The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is one of the most popular business books of all time, having sold more than 25 million copies. The well-known author is the late Dr. Stephen Covey. But Dr. Covey didn’t write the book. Ken Shelton did, as his ghostwriter.
The same is true for books by William Shatner, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Richard Branson and many, many others.
Now it’s true for me too. I have published over 50 books under pen names in many genres…that I know absolutely nothing about.
I found a qualified writer, who is a certified nutritionist, to do some of our health books. Another is a PhD who wrote my books on depression and dyslexia, among other topics.
So the biggest book writing secret of the rich and famous is—don’t write it; hire someone to do it. And today you’ll have your pick of tens of thousands of highly qualified writers, many of whom you can hire for as little as three to five cents a word.
The amount of work you have to do can be a little or a little more. It can be as simple as picking three to five of the most popular books in the niche you want to publish in and giving those books to your writer. Tell them you want them to “synthesize” the content in the popular books into a new book.
Synthesizing is not copy and paste, which would violate copyright laws. Synthesizing is identifying the main ideas and concepts and then presenting those ideas and concepts in your own words.
The method I’ve used the most when hiring writers is to give them a list of the chapters that I want to see in the book.
For instance, if I wanted a book about Widgets, then I’d start with an introductory chapter. Chapter 2 might be “My Experience With Widgets.” Chapter 3 might be “The Evolution of Widgets.” Chapter 4 might be “How Widgets Make Your Life Easier”…and so on.
So the book takes the reader from A to Z. Depending on the topic, and the depth you go to in your book, you might have many chapters.
Here are some simple guidelines when hiring writers:
Take your time writing your specifications of what you want. If you don’t, you likely won’t be happy with the product you get back.
Be specific as to how many words you want (it’s ok to use a range, like 18K-20K), how many chapters, and whether to write in the first person or in the third person; whether in a conversational style or a reportorial style.
Request a list of the sources, including websites that the writer used.
Specify that the work must be 100% original and able to pass through a plagiarism checker (there are a number of free checkers on the web).
Include everything you want to see in the book. Better to do this upfront when negotiating the price rather than after you get the first draft.
Hiring writers is just one of a number of ways that you can create income from publishing. And with that income you can have the life you dream of overseas.
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