HOW I PLANNED MY BOOK
I’m writing a book, as you probably guessed from the title of this post. For me, the most difficult thing was getting started; now that I’ve written my first 5000 words, the task doesn’t seem so mammoth and daunting anymore! I’m hoping that, by telling others how I planned out my book before I actually put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard, as it were), I can inspire people to get started with their own writing.
I’m not going to give out any hints to what my book is actually about (the internet is brutal and I don’t want my ideas stolen), but I will tell you that it is a non-fiction book. The planning techniques may differ from if you were writing fiction, but you could possibly adapt them so they fit your needs.
I came up with my book idea at around 3am whilst reading an unrelated ebook. As it was so late and I was half-asleep, I grabbed my phone and furiously typed as much as I could before I passed out. When I read it in the morning, I realised it was mostly incoherent, but I manage to salvage what I could into a proper idea. I was excited. I even tweeted about my excitement, because I wanted to document the moment just in case this book ever makes me a millionaire (doubt).
EXPANDING MY IDEA
I knew I couldn’t keep the idea solely on my phone, in case I lost it or it broke. So, I bought a plain notebook and transferred the idea into it. First I wrote a general plan of what I wanted to do. On the next page, I wrote a big list of everything I wanted to include. This was both the bigger topics (like chapter themes) and the tiny details (like specific pictures). I just wanted everything out on paper! The entire book was in list form over 4 pages, which was terrifying and thrilling all at once.
I wanted a way to easily move the different topics and chapters into the right layout, so I transferred the list items onto individual post-it notes. This meant I could place the whole book (in bullet point form) on a table and easily pick up a chapter and move it to a different place, without having to cross anything out. It also meant I could link chapters together easily as everything was there in front of me.
THE FINAL PLAN
Once the layout was finalised, I wrote everything down once again in a list, this time onto A4 paper which I joined with sellotape. I can now work my way down the paper, easily seeing what I still have to write and how to link each chapter to the next.
If you’d like to hear me talk about this topic, check out the video below!