Writing non-fiction books is a rewarding career and easy to do providing you plan the project and complete it in a step-by-step process. Non-fiction books are in high demand but it is important to select the right title and content.
Here’s What To Do
The first step in how to write a non-fiction book is to select a title that is about a subject that is popular. To assist us in finding out what subjects are popular and well searched for Google’s Keyword Analyser Tool is an invaluable resource. By using Google’s Keyword Analyser Tool, we are able to find out if the keywords we use in the title are popular searches. We are able to see how many times the keywords are searched for per month on Google. By choosing keywords that are searched for more than 100,000 times per month we know we are on a winner.
Next we need to do a bit of research on the audience before we go ahead and write a non-fiction book. To do this forums give us a wealth of information on our target audience. By visiting a forums related to the subject of the book we can find out what type of questions people are asking about our subject and what are the hot topics of the day. Researching forums will also give us more information for the headings and sub-headings of our book.
Another way to check what is popular is to visit the big online booksellers like Amazon and Barnes and Noble and check the bestseller lists. This will give us some more ideas on selecting a winning title.
Once we have selected the title it is time to select the chapter headings and sub-headings. We can do the research for this step by reading books and articles related to the subject of our book. The local library, online libraries or online article directories are good places to start.
While doing our research it is also time to start taking notes on topics of interest and summarize the content of the chapter heading or sub-heading. Don’t forget to do further research in relevant forums that offer a wealth of information. While doing this step it is also important to keep doing keyword research on the chapter headings and sub-headings to make sure they are popular and well searched for topics.
The next step in writing a non-fiction book is to find a suitable publisher and send them a book proposal. It is no use writing the first draft of the book unless we can find someone who is willing to publish the book. A book proposal should outline the title, chapter headings, sub-headings and summaries of the book. Don’t forget to include the proposed length of the book.
After the publisher has given the go ahead, it is time to write the first draft. It is simply a matter of working methodically and setting deadlines to keep you motivated. When the first draft is finished you have only half done the task. The final step is editing, proofreading and formatting the first draft. To save costs do most of these tasks yourself, however it may be necessary to seek professional help if your expertise is not up to it.
I hope you have found this article helpful on the task of how to write a non-fiction book. If you are interest in publishing your book in ebook format check out Jim Edward’s excellent book on the subject, “Ebook Secrets Exposed”
“Self-Bailout Strategy” by Shaun Fawcett is a blueprint to recession proof your income and make a six figure income by selling information from your website. Shaun has an M.B.A. and his approach is very direct and business-like.
“Self-Bailout Strategy” explains how Shawn is able to generate a six figure income from his website on the writing niche. Shaun’s website is called “Writing Help Central” and it has about 260 pages of content on various writing topics. He has about 4 ebooks he has written on writing subjects that he sells from his website and as well as various affiliate products he promotes for other vendors.
Under his multiple stream income model, he gets revenue from advertising income, affiliate income, consulting income, income from his own products as well as other income.
“Self-Bailout Strategy” gives you the big picture on how to make money online as well a step-by-step business plan. I bought the book two and a half years ago and to tell you the truth I would still be lost in a maze of misinformation and get-rich-quick schemes without it.
“Self-Bailout Strategy” remains one of my key books that I refer to when developing my own websites and I thoughly recommend it.
I ADMIT IT I HAVE BEEN A FAN OF EBOOKS FOR FOURTEEN YEARS AND LITERALLY HAVE HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS OF EBOOKS ON MY COMPUTER. THE NUMBER OF PAPER BOOKS I HAVE BOUGHT IN THE LAST TEN YEARS I COULD COUNT ON ONE HAND. I HAVE WATCHED THE EBOOK INDUSTRY GROW FROM BEING A NOVELTY TO A MULTI-BILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY.
What I like about ebooks is the convenience. I no longer have to cart a library of paper books around with me whenever I move. My library is conveniently contained on an external hard drive the size of a small paperback. I also like to shop for a new ebook from the comfort of my own home, rather than traipsing all over town visiting various bookshops. I have a huge selection of titles to choose from and when I find the book I want it is delivered to the hard drive of my computer within minutes.
