How to Write Your Book
Write your book quickly and easily using this simple, practical system.
- Build your book in pieces with a foolproof, down-to-earth outline.
- Draft the pieces of your book with an intuitive writing technique.
Productivity = Creativity + Planning
If you have great ideas for books and information products, but for some reason you are not finishing them, Automatic Author will shift your writing practice into productive action and completion.
- If you can talk about your ideas
- If you can write email
- If you can blog
There’s absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t be publishing your work and making money doing it.
21st Century Author’s Business Model
You probably know me as a professional intuitive consultant. But, more than anything, I’m an “indie” (self-published) author.
This is the same system I personally use to quickly outline and write all my tutorials, courses, workshops, workbooks, and ebooks. I passively generate more than 80% of my income from these information product downloads.
I produce a piece of writing in a couple of weeks and then sell it indefinitely — with very little extra work beyond my weekly blogging. With each new addition to my catalog of information products, my income grows exponentially.
This business model works with any niche market or topic.
First, You Have to Write Your Book
Whether you want an old school “legacy” publishing deal or you want to take advantage of the amazing technological tipping point happening right now in self-publishing, you need to crack the code on quickly and effortlessly producing and completing a lot of writing.
- No more thinking about writing a book.
- No more trying to write a book.
Finish writing your book.
Why the Big Projects are So Overwhelming
No matter how prolific you one day become, you will have read a thousand times more books than you will have written. You consider the experience of a book from the perspective of a reader.
Books are intended to be read in a single linear mode. But, you don’t necessarily have to write books this way.
If you have yet to reach the milestone of having drafted and completed a long format writing project, then of course you have no other association with books than the long linear time span of reading them.
No wonder you’re overwhelmed:
You subconsciously calculate the amount of time you believe it will take you to write a single page, multiplied again by the sheer number of pages…
You’re paralyzed before you even begin.
If this is your concept of producing a book, then I’m not exaggerating when I predict that the process taught in this course can change your life as a writer.
Are you a blogger?
If you’ve had some success with blogging, there’s evidence of your own potential right in front of you — open your word processor, copy and paste a few of your posts into a document, and find an average ratio of pages to posts. Multiply that by the total number of blog posts you’ve published.
How many pages are we looking at here?
Imagine if all those posts were chapters in a book…
Why is producing a blog nowhere near as daunting as producing a book?
Because a blog is broken down into small, manageable pieces. Writing a book is just writing a collection of small pieces — with a plan.
Creativity & Speed
Speed writing is based on the premise that the intuitive mind and creativity work more quickly than the intellectual mind and logic.
Intuition and imagination are like different fingers on the same hand.
By incorporating time constraints, you can train your Thinking Mind to step down from its dominant position and allow your Intuitive Mind to retrieve the information. “Laboring” over your thoughts is not the “best” way to access information at the level of intuition — intuition is fast.
You work intellect; you allow intuition.
The less you think of writing as “working” — and more as “allowing” or “picking up” information — the easier the process becomes.
Learn the 3 Most Important Keys to writing your book quickly.
Choose the Right Project
You probably have too many potential ideas. In Automatic Author you’ll learn four ways to ensure that you write the book your audience truly wants.
With non-fiction, the market for your book — the need for your book — is identified first.
Why spend the time and energy writing a book that no one is dying to read when you could have just as easily written one the audience is hungry for?
- Non-fiction books
- Information products
- How to books
- Memoirs and autobiographies
- Free reports for email list subscribers
- Autoresponder series
- Seminars and workshops
- Lectures and podcasts
Can Automatic Author be used for fiction?
It can — with some adaptation.
If you have a working knowledge of the components of dramatic story-telling — Three Act Dramatic Structure, Character Development, Point-of-View, Story Arcs, Sub-plots, et cetera — then you can certainly apply the execution techniques presented in this course: the index card system, outlining, keywords, questions, and time constraints.
Whether you want to produce a traditional book, find an agent and sell it to a mainstream publisher — or your goal is to produce a more contemporary information product…
First, you must write your book.
And that is the sole purpose of this course.
Define Your Book’s Intention
If you can be very succinct, purposeful, and clear about the intention of your project, then you can much more effectively communicate that goal to your potential reader.
- Learn the One Intention at the core of all successful non-fiction books.
- Answer 2 Questions that will help you define that intention for your book.
- Use a fill-in-the-blank template to define your book’s core intention.
Define Your Book’s Audience
The beginning, before you even start outlining or writing, is always best stage in your project to define your ideal audience.
- How to define your ideal audience and connect to your authentic voice.
- How to identify a real Muse to ground your authentic voice.
- How to use correspondence to produce a truly authentic style.
Choose the Right Title
How your project title can actually contribute to procrastination and writer’s block — and the simplest way to immediately jump those hurdles.
2 Writing Channels
One channel is connected to your intuition; the other channel is connected to your intellect. Most writer’s block is caused by one channel or mode interfering with another.
