Book Idea: How to Find Good Book Ideas Guaranteed to Stir Envy

A good book idea is rare.

As much as you think all of your book ideas are fantastic and anyone would love to read them…you might be completely wrong.

And I’ll explain why shortly but first, if you want to skip ahead and discover if your book idea is indeed a great one, take this intuitive quiz that will tell you exactly how it fares against the competition.

Click Here to Take the Quiz!

What makes a good book?

A good book is a combination of high passion on your end, making your readers feel intensely along with a structure that toys with their emotions and an overall message worth sharing.

In order to come up with a good book idea, you have to understand what makes a book great and then work backward from there.

This might seem a little vague but in reality, this combination isn’t easy to come by.

A good book takes time, effort, and the right formula to get right. If you want to leave readers feeling stunned in the best way (and ready to give you those coveted 5-star reviews), it’s essential to first start with a great book idea.

book ideas

Here are some of the top qualities that make a book good:

  • It invokes high levels of emotion in the reader
  • It has an overarching theme or message
  • A strong, pleasant voice
  • A structure that builds on itself
  • Quality writing that’s enjoyable to read and visualize
  • Originality

Once you know what your book needs, it’s time to figure out what you should write about.

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What should I write my book about?

When determining what you should write your book about, start with figuring out if you want to write fiction or nonfiction.

If you want to write nonfiction:

Fiction and nonfiction are basically two different worlds when it comes to writing.

You have to determine if you’re someone who wants to write fiction or nonfiction. This decision is typically simple to make because if you don’t have an interest in creating new worlds, realities, or making up characters, fiction is not for you.

On the other hand, if you love to write guides and how-tos and maybe even self-help related books, nonfiction is going to be a better fit for you.

If you want to write fiction:

You have to start by determining what kind of fiction you want to write.

Which genre will be your battlefield?

These are just the more popular fiction genres:

  • Romance
  • Fantasy / Sci-fi
  • Contemporary
  • Mystery
  • Thriller / Horror
  • Satire
  • Young Adult

In order to choose, pick the genre you enjoy reading the most. That means if you love fantasy and typically read that more than anything else, this will be the genre you’ll enjoy writing the most.

Once you know what you want to write, you have to learn how to come up with a good book idea in it.

Coming Up With a Good Book Idea for Both Nonfiction and Fiction

We’re going to separate these two simply because the process is so different. Coming up with fiction book ideas differs greatly from nonfiction because they cover much different information, key elements, and reader intent.

— How do I come up with a fiction idea for a book?

Fiction is amazing because you can come up with pretty much anything and it can be formed into a good book idea.

Let us help you break it down.

#1 – Use writing prompts to spark your creativity

If you have a hard time coming up with book ideas, then what you really need is something to prompt your mind into thinking creatively and imaginatively.

And that something is a writing prompt.

Writing prompts are very short ideas or story concepts for you to use in order to get started. Think of them as the catalyst for your imagination.

We actually have a list of over 200 original fiction writing prompts created for this specific purpose.

You can fill out the form below to download them! These prompts might contain the beginning of your next book idea.

DOWNLOAD 200+ FREE WRITING PROMPTS HERE


#2 – Do some people watching

Head to a park or airport and just sit down to watch people. This might seem a little odd (or even a tad bit creepy) to you but it’s often a great way to get real-life writing prompts.

You may overhear a snippet of conversation or witness someone doing something interesting.

Take a notebook and jot down notes in order to flesh it out into a full story later. Consider it more like research for your novel.

#3 – Bounce ideas around with a friend

If you have a creative friend you love to chat books and book ideas with, just sit down and bounce ideas around with them.

Two minds are greater than one is most cases – including coming up with book ideas.

You can ask them to come up with a character and their background, and then you can give their life a reality with problems and a main conflict.

This alone can get you started on a book idea!

#4 – Play the “What If” game

This is my favorite way to come up with book ideas and it’s based on the concept of saying “what if…” and thinking up a crazy situation in this world or one of your own making.

Not only does this open your mind to otherworldly possibilities, but it’s also great practice for your imagination.

Here are a couple examples of how to play the “What If” game and how it can yield interesting book ideas.

"What if" thoughtExpanded on for book idea
What if...there's already a cure for cancer.The cure for cancer is kept hidden due to the large amount of money it generates for research.
What if...there are hidden civilizations living among us.These hidden civilizations have advanced technology and medicine we know nothing about.
What if...the oceans are home to alien life.Aliens are living among us...deep, below the ocean, with entire cities and civilizations.
What if...money became obsolete. Money no longer has value and the world is thrust back into a world of trade, barter, and other means of getting what you want—dangerous means.

