For all of you who have ever been inspired to write your first book, I have some great news for you…. Without a doubt, there has never been a better time than right now for you to fulfil your dream of writing and publishing your book. And that’s whether you wish to solely publish in e book format, in traditional hard copy print or use both of these options.
In fact, now more than at any other time in the history of publishing, you can get your book written, recorded and out into the world faster, more efficiently and delivered to a global audience… all in a matter of weeks. This is backed up by the statistics which show that between 600,000 to 1,000,000 new release books are launched to the insatiable book reading market each year.
Thanks to technology and human ingenuity we have definitely made some great leaps forward. Not only has the advent of the e book and improvements in digital publishing removed many of the traditional financial and time based obstacles for most would be authors, but now there are also more book writing courses, programs, webinars, you tube videos, author guides, books, and podcasts about this very topic than ever before. In fact, social media and online marketing is literally full of them, with new offers and experts coming online every week.
This makes it an exciting and inspiring period in time for the estimated 75% to 82% of us in the western world who have secretly harboured the long held desire of one day becoming a published author. Now there is no longer a single good reason for not writing your book, because what was once perhaps only a seen as a distant pipe-dream, has now become a real possibility, and for an increasing number of keen and enthusiastic self-published authors, an easily achievable reality.
However amongst all of this incredible opportunity and potential for self-published authors there is one major problem. A problem which no one seems to be addressing nor coming anywhere close to solving.
The problem is that… the increase in the quantity of new self-published books being released and the massive expansion in access to information and education around book writing and publishing, has not lead to a corresponding increase in the quality of the titles being published. Nor has it lead to a reduction in the most common and easily avoidable mistakes which inexperienced, self-published authors make with their books.
The sad fact is that quite the reverse is true and I put it down to the single #1 biggest mistake made by self-published authors ….the mistake which underlies and causes most of the others.
And that is; thinking that writing a book is solely about writing the content and nothing else.
This means that you focus only on the physical aspects of your book and disregard the all-important invisible factors which go into creating and publishing a good book. This is because you can only see the physical, finished product, the e book or the paperback book, and not all of the necessary processes which remain invisible to the untrained eye. And when it comes to books there are a number of invisible and even, intangible key elements which go into creating the book, before, during and after the words have been written.
Beginning to write your book with this mindset can only lead to you encountering a number of compounding problems as you literally bump into what you don’t know along the way and what wasn’t visible to you before you started the process. By doing so, you are effectively setting yourself up for some major learning experiences as an author. And sadly, I cannot put a figure on how many times I have seen this mistake being made by new and inexperienced authors, sometimes at the draft stage of their books, when at least most issues can be fixed, but usually after their e book or paperback have already been published.
I call it The Iceberg Effect of book writing….
With the typical iceberg you can clearly see the exposed tip of the iceberg above the water, you can touch it, sail around it and to the uninitiated, could easily assume that what you see is the whole iceberg. But what you are missing is the part of the iceberg which remains submerged and invisible beneath the surface of the water. This invisible part of the iceberg could potentially be up to 80% to 90% of total mass of the object… that’s a huge amount of iceberg to miss and correspondingly, a major part of the book creation process to disregard. More importantly it is the most costly mistake you could make as an author.
Think about the maiden voyage of The Titanic where one iceberg sank the famously unsinkable ship… you definitely want to make yourself aware of what is not necessarily visible to the eye so you can avoid crashing into the hidden part of the iceberg.
Below I’ve separated out the Invisible elements of the process from the obviously Visible ones. Neither is more or less important than the other, because they work together synergistically and build upon the other to give you the best opportunity for producing a cohesive, readable, engaging and successful book. And this is what all self-published authors should be aiming for.
- Research and Planning
- Structure and Content
- Promotion, Marketing and Sales
- The Writing
Your first step is to become aware of them, learn about them, understand them and then use them because these are the steps which will set you up for success. This is the equivalent of seeing the whole iceberg at once and it will enable you to avoid the #1 biggest mistake made by self-published authors.
Because I’m sure you’ll agree that, if you are going to put in the time, energy and focus which is required to complete the journey of designing, writing, publishing and promoting your book, you may as well make sure that you can avoid as many of the major pitfalls as possible. But perhaps even more importantly, I am sure that you want to give yourself the best opportunity to write a good book, maybe even a great book. One which your readers are more likely to actually read, one which will be capable of creating the impact you intend it to make, one which will position you as a professional expert in your field, one which you can confidently leave as a lasting legacy for others long after you have gone and one which you can be justifiably proud. This is the unquestionable power of all great books.
Wishing you happy writing.