Sure you can write a book without any help, edit it, submit it, and get it published all by yourself. You don’t have to have a coach, a guide, or an accountability partner for this process, but I sure wish I had one when I started.
What can a writing coach do for you?
Create a success plan for your career
Recommend launch strategies for your book
Act as an accountability partner through the writing process
Help with audience building, marketing, and website design
Mentorship programs for various aspects of the author business
Writing a book is a big job and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Although I teach people that you shouldn’t be intimidated by the process, on the other hand, you still need to take it seriously.
I have been in the publishing industry for twelve years and have been writing professionally for even longer. Besides the years of on the job training, I have taken thousands of hours of seminars, classes, and workshops on the business of writing. Each year I read at least 100 books.
I will be the first one to tell you that no, you don’t have to have a coach to be a writer, but why not use my knowledge to give yourself a headstart in the industry?
Schedule your free 30-minute coaching session today.
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Have you walked through a bookstore and imagined what it would be like to see your name on the shelf?
If you have daydreamed of becoming an author, but don’t know where to start then you’re in the right place. If the thought of writing a book seems overwhelming then check out this course! Synova has spent 15 years in the publishing world’s School Of Hard Knocks and she wants to help you avoid the bruises. Let her guide you through the mindset issues and the details with her newly relaunched Get Your Book Done Now course!
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Simply put, a story arc is the transformation of a character from one state to another. It’s the growth process of the hero, the empowerment of an underdog, or the digression of an antagonist. A single book has a small growth journey for the main character, but the best place to witness a story arc is in a long-running television series. To keep the viewers interested, these characters will transform over time.
Watch any soap opera and you will see a great example of a story arc. You most likely won’t see a great storyline, but the arc is definitely there. I apologize to all of you daytime television lovers out there, but on the grand scheme of things, no book series would last twenty years by constantly adding more drama between such plastic and unrealistic characters.
How many of your favorite characters started out as a bad guy, but throughout the series of events, he slowly transforms into a likable person? This is a good example of a story arc.
All writers need to keep this basic arc in mind when writing fiction stories, or even nonfiction in some cases. If you are writing your life story, then this will be your journey to awareness. Ask yourself the following questions whether you are writing your life story or you’re writing fiction.
What are the hero’s characteristics, circumstances, and values to begin with?
What happens to the hero during this story and how does it change and mold the character?
At the end of your book, how has the hero changed?
When writing a series of books the story arc becomes more prevalent. You don’t want one character to grow tremendously in book one and then start over in book two. Start the growth journey from the character’s current position.
Do you cringe when you hear the word “dictation?” There’s no need to be intimidated by the word or the process. When someone says the word “narrate,” does that set off alarm bells? I doubt it. There’s a really simple reason behind this example.
“When you change the way you look at the world, the world you look at will change.”
– Wayne Dyer
The perception around dictation is more intense for some people so they find themselves becoming intimidated by the concept. Instead, I suggest you look at it as narrating.
Tips For Narrating (Dictating) Your Next Book:
Outline your book first by making a list of topics you would like to cover. Then choose one topic to “talk” about.
Label this recording with the topic title. This will make it easier for you when you to to arrange your recordings into a readable book.
Google Docs and MS Word both offer a talk-to-text option. This is a simple and free way to get your thoughts down on paper.
**Do Not Watch The Screen As You Dictate!** The whole point of this exercise is to get your thoughts down, not to edit as you go. If you watch the screen, you will find yourself stumbling around in your speech and trying to edit as you go. Instead, hit record and start talking. Edit later!
If you don’t want to use talk-to-text options you can record your story and send it to a transcriptionist to type it up for you. Again, don’t worry about editing here.
After all of this is said and done, now you can send it to an editor who will work on your punctuation, grammar and sentence syntax.
If you are struggling to try to find time to sit at the computer and write your book, then perhaps narration is the best option for you. I know it has made a drastic change in my writing projects.
Remember those days back in school when you weren’t the first person to be picked for a ball team? Do you really want to put yourself back into that situation? No! But, we do it all the time. As writers, don’t get into the trap of believing that you have to be “picked” by a traditional publisher to be a successful writer.
#2 Successful Writers Read
Study the most successful people in the world and you will find they are all committed to a lifelong study of business and personal development. Nowadays, you don’t even have to sit down to read a paperback book. I am constantly studying. While I’m washing dishes, I have my earbuds in listening to a seminar. While I’m driving I will be listening to an audiobook. You don’t have to wait until you have time to sit down with a cup of coffee to read and learn. The important thing to remember is to study.
#3 They Control And the Let Go
I know that sounds odd, but here’s the deal. They control the only thing they really have the power to handle and that is their reactions and their mindset. They can’t control someone else’s behavior, but they control their own. They let go of everything else.