#5 – Pick a different time period and think about issues that could arise

This specific technique is designed to free your mind from common problems in this time. Because it’s all you’ve known, your mind can try to come up with problems deserving of a book, but it’s a little difficult to make those seem interesting.

Instead, give your brain a shock by thinking of problems from another time period, whether that’s the past or the future.

You might have a book idea hiding in the past that you’ll never be able to see if you’re only looking in the present.

#6 – Use Pinterest to find interesting pictures

Then write a book about their reality.

One thing I like to do most often is type “character inspiration” into the Pinterest search bar.

book idea using pinterest

Then, once the images load, I pick someone who stands out to me.

book idea using pinterest

From there, I do some deep thinking about a world they could fit in, what it looks like, what the big problems are, and even go so far as to create a job and personality for that character.

You can do this very same thing with “fantasy world” or “sci-fi world” if you want to think up some books revolving around those ideas.

The results often give you images that can spark a small idea – which we can help you develop into a fully-fleshed story.

#7 – Make up a character you’d like in real life

From here, you’ll craft a story about their life in their own reality.

This exercise is perfect for coming up with a good book idea because generally, you want your protagonist to be a character people like.

And when you create a character you genuinely like and would be friends with, other people will feel the same.

While the story and plot have to be intriguing, the character is sometimes the biggest selling point. A book with great characters will stand out.

— How do I come up with a nonfiction idea for a book?

You’ll have to unleash your inner child.

Yes, I’m serious. Coming up with good book ideas involves a lot of creative thinking and suspension of disbelief.

Here’s how you can come up with great book ideas many will love to read.

#1 – Determine your passion

Writing a book without passion is useless.

Your distaste or worse, your indifference, will bleed through the pages and be obvious to anybody reading it.

If you want to come up with a book idea that not only other people will love, but that you will also love, it has to be something you’re passionate about.

The process of writing a book can take some time and a lot of dedication, rereading, and editing to get right.

It will only do well and be met with praise if it’s something you put a lot of passion into.

#2 – Think about what you know a lot about

What are a few topics you seem to know more than the average person about?

The reason you have to figure this out is that it will help you determine the best book idea for you to write.

Here are some questions you can ask in order to uncover what you’re knowledgeable about:

  • What are people always asking you advice for?
  • What are key concepts you find yourself repeating a lot?
  • What do people tell you you have a lot of knowledge about?
  • What are your “specialties” both at work and at home?

These questions will help you determine the common theme within the answers. Once you know what you have a strong knowledge of, you can narrow down your book ideas.

#3 – Brainstorm many main concepts

You don’t just have to limit yourself to what you know a lot about. Instead, brainstorm a very large number of main ideas.

These can be anything from your hobbies to your work expertise to even your view of the world and how it works.

Anything that comes to your mind and sparks your interest is worth writing down.

When you do this, you’ll typically find that there’s a main topic or overarching theme that sticks out the most. Usually, this is what you should write a book about.

#4 – List book concepts you’d want to read yourself

What are the nonfiction books you’re drawn to most? This will often give you insight into great book ideas for you to write yourself.

The reason for this is because if you wouldn’t read the book you’re writing, then you shouldn’t be writing it.

This technique works backward from your own interests in order to determine which book idea you should push forward.

#5 – Write down the things you daydream about

What do you most often find yourself spacing out about?

When your boss snaps to get your attention or when your partner has to wave a hand in front of your face to bring you back to reality, write down what you were just thinking about.

It can be anything.

Even if it’s just what you’re going to make for dinner, write it down because you want to get into this habit.

After a week, take a look at all those thoughts and you’ll usually find a pattern amongst them. That’s the book idea you should write about.

#6 – Start with a narrative about your day-to-day life

This is a very unique technique that can help you discover what’s important to you from a day-to-day perspective.

In order to do this, open a blank document and just start writing about your everyday life – but do this as if you were writing a story about yourself through narrative. Meaning, from a third person perspective.

Here’s an example of this book idea finding exercise:

Book Idea Exercise Example:

She was perched at her desk, the monotonous tap-tap-tap of the keys a familiar comfort amidst the silence of her lonesome. Leaning in, her eyes flitted across the screen, following the lead of each word she typed.

Start writing yours and your mind might just come up with a book idea for you to take to publication.

Other Methods for Coming Up With Book Ideas

Everyone is different and all of our minds work differently. And that means if you want to come up with a good book idea, you’ll have to try a number of different methods to determine what works best for you.

