From Idea to Publication: Key Decision Points Along the Way

Sometimes the book-writing journey can feel like a long winding road. 

While every journey is different, there are common steps and common decision points in every journey:

Every book starts with an idea. Test your idea. Talk to colleagues. Do some research. Make an initial decision: Go or no go.

Decide on your genre: Memoir? Self-help? Something in between. Each genre will have implications for next steps and for your structure. 

Decide on your publication path, at least make a tentative decision early on. With my clients we talk about this early in our process: their goals and the pros and cons of traditional publishing vs. self-publishing.  This is a big decision. It will set in motion your next steps. Do I write a book proposal or draft my manuscript? It also will have a huge impact on your timing.. If you are self-publishing, you can get your book out much more quickly.

Another big decision: do I go it alone or get help? That was an easy choice for me when working on my memoir. I've done it both ways, and I do better with support. I need accountability (deadlines to get my butt in chair) and someone to bounce ideas off. I'm working with a certified book coach who’s in my book coaching community. This decision typically comes up at beginning of the process or after a writer goes it alone for a while and is stuck or not making progress. NOTE: If your budget doesn’t permit you to pay for support each step of the way, the best bang for your buck is upfront, before you spend tons of time writing in circles. Get clear on your point and then write forward. The other critical point for support is at the end, especially if self-publishing. At a minimum. have a professional proofyour manuscript: nothing says amateur like a manuscript riddled with typos.



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