But how often do those ideas become actual books? Not as often. It’s easy to have an idea. I have the beginnings of 20 novels on my computer and a dozen short stories. All were wonderful ideas, so I thought. But it takes more than just the idea, or the beginning, to make a book.
Books are made up of chapters. Novels have characters, a plot or two or three, twists and turns, a main goal, several huge obstacles, a glorious climax, and an ending. Nonfiction books have a main subject, subtopics (or points) of discussion, personal stories to illustrate these points, comparisons with other methods, lots of motivation to keep the reader engaged, and a stirring ending to urge the reader to take action.
How does all this happen?
When I started working on F.A.I.T.H. last November, I loved the idea of a collaborative book and thought it would be easy to put together. I wanted 19 other authors. Simple, right? But it wasn’t simple. People said “no” time and time again. Months passed and I had little to show for my efforts. There were moments when I thought of giving up, but I didn’t. Why? Because I was determined to complete the project. It wasn’t just a book anymore. It was a mission. I couldn’t “not” do it.
Here are three ways to feel that calling:
1. Solve a problem. What’s happening in your life right now or in the lives of your readers (or clients) that calls for a solution? Do you have a new way to market a product or service that will save time or money? Did you have an important “aha” about love and relationships? After months of dieting, did you finally learn the secret to losing weight? All of those answers are important to your readers.
2. Know your message. Every book has a theme, an underlying message that the author wants to get across to the readers. Romances are about the strength of love. Tragedy shows us that life is often unfair. Books about relationships may talk about the need to love yourself before you try to love someone else. What is your message? When you’re clear about your theme, then infuse it into every part of the book.
3. Write from the heart. If you don’t care about your book or your message, neither will anyone else. But a simple book, written with great passion, can encourage and motivate and inspire. Believe in your message, in the importance of your book. Then write from the heart and watch your readers feel your love.
Millions of books are published each year. New authors are created every day. You can be one of them if you don’t let your ideas die through neglect. Solve a problem. Know your message. And write from the heart. Then persevere. A little bit at a time will eventually result in an entire book. Your book.
F.A.I.T.H. will be published the end of June 2014. I am a proud author! Who will join me?
Photo by Danielle Bonardelle, photoXpress.com