A study by The New York Times found that 81% of Americans say they have a book in them. Isn’t that great? So many Americans want to accomplish a great feat and write a book.
That’s until we take a step back and realize that not even close to 81% of Americans are authors. It’s the classic paradigm of people saying what they want to do, but not doing it.
Why don’t they do what they say? There are many reasons why people say they can’t get started writing a book. Excuses fall from the air like rain in Seattle.
Here are a few of the most common:
- “It’s too hard to find time to write when I’m writing with a day job.”
- “What’s the point? There’s already a book written on a similar topic.”
- “Following the habits of successful writers is too hard.”
- “I know I’ll get stuck at some point and I won’t know how to get rid of writer’s block.”
- “Since my life and ideas aren’t interesting or creative, I don’t know what to write about.”
- “I told my friends and family I’m writing a book and they weren’t supportive.”
- “Even if I did write a book, I don’t know how to publish it or market it.”
- “What if I fail, sell zero books, and look like an idiot?”
None of these reasons are ridiculous. They all have some merit, which is why people use them (so well) to make themselves feel better when they procrastinate on writing their book.
But they’re missing the point and losing out on all the benefits of writing a book because they don’t have the right mindset.
Getting Started Matters The Most
If I had to pinpoint the root issues of all those excuses above, it comes down to fear and insecurity. And this is natural. You’ve never written a book before, so it’s going to feel awkward, uncomfortable, and scary when you don’t know exactly what you’re doing.
These negative thoughts affect all aspiring authors in some way. These doubts create an intimidating wall between where people are and where they want to go.
But they key difference between people who succeed and fail is their mindset. And the people who go on to write a book have the mindset that they will just get started and learn as they go.
So they find their book idea (see how to find your book topic in under 15 minutes). They research what they might want to write about. They start outlining their book structure. And they make progress day after day.
And you know what happens after they put in consistent work? Their initial fear and insecurity gradually turns into confidence after each step forward in the book writing process.
Then they look back a week from their start date and smile at how far they’ve come. And once they reach a month, their work is truly coming together and looking like an actual book. They’re proud!
Over time what seemed impossible now seems possible because they took a step of faith and made progress. It’s probably not perfect. But this progress leads to more positive results—and eventually a book gets written.
And one book leads to the belief that they can write another book. And two books leads to whatever they want to accomplish next.
Of course, those who never get started eliminate themselves from this feeling of progress and ultimately end their dream of becoming an author before they give it a chance.
That’s why I’m convinced getting started is the hardest hurdle to overcome, and the most important.
Trust the process
For those determined to get started, step two is to trust the process as you go.
By trust the process, I mean you give up your desire that needs to know, control, and worry about everything coming in the future. Instead, you allow yourself to completely focus on the present task.
For example, when you’re outlining your book you don’t get discouraged that your conclusion leaves a lot to be desired because it’s something you’ll address later.
And when you trust the process you don’t care that you have no idea how to self publish a book because you’re completely zoned in on writing the book.
Trusting the process gives you the empowering perspective that you will cross that bridge when you get there. This attitude inspires actions that turn into small wins. And that’s how you learn as you go and overcome any doubts.
So trust the process and you’ll go farther than you ever imagined. And it’s often more fun when you don’t know exactly what you’re doing at every turn. Look at the positive!
So if you’re committed to getting started to get your message out to the world, I’ve written three step-by-step guides to walk you through the book writing process:
Take the jump to get started, trust the process, and you’ll learn as you go.
I promise you won’t regret investing your time to write a book. I certainly did not!
Want the exact roadmap and an accountability partner to ensure you become an author in 12 weeks? You can hire me as your author coach.
What stops you from getting started to write a book? Feel free to comment any other thoughts.