One day last week, at 1:27 p.m., I closed my computer and walked away. I had met my objective. In two months, my second book was finished. 44,000 words. I could do no more.
This is the book I have always known was in me. My own thoughts with no thought-leader pretensions from ChatGPT and organized in a simple framework as well as I could. There was nothing left to say. I went to my happy place and whipped up a new kind of soup. (Admittedly, a very weird celebratory rite.)
My first book took an entire year to create.
The baby finger on my right hand has a permanent kink in it from all the extended time spent gripping the mouse. Fifty thousand words were eventually edited professionally, down to 42,000. Ultimately, I refer to it as my practice. Much like the first marriage is a practice for the second.
I’ve been writing all my life and never considered myself a writer for two reasons.
First, because I didn’t write fiction. Non-fiction, especially business, is not so much a story but more like a bunch of little vignettes strung together with a golden chord called a theme.
Second, while many relied on my wordsmithing during my career, NOBODY ever said Hey, maybe consider a career doing this. So, like all of us, I never once considered my talents and skills part of my secret sauce. I shoved them down because anybody can do it.
The difference between both books is night and day. The first was a big brain dump to satisfy my ego, impress everyone else, and be held up as a definitive guide for newish entrepreneurs. It was a failed experiment.
I began with absolutely no intention to sell or make money from the book or the ideas, had no real plan other than to see my name in lights, and never wove in the marketing plan I would need to get the book into the hands of readers. Worse, I thought I was a better writer than I was. The editor had her work cut out to make it as good as she did.
The second book
Is an exploration, a big idea about what is in the highest good of everyone, a roadmap on how it might be accomplished and an invitation to join a movement.
A book is nothing more than a fancy business card. The magic is in how you weave it into a money-making venture.
I started with an idea of what I wanted to create and worked backwards. I pulled out everything I had written over the last eight years. There was a lot of material. (1,000 words five days a week for eight years.)
I ran the numbers for fun and discovered only about 1.5% of previously written material was used. So, real new content for this book was maybe just a third. And I edited my work very, very hard. Four times, I cut all kinds of stuff out. And I am very aware it still needs help.
I am sharing all this for a few reasons:
- Making a self-imposed deadline is always a reason for celebration.
- Writing is a full-time effort, no matter what you hear or read. The only thing I know for sure is the more you do it, the better you become.
- If you or someone you know is writing a book, start with the right intentions. Our ego is the absolute worst thing going to put out a good product.
- The possibilities for making money from a book are truly mind-boggling. Every single one of us has the same opportunities.
- Failure is a disguised lesson that ultimately pays off. I am glad my first effort was horrid, and I am beyond grateful my clients have had faith in my ideas to help them earn some real gold. This book sits on so many lessons it can’t help but be successful.
Maybe the best reason for this note is you’ve likely heard me prattle on over the last five years that I am working on my second book. Well, I am done. And it has moved to the cover design and editor stage!
We are now into September. 2023 has just four months remaining. There is more than enough time to accomplish that big project you decided to complete this year.
Here’s to a strong finish.