As a writer this an important trait to acquire. People are going to be rude to you when you release a book. Someone is going to leave an occasional nasty review on Amazon. While some people praise you others are operating out of narrow-minded jealousy. Let them go. Control your reactions to these people and let them go.
#4 Forget Everyone Else and Focus on Themselves
Successful writers study the market trends, but they don’t fall into the trap of comparing their work to other writers. How can you compare apples and oranges? Every writer is working from their own ideals, mindsets, and beliefs. No two writers are alike, so don’t compare. Just focus on becoming a better writer today than you were yesterday.
#5 They Don’t Let Fear Stop Them
Successful writers are just as afraid as you are. They have the same anxieties and shortcomings, the difference is they don’t let that stop them from sharing their work with the world. Be courageous and bold. Jump in and swim even when you are afraid and I’ll see you at the top!
The movie Walking Tall tells the Hollywood version of the real-life story of Sherriff Buford Pusser’s war with the Dixie Mafia. A two-hour film cannot possibly explain the entire story, nor can it relate the stories of all the secondary characters. Unfortunately, the story of murder, betrayal, and cover-ups didn’t end with the death of Sherriff Pusser. I will try to relate this massive tale to you, but it may take more than one post.
The Dixie Mafia was known as the State Line Mob and was led by Carl Douglas “Towhead” White. White was in prison when his lover, Louise Hathcock pulled a gun on Sherriff Pusser and was killed. Upon hearing the news, White called his friend Kirksey Nix, Jr and ordered the hit on Sherriff Pusser and his wife, Pauline.
August 12, 1967:
Sherriff Pusser received a disturbance call in the wee hours before dawn. Pauline Pusser decided to ride along with her husband as she had done on many occasions. The pair drove out to New Hope Road to check it out. The disturbance was a ruse to ambush the young sheriff and his wife.
Pusser passed the New Hope Methodist church looking for the reported disturbance but continued driving when he found the place quiet. A black Cadillac pulled out from behind the church and followed the sheriff with its lights off. As the two cars reached a narrow bridge, the Cadillac flashed on its headlights and came racing up beside the officer’s car.
The Cadillac’s passenger opened fire hitting Pauline in the head. The sheriff ducked stepped on the gas. The engine roared to life, and the car lurched ahead of the assassins. He sped up the road a couple of miles until he was sure he had lost his tail, and then pulled over to check on Pauline. Moments later the assassins again found their mark and gunshots rang out hitting Sherriff Pusser in the face and jaw blowing it apart. Somehow the sheriff would survive the attack, but Pauline was killed.
At first, Pusser declared he knew precisely who was responsible and named Towhead White, George McGann, Gary McDaniel, and Kirksey Nix. After 18 days in the hospital and a dozen surgeries to repair his face, Pusser declared he couldn’t tell who had shot him.
Was it the trauma that caused his amnesia or was the hard-nosed police officer going to exact his own revenge?
Time would witness the deaths of three of the conspirators, but Kirksey Nix would remain on the loose. Legends would be told about the great Buford Pusser, but the story didn’t end with his death in a 1974 car wreck. Kirksey Nix continued and became the head of the Dixie Mafia. By 1987, Nix would be embroiled in another major hit.
Here is where the side stories start creeping into this case. The Dixie Mafia and the State Line Mob were prevalent in the area due to the payoffs of local officials and the coverups by local police departments. This allowed the mob to rule without much interference. Although a few shady officers corrupted the police departments, other lawmen were threatened into silence. At this point in the story, I would like to interject one officer named Lieutenant Dan Anderson of the Harrison County Sherriff’s Department. Six weeks after the ambush of Sherriff Pusser on New Hope Rd, Lt. Dan Anderson’s son, Ronnie Anderson was shot and killed in his apartment. The case was immediately ruled suicide despite massive evidence to the contrary.
What happened to this 17-yr-old polo victim in leg braces?
What kind of threat could he really have been?
I will dive deeper into the case of Ronald Anderson next week and follow up with the murder of his father, Dan. Along the way, we will highlight the nationally publicized case of the slaying of Judge Sherry and his wife. All these bizarre murders are tied together with a delicate string. That string is the Dixie Mafia. Find out more next week when this cold case story continues.
Make the decision to follow through with the project
#2. Discover the truth
You can do this! Once you realize this you are good to go. You are more than capable of writing about a topic you love. Chances are, you already have. (Blogs, Videos, articles, brochures, website content, courses, etc.) You probably already have all the content for your book.
#3. Write, Type, or Jabber…daily!
Create a daily “writing” habit. I put writing in quotes because with all the tools available today, you don’t have to hand write a single sentence if you don’t want to. Most entrepreneurs actually dictate the entire book then send it off to an editor. The point is to work on the project daily.
