Yesterday, we explored the idea of beefing up your finances with a side income in self-publishing.
And literally minutes after I sent the e-letter out, I started to get emails from folks who wanted to know more.
A lot of readers are excited about the idea of a passive income that looks after itself. But the one question on everybody’s lips was:
“That sounds great and all. But how do I start writing a book?”
I asked James Altucher, author of 19 books, to come back and answer that question for us.
All the best,
Editor, Money & Crisis
P.S. Want to a passive income that keeps earning money even when you’re asleep? Click here and James will show you how to turn your passion into thousands of dollars a week — from your couch… at the beach… or anywhere in the world. Find out more.
The Best Way to Start Writing Your Book
“What’s the best way to start writing a book?”
After writing 19 books (and counting), this is a question I get asked every day.
Today, I’m going to answer that question with a story.
Right now, I have a problem.
I asked my 15-year-old daughter what she’s learning in school.
She told me that in math she’s learning about how to find the volume of a cone.
I asked her what she was learning in a class called “global.”
She said she has to write about what she’s learned from all the homework they did this year.
“So…” I said, “You have homework now ABOUT your homework.”
My Big Problem
I’ve learned a lot in life.
I’ve learned how to deal with people… how to have ideas… how to be creative… how to be healthy… how to sell… how to negotiate… how to know who is good for me to be around and what sort of people I should avoid.
These are the tools I use every day to live a steadily improving life (and even then I still find it hard sometimes).
Life is difficult, it’s hard to survive every day. It’s hard to make decisions. And we constantly have harder problems as we age.
So my problem is: my 15 year old is learning NONE of that.
Everything of value I know today, I had to learn through experience.
What does this have to do with writing a book?
Everything. Because if someone wrote a book that solved my problem for me… I’d buy it in a second.
That’s why the first step to writing a great book is always:
A) Have a Problem
If you’re writing a nonfiction book — be it a self-help book or a history book — you always start with the problem.
Somebody WANTS something and there’s a problem standing in the way. Explain why you want this problem solved and why solving that problem is so important.
My problem is that incomes for young people ages 18-35 have been going down for the past 25 years… and my daughter is doing homework about her homework..
The bigger the problem. The higher the stakes.
If you’re writing a fiction book then… the same principles apply. Except now it’s your main character that has a problem.
Luke Skywalker wanted to explore the universe. His uncle wouldn’t let him. Then stormtroopers killed his uncle and Obi-Wan Kenobi told him he needed to learn the Force to save the Princess.
Those are some big problems. But where do you go from here?
B) Make a List to Solve Those Problems
Make a list.
What needs to be done to solve your or your hero’s problems.
In the case of my daughter’s education problem , here are the things people need to learn at a young age in order to be successful:
- Emotional connection
- Communication Skills
Luke Skywalker’s list might look like: Find a pilot, avoid getting caught by stormtroopers, protect R2D2, learn more about the Force, shut down the force field on the Death Star, save the Princess, destroy the Death Star.
Each item on your list is a chapter in your book.
And in each chapter, there is a story that works the same way as the book: The character has a problem, figures out some ways to solve it, solves it, moves forward.
Note that Luke’s problems got more and more difficult… and the stakes got higher.
As your character goes from reluctant amateur to hero, his or her problems get more and more difficult.
C) Problems Solved By the End… Maybe
At the end of the book all the problems you presented should be solved. Or…mostly.
Luke Skywalker blows up the Death Star and I teach my daughter how to negotiate with the best of them.
And that’s how you write a book. Good luck, my friend.
This Is Only Step One…
We’ve only scratched the surface of this issue.
Because the next step in your process would be to publish your book. Preferably, self-publish.
That way, every day of “work” will be setting you and your family up for a lifetime (maybe more) of income.
That’s where I come in.
I’ve been working on a project for the past year…
To help you take your masterpiece to the next step. On your terms, in your own way.
If 100% financial security, being your own boss, traveling the world and spending more time with your family interests you…
Then you need to see this.