“The time it takes to create a work of art does not equal the quality of the final product. Mozart’s complex and beautiful Linz Symphony took him just 4 days to compose.”
~ Debra Hilton
Strategic Nimbleness = Victory
Now, more than ever, you need to be able to create the assets and communications your business needs to grow quickly and easily. Books and ebooks are an integral part of these assets, especially for complex businesses with longer sales cycles and multiple stake holders.
Hiring a qualified ghostwriter takes time. Your in-house writer may not (yet) have the knowledge and expertise it takes to write a high-converting book or ebook – and you may not either.
BUT… What if you had access to the tools and frameworks you needed to do product these assets quickly and effectively using factual data about what the most effective methods and structures are? You could move from idea to execution faster than a speeding bullet without losing control or compromising quality!
So, How Long Does it Take to Write a Quality Book?
In 2019 I ghostwrote 3 NYT bestsellers in 7 months. Each of those was completed within 60 days and took between 268 and 314 hours of focused interview, writing, and reviewing time to move from idea to completed manuscript (an average of 5 hours per day 5 days per week). Will they still be read in 400 years? Possibly not, but that’s the nature of business books, isn’t it? Unlike Shakespeare, Dante, Vergil, Homer… they are not so much about universal human emotions as time-centric business issues.
The point is, that if you have processes and frameworks in place then writing a unique and fascinating business book doesn’t have to take several months or even years – and you’re actually doing yourself a disservice if it does because…
- Every week you wait to publish, you’re losing opportunity and momentum
- The longer it takes to finish your books the more accretions and deletions occur
- It’s more effective and creates higher visibility if you publish 3 books, than one all-encompassing tome.
Why Don’t Most Business Books Get Finished Quickly (or ever)?
The quest for perfection in anything is a highly dangerous pursuit. The quest for excellence should be your focus – not perfection.
There are 3 primary reasons why books don’t get finished:
- Lack of commitment and discipline;
- Fear of what people will think and whether they’ll agree with you;
- Bad advice from well-meaning people;
I suppose that fear of not measuring up comes from the sense we all have that we are the centre of attention. Most people know that they aren’t the subject of intense scrutiny, but still make decisions as though they were. The reality is that if your book is truly destructive to your business, you can withdraw it and no-one will even know.
One author I was working with for a time shared his first draft with his business coach (who had never written a book) and was told that he had shared too much of his process and others would copy it… Take my word for it: that wasn’t true! Anyway, he gutted the substance of the book and sent it back to me for revision with the instructions to “add some more of his stories and conversations that wouldn’t give away any information.”
We had a long conversation about the impact of doing this and reasons not to do so, then ended out relationship. Some time later he contacted me again to ask for advice: his consulting had dwindled to a trickle and he finally had some feedback: “I read your book and was convinced by it that our company needed an expert in your area to facilitate our C-Suite development, but we all agreed that you were not the person because you were too self-focused and didn’t offer enough substance.”
His question to me: “Can we finish the book off on our original terms?”
That wasn’t possible, but he tidied up the original first draft and used that and it was extremely effective.
What Would It Take to Shave Months Off the Process?
There are a few ways to complete your book quickly…
- Use a transcript from a speech or workshop, tidy that up, add illustrations then get it laid out and published;
- Use a potted outline and fit your information and expertise around that;
- Create a structure and timeline at the start using the basic structure and elements and weave them seamlessly into your information and expertise, assess each stage using custom frameworks and tools, and commit to progress.
In my opinion (and also from testing results), the first two methods create some up-front buzz, but end up costing their writers credibility and high-end opportunities. The third method produces a book that you can build a business on, one that attracts your ideal client and repels those who will be challenging to work with.
90 Days to a High Converting Business Book Course
In addition to ghostwriting books for individuals, I’ve also been coaching clients 1:1 to help them write their own books in a timely and successful fashion. This has been very well-received and several of them have gone on to write subsequent books on their own. Others have asked for help so I have created an online self-paced course that can be used again and again.
The course includes timelines, frameworks, motivations and reminders to walk you through every step of the process on the basis that if you stick to the timeline you will complete your book in 90 days.
To learn more visit: https://hiltoncopy.com/Write-Authority-Book-90days