There are tons of books, blogs, and online courses claiming to teach you how to write a nonfiction book.
Almost none of them are useful for first time Authors.
They act as if writing tips like “start off strong” and “focus on substance” will help you write your book.
Tips like this are not only useless, they’re worse: They give you the impression of help, without any actual substance, like an EMT who drives by a car accident and says “Do CPR!”
If you want actual help with writing a book, read this article first. You’ll be better prepared to begin the writing process—and more likely to actually finish your book.
Below I cover:
- Why most resources on book writing aren’t very good.
- How we teach the book writing process differently at Scribe.
- Scribe’s free resources including our blog, book, and online course.
Note: The following article is specifically for nonfiction Authors. If you need help with creative writing or writing fiction, this isn’t the article for you.
Why Most Resources on Book Writing Aren’t Very Good
There are many reasons why, but here are the 3 big ones:
1. No One Covers Book Positioning
I have yet to find a single resource on book writing that covers an in-depth process for book positioning—yet positioning is the most important part of writing a nonfiction book.
Book positioning is the process of getting clear on why you are writing the book and what you want to accomplish with it.
Who’s going to read it? Why will they care?
If you don’t answer these questions before you start writing, at best, you’ll end up writing the wrong book (in that it doesn’t achieve what you want), and at worst, you’ll write a book that makes you look bad.
2. They Tell You What to Do, Not How to Do It
Most of the resources on book writing give you vague pronouncements about what to do without explaining in detail how to do it.
They’ll say, “Choose a coffee shop or writing space. Then set a daily word count. Then create an outline.” And you’re left wondering, “Okay, well, how do I do that?”
Telling you what to do isn’t enough. Good resources guide you in detail on how to do each step.
3. They Don’t Explain Why Their Advice Works
Lastly, because most advice is written by people who’ve never published their own books (at least real books that actually sell copies to real readers), most resources don’t explain why the advice works.
This ambiguity signals that the Author or coach behind the advice doesn’t know what they’re doing. They are simply repeating advice they’ve heard in other places, like a game of book writing telephone.
How We Teach the Book Writing Process Differently at Scribe
I developed the Scribe Method book writing process using my experience writing 4 New York Times Bestselling books, and helping thousands of people write books, including people like Peter Thiel, Tim Ferriss, David Goggins, Tiffany Haddish, Dave Asprey, Nassim Taleb, and many more.
Whether you read our blog, book, or take our online course, the process for writing your nonfiction book is the same. The Scribe Method is successful for 2 reasons:
1. Our Emphasis on Teaching Book Positioning
The most successful professional writers—people like the ones I just mentioned—spend almost as much time on book positioning as they do on writing their book.
This step is completely unintuitive for Authors writing their first book. Most aspiring Authors have never even heard of book positioning. They come with a desire to write a book, but don’t have a well formed book idea.
Writing a great book requires you to think deeply about what your book is—before you write it.
When we teach The Scribe Method, we guide Authors through an in-depth positioning process. It involves answering the 3 most important questions to ask before writing a nonfiction book:
- Objectives: What do you want your book to accomplish, for your reader and for yourself?
- Audience: Who must the book reach?
- Idea: What will you say, and why will the audience care?
By focusing on this first, we set Authors on a path to write a book that resonates with their audience and achieves their goals. This is why positioning is so important: It ensures you get what you want, while delivering the reader what they want, as well.
We spend a lot of time on this in our Guided Author workshops (more than our Authors expect). Months after our clients have finished their books, they often comment on how important positioning was to their success.
2. Our Process Is Battle Tested Over Thousands of Authors
The Scribe Method doesn’t just tell you what the steps are to write your book—it explains in detail how to approach each step. It includes detailed examples and explanations to demonstrate our method.
Unlike most resources, thousands of successful Authors have used our process. Every step was developed to solve a common problem that our Authors have faced while writing their books. This experience allows us to explain exactly why our advice works.
This means every piece of our advice is there for a reason. When we recommend setting a daily word count or scheduling regular writing time, we do so because we’ve seen the effectiveness of these writing habits for our Authors. And we have the success stories to prove it.
Thinking about getting professional support to help you write your best book? Schedule a free consultation to speak with one of our Author Strategists and see if our coaching service is right for you.