3 Writing Modes
How to identify which channel to use with which mode at what exact stage of your project.
Outline Your Book
If you’re building something big from a lot of small pieces — you need a plan. When you employ the simple outlining techniques in Automatic Author, you’ll know exactly what is going to appear on each and every page of your book before you even begin writing.
On p.22, you’ll find your first Action Step. All action steps have an arrow beside them in the left margin, so you’ll know exactly when to stop and apply a particular part of the process to your project.
Brainstorm a List
The first major task in building your book is a simple list. There’s absolutely nothing intimidating about this step — you don’t even have to worry about the order of the items in your list.
You’ll be given the exact number of items you need on your list in order to produce a traditional-length non-fiction book.
Working with the pieces of your book is a bit like having a puzzle with no cover image — or a fuzzy Big Picture of what the whole thing looks like finished.
How to Organize the Pieces of Your Book
The key to arranging your pieces into an outline is to start with “big obvious chunks” and drill down into levels of specificity as you go.
These pieces can be physically represented by items on lists and on index cards.
Once you have a few big groups to work with, the pile of individual pieces starts to organize itself and to become increasingly more focused.
Concepts with Built-in Outlines
Outlining your book — blueprinting, planning, and building your book — is all about imposing a conceptual order before you actually write.
There’s One Outline Concept that almost builds itself — and odds are great that it will apply to your idea. It’s a highly effective and very flexible format to use when presenting a teachable topic. It’s the easiest way for your reader to learn — and it’s also the easiest way for you to outline your book.
- Learn about the 3 Conceptual Types to which almost all non-fiction books belong.
- Determine which concept is most appropriate for the structure of your book.
You can choose a straight-forward structure or plan for your book without your reader necessarily having to be aware of it. Make the skeleton simple and strong, and you can hang any “style” of writing or storytelling on it that you wish.
Choose Your Outlining Approach
Automatic Author provides you with two potential paths for creating your outline:
- The Strict Outline
- The Unbound Outline
Your Personality Type
The decision about your outlining approach may be based on your personality — some creative types thrive on an organic process with very few rules; still others benefit from having clearly defined boundaries to constrain them and keep them safely on track.
Your Project Type
The outlining approach you choose may be determined by the writing project itself:
- 5 Questions that will determine if the Strict Outline is appropriate for your book.
- 7 Signs that you should definitely use the Unbound Outline strategy.
The Strict Outline
If you want to sell your book to a traditional mainstream mass market publisher, then you especially need your book to adhere to a specific size and format.
Conventional Industry Averages
Do you know the average, conventional format for a typical non-fiction How to title?
Learn the exact quantities:
- Total Number of pages
- Number of chapters
- Number of pages per chapter
- Number of words per page
What your book says — the message, the information, the topic, the voice — can be as unique and revolutionary as you wish, but if you want a publisher to acquire your manuscript, the physical format should be conventional.
The Strict Outline will help you define:
- How many chapters you should create
- How many individual items belong in each chapter
The Unbound Outline
Don’t be swayed too much by the initial impressions you get from the words “strict” and “unbound.”
For some, a Strict Outline works like an invisible fence for your creativity — you don’t have to worry about your ideas running wild, wandering away, becoming lost…
But some of you found it hard to breathe the minute you saw the word “strict” — your throat closed up, your eyes glazed over, you literally started to squirm in your chair…
You’re in luck — there’s a “unruly” outline strategy for you.
The tools and the concepts are the same, but we’re going to play soft, loose, and lax with the exact quantities.
The Strict Outline demands very specific quantities of cards, items, chapters, and pages.
The Unbound Outline is perfect for:
- Projects where exact length (number of pages) is not an issue.
- “Unconventional” projects, workshops and seminars, or mixed media information products.
How to Outline a Chapter
A simple 6 step technique for generating the items in each chapter, including:
- What to do when you can’t come up with enough items for your chapter.
- What to do when you have too many items for a particular chapter.
Making the Individual Pieces
You’re going to exactly define each individual piece before you sit down to write.
This is the most important stage of this outlining and planning process — if you follow this set of steps, you’ll have a book that will (almost) write itself.
Once you’re actually drafting — writing — you’ll be able to get into a zone of pure productivity.
At this point in the process, you’ve reached a significant milestone — you’ve completed an outline of your entire manuscript.
Save this outline
The outline that exists at this stage can be used to:
- Create a Table of Contents.
- Craft a book proposal for an agent (along with sample chapters).
- Build a killer long-form sales page.
Check out the section toward the end of the course entitled “Repurposing Content.”
Write Your Book
The Power of Working with Questions
It’s much easier to write in response to specific questions. In conversation, the mind hears a question and almost immediately produces an answer. The essential answer already exists — you just reach out and grab it.
- Don’t think about your answer.
- Don’t “create” your answer.
- Simply retrieve it.
…As quickly as possible, exactly as you would speak to a friend.
