The process of writing a book is often thought to be lengthy, difficult, and complicated.
Many aspiring authors have high hopes of one day writing a book that will impact many. The problem is, they never quite get around to publishing their first.
But what if you could finish an entire manuscript in 90 days? Not only is it possible, but it’s also been done. Here’s how:
Break Down the Project into Smaller Chunks
How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. It’s a crude cliché, but as it applies to developing your first (or next) manuscript, it’s a key concept.
A book is generally in the 40,000- to 80,000-word range. 80,000 is usually getting a little long in the tooth unless the subject matter calls for it. You can have a perfectly respectful book at 40,000+ words.
So, let’s say you want to write 40,000 words in the next 90 days. Simple math shows you’d only need to write approximately 444 words per day to end up with a 40,000-word manuscript, 90 days from now.
Yes, it will mean writing daily. But 400 to 500 words is a very manageable amount. Once you get used to it, it should only take you about 30 minutes to an hour, even if it’s research intensive.
Plan Your Project
“Sit at your desk and stare at a blank screen” said only the most inexperienced writers ever.
We want to write a coherent, high-quality book. That being the case, we at least need to know what we’re going to be writing about.
Whether it’s a table of contents or an outline, you need to develop your ideas in advance. Gather all your journal entries, notes, and references before even beginning the project.
If it’s going to be a non-fiction book, then simply research the most frequently asked questions in your niche or industry and make each of them a chapter heading. You can get your outline done just like that.
Blog the Entire Book
Sometimes even the best entrepreneurs, executives, and leaders suffer from lack of accountability. Of course, they know well that the best accountability money can buy still isn’t going to do the work of writing a book for them.
You’re much better off making the commitment to writing a book and sharing your work publicly. It’s okay if the sections or chapters are rough drafts at this point. Go ahead and publish them on your blog anyway. This will help you stick to your schedule.
If all goes according to plan, you’ll have a book manuscript 90 days from the moment you begin. And don’t forget – you can edit before you publish!
Yes, it will take some discipline, but nowhere near the discipline required to gradually gather relevant data and information, hunt and peck at the book every now and then and try to remember what you were writing about two weeks ago.
Plan your work and work your plan. Make writing a daily discipline, and to hold yourself accountable, publish your work to your blog.
Your first book may not do what you hope it will, but that’s okay. You can apply everything you learned from your first to make a better second book!