Authors are called to write books.
The source of the call varies. Authors might be drawn to share their version of the answer missing from the literature and wish to make a contribution. Maybe, a question appears and as Geoffrey Moore says, “you staple yourself to the problem” in search of the solution. Clients start asking for more details and explanation, for something concrete they can keep with them and refer to. An agent might call saying they can sell a book to a publisher. Some authors treat writing a book like running a marathon or sitting for a 10 day vipassana retreat, a task to check off the bucket list. Or that another product is needed among a growing set of offerings from the author.
These sources make a chord of sorts, a mixture of internal and external pressure that calls an author to write a book. Pay attention to what brings you to start that journey. They provide the energy needed to get started, like the starches in a seed.
There’s also strands of intellectual DNA that come from those initial signals. Those intentions combine with an author’s existing abilities and body of work. Most authors were already writers in some capacity. Every author harvests material from their coaching and consulting. It might be through the story of a client’s journey or development of a framework that allows others to perceive their world in a new way. Gather and make note of as many signals and sources as you can—tweets, speeches, courses, blog posts, interviews, and essays. That ability to internalize all the signals and start to express them marks the first step of answering the call.
- Gather up all your existing materials and immerse yourself in it. See Steal Like An Artist by Austin Kleon.
- Ask potential readers how your work helps them. See Talking To Humans by Giff Constable.
- Start writing a journal today to start capturing everything that’s bubbling up from answering the call to write your book.
If you find yourself called to write a book right now, check out what we at Bard Press are looking for in our next authors.