A common complaint about ebooks is that you have to read them on your computer. I don’t find this a problem. My computer screen is well lit and I can adjust the font size to my liking at the press of a button. If I have a lengthy book I simply get a copy printed at a print shop so I can read it lying down if I want to.
Because I am interested in writing, publishing and internet marketing I found titles on these subjects simply were not available at local book stores. Yet there is a wide variety of titles on these subjects available in ebook format. Ebooks have made many more titles available to the public, where as before they would not have seen the light of day.
On the down side, the quality of many ebooks can vary a lot just as with paper books. I have downloaded my share of shoddy books. Ebooks where the marketers have over-hyped and over promised, then under-delivered. The best thing to do if you are thinking of buying a particular title is to do a search for it online and there will most likely be a few reviews for the ebook if it is a good seller. Also send an email to the website selling the ebook and ask how many pages the ebook has. Once you start buying ebooks you will soon get to know which websites have good quality titles.
Ebooks.com has a lot of good quality titles to choose from as does Clickbank. You have to be careful of Clickbank and make sure you read plenty of reviews. I have been caught many a time by buying a sub-standard ebook
Before you write the first sentence of your ebook, it is important to do some keyword research so you are targeting keywords that your readers are searching for. Otherwise, your book will be lost in a sea of book titles that do not relate to keywords readers are searching for.
Google’s Keyword Planner Tool gives a wealth of information on keywords. What we are interested in is the number of global searches there are for keywords. If a keyword has over 20,000 global searches a month there is probably too much competition for that keyword. The best keywords to target are ones that have 2,000 to 8,000 global searches a month.
For example, giving your ebook the title of “Meditation” is probably too broad a term to use as there are 2,740,000 global searches each month for the keyword “meditation”. However, a better title would be “How To Meditate Properly” as there are 3,600 global searches on Google each month for the keywords “how to meditate properly”. By doing this, you are targeting a sub-niche of meditation and have a good chance of readers finding your ebook when doing searches. An ebook called “Meditation” would have far too much competition to be easily found with a Google search.
Doing keyword research before you write your ebook also helps identify keywords to use in the chapter titles and sub-headings. Keyword research can be used as an aid in the brainstorming process when listing chapter titles and sub-headings. Your book will be about what readers are actively searching for online.
Make Money Writing About Your Favourite Hobby, Interest Or Activity
I read “How To Write A “How To” Book (or Ebook)” a few years ago when I was interested in writing a “How To” book. Shaun Fawcett is one of my favourite authors and this book is one of his best. Shaun is the english master you wish you had at high school but never did. He is an expert at explaining how to do something in a logical, step-by-step, easy to understand fashion.
“How To Write A “How To” Book (or Ebook)” starts by defining what a “How To” book is, who writes them and what type of problems they solve. “How To” books are one of the most popular niches in the publishing world. They solve problems that people face when they first learn to do something and are a cheaper solution in many cases than attending a course or even watching a series of videos.
The next section of the book explains the preparation phase of writing your “How To” book. How to find your target audience, selecting a title for your book and how to go about researching your subject. You also need to look at the competition for your book. A lot of competition is not necessarily a bad thing as it shows there is a lot of demand for your topic. If you create a book that is more comprehensive and cheaper than you competition then you are on a winner.
Shaun then goes on to cover the actual writing process. How to develop your chapter heading and sub-headings and then flesh out each section in detail.Developing your own writing style is important as you want your target audience to easily understand you and look forward to the next step in the process. Once you have written your first draft it is important to proofread, revise and edit it until it is a polished piece of writing.
Pictures and diagrams can be used extensively to illustrate your book and they can be purchased at a reasonable cost. Even video or MP3 recordings can be added to your ebook to give it added value.
Once you have completed your book it is time to look at your publishing options. Traditional publishing of a paper book may be your preferred choice but these days ebooks are becoming increasingly popular and can be more lucrative for the author. Vanity press is explained but this is not a preferred option and there can be traps for the uninformed. Shaun goes into a lot of detail explaining the pros and cons of each publishing option.