Here are some alternative methods for coming up with a book idea that aren’t listed above.

#1 – The snowball method

This is a technique that helps your ideas build on one another – much like a snowball builds on itself when you start rolling it through the snow.

How it’s Done:

How to do this book idea-generating exercise: This is done by writing down a broad concept first, like: Confidence. From there, you will list more specific but still general terms related to this, like:

– Gain more confidence
– Confidence and your mood
– Confidence in the workplace
-What affects confidence?

After you have these ideas, pick a single one to narrow down even more until you have a niche-specific book idea.

#2 – Your own twist on a heavily-searched topic

This is for you nonfiction writers out there. In order to find topics that are searched a lot, hop on Amazon, choose “Books” from the search bar drop-down, then click the search icon or hit enter (yes, without typing anything in the search field).

This will bring you to the generic “home page” for books. Scroll down a little bit and locate the left sidebar with the different categories like “Popular in Books,” “More in Books,” and more.

From here, choose “Top 20 Lists in Books” as seen below.

find book idea on amazon

You can easily scroll through the different sections in order to get an idea for what’s the most popular.

Now, most of these will be fiction, as it’s the top-selling genre.

If you want to find nonfiction-specific top sellers, repeat the first two steps in order to go back to the books “homepage.”

Then scroll down until you find the “Books” category with specific genres beneath. You can click on the genre you have the most interest in, like “Self-Help” in the example below.

find book idea on amazon

From here, scroll down until you find the “Bestsellers” section in which you can discover the hottest titles and topics they cover so you can shape your book idea based on what will sell, like in the image below.

find book idea on amazon

#4 – Write down any and all ideas

Even if they’re tiny and you think they could never make a great book, write them down.

You never know what could blossom into sometime incredible. Maybe JK Rowling never thought an idea about a wizard in school would be interesting – and look what happened there!

Next Steps – If You’re Serious!

If you have a book idea – or even if you don’t, we can help.

Book a call with one of our experts in order to discuss if your book idea is good and how you can dive deeper and uncover a final idea for your book.

Join Chandler Bolt at his FREE Webinar Training as he reveals the exact tactics and strategies he used to write and publish 6 bestselling books in a row – and how he used them to build a 7-figure business in less than 2 years!

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What is your book idea? Comment below and let us help you iron out the details!

5 Simple Steps to Snag Book Endorsements from a Marketing MBA

Growing you book sales isn’t easy. In fact, you’re probably doing it incorrectly already.

This post will show you how to market your book for growth.

But if you want to know all the ins-and-outs of self-publishing, including how to write, market, and publish your book within 90 days…we highly recommend watching your free training first.

This is a guest post by Cloris Kylie, marketing MBA, who shows you how to create a strong marketing foundation and connect with influencers to grow a magnificent business. The bestselling author of “Beyond Influencer Marketing” and the host of “Beyond Influencer Marketing Podcast,” she has been featured on network television, top-ranked podcasts, and YouTube shows and websites with millions of followers. Get her guide to connect with influencers at https://www.cloriskylie.com/influencer.

How to get book endorsements

Endorsements are a very powerful form of social proof and trust-builder for potential readers of your book.

Endorsements alone might not make your book a bestseller, but they’ll give you an advantage over other books that don’t have them.

book endorsements

I was able to leverage my endorsement by a top influencer to promote my book on social media, on my website, and even on webinars and speaking engagements.

You could place endorsements or “blurbs” on the back cover of your book, the praise sheet, or even the front cover, as you can see from my endorsement example below.

book endorsment example

But, how do you get top influencers to support your book? Here are five simple steps to get endorsements for your book.

#1 – Find the right influencers

The most powerful endorsements are those given by people who are well-known in your field.

To select the right influencers, find out who your ideal readers admire. Post the question on targeted social media groups or ask them directly.

Also, ask yourself what top influencers you follow and respect. Add their names to the list.

Focus on quality over quantity, but if you don’t have enough names, search for bestselling books similar to yours and check out who endorsed them.

It’s important that the influencers have a style and values similar to yours. That way, your ideal reader will be likely to be attracted to them and be familiar with their work.

How do you figure out the style and values of potential endorsers? Start by visiting the “About Me” page on their website and pay attention to their branding and message.

Then, visit their social media pages and focus on the style of their posts and the content they share. You’ll get a good idea of whether the person’s values and style might be a good match for you or not.

#3 – Deliver value first

Because it’s much easier to get a yes from someone who has already received value from you, it’s important that you start planning your request for endorsements in advance.

