How to write a book chapter

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I write business books. Every chapter is a 5,000-word package full of stories, detail, statistics, insights, and recommendations. You don’t just sit down and write one of those at random. Here’s what it takes to create one. In the last 10 years I’ve written, cowritten, or ghostwritten six books. Five of them were case-study powered business … Continued

Can women write successful business books?

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On its face, this is an absurd question. But my friends are hearing this question and wondering about bias in the publishing industry. Today I’d like to explode those myths. The impetus for this post was the testimony of a female author I know who is trying to sell her next book. She has asked … Continued

The ideal business book (with examples from Talk Triggers)

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I work on a certain kind of business book. It’s about a shift in the world, and the shift in strategy that companies and people need to make in response. There is a best way to write a book like that, and Jay Baer and Daniel Lemin’s Talk Triggers is the best example I’ve seen in … Continued

How to balance the 5 key elements of a business book

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Business books are made out of case studies, idea frameworks, proof points, argumentation, and advice. The key is to balance the amount of each element that you include. Here’s a short description of what each piece is, why it’s important to use the right amount, and how to adjust it. If you write business books, … Continued

How to write a good book quickly: 12 simple rules

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Can you write a good book in two or three months? Maybe. But it takes planning and discipline. I’ve done it, and so have other authors I know. Many of us feel that we created our best work quickly. I wrote most of Groundswell in 11 weeks and Writing Without Bullshit in three months, and both are buttoned-down, … Continued

Case study tip: the quickie character sketch

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It’s easy to forget that businesses are made of people. When you write a case study for a business book, blog post, or article, readers need to see those people as human. Here’s how to do that quickly without getting in the way of the story you’re telling. People in business prose need to be … Continued

10 things your business book needs and how to get them

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Business book authors dream big. But the size of your dream is less important than the intellectual ingredients you bring to the project. I know the power you get from being prepared — and the sinking feeling when you realize you’re missing something crucial. If this is your dream, your first step is to assemble … Continued

Should you start with a story or a lede?

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The best way to hook an audience is to start with a story. The best way to get people to read what you write is with a descriptive title and a few summary sentences (or as journalists call it, a lede). How do you resolve these contradictory pieces of advice? When I got this question … Continued