Overall, I would give this book a five star rating as it is the type of book you will keep in your reference library for many years if you are serious about writing.
WHENEVER I HAVE WRITER’S BLOCK I MAKE SURE I GO TO A QUIET ROOM AWAY FROM ALL DISTRACTIONS. I TURN OFF ANY RADIOS, TVS AND PHONES. I SIT QUIETLY AT MY DESK AND TAKE THREE DEEP BREATHS. BREATHING IN TO THE COUNT OF THREE, HOLDING TO THE COUNT OF THREE AND BREATHING OUT TO THE COUNT OF THREE.
Then I allow my breathing to return to its natural rythem. Next I focus on the different muscle groups in my body. I start at the head and work my way down to my toes. Tighten each muscle group to the count of three, hold to the count of three and relax to the count of three. This usually puts me in a state of relaxed alertness.
Now I simply observe my thoughts for the next fifteen minutes and write them down. Any random thought that comes into my head. Always remembering to be totally detached from my thoughts and simply observe them. At the end of fifteen minutes I read over what I have written and proceed to write a short 250 word article about what I have written. This usually gets the mind ticking over so I can continue to write.
I write as much as I can about the subject I want to write about always being conscious that I can edit what I have written when I am finished. Writing is only half the process, editing and proofreading is the other half.
Once I have written all I can write, I take a break and read something related to what I am writing about. This usually gives me more food for thought which I write down.
Exercise is also an important part of my writing routine. I take half an hour to an hour to go for a walk or a bicycle ride. There are plenty of beaches and parks in my area so I like to visit them and think about what I want to write next.
I reread and edit what I have written frequently so I don’t lose my train of thought. This also stops me repeating myself or losing the plot. For non-fiction writing I frequently refer to the various heading and sub-headings I wrote at the beginning of the writing to keep me on track.
Ongoing research at the library or online also helps. The more you research, the more likely you are to discover aspects of your writing project you have not already covered. You can always add more titles and subtitles to your project.
If all else fails make sure you are getting plenty of rest and having enough breaks away from writing. It is always good to have a weeks break or at least a couple of days and then return to your work with fresh eyes.
IF YOU ARE NEW TO FREELANCE WRITING IT IS IMPORTANT TO START A PORTFOLIO OF YOUR WORK TO SHOW EDITORS. THE PORTFOLIO OF YOUR WORK SHOULD BE IN THREE FORMS. A HARD COPY, A WEBSITE OR BLOG AND IN EMAIL-ABLE FORM.
The hard copy of your work can simply be clips from newspapers and magazines that have published your work. Arrange the clips in a binder or folder with separate pages for each article. As well as the clip of the article also include the following information.
– The name and date of the magazine or newspaper the clip appears in.
– The name, phone number and email of the editor who hired you.
– The rights that were sold with the piece.
– How many words the piece is.
– Prints or photocopies of any photos.
The hard copy of your work is handy to show new editors after you have arranged to have an appointment with them.
A website or blog should showcase your work in electronic format. Simply scan clips of your work and put them on your website or blog. Don’t forget to add the same information about your clips as you did with the hard copy portfolio. Personally, I prefer using a blog as opposed to a webisite as it is more user friendly. A blog is very easy to edit and update. The main advantage of websites and blogs is that they can be accessed from anywhere in the world. This is handy if you are dealing with interstate or overseas editors.
An email-able form of your portfolio is simply copies of your articles in Word or PDF format. The text and photos of your published articles as well as the same relevant information provided in your hard copy version are saved in a Word or PDF document. This can easily be emailed to editors located anywhere.
If you are just starting out and have not had any of your work published in magazines or newspapers, just make up portfolios of your articles that you have completed in your studies or courses. Use only the best examples of your work. Try to go for quality not quantity.
Remember your portfolio is your calling card and the best way to market your services. If editors like what they see it increases chances of them hiring you. The more marketing of your services you do, the more you increase the chances of you getting work.