Five questions to ask yourself to see if writing a book is right for you.
Does this sound familiar? Do people tell you all the time that you should write a book? If they do and you’re wondering whether you should take the leap into authorhood, then I invite you to come on an important journey with me right now. You’ll ask yourself some simple questions, explore what writing a book would mean and help you to decide whether writing a book would be right for you today.
#1. Why Do They Say That?
First, think back to all the times that people told you that you should write a book. Who told you this and in what situations? Reflect on what you think it was that prompted them to say it in that moment.
For example, do you have many interesting stories to tell? Do you have a lot of unique knowledge? Are you a great conversationalist? Are you an enthusiastic writer? What important qualities do they think you would bring to the creation of a good book?
When in doubt, don’t be afraid to ask people why they said what they said!
#2. What Book Is It That They Think I Should Write?
Do you have enough knowledge about and interest in this book?
Imagine that you’re a pro traveler with lots of great stories. You love telling people about your years in Africa, but it’s your stories of the time everything went wrong for you in Japan that always leaves people howling in laughter and encouraging you to write everything down.
Or imagine that you’re a consultant. Your clients keep telling you to write down your most popular advice since many of them have a friend of a friend who would be interested in what you have to say but who lives too far away from your office.
Whatever you own case may be, consider whether the book that other people have in mind for you is actually the book that you would want to spend your time writing.
#3. Who Would Read This Book If I Wrote It?
“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” You’ve probably heard this question before, but not in the context of authoring books.
As a potential author, however, you need to consider: What type of audience would want to hear what I have to say in a book? Think about whether your book would be of interest only to those who already know you, or if your book would garner enough attention from others. And, is this audience large enough to warrant writing a book?
Maybe your ideal reading audience would be Kurosawa film buffs, overweight vegetarians looking to slim down or teen girls considering a STEM career. Whatever your proposed book may be about, you first need to make sure that there’s enough of an audience to make the writing process worthwhile for you.
#4. Where Would I Find That Audience? Am I Connected to That Audience Now?
Unfortunately, knowing who the audience is for your book is one thing, but being connected enough to that audience to convince them to read your book is another. Can you close the gap?
Do you know where your audience congregates? What they like? What they dislike? What they like to spend their money on? What they won’t spend their money on?
Are you currently connected to your proposed book’s audience? Are you a regular presence in their orbit? Do you have any influence in their world? But if not, do you know how could you get more connected? Are you ready and willing to make the connections necessary to get your book read? Be honest with yourself.
#5. Is Writing a Book Worth It?
Finally, you must consider what is arguably the most important question: Is that reaction from your audience, or the impact your book would make, actually worth it for you? This is where the rubber meets the road.
Is their reaction enough to make you spend all the time, energy and resources required to write a book you can be proud of, and then to market it sufficiently, so that the book will ultimately have the impact that matters to you?
If you’re honest with yourself and your answer is No, then that’s okay. Writing a book isn’t for everyone. You can still tell your great stories and be respected by your circle of friends without ever writing a book.
On the other hand, if your ultimate answer is Yes, this will be worth it! I have things to say! I have a book to write and share with the world!, then, my friend, your book journey awaits. It’s a journey unlike any other—with rewards unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before. But it doesn’t need to be a party of one.
If you could use a guide to help you along the way and to ensure an all-around more pleasant journey, then I can help.
Dudley Court Press
Dudley Court Press works with writers like you every day. As a full-service, hybrid publishing house, we help thoughtful people write their books and become successful published authors.