For blurbs by top influencers, you might need to start the outreach process several months ahead of the publication of your book.

Regardless of where you are in your journey, there’s always a way for you to bring value to the influencers and start a relationship with them.

Something as simple as sending them a handwritten note about how much their message means to you, posting a video review of their book on Amazon, or recommending them on LinkedIn will help you stand out.

Here are other examples of powerful ways to stand out:

  • becoming an active member on the influencers’ social media groups
  • attending one of their conferences
  • joining one of their paid programs

You should do this because you truly enjoy their message and not just because you’re seeking endorsements. Your true intentions will come through in your communications and behaviors.

Avoid going straight to the ask without having taken the time to deliver value first.

#4 – Prepare to ask

Before you reach out to potential endorsers, do everything you can to make it as easy as possible for them to say yes.

Prepare well in advance so you can find the best opportunities to ask for the endorsement, and give yourself enough time to get through gatekeepers.

For example, if the influencer will be speaking at an event in your town, you could grab a ticket and introduce yourself.

However, local events aren’t your only choice. One of my friends was interested in building a relationship with an influencer who would be speaking three thousand miles away. But that didn’t stop her.

By following the influencer on Instagram, she learned that this person loved brownies and would be attending the event with her husband.

My friend ordered a dozen brownies to be delivered to the event with a customized note that read, “Best wishes during your presentation. Hope you and your husband enjoy these treats!”

That was the start of their friendship.

As part of your preparation, write a sample endorsement for each influencer. Blurs usually hover around 50 words (never more than 100). If you know their work well, you will be able to create blurbs that closely match their writing voice.

#5 – Ask for the endorsement

It might feel nerve-wracking to ask, but never wrong. If you’re hesitant, it might be too soon in the relationship, especially when it comes to top influencers.

If you ask too soon, they will either ignore you or reject your proposal.

Rushing might mean that you’ll have to start the process all over again and find someone else to endorse your book.

Never send a mass request to a group of influencers. You’ll waste your time, and hurt your chances of ever building a relationship with them. Customization is key.

Send the influencers a copy of your book along with a well-crafted message asking for the endorsement.

Ideally, you’ll send them a physical copy. It doesn’t have to be the final version, and it doesn’t have to be perfect. It can be a printed PDF.

That said, you must ensure that whatever you send to the influencer is professionally packaged.

If sending a physical version of your book is not possible, you can send them the PDF or ebook, but you’ll have to ask in a way that stands out. You could achieve this by customizing your message in a unique way, creating a video specifically designed for them, or preceding your email with a handwritten note.

Think outside the box! A video card or a note written on a balloon would be clever ways to stand out, too.

Be succinct. Remember that time is a high-price commodity for influencers (for everyone!) so you don’t want to make it a chore to understand what you’re asking.

Start by expressing why you feel they’re the right person to endorse the book and why you respect them so much. Be sure to mention that you’re eager to make your readers aware of their work.

Next, specify the length of the blurb you’re seeking as well as by when you need it done.  

Don’t make your deadline too far in the future so that it’s put in the back burner, but don’t make it so soon that the influencer will immediately say no. I personally chose 3-4 weeks to collect the blurbs.

Be prepared to negotiate an extended due date, and allow for extra time in your planning.

When you share the blurb that you wrote, explain that you’re just trying to make things easy for them.

Express how much you appreciate their time and attention, and close with the promise to follow up in a week or two.

Following Up for Book Endorsements

If you don’t hear back from the influencers, it’s easy to assume they’re not interested in writing the endorsement and be tempted to give up. However, it’s important to realize that they might have not received your message yet. 

Emails go to spam folders. Gatekeepers delete emails and toss out mail. You never know!

When you follow up, try a different way to reach the person. If you used email first, follow up with a handwritten note or a message on social media.

If you find out the name of the influencers’ gatekeepers, reach out to them directly. Build a relationship with them as well, and you will have a great chance of success.

My rule of thumb is to follow up three times. If you don’t hear from them, it might be time to move on.

As you can see, with a well-written manuscript, proper planning, and a great dose of authenticity, it’s possible for you to get endorsements from top influencers in your field.

The most important step is to take action.

It’s easy to be sidelined by fear of rejection, but if you think about it, the worst thing that can happen is that they’ll say no. If you’re confident in the quality of your book, you have nothing to fear.

Take the first step today to gain powerful social proof and make your book a success!


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11 Best Writing Blogs to Master the Craft of Creative Writing

You already know this:

Writing is hard.

It’s so difficult, in fact, that there are countless resources online dedicated to helping you better understand and improve the craft.

