Anyone can write a book and get it published, there is no magic involved. Below is a brief outline of the necessary steps and some of the resources you may wish to use if you would like to tackle the job yourself. For a more in-depth do-it-yourself business book guide, you may wish to read BE THE AUTHORITY: How to Write and Publish a Book that Brands You the Authority in Your Field.
If you feel that you don’t have the time to write your own manuscript or that the mechanics of book creation isn’t something that you wish to deal with there is no need to let these potential stumbling blocks prevent you from becoming an author. You can simply outsource those parts that you do not wish to do yourself to us here at Haines Communications.
Writing Your Manuscript
The first step in creating a book is to write a manuscript which, when finished, will be put through a series of mechanics in order to become an actual book. This first part, the actual writing of the manuscript, is the most time consuming, and for many people the most difficult part of creating a book. Keep in mind that your book does have to be lengthy, unless you’re writing a novel or some detailed business tome. Your book should contain no more than 15,000-20,000 words, so using a rule of thumb that a typical page contains around 200-250 words it will be perhaps 50 to 100 pages long.
You know you have a lot of information in your head, but extracting that information and transcribing it into a manuscript can seem like a daunting task. For many people who have thought about writing a book this is probably the reason they haven’t done so. The easiest way to get started is by making a list of the most common questions that your clients and potential customers ask you about, if it is a business book. If it is a personal book, then create a list of the anecdotes or salient points you plan to talk about. List up to 20 items.
Next, pull together everything you have written, and if a business anything you are currently using to promote your brand. Go through these and copy anything that pertains to the above you have made.
What you then do is take each item from your list and write out your answers/story in about 1,000 words for each question. Each one of these can then be a chapter in your manuscript, although similar questions can easily be combined into a single chapter. When you’re finished you should end up with 12 – 15 chapters.
If you would rather have us do the writing for you, we offer a ghostwriting service where you would still be recognized as the author.
Having your manuscript written is exciting and it will be natural to want to rush to getting your book into print, but it is very important to have any errors that you missed in your document corrected and to make sure that you have the text exactly the way you want it to be seen in print before you proceed. This is done in editing, a procedure which should not be skipped.
Editing is the process to check your manuscript for grammar and spelling errors and, if necessary, re-word for better flow. Since you wrote your manuscript you are too close to it to be an effective editor, so while it is entirely your choice whether or not to hire a professional editor, it is highly recommended that it be someone other than you who does your editing.
To have Haines Communications edit your manuscript for you, visit our Editing Service.
Formatting and Publishing
The next step is to convert your manuscript into an actual book and get it published. Books nowadays come in two versions, print and electronic, but the formatting that works for a print copy will not work for an e-book and vice versa. Rather than using a traditional publisher, the easiest and quickest way to accomplish this is to self-publish with Amazon KDP. Using KDP enables you to maintain creative control over your book, you will own the copyright, and the ability to print on demand means the print version of your book will never be out of stock.
If you are proficient with word processing programs like Microsoft Word you may be able to format both versions of your book yourself, but the easiest way to get it properly formatted before submitting it is to use a template. Templates are readily available for download, just do a search for ‘book templates’ on-line or look at the free resources provided by KDP.
As with the inside of your book, you can elect to design your own cover or use one of the many cover templates available online. KDP’s free program called Cover Creator offers several templates to select from.
In addition to listing with Amazon, your e-book can also be placed with services like Smashwords and Draft2Digital for wider distribution.
Haines Communications is happy to handle all of the formatting, cover design, conversions and publishing for you with our complete Book Publishing Service.