The Power of Working with Keywords
Do you know how many words the mind requires to create a complete outline of a story? It may be a lot less than you think…
Writing with Time Constraints
You can write for 5 Minutes, can’t you?
Even if you can only work in small increments of time, when you have a strong outline in place and you’re committed to a plan, you will inevitably (eventually) finish.
- Don’t contemplate the large amounts of time you require to write your book.
- Don’t think about how many weeks or months it will take to complete the project.
Just trying to carve out a whole day from your week — or a few hours of a day… That’s the most challenging part for most of us.
But when you have a clear plan of exactly what pieces need to be written — and the pieces are small — small increments of time are all you need.
If you have just thirty minutes — and you don’t waste twenty of those minutes trying to decide what to write, but instead, are able to sit down and actually draft the words your book requires for that entire half hour… you will get there.
Even if you only have 30 minutes a day — that’s 6 pages a session.
Using the Strict Outline, and writing for just 30 minutes a day, you can conceivably complete your first draft in 33 days — that’s only 4 weeks.
Just one hour per day — that’s 12 pages per day.
Working at the rate of just one hour per day, you can complete a 200 page manuscript in just 16 days.
That’s only 2 weeks.
A completed first draft is The Milestone that divides the Writers with Good Ideas from the Authors Who Finish.
Should you type or write by hand?
2 factors to consider when deciding whether you should type or write in longhand.
Write out of Order
Outlining and planning your book is all about imposing an order before you actually write. You don’t have to waste time meandering about and getting lost on random detours…
- Pick any piece.
- Pick the easy pieces first.
- Start with your favorite parts.
The cool thing about writing your book with an outline is that you can actually write it out of order.
Edit Your Book
Tips on Editing
Tutorials are inevitably “Do as I say, not as I do.”
No matter how much of a no-brainer a particular editing tip may seem to be — chances are, I included it because it’s a piece of time-tested collective wisdom I skipped at some point — and regretted it.
“Research” can quickly get out-of-hand, becoming an insidious form of procrastination.
Learn about the best possible approach to research that will not negatively impact your productivity.
Formatting your manuscript and making stylistic decisions during the actual drafting process is another huge productivity killer.
Learn how to keep your mind dialed in to the appropriate creative mode at each stage of your project.
A “good” editing job involves cutting material.
Much of what gets cut for strategic reasons may still be well-written, thoughtful, and useful as:
- blog posts
- social media
- free reports
- sales pages
- landing pages
- squeeze pages
- bonus material
Out-takes as Multimedia
Multimedia components or “bonus” material — audio, video interviews, podcasts, lectures — can positively impact the value of your project.
Turn your out-takes into audio or video that you can offer as part of a package.
What remains in the book — and what becomes multimedia?
There’s a simple “Yes or No” Question that defines that criteria.
The entire tutorial is only 81 pages. Depending on how fast you read, you can absorb the main concepts in a couple of hours. Then, you’re ready to dive in and follow one of the Outline Strategies.
The Strict Outline and the Unbound Outline are laid out for you very much like recipes in a cookbook.
- There are series of actions steps.
- Each action step is marked with an arrow in the left margin.
- Each action step is further qualified and explained.
At the end of the tutorial, both the Strict Outline and the Unbound Outline are reduced to a 2 page summary.
Once you’ve learned the Automatic Author process, you can refer very quickly to the recap summary as you work on your outline. And when you return to build your second book.
And your third. And your fourth…
Once you’ve made it this far, you need to stop, take a breath, acknowledge, and celebrate. You’ve reached a true milestone — you have followed through and completed a manuscript.
Only a small fraction of the millions who want to write a book ever get this far.
You have proven to yourself that you have the perspective and the perseverance required to write books.
At the time of the release of Automatic Author in 2011, I have self-published a growing catalog of original writing that includes 500 articles and memoirs (give or take) and 11 non-fiction books / information products.
I understand that there are a lot of complex reasons why someone pursues a “legacy” (traditional) publishing deal.
But don’t be naive about the rapidly changing publishing environment and the options available to you.
A few things about self-publishing that you might want to consider:
- In terms of income, I can take a “book” like Automatic Author — which is half the size of a traditional non-fiction How to — and charge 20 times as much per copy.
- I own 100% of the project and I control 100% of the decisions.
- The overhead cost to deliver a digital version is next to nothing.
- There are no royalties.
- There are no publishers with whom I must share the profits.
- There is no delay of months or years as the book works its way through the traditional pipeline. I can begin profiting from the work within hours of its final edits.
- I can market and pre-sell it before it’s even completed.
- What I might hope to receive as an advance from a legacy publisher, I can make in one day — or at least within the first week I launch the product.
Significant Indie Publishing Income
The secret to long term success and truly significant, sustainable income is having multiple titles.
Once you have several titles out, the effects become cumulative. And not only the income, but also the interest in the content itself — your books advertise each other.
Now … you just have to write them.
81 page ebook in PDF format