How to write a book - the image shows a girl writing in front of a computer and there's books flying around her


How to write and publish a book: planning, writing, and selling

Would you like to become a renowned writer? See the complete step-by-step we have prepared for you on how to write a book and publish it successfully!

Ana Codeglia

05/08/2018 | By Ana Codeglia

What will we see in this post

Writing a book and publishing it is one of the best business options for those who want to make some extra money with passive income, or for those who want to start their own business project.

If the idea of writing a book pleases you, and you have some knowledge and ability to create appealing, high-quality content, but you need a little push to get moving, don’t worry!

We know that the writing and publishing a book requires a lot of planning and structure. After all, working haphazardly is the most common mistake made by new entrepreneurs, and one that unfortunately may lead to things going wrong.

However, it is perfectly natural that having so many ideas on your mind, you don’t know where to start. And that’s why we have come up with this step-by-step for you to start writing a book.

With this complete guide, we will go through all the stages for you to learn how to write a book, publish it, and, of course, successfully sell it.

Let’s see:


Decide what you will write about

To begin with, we need the most basic and most important thing of all: the topic.

To decide on the topic of your book, you need to think about the knowledge and talents you have. You should pick something that you master, and more – something you can your personal touch to.

Use all the time you need to decide what you will write about, and remember: the more specific you are, the greater the chances of standing out in the market.

Which means, instead of writing about healthy eating, for instance, try to choose a more specific niche that meets your needs and interests, such as a book of recipes for gluten-intolerant children.

Divide it into chapters

The presentation and structure of your book are also very important, and that’s why you have to divide your content into chapters and sections.

The main objectives of chapters are:

  • To make the book easier to read;
  • To improve the layout;
  • To make it scannable.

Think about the possible chapters or sections your book will have. You can make changes to them as you go, add more or cut some out. But thinking about this will help you better organize your content while you write it.  

Set goals and deadline

As in any entrepreneurial project, it is necessary that in the planning stage, you set goals and deadlines for your project. The goals will help you guide your project, and the deadlines will ensure you have discipline.

Find someone to revise it

As much as you reread and revise your texts for mistakes in grammar and spelling, it is always recommended that you someone else to do it too. Ask someone you trust to revise your text and give you insights on how to improve it.

If you don’t know anyone who can do this for you, an alternative is to look for freelancers online who are specialists in this kind of task.

Create or find images and illustrations

Visual resources are always an excellent option when it comes to the content of a book. Images provide exceptional support to text, and are a great way of making your content richer.

If you have drawing abilities, you can create your own images. You will find free resources online to make your illustrations.

Likewise, you may also hire a freelance designer from anywhere in the world in platforms such as Workana or Freelancer.

If your budget doesn’t allow you to hire a professional, you have the option of proposing an exchange of work, so that both parties win.

For example:

You can write content for their websites, or revise the text in the designer’s portfolio in exchange for the images created.  


Now that you know how the content of your book will be structured, it’s time to start writing! Time to show your knowledge with facts, and, of course, your writing skills.

In this stage, it’s essential to keep the goals you set, and their respective deadlines.

We know this may prove difficult when you have a house to take care of, social life, and many chores that require your undivided attention. But remember that writing your own book is a task that depends only on you, and no one else!

Next, we have some tips that will come in handy when you start developing the structure of your book.

Keep on reading to find out what they are!

Strategies to meet deadlines

Adopt these simple habits to your routine and you will see how you will reach your objectives and meet the deadlines successfully.

Take deadlines seriously

This may seem obvious, but putting your deadlines first, and incorporating them into your routine is the first step to meet them. Don’t see them as something optional, but rather as something mandatory!

Keep a list of goals and deadlines

Having it all “in your head” doesn’t cut it.

Organize yourself and write down everything you have planned in an appointment book. You may also use organization tools that will help you achieve a more structured day-to-day routine, and also importantly, avoid forgetting important things.

Set aside enough time for it

One of the major problems faced by entrepreneurs is that they cannot focus on their objectives, because they only carry out tasks for their projects in their spare time.

Publishing and selling your book must be considered a priority. Therefore, set aside a pre-established time frame in your schedule to work on it.  

