The pronoun conundrum: “we” vs. “you” in business advice

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Business books are full of advice. They’re also full of pronouns — and pronoun-driven confusion — around when to use “we” and when to use “you.” Start with this: you should write directly to the reader. Compare the following two alternatives: Marketers must spend less time on SEO and more time on the creation of … Continued

The 2 questions every business author must answer

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If you want to write a book, ask these two questions before you start — and every day as you work on it. How will my reader see the world differently? What are they going to do about it? If your book is not going to help your reader to see the world differently, why … Continued

What your book says about you

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A business book is an extension of you. It makes an impression — both good and bad. There’s an idea going around that a book is just a big (and expensive) business card. If that were true, it wouldn’t matter much what was in it. In truth, it matters an awful lot. Because if a … 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

The ROAM test for business books

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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

What all business authors do

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I’ve been working with and interviewing a lot of authors lately. I am trying to get at what makes them tick. While it is true that they aren’t altruists — they’re in it boost their own standing and businesses, of course — I am beginning to think I’m getting to the nub of what’s important … Continued

The last chapter of your business book

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How do you end your business book? Many just fizzle. Here’s how to leave your readers on a high note. I already wrote about how the first chapter is the scare-the-crap-out-of-you chapter. And I explained how to write all the other chapters. But once you’ve said all you need to say, what’s left to say? … Continued

Where do you find stories for your book? (Ask Dr. Wobs)

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Business books are made of stories. Where do they come from? Here’s today’s question: Dear Dr. Wobs  I am writing a business book and want to supplement my own experiences with relevant business anecdotes. (Google is virtually useless, although maybe I’m just doing it wrong.) Any suggestions? — Jack Finding stories We’re hard-wired to remember … Continued