“I wish I could write a book.” I’d just been introduced to the young man as “an author.” That’s what we began talking about.
I’ve had that conversation many times. What people wonder about is whether or not they can write a book, but that’s the wrong question.
It may be a dirty little secret of book writing, but the truth is that if you can read a book you can probably write one. The real question is whether you’re willing to do the learning and the work.
If you write the book yourself, you’ll have to develop your writing skills. You’ll need to master the arts of organizing the contents.
If you use a ghostwriter, you’ll still need to master the core material. You’ll have to answer questions, review material, and keep to schedules. It takes discipline and work.
Then there are what I call the logistical skills. If you’re using a traditional publisher, you will need to find and engage an agent, write a book proposal, and evaluate the deal you’re offered. If you’re publishing your own book, there’s an array of details about the publishing process that will claim your attention.
Regardless of which way you go, marketing your book will probably be your responsibility. Whether you hire help or do it yourself, there’s probably learning and work involved.
Regardless of how you do it, writing a book involves a lot of work that you probably haven’t done before. The important question is, “Am I willing to do the learning and work necessary?”