Get rid of distractions

Sign out of social networking sites, turn off the TV, and silence your phone while you work on your book.

Strategies to write great content

The most important thing when it comes to selling books is the content. After all, that’s why the customers pay money to read them, right? That’s why you should strive to create high-quality content, in texts that truly valuable to those who read them.

We could say that writing appealing texts is just like a sport, and that not everyone is born with this talent. However, with practice and discipline, you can make your writing style flourish more and more, and stand out.

Check out the strategies below that will help you write an excellent text:

  • Be clear and concise, avoid using technical jargon in your texts. When the writing style is too convoluted, it makes it difficult to read. And people don’t read what they can’t understand.
  • Resort to some tricks, like using intertitles, presenting items in lists, using markers to highlight specific parts of the text, asking questions to entice readers, creating a dialogue with them.
  • To ensure your text flows, and that your readers can absorb all the content in your book, make sure you use punctuation correctly.
  • Avoiding repeating words. To become a good writer, you need to have a vast vocabulary, and there’s no substitute for a good dictionary to achieve this mastery. With this tool, you may quickly find synonyms and equivalents to substitute a word or phrase. Your readers will thank you!
  • Be authentic, energetic, and most importantly, be yourself when you write.
  • The beginning and ending of the book have to cause an impact on the reader. Therefore, be compelling and gripping when writing these sections.

Strategies to be creative

If you want to become a successful entrepreneur and that your books are sold satisfactorily, it is necessary to give wings to your creativity when you write your texts.

Creativity will enable you to stand out. That’s why we came up with a list of strategies and habits that will help your creative side bloom.

To become more creative, you have to:

  • Be more open – don’t limit yourself!
  • Stimulate your creative side by visiting new places, looking at something new every day, and getting some fresh air to oxygenate your brain.
  • Create the perfect environment to develop your creativity: keep a clean, organized workspace, open the windows and sit in a comfortable chair or sofa when you write.
  • Always keep a notebook and pencil close by: you never know when a great idea might strike you.
  • Wake up early: our brain is usually more creative in the morning, when you’re well rested. Set your alarm clock and start enjoying your mornings!


After you have written all the texts, revised them once, or twice, added images and graphic resources, it’s time to publish your book!

To do so, you have to start by drafting a proposal and sending it to different publishing houses.

But be careful! Sending multiples proposals at random can end up being frustrating and discouraging your dream of becoming a real author.

That’s why you have to carry out a thorough research about publish houses and pick the ones that would be interested in the topic of your book.

How can you know? It’s actually pretty simple. Find out which kinds of books the publishing houses usually publish, and if they’re willing to support new authors such as yourself.

Here are some tips on how to write your proposal:

  • Introduce yourself: prepare an introduction with who you are and show your knowledge and authority on the subject.
  • Prepare a summary of your book, you don’t have to send the whole text.
  • Put some effort into the presentation: you may send it in a physical or digital format.
  • Be patient! You may get rejections at first.

It’s time to sell the book. Now, what?

Fortunately, today entrepreneurs have at their disposal a variety of sales strategies that may help you sell your products, and make a grand entrance into the market. And one of them is advertising.

It doesn’t matter how big your budget is, all these promotional strategies may come in handy.

But first, you need to take certain details into account:


  • What is your available budget?


It may be a lot or a little, the important thing is that you really know how much money you will have to invest in advertising. Besides, this will help you decide which options to pursue and which ones to discard.


  • Where is your audience?


We can easily say that this is the most important of all: figuring out who your audience is and knowing where they are, or which communication channels they use. There’s no point in advertising in social networks they don’t use, or pay for a newspaper ad if they no longer buy this kind of printed media.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the ways you can advertise to boost the sales of your book:

Paid online advertising

Online ads have become a great way of selling products or offering services. Placing a beautiful, appealing ad on a certain website or blog can truly help you promote your book and make more sales.

It is necessary that you use the ad to invite people to visit your Landing Page or website, that is, the page in which you present all the information about your product.

If your book is going to be published physically, tell the visitor where it can be purchased. If it is in the digital format, include the direct link for purchase.