We here at Self-Publishing School are even committed to giving you the best advice out there.

But we wanted to offer you more.

writing blogs

If You’re Ready to Get Started NOW – Watch This Right Away

Don’t waste any more time than you already have.

Before we get into the meat of which blog posts are the best and what unique qualities they have to offer, let’s set you down the path for success.

You’re here because you want to learn more about writing.

We get it. In fact, we already put together a free training guide for you with all the information you need to know.

Join Chandler Bolt at his FREE Webinar Training as he reveals the exact tactics and strategies he used to write and publish 6 bestselling books in a row – and how he used them to build a 7-figure business in less than 2 years!

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11 of the Best Writing Blogs for Tips and Advice

If you’re not quite serious yet about getting your book published yet, we’ve put together a list of the best writing blogs to learn and grow from.

These are the top resources for you to use in order to expand your knowledge and improve your craft.

Here are the best writing blogs we’ll cover for you:

  1. The Write Life
  2. Writer’s Digest
  3. Write to Done
  4. The Write Practice
  5. Count Blogula by Jenna Moreci
  6. The Creative Penn
  7. Terribleminds by Chuck Wendig
  8. Daily Writing Tips
  9. Better Novel Project
  10. Well-Storied
  11. Shayla Raquel

Let’s dive into exactly what these blogs have to offer and why you should be paying close attention to them if you want to improve your writing, finish your book, and get it published!

#1 – The Write Life

If you’ve been searching through the writing community long enough, you’re probably already aware of all The Write Life has to offer.

This writing blog is a fantastic resource for writers of all kind.

best writing blogs - The Write Life

Whether you’re looking to write a book for the first time or jump into the freelance writing community, The Write Life has you covered.

They even have tips for blogging and marketing. All the bases are covered!

Make sure to check out their helpful blog posts and read the comments for extra help from their dedicated community.

Click here to check out this writing blog!

#2 – Writer’s Digest

If you love writing tips by writers, this is one of the top writing blogs to visit.

This writing blog is all about uncovering your potential through real, easy-to-follow blog posts that simplify more complicated issues in the writing community.

best writing blogs - Writer's Digest

They even host competitions, feature blog posts by editors, and give you insights to events they host or even attend.

If you’re someone who loves to physically join a writing group, you’ll love this writing blog and all it has to offer.

Click here to check out this writing blog!

#3 – Write to Done

There are a lot of different avenues writers have to be aware of when it comes to building a successful career from their work.

And Write to Done gives you just that!

best writing blogs - Write to Done

Covering both fiction and nonfiction writing, Write to Done teaches you how to master a number of different techniques and habits geared toward helping you succeed in the literary world.

You don’t want to miss out on all the advice they have to offer along with motivational material to help you keep it up.

Click here to check out Write to Done.

#4 – The Write Practice

The Write Practice is a massive source of helpful information for writers everywhere. They cover blog posts touching on topics revolving around key writing practices, writing exercises, and even writing prompts to get your mind stirring.

best writing blogs - The Write Practice

You won’t be without help with The Write Practice.

Not only do they offer free help through their blog posts, but they also have programs, writing contests, and help involving your author platform in general.

Click here to check out The Write Practice.

#5 – Count Blogula by Jenna Moreci

Jenna Moreci is an Award-Nominated Self-Published Author with two novels on Amazon, in libraries, and on shelves all over the country.

Count Blogula is where aspiring authors congregate to ask specific writing, marketing, and publishing questions to be answered by this wildly successful Youtuber and Self-Published Author.

best writing blogs - Jenna Moreci

Moreci is honest (sometimes brutally – in the best way), real, and lets all writers know what it truly takes to make a career out of writing.

Head on over to her blog if you want to scroll through pages and pages and pages of free writing advice by someone who has been through it all before.

Click here to check out Count Blogula by Jenna Moreci.

#6 – The Creative Penn

If your goal is to make a living from your writing, it’s worth giving The Creative Penn a read.

This website has blog posts covering topics from genre-specific writing advice to marketing to publishing tips.

best writing blogs - The Creative Penn

Joanna Penn is an Award-nominated, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author and she runs The Creative Penn to teach others how to reach her level of success with their books.

She has a number of writing-specific books available for purchase along with podcasts, courses, specific tools, and more.

Click here to check out The Creative Penn.

#7 – Terribleminds by Chuck Wendig

Chuck Wendig has a must-acquire-a-taste-for personality. He’s curt, brutal, and gives humor to his writing tips and advice for aspiring authors.

