Questions writers ask around publishing

Questions to ask before writing a book 

Writing and publishing a book can be overwhelming, especially to beginners, but do not let this stop you from writing and publishing your book.

A good book provides both author and reader value and impact. To help you in this journey, here are some questions you might want to ask yourself first before writing and publishing. Taking the time to reflect on the following really will save you lots of time, energy and commitment and ultimately will ensure you publish the best book for your business.

1. What am I trying to achieve in writing this book?

Authors write because we are trying to accomplish a goal. But what is that goal? What are you trying to achieve in writing and publishing your book?

Determining your goal is very important because different goals require different paths. Once your goal is clear, your intentions will be clear. Thus, you will know which path to take and your journey will be fun and exciting.

Here are some of the reasons why people write:

  • you want to establish an authority
  • you want to inspire, educate or entertain your readers
  • you want to raise your voice and share your story
  • you want to prove that you can do it
  • you want to leave a legacy for your family
  • you want to express your passion for writing

There are many possible reasons why but they all boil down to three major reasons why:

BRAND – writing a book for your business is a great marketing tool to establish authority and credibility. Nowadays, having a brand will set you apart from your competitors. It will make your business more visible to your dream clients. If you are going to write a book that speaks to your brand, you are reaching your dream clients far more than you can imagine.

BUSINESS – writing and publishing a book is a great platform to increase your visibility as a business owner and tell your clients about your expertise. It gives your business more exposure where your clients are concerned and attracts potential customers. A good book that gives value to its readers will cultivate loyalty for your business.

IMPACT – writing a book can create a great impact on your readers. Many authors don’t realise this right away until the book is published. With the right content, your book can positively influence your readers. 

2. Whom am I writing this book for?

Try not to give generic answers to these questions. You need to be able to give a clear description of who they exactly are, what they work as or do, what life currently looks like for them (tell their story), what challenges do they face, what preoccupies their mind, keeps them awake at night, stresses them, can you help them, give them what they need? What do they really care about, inspires them, pushes them forward?

Knowing who your dream audience is will enable you to write the right content for your book. You can add ideas and concepts, which will engage your readers and make them care about your book. And those who read your book will encourage others to read your book too.

3. How to write an effective title and subtitle for my book?

Writing an effective title and subtitle for your book is accomplished through keywords but they need to be meaningful and easy to remember.  For instance, if you are writing about marketing, include marketing in your title. For the subtitle, you can add more keywords that are relevant to your title. This is more important if it is not very clear from the title what the book is about and you do not want to change the title. Using relevant searched for keywords is important from search engine optimization (SEO) if you want to give your book the best chance of being found online.

If you are not using the right keywords for your book and you are just sitting there waiting for people to notice your book, you will never achieve your goal.

Have you ever had the experience of wondering why a specific book has the number one spot in Google search for a certain keyword despite how bad the content is? It is because they are using the right keywords.

Incorporating the right SEO into your book will play an important role in making your book stand out. Just remember, use the right keywords in your title and support it with other relevant keywords in your subtitle.

4. How can I stay motivated while writing?

Creating an outline plan or guide for when you can dedicate time for writing will help you keep on track. 

Having a chapter-by-chapter outline will help with work flow, and you will have a guide on what to write for each chapter. It does not need to be completely polished. You can write your ideas and concepts first, then expand them when you start writing your manuscript.

5. What writing schedule will I follow?

After you are done creating an outline, it’s time to start writing your book. Either allocate a daily time goal, word count goal or page count goal. Whatever you choose, make sure to follow it.

6. What publishing route should I take?

Every publishing method has its pros and cons. Self-publishing gives you more freedom and flexibility. It also gives you more rights to your work and more profits by collecting all your royalties. On the other hand, traditional publishing can assist you more in distribution and gives you more support.

But don’t stress yourself in choosing which publishing method is the best because both can offer you success. There are successful self-published authors and there are also successful books through traditional publishing. 

7. How will I market my book after getting published?

It is easy to get distracted and focus on generating sales for the book, but which would you rather-sell the book and make a few dollars from the sale or see that book as a lead generator for warming an audience to your brand and offering? There is no comparison between the financial return on the latter compared with the income from any direct sales of the book. See your book as a high value item in your hands that has the power to be truly transformative in the lives of others and be open to exploring exciting opportunities for you and your business.