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