His blog covers topics ranging from his own personal work and the work of others to help you specifically ask for.

best writing blogs - Terribleminds

You’ll never be bored with Wendig’s unique delivery style and real advice.

Click here to check out Terribleminds by Chuck Wendig.

#8 – Daily Writing Tips

Daily Writing Tips is exactly as it sounds; they give writing tips for aspiring authors daily.

Their advice ranges from writing-specific to motivation to oddities, like words that Shakespeare invented.

best writing blogs - Daily Writing Tips

If you’re someone who wants to improve the craft of writing with very specific tips and tricks, this is the place to frequent. You’ll never want for more help with Daily Writing Tips.

Click here to check out Daily Writing Tips.

#9 – Better Novel Project

If you love doodles along with writing tips, this is the site for you.

Better Novel Project has a number of different blog posts centered around helping you become a better writer.

best writing blogs - Better Writing Project

From NaNoWriMo content to blog posts all about genres, writer life, and even writing scene-specific details.

It’s easy to get lost the abundance of content available for you on this writing blog – so be careful, but get your fill.

Click here to check out Better Novel Project.

#10 – Well-Storied

Kristen Kieffer is the author behind Well-Storied, as well as an author of fantasy and writing resources.

Not only does she offer great writing advice, but her dedication to helping writers uncover their true abilities is nearly unmatched.

best writing blogs - Well-Storied

You can check out her free courses, listen to the podcast, and even participate in her community chats.

Well-Storied has an abundance of help in the writing-world and you’ll be better off by tuning in regularly!

Click here to check out Well-Storied.

#11 – Shayla Raquel

Shayla Raquel’s writing blog is filled to the brim will knowledge regarding all aspects of writing. From prepping to writing to marketing, she has you covered.

best writing blogs - Shayla Raquel

As an editor and seasoned writer herself, Shayla works one-on-one with authors nearly every day. She has edited over 300 books and launched Amazon Bestsellers – making her experienced and competent!

Click here to check it out Shayla Raquel!

All of these writing blogs have something unique to offer that you won’t find any anywhere else. When it comes to learning any craft – especially writing – it’s important to broaden your search and learn as much as you can from as many talented minds as you can.

ARE YOU READY TO BECOME AN AUTHOR ON YOUR OWN?

Your writing blog and expertise could be up here one day with some of the best!

But you have to commit to taking action and writing your book first.

And we’re here to help you on your journey to write, market, and publish your book. But only if you’re serious about making this a reality.

Join Chandler Bolt at his FREE Webinar Training as he reveals the exact tactics and strategies he used to write and publish 6 bestselling books in a row – and how he used them to build a 7-figure business in less than 2 years!

Spots are limited!

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Do you have any favorite writing blogs? Comment them down below!

How to Survive NaNoWriMo in 2018: 17 Top Tips for Success

You might not like to hear this.

But NaNoWriMo can often take a toll on you mentally and even creatively.

It might not make sense to you now, but you’ll understand just how much NaNoWriMo can affect you in a little bit.

First, let’s talk about what makes NaNoWriMo unique and special.

What is NaNoWriMo?

NaNoWriMo is short for National Novel Writing Month.

It’s an event that takes place over the course of November where writers from all over commit to writing 50,000 words during the month. That’s the main goal and if you accomplish this, that’s how you WIN NaNoWriMo.

So unfortunately, no, NaNoWriMo not some sort of nanobot that you can implant in your mind to write your book for you.

The entire point is to help writers have a month of very high productivity so they can get the first draft out of the way in order to pave the way for editing, rewriting, and overall polishing.

Nanowrimo

What can take writers months to accomplish (50,000 words) only needs to take one so the book gets finished faster.

Here are your daily, weekly, and total goals for NaNoWriMo. If you’re someone who likes to work on a weekly basis instead of a daily, this will help you.

How to Prepare for NaNoWriMo

One of the best things you can do if you want to win NaNoWriMo is to prepare properly. There’s a reason those who participate dub October as Preptober.

Here are a few things you can do to make sure you’re ready when NaNoWriMo comes to town.

#1 – Download your survival guide!

When it comes to making it through NaNoWriMo, you might need help. It’ll be a tough month and that’s why we put together this survival guide for you to follow.

It covers expanded preparation steps as well as resources to help you get through the month.

Make sure to download this if you want to win NaNoWriMo this year!

DOWNLOAD HERE!

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#2 – Pick a story

If you haven’t already, you have to decide which story you’re going to write. If you’re anything like me, you might have tons of book ideas bouncing around inside your head.

So how do you choose which to write and which to save for later?

