The One Thing You Need to Write Your Book On Your Own

Why do people decide to work with a ghostwriter instead of writing their book on their own?

I gave a talk last week where I answered this question. I get it a lot and I’ve answered it in print before, too.

There’s one glaringly obvious reason I didn’t explore in that article:

People hire us because they don’t have time to write their book.

I’m always going on about the things you need for a book project—mindset, good ideas, structure, a very sturdy connection to your intrinsic motivation—but I’m realizing I never mention the elephant in the room:

You need time.

You need time to think and time to write and time to procrastinate because you’re not a writing robot.

You also need time to pass within the project so that your ideas can develop and mature.

Writing is basically a fermentation process.

(AKA, don’t write your book in a week while holed up in an AirBNB. Or go ahead. But then expect that some of the ideas in your book will be, you know, cabbage instead of kimchi.)

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I’ve got some actual tips for how to make time or find the time, but before you can use those tips, you have to accept (and honor!) the fact that writing a book takes time.

I’ve spent 10, 12, even 20 hours in a given week on some book projects.

Do you have that kind of time?

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