Do you have a book inside you? The popular wisdom says that you do. It will take time and effort, and skill, and probably some money, to get it out and make it good, but it’s probably there. The question is, “Why would you want to write a book at all?”
I get a wonderful view of that question, because I talk to people all the time who write books or tell me about why they want to. Here are six3 common reasons. One of them might be right for you.
You can write a book to boost your career.
That’s by far the most common reason that people contact me. They’re entrepreneurs, successful business people, or successful in some other way, and they think that a book improve their business. They might want to increase their fees or establish their position as a thought leader. They know that a book can lead to speaking engagements that provide more revenue and more exposure.
You can write a book to tick an item off your bucket list.
Maybe you’ve always wanted to write a book. I’ve had clients start from there. They want to write a book just to prove they can do it or to get the experience of it or to have something to leave behind for their family.
You can write a book to teach.
Several of my clients have written books that were purely teaching tools. One wrote a book about how to be successful in his profession. Another wrote a manual for people in his office so that they would understand what they needed to do and why it was important. Still another wrote a short book for prospective customers that would help explain his process, what he did, and why.
You can write a book to learn.
My two-time co-author, Jeff Senne, likes to say that writing a book is like getting a PhD. I don’t know if I’d go that far, but I’ve had clients who wrote a book as a way to organize their efforts to learn a subject in depth.
You can write a book to tell a story.
What’s your story? What would you like friends or family, or even the world at large, to know about you? I’m working with a client who’s writing a book about his fascinating experiences during the Vietnam War. Will he publish it? Maybe and maybe not. The primary audience for him is made up of his children and grandchildren, who haven’t got a clue that there even was such a thing as 30-cent a gallon gas.
You can write a book to leave a legacy.
One of my clients grew up with hardly any money and rose to the corporate board room. Her book is about her early years. One reason for writing it is to give credit, thanks, and love to the people who raised her and made the successes of her life possible.
Mix and match as you choose.
You don’t have to limit yourself to one reason to write a book. You can write to teach something about a subject you know well while you learn more about it. You can write a book that boosts your business and ticks an item off your bucket list. You can tell a story that teaches. You can write a book to learn a topic and use it to boost your business.
If you can read a book, you can probably write one. Find a reason that works for you and, if it’s strong enough to put in the time and effort and money, go for it!