Here are a few questions I like to ask myself when deciding which story to try first:

  • Which do you think about the most?
  • Which is developed the most?
  • Which one is a book you’d be most likely to pick up and read yourself?
  • Which one have you been thinking of as you read these questions?

Chances are, there’s one idea that stands out to you above all the rest. Even if the others are good, the story you’re most connected to and think about the most is the one you’ll actually enjoy writing the most.

And since you’ll be spending a great deal of time on this book over the next month, actually enjoying it is very important.

Pick the one that has your passion and run with it.

#3 – OUTLINE

I’m a personal advocate of outlining. My outlines are very detailed and I want to basically have an instruction manual for my book.

That being said, it’s understandable that not everyone works well with an outline. Maybe it’s not for you.

However, going into NaNoWriMo completely blind is a mistake.

You at least want to have an overview of the plot and the major plot points figured out so you have a direction in which to write.

For those of you who need outlining, make sure it’s done before November starts!

That clear, step-by-step overview of your book will be extremely helpful for saving time. You’ll be able to sit down and get to writing instead of spending so much time trying to figure out where your story is going.

#4 – Join support groups

Going through something as arduous as NaNoWriMo requires some backup…preferably in the form of friends or just other people participating as well.

You all know that it’s going to be hard and therefore, you can count on support groups to help propel you through the tough times.

Support groups are your best bet to stay motivated throughout the entire month. Plus, anyone who’s a part of those groups is usually more than willing to help when you get stuck on your story, too.

So where do you find groups like these?

You can follow specific hashtags or accounts on Twitter, or you can join Facebook groups dedicated to NaNoWriMo.

Here are a few Facebook groups you can join right now to help you make it through:

#5 – Get in the right mindset

The reason NaNoWriMo is so difficult isn’t because of the fact that you’re writing a book; it’s because you’re writing so much of your book in such a short amount of time. It’s scary.

And that can be intimidating to a number of people – most of us, I’d wager to bet.

That means one of your biggest obstacles isn’t plotting your novel or making sure you’re physically prepared, it’s making sure you’re mentally ready to complete such a tough goal.

That means focusing on your inspiration, motivation, and staying positive!

You can find other methods of maintaining the right mindset in our NaNoWriMo survival guide.

#6 – Schedule your writing time

This is one of the absolute best ways to ensure you actually make it through NaNoWriMo in one piece – and even win!

It’s as simple as making a schedule for yourself and then sticking to it.

Anyone can mark their days to write on a calendar but it takes a special kind of writer to sit down daily and hit those word count goals.

We actually put together a progress tracking and planning spreadsheet that calculates your percentage completed in our NaNoWriMo survival guide! You can find what that looks like below.

You can use this all year round, not just in November. Give it a download if you want to make some real progress this month.

NaNoWriMo-Winning Habits

Being able to win NaNoWriMo is the entire goal of entering. You want to complete 50,000 words in a single month. But that’s much easier said than done.

I decided to pull out the big guns and ask for some help from my personal Twitter followers since I know many of them participate in this yearly.

I tweeted out asking for help, and they did NOT disappoint.

Here are some of the tips I received on the thread of this tweet along with some extended tips to help you make the most of NaNoWriMo this month.

#1 – Pick a daily word count and focus on hitting that only

When you think about the overall goal of writing 50,000, you might begin to sweat, get anxious, and even feel discouraged.

Because it is a lot of words to write in a single month.

But one of the biggest tips experienced NaNoWriMo-ers have for anyone venturing to accomplish such an audacious goal is to only focus on hitting your daily goal.

So instead of thinking about it as 50,000 words a month, think of it as 1667 words a day.

This helps your mind process the amount better so you don’t get so overwhelmed.

#2 – Put together writing playlists

Inspiration doesn’t just exactly come around whenever you want it to. Sometimes it hides away like you might when winter comes around (just me?).

But the thing is, if every writer waited for inspiration to find them in order to write, hardly any of us would get our books done and we’d definitely not make it through NaNoWriMo with 50,000 words accomplished.

So instead, you might have to coax inspiration from the outskirts of your mind and one way many writers do this is through music.

Create a playlist that fits with the style of your story and turn it on whenever you sit down to write. It can serve as inspiration and a mental cue for your mind to get ready to work.

#3 – Have writing motivation and inspiration handy

Just like I mentioned above, you won’t always want to write but in order to hit your goal for November, you need to write daily (unless you want to sit and write huge chunks of words a couple days a week).

When you keep visuals, quotes, and even other novels that have inspired your own writing journey handy, it’s much easier to get in the mood to crank out some high-quality words.