(Here on the blog, we have already published posts on how to create ads on Instagram, Facebook, and also on how to use Native Ads as part of your strategy. Check them out after you have finished reading this post!)

Advertising on the radio, TV and newspaper

Mass media outlets such as radio or television, and print media such as newspapers and magazines, are also great channels to advertise your book.

However, this kind of media is much more expensive.  

Content marketing

Content marketing is an excellent strategy for you to promote your book online. And the best thing is that, with little to no budget at all, you can develop a content marketing strategy and boost the sales of your book.

However, you have to take into account that this is a kind of advertising strategy whose results start to appear in the long term. You need to constantly create quality content, which invites users to buy your book. Obviously, this not something you can achieve in one or two days.

Social media

Social media, or social networking sites, are excellent communication channels for you to promote your product massively. After all, nowadays it’s quite difficult to find someone who is not on Facebook, or Instagram.

Before you start using social media to promote your book, however, it’s crucial to know where your buyer persona actually is: Facebook, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Instagram, or Twitter? This is extremely useful information, for you to concentrate your efforts on the platforms where your audience actually is.

And keep in mind that it’s not just about advertising. Don’t spam! Offer content that is valuable to your audience.

An excellent alternative: digital books

If you definitely don’t have time to wait for the replies from publishing houses, if you don’t have a lot of money to invest, or if you’re simply not fond of the idea of publishing a book in physical form, digital books (also known as ebooks) are ideal for you.

Creating electronic or digital books is one of the best options for people who want to start an online business, since this is one of the most popular products in the market.

It’s so simple anyone can do it, as there is no need for initial investment and you won’t need the support of a publishing house to put it on the market. You will do it yourself!

Besides, selling books in a digital format enables people from all over the world to buy them easily and quickly.

Among the advantages of ebooks, we can highlight:

  • Price: this product has a very low production and promotion cost, which enables you to offer the ebook the public at an accessible price.
  • Portability: the digital format enables you to distribute the ebook quickly and efficiently, all around the world.
  • It brings passive income: this is a business model that will certainly enable you to generate passive income, once you don’t need to be present to make a sale – you just need a digital distribution platform to do it for you.

How to write your digital book or ebook

Creating a digital book is a very similar process to the one used for a physical print. However, you need to take certain aspects into account, especially how the content will be presented, and the sales process.

Let’s see:

Choose the format of your digital book

An electronic book can come in two different formats: PDF or ePub. Both are excellent options, and it all depends on what you wish to offer your readers.

For instance: the ePub format organizes the text around the page, which means it is responsive; whereas the PDF format is a representation of the print document, no matter where you view it. So, it all depends on the purpose you want to achieve with your ebook.

Format your ebook

Formatting your ebook may be what will make it stand out, as it enables an excellent user experience. It also makes your book look professional.

This is something you can do on your own, but you can also hire a professional that masters the layout and formatting of digital books. We are sure this professional will help you with the final touch for your book to be successful.

Revise your content (once again)

Yes, we know: you have already revised your text, and so has someone you trust. But it’s necessary to take into account that, when we are in contact with a piece of content for a very long time, it’s possible that some details have gone unnoticed.

Make sure you deliver a high-quality material to your customers: revise it as many times as possible.

Register your work

As you have spent so much time creating texts and making small adjustments so that your digital book turns out perfect, don’t forget to register it before you put it up for sale!

Avoid being plagiarized: do some research on the intellectual property laws in your country and make sure you register your work.

Price your digital product

The price of an ebook depends on a variety of factors, but know that most of them range from $9.99 to $99.99.

Choose a distribution platform

A distribution platform is your ally in selling your ebook, as it ensures that your customers receive the product, that you get paid, and that no one copies your content.

There are many platforms available, with features and infrastructure so you don’t need to worry about the sales process. So, pick the one that best suits your needs.

(Still don’t know how to choose a distribution platform? Just read our post on how to choose the best platform for your product.)

Let’s begin?

If you want to learn more about how to create digital books, don’t waste another minute and check out our post with the step-by-step on how to write an ebook, and turn your knowledge into profit.

Are you ready to start writing your next book? Follow our tips, and get to it! :)