How Do You Define Success When You Are Writing A Book
Success means different things to different people. You may write a book and never publish it, yet it is a success because it has helped you to heal. Success could be that your book has helped to raise your visibility and attract new clients.
You may have more speaking engagements. It could be that you want to become a bestseller and sell thousands each week. You have to decide what success means to you and embrace it.
Behind success is motivation. Unless you know what motivates you to write a book then it will never get written. Writing a book requires energy. Just today I have found it hard to write because my energy levels are depleted.
On the weekend I was fed gluten after persistently checking with the chef, only to find that they had lied. The knock-on effect is that because of lower energy levels I have no motivation and without motivation, there will never be a success. Or in my case, the chapter I am working on will stay in draft!
No matter what superhero strengths I have, practically nothing was written yesterday. However, what I know is that if I can do something towards my book then I’m making progress and the feelings of success will come.
When you think of writing a book what keeps you motivated and on track towards becoming a published author?
The following questions have been designed to get you thinking what success means to you, and what makes you feel successful on the journey to becoming a published author.
What will this mean to you when you successfully publish and become a published author?
Let’s break this question down and consider each part. To successfully publish could mean that you get your book onto Kindle Direct Publishing and press publish. To all intents and purposes, you are published and an author. It could mean that you’ve done that and now you are being hailed as a successful author. It makes sense to understand what this question means for you and to set some goals.
Is success?: –
- Getting your book to live and available status?
- Letting others know that it has been published and looking for opportunities to create a buzz around your book?
- Selling an amount each week/each month/each year?
- Getting bestseller status in your Amazon category?
- Hitting the bestseller list on the big book lists?
- Feeling wonderful because you are achieving your goals?
What does success mean to you?
No matter which of the above are your goals or how you motivated yourself to achieve them, success is a strange beast. Goals are about progress towards something you want, and success is a feeling, or at least it is for me.
Perhaps for you, there are some concrete things you can identify. Money in the bank as a result of writing and publishing your book. More speaking engagements? Possibly wealth, fame and influence? What about the power that success might bring?
Perhaps success is about feeling happy, having an impact on others, inspiring change and making a difference?
The first thing to do is to define what success means.
Is it things or is it feelings? What is it that leads you to fulfilment?
I believe that success is a set of feelings that lead you to take action that results in you meeting your goals and getting what you want, which leads you to feeling successful and fulfilled. Let’s face it no one wants to be rich and miserable… or do they?
When you imagine yourself having success do you associate feelings of contentment and inner peace? Can you see yourself smiling and stepping into a greater sense of well-being?
What is difficult about defining success is that when you are asked the question it feels loaded with an expectation for you to specify the things that you will have.
Instead, my invitation is to consider holding your book in your hand and flowing into the feeling. Then imagine the lives you have impacted and feel that. Feel into imagining subsequent books and seeing the faces of your readers getting what they want because your words inspired them.
What are your success habits, and how can you use them on this project?
Having read the above there are two things to contemplate. The success habits that mean that you will blog regularly and write your book so that you reach the goal of being able to publish on the day that you said you would.
Then there are the feelings that success brings and how that motivates you to continue.
When I think about habits, I like to model something that has been successful for me. When my spine fractured, I journaled every day, but more than that I did affirmations and visualisations. I spent time researching and understanding my subject and then formulating a plan to heal. Every day I took action no matter how small towards my recovery. I experimented with ideas, some worked, and some didn’t. Listening to my body and considering the responses was immensely powerful. My success habits also included faith, belief and courage.
Think about how you can get what might seem like an impossible task completed, map out the steps that you take – every step. Now transfer that across to your blog or book project. What do you learn?
Which successful author do you identify with and why?
This always fascinates me. And the authors I love are those who’ve come from humble beginnings and then pow they seemingly have overnight success – as if…
One of my favourite authors is John Marrs. If you haven’t read The One, please do so, it’s brilliant. What I love about John is that he writes consistently interesting novels with intriguing plots and I read that The One is going to be a Netflix film, how brilliant is that?
He strikes me as a hardworking, humble, dog loving author who followed his dreams. He does the work required to bring him those feelings of success we talked about.
And that’s the key, he writes and publishes consistently.
Would you feel your book was a success even if it wasn’t a bestseller?
Hint: the answer is yes, writing is hard work and being one of the small percentage of people who do publish means you rock!
However, writing and publishing is one thing, actually selling your book is quite another things. Many people can dream of being authors, yet few keep marketing their books and ideas.
For your book to be a success in terms of the rewards that it can bring outside of those lovely feelings, you need to be working on your marketing.
One of my favourite ways to bring your work to your ideal client’s attention is to blog your book. By writing consistent high-quality content which you promote you can engage regularly with your audience and inspire them while building your author platform.
Bestseller status is interesting. You can be a bestselling in a quite obscure category. Just last week I was looking at a personal development book from a famous author which was number one in call centre management. That’s what I call frigging the system.
You have to consistently sell 1000’s each week and stay on the bestseller lists. Go and look at Amazon and the NYT lists and research the authors. What would you have to do and how much would you have to spend to sit alongside them?
By employing other more strategic tactics that fit with your business model you will achieve success.
Make a list now of 20 things you could do to promote your book.
How will you profit from writing a book?
Profit is an interesting word. You might profit from the sales you make or you could profit by creating other products and services that align with your book ideas and concepts.
What else can you put on your product roadmap? Make a list and map them out over 24 months. Not sure what you could do or want to brainstorm them, book in for a planning session.
You will have already profited by learning new skills. Think of the planning that goes into getting your book written, published and promoted. Look at how your writing will have grown. Remember the days that you took consistent action to get these things done and the skills you employed and the habits you cultivated.
Profit is not just cash in the bank it’s also personal growth.
Please do comment on these questions, I’d be intrigued to know now that you have contemplated all of this what success and writing a book means to you.
If you are put off writing a book because it feels too big consider blogging your book. Everything is in bite-sized pieces and you can feel successful every time you hit publish and someone comments. And by the way, all of this feedback can help you to write a better book.
What can you do next? Chat to me about blogging or writing your book.
101 questions to ask before you write a book
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