An easy way to integrate your regular business-building activities with your publishing ambitions is to blog your way to a book. This way of producing a book has many advantages but it does require some planning. Blogging your way to a book does not mean you can just make it up as you go along. In fact, your plan is even more essential.
Begin by creating a project plan. By that I mean a full plan for your whole book, including who your book is for, how you intend to use it in your business and how you are going to market it. You also need to decide on the format you want to publish it in (or formats if you want to use more than one), how much you are going to charge etc. You also need to decide how many words you are going to write.
Make sure you keep a record of all this information in one document so you can refer to it whenever you want to, and so you can amend, add to and update it as your ideas develop.
Your book or content plan needs to be very detailed if your blogging is going to be productive for you. It may take some time and effort to get this completely worked out, so be patient and be prepared to spend time on this part of your book plan.
- First, work out your chapter headings.
- Next, write out your main headings.
- Finally, write a brief paragraph describing the key points you want to make beneath each of the chapter and main headings.
You may find areas of overlap or omission as you go through this process but you can keep amending until the plan flows and works as a whole. When you get to that point, work out how many words you want to write for each section or heading.
From here, write a list for each chapter of the blog posts, number of words and the date you intend to publish them. Of course, you may decide to withhold some information, especially if it is very high-value as you can sell your blog readers on getting this information.
You now need to decide how fast and how frequently you are going to write your book blog posts. You may decide to do a couple a week or one a day for a month or six weeks – it depends on what else you have going on and how much you want or are able to write.
You can either write your book consecutively – in the order of the chapters in the book – or in a different order, it doesn’t matter which you choose. Make sure you write all your content on Word documents that you label carefully so you can easily merge all your work together when you are finished. This makes the process of producing a book manuscript much easier.
There will probably be bits of content that you want to use in a book that do not fit well into a blog post. If that’s the case, simply write those in later when you have finished your blogging series for the book or for a particular chapter.
You may not want to get started with your book introduction as this may seem like an odd blog post for your readers. In fact, writing your introduction last is much easier. That said, you may find it helpful for your own clarity to write out a rough introduction to get you started with your blogging.
Once you’ve done that, where you begin with writing your blog posts is up to you. As with writing a book in a more conventional way, you can choose to write in any order you wish but focusing on one chapter at a time will be more coherent for your readers and easier for you to write.
The beauty of writing your book in a series of blog posts is that you get into a rhythm of writing, whether that is weekly, several times a week or daily. This helps to overcome the problem of not finishing your book or feeling that what you write is wasted or lost if you don’t use it in the final book.
Blogging your book also give you the advantage of discovering which parts of your book elicit the greatest response from your readers and from search engines. You can use this information to alter the focus or direction of your book before you publish, which has the potential to substantially increase its impact in your market.
Finally, if you have already started a book and have got stuck, you might like to consider working out the parts of your book that are causing you problems in blog posts. This will have the effect of making you feel less isolated with your problem and will give you an opportunity to write out difficult areas rather than having them spin in your mind and keep you from moving forward.
All in all, blogging your book has many advantages so it is well worth considering, especially if you have a hectic schedule and already blog regularly.
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