Scribe’s Free Resources to Help You Write Your Book
Here are the resources we’ve created for you to learn The Scribe Method for free:
1. Our Online Course: Scribe Book School
If you’d prefer to learn our process through an online course, try Scribe Book School.
There are 4 modules available:
- How to write your nonfiction book.
- How to write your memoir.
- How to publish your book.
- The book launch blueprint (how to launch and market your book).
The course includes everything covered in The Scribe Method book, presented in video form.
2. The Scribe Blog
Scribe’s blog is the best blog on the internet for nonfiction Authors. It doesn’t just focus on how to write well. It teaches you everything you need to know about positioning, writing, editing, and publishing your book.
In contrast to most blogs on book writing, it also teaches you how to navigate the emotional hurdles of writing a book.
I recommend you start with the following posts:
What I Tell Authors Who Want to Write a Book But Don’t Know Where to Start
I explain everything you need to know about the positioning process and provide real world examples that demonstrate how to position your book properly.
Step by Step Guide on How to Write a Nonfiction Book
I break down how we teach Scribe Authors to create a writing plan, write their book, and edit their book.
The 6 Book Writing Fears, and How to Beat Them
I walk you through the 6 common fears Authors face and provide insight into how you can reframe those fears to help you.
3. Our Book: The Scribe Method
The Scribe Method is our bestseller on writing and publishing. It teaches the exact process we use with our clients at Scribe.
Everything in The Scribe Method is practical, actionable, and straightforward. There’s no fluffy “write what you know” or “believe in yourself” advice.
It covers everything you need—including preparing to write your book, positioning, outlining, drafting, editing, designing, and publishing.
Why Free Informational Resources Aren’t Enough For Most Authors
When people ask me for help with writing a book, many think they just need information on the book writing process.
“What are the steps?” they’ll ask.
I usually respond by giving them The Scribe Method. I say, “Here is the exact process we use with our clients. It’s the same process we used with massive bestsellers like David Goggins and Tiffany Haddish. Read this, and you’ll understand how to write a good nonfiction book.”
Occasionally, that person will follow the process we cover in the book and do the whole thing independently. But these individuals are very rare.
Most Authors realize there’s a lot more to writing a book than knowing how to do the steps. Writing well is a deeply emotional process. It brings up feelings of uncertainty, fear, and overwhelm that are difficult to face alone.
Finding the right forms of support and accountability often outweigh even the most detailed information on how to write a book.
That’s why we developed our nonfiction book coaching service—Guided Author. In addition to all the information Authors need, we provide accountability and coaching to guide them through the emotional journey of writing their books.
Below, I’ll walk you through how Guided Author works and everything it includes.
How Scribe Guided Author Works
Guided Author (GA) is designed for entrepreneurs, consultants, executives, and professionals who work full-time but remain dedicated to writing their book.
You’ll begin with a 3-day book writing workshop (led by me and our head of book coaching) at our office in Austin. We work with you to ensure you’re crystal clear on your positioning before you begin writing your first draft.
We also spend time teaching you about Author psychology and how to overcome the emotional hurdles involved with writing a book.
When the workshop ends, you get access to our private writing community. There you join our world class writing coaches and other published Authors who’ve gone through Guided Author. They support you and answer questions as you do the hard work of writing your book.
You also get to attend weekly group coaching calls with senior Scribe editors and coaches. They help you work through common challenges like writer’s block and procrastination, and guide you in making key decisions about your book.
Lastly, Guided Author includes self-publishing. We not only help you write your entire book, we ensure that it gets published and into the hands of readers. Everything involved in the design and editing process, as well as printing and distribution, is handled by our team.
Scribe Guided Author costs $18,000 ($1,500/month for 12 months). In addition to the workshop, writing community, and weekly group coaching calls, it also includes:
- Quarterly masterclasses with me.
- A full edit of your completed manuscript (done by professional editors).
- Full publishing services, including a beautifully designed cover, hardcover, paperback, and eBook formats.
- Full distribution services, including print and eBook distribution,
- Marketing consult and guidance.
- First week promotions to help you become an AmazonBestselling Author (including graphics for social media and an interview on our podcast Author Hour).
Guide Author is open for enrollment. Click here to learn more or schedule a consult to speak with one of our Author Strategists. If you decide writing a book sounds like too much work, check out interview-based ghostwriting service Scribe Professional.