Think about how well you know the ideal reader for your book. People buy books because of some sort of outcome, solution or result that it gives them. In this series of articles, we explore what makes an ideal reader and how to find yours.
What questions does your book answer?
The questions that your book answers, or the problems that it solves, is the next piece of the jigsaw. Think outside of who you currently consider to be your ideal reader. Who asks you what questions? Who are they and what will they get from reading your book?
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Problem and results
Look at what potential problems your readers may have and ask, what results do they get as a consequence of reading and using your content? List out all of the problems and what you believe the benefits will be for your readers. For example, a book on nutrition and sleep.
- Problem: My sleep is disturbed
- Results: By understanding which foods help you to produce the right chemicals in your brain, you can change your diet and learn to sleep well
Look at each of the problems and ask yourself, if this were my problem:-
- How do I feel?
- Why do I feel this way?
- What are the facts?
- What do I know to be true?
- What do I have?
- What don’t I have?
- What other forces are influencing this problem?
- What if I could solve it?
- What if I couldn’t solve it, what then?
Do this for as many problems you think your book will help your reader solve. Once you have worked out what each of the problems are, and how they will be resolved, you will be able to map them to chapters.
Complete the ‘problem and results’ worksheet (below) to help focus your mind on what issues your reader may be facing and which you could help them with
Choose ten questions that your book answers for your ideal reader. If you know these, it is easier to stay on track when you come to writing your content and connecting to your reader.
E.g. What foods do I need to eat to ensure a good night’s sleep?
What is great about your questions is that they also make brilliant chapter headings.
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Plan your non fiction book in a weekend has been designed to help you to be able to undertake all of the vital planning tasks that make writing a book – simple and stress free
Each day to help you create your book, I am going to answer these essential planning questions:-
- What kind of planner am I and why is this important to know?
- What tools and resources do I need?
- What is the process and cost of writing and publishing a book?
- How long will it take me?
- How do I get ideas for my book?
- How do I choose the ONE big idea for my book?
- What is an outline and how do I create one?
- How can I structure my chapters?
- How do I create and use a book proposal?