#4 – Commit to NOT editing at all

This is one of the hardest parts for many who’ve done NaNoWriMo before.

They can get the words down, but only if they don’t stop to edit as they go.

Your first draft is better done than perfect, which is the entire point of NaNoWriMo in the first place. So put the editor part of your mind on hold and let your writer-brain take full ownership over the next month.

#5 – Ask friends/family to leave you alone

I realize this might sound harsh but NaNoWriMo is a commitment. You can’t have friends and family bugging you when it’s your designated writing time.

In order to succeed with NaNoWriMo, it’s best to make it clear to everyone around you that you’ll be unreachable for a specific amount of time whenever you write.

If you set that expectation early on and be stern about it, it’ll be easier to avoid this type of distraction throughout the month.

#6 – Recruit a close accountability partner

If writing groups don’t work for you because your posts get lost in the mix, pairing up with someone for one-on-one accountability might be a better option for you.

You can check-in daily and give each other support and encouragement when it gets tough.

And trust me, by the second week, you’ll need someone there to push you along and remind you why you started this lofty task in the first place.

#7 – Use a distraction-free writing app

There are a ton of writing software and apps out there designed to help you write – and write faster.

One of the best to use is an app called Freedom.

What this app does is cut off access to certain websites or apps for a determined amount of time. Whenever you try to visit those sites (like Twitter) during the time you have scheduled to write, you’ll receive this message:

This prevents you from procrastinating or getting too distracted, which hinders your word count progress.

The idea here is that this app “frees” you from the addiction and distraction of sites you know you get sucked into easily.

#8 – Turn your notifications off

This is for your phone, social media, email, and any other notifications that might pop up during your writing time.

If you use the app mentioned above, this will be a little easier, but you also have to manually keep your phone far away from you so even text messages won’t break through your concentration.

Just me, those messages will still be there by the time you’re done with writing.

#9 – Never guilt-shame yourself

This will be very hard if, for whatever reason, you don’t end up hitting your word count goal daily. You’ll start to shame yourself, even if only internally.

This isn’t productive in any way, shape, or form and it’ll only slow you down further.

Instead, you should recognize when you’re behind, and then schedule the time to catch up if hitting that 50,000 words is truly important to you.

And if you need a little bit more to help you out with this one, just remember that no matter what, you’re making progress on your book and that alone is a major accomplishment.

#10 – Just write

NaNoWriMo is all about just making progress. That progress doesn’t have to be the best version of what you can do, it just has to be progress.

You can forget all about making your manuscript all shiny and perfect. Instead, just focus on pumping out those words.

Write to the best of your ability given the time you have to hit those words.

After all, the large majority of us tend to write best once we get into the groove of just writing anyway. And that means if you shut off the self-critical part of your brain for a while, you can make some major strides.

#11 – Go easy on yourself

Cut yourself some slack. You’re not perfect and writing can be very difficult.

If something comes up and you’re not able to write for a day, just forget about it and get back on track the next.

There’s no point in driving yourself crazy over missing a few thousand words because like I said above, you’re still making progress on your book and that’s the entire point of NaNoWriMo in the first place.

What to do Next – Only if You’re Serious

Writing a book isn’t for those who just choose to do it on a whim. Those people aren’t serious and therefore, these next steps won’t help them.

But if you are completely serious about writing and completing a book, we have a few next steps that will help you get there.

#1 – Your free training

If you haven’t taken advantage of this free training offered by Chandler Bolt, you’re making a mistake.

Join Chandler Bolt at his FREE Webinar Training as he reveals the exact tactics and strategies he used to write and publish 6 bestselling books in a row – and how he used them to build a 7-figure business in less than 2 years!

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Click Here to Save Your Spot

#2 – NaNoWriMo Survival Guide

Download your guide if you haven’t already. This is full of helpful advice and resources that will make this entire process much easier!

Plus, you’ll have some peace of mind knowing you’re doing all you can to succeed.

Click right here to download!

#3 – Follow us on Twitter for daily NaNoWriMo motivation!

That’s right. Every day during the month of November, we’ll be serving up quotes, videos, and general motivation and inspiration so you’ll feel ready and excited to start writing ASAP.

Make sure to give us a follow and tweet us what your book is about!

We’d love to hear what everyone’s tackling during this month and you might even meet an accountability partner in the mix.

NaNoWriMo is no easy feat. If it was, everyone would participate, but they don’t. You are, and because we admire that in you so much, we made these tips to help you succeed.

Good luck and let us know how your progress is going in the comments below!