay ought to make you think. Here’s some of what he wrote: And at … Continued

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

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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