Outline the basic topics you want to cover and then write about each topic until you finish the list. Remember, you are just telling people about you and your business. Isn’t that what entrepreneurs love to do? Just chill out. Don’t think about a book like it’s a hard thing. You’re just chatting with clients.
#5. Set a deadline
Set a deadline to keep yourself accountable to finish the project.
We all know that entrepreneurs need to have a book to help promote their business, but why?Google this question and you will find ten thousand articles which tout the same five reasons. I contend the most important reason is not among them!A book gives your potential clients, and customers in inside look at your and your business like no other marketing can provide.The content housed in a 75,000-word book could fill up five years worth of media ads and still have more information.A book releases the pressure on the client and the business owner. Now the customer can learn all about your business without the pressure of endless sales calls, webinars, or costly ads.In the comfort of their homes, your ideal customer learns more about you than you can possibly put in any other form of infomercial.#authorcoaching #entrepreneursneedabook
I grew up in McNairy County, Tennessee, the home of Sheriff Buford Pusser of “Walking Tall” fame. Stories about Pusser and the Stateline Mob were as common to me as talking about my cousin who lived down the road. I fondly remember sitting on the sun-bleached, rain weathered front porch of my Grandparent’s log house and soaking in tales of mystery, intrigue, and murder.
Maybe these were not the best choices of stories for young ears, but they are a part of my heritage and a part of me. I learned the chemical compositions that can dissolve a body by hearing about a man who killed his wife, put her body in an abandoned well and poured lye on it, so it would quickly dissolve. Bribery and bootleg whiskey was always a common topic.
One tale, however, always stood out. In Chewalla, Tennessee, a neighboring town, there lived a man, who by today’s terminology, would be considered a serial killer. Russ Hamilton would meet his demise in 1968, in a Christmas Day shootout with Sheriff Pusser. This was two years before my birth, and certainly not a “hot” news story by the time I was listening to front porch storytelling. In fact, I never had a name to attach to the horrific tale of how he murdered one of his wives until I was an adult and began researching for my writing. As a child, my Grandfather would recount how in 1940, Russ tortured and killed Grace Burns, his “wife” (no one can confirm if they were, indeed, legally married), tied her up in the woods and left her to die. Body parts were strewn by animals through the woods, ultimately leading to her body being found. Other versions of the story state that he had dismembered her. At any rate, it was quite a lot for a child’s imagination.
This is where the story takes a sharp left turn, not in the details of the horrific murder, but rather in learning how close a connection my Grandfather had to this man! They were “running buddies”! Grandpa, who had long passed when I began my research, is quoted as often saying that Russ, “…was the nicest man you would ever want to meet unless he had been drinking.” That seems to ring true, when you look at his life history, although I am not certain that bootleg whiskey, alone, was the catalyst for his callousness and evil temper.
No one knows exactly when Russ started killing. It seems that he was an odd child and possessed the stereotypical serial killer characteristic of torturing and killing helpless animals. Family members, transients and lovers suffered unusual and untimely deaths or simply disappeared. The first documented murder was in 1931 when he killed Deputy John York in Chewalla, Tennessee. In 1933, he went to the Tennessee State Penitentiary for that killing but was paroled and pardoned in 1938.
In late August/early September of 1940, he brutally tortured and murdered his wife, Grace, for which he would negotiate a plea deal of 2nd Degree murder with a ten-year sentence. However, he was paroled on June 29, 1948. In January 1951, his mother, Ben Ella Hamilton, was found dead and although he was never charged, it is commonly held that Russ
killed her. While being questioned about her death, he was found to be in violation of parole and did go back to prison. (Maybe a measure of justice there.) He was paroled, again, on January 1, 1953, but was arrested for assault and battery, less than two months later and returned to prison until June of that year, when he was finally discharged.
Russ tended to bounce between the McNairy County, Tennessee area and Lauderdale County, Alabama and it was there, in October of 1960, that he killed a co-worker, John G. Grossheim. He was found guilty of 2nd Degree murder and sentenced to 40 years to life. However, he was granted a new trial in 1963 and the jury returned a verdict of 1st Degree manslaughter with a ten-year sentence.
He was released in February of 1967 and went to live with a cousin, Don Pipkins, in Selmer, Tennessee, who owned a small apartment that Russ would rent for $20 a month. On Christmas Day, 1968, one of Russ’ drunken rampages would end his life. He fell through a plate glass window during a Christmas celebration and when Don took him home, he became belligerent and drew a gun on him. Don retreated and called the law. When Sheriff Buford Pusser arrived at the front door and announced himself, Russ started firing as he came through the door. Sheriff Pusser was wounded but returned fire and shot Russ right between the eyes. A lifetime of killing was brought to an end by one bullet.
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