Writing is never easy, especially for book writers.
Putting together an eBook takes time and effort. And writing the book is just part of the equation. It also needs to be edited and published.
The good news is, you couldn’t have picked a better time to write and publish your own book. Self-published books now account for more than 30 percent of book sales on Amazon, the world’s largest marketplace.
Whether you’ve already started or you’re just exploring your options, keep reading for a closer look at how to write an eBook and a few mistakes you should avoid.
1. How to Write an eBook – Don’t Begin by Writing without a Purpose
Anyone can write a book. Stringing a few thousand words together isn’t anything special.
But, writing a good book- – one that clearly conveys your message or story – is a real achievement.
Writing well starts with a clear purpose and idea in mind. Before you begin, make sure you have a solid understanding of your goals and how you want to explain your topic or tell your story.
Nothing will disappoint readers faster than a book without a purpose.
2. Not Understanding Your Audience
Writing a book that no one buys or doesn’t achieve its purpose can be a waste of time.
People read books because they clearly explain a topic or tell an interesting story.
Unless you just want to satisfy your desire to write, it’s important to know what readers want. Before you begin writing, spend some time doing a little research and get a feel for what people are actually interested in.
Odds are, your interests will align with some segment of the marketplace anyway, allowing you to write what you want and satisfy readers at the same time.
3. Failing to Plan
It’s hard to know where you’re going without a map.
The same applies to writing. It’s difficult to write anything – from a blog post to an epic fantasy novel – without a clear plan.
Given their length, books are especially hard to write without some sort of plan. While some novelists claim to write without an outline, most have some idea of where the story will go. Non-fiction writers, on the other hand, definitely need a clear plan in place before getting started.
Before you begin, map it all out. Your outline can be as complex or simple as you’d like it to be; just get it down on paper and stick to it.
4. Not Fully Understanding Your Topic (or Story)
You’ve found the perfect topic or identified the right story. You love the idea and can just imagine readers fawning over your work.
The only problem is, you don’t know squat about the topic.
Ernest Hemingway advised writers to write what they know. While you may not need to be the leading expert on your topic, you must have a firm grasp of it.
Thankfully, this problem has a simple solution: do your research and understand your topic backward and forwards before you begin writing. If you’re writing fiction, know your story and understand where it’s going before you dive in.
5. Writing a “Fluffy” Book
There’s nothing more frustrating than reading a book and thinking, “Wow, I already knew all of that.”
Many books are “thin” on content, providing little value to the reader and nothing new on the topic they cover. Some are even a blatant repeat of other books on the subject.
Don’t be that writer. Create something that educates and informs the reader, bringing new ideas and research to the table.
6. Writing a Wordy Book
Unfortunately, the opposite also happens fairly often as well.
Rather than providing too little substance or no new ideas, some books have too much content and over explain the subject.
You probably don’t need to reach textbook levels of detail (unless you’re writing a textbook) for the average reader. Explain the subject in a way that’s simple to understand. That, after all, is the real goal of writing.
Don’t think you get a pass on this one if you’re a fiction writer, though. Keep the writing interesting, but not overly wordy.
7. Not Editing the Book Properly
Writing is only half the battle. Once you’re done with the first draft, the real work begins.
For many writers, editing is the hardest part. Many writers hate to read their own writing, and the process of going back through and cleaning up a draft is an arduous process.
But you can’t skip the editing process – and you definitely can’t do it halfway. Edit your book to perfection, then have an editor or another writer look it over.
8. Quitting before You Finish
Writing is hard. It takes time and real mental effort. You can’t write a book in an afternoon and you definitely can’t phone it in.
If you want your book to succeed and be effective as a lead magnet or make money, you’ll need to make a real effort.
The problem for many eBook writers is that they simply give up too soon. They encounter the challenges of writing a book and just can’t make it to the end.
If you want to write a book, understand the challenges before you dive in. Make sure you know what’s required. Set yourself up for success, not defeat.
Putting It All Together
Ready to get started writing an eBook?
Hopefully, you’ve got a better understanding of how to write an eBook and what to avoid.
Steer clear of the mistakes above and stay true to your goal. It might take some time to complete your project, but it’s worth it in the end.
If you’re writing a book and getting ready to publish, check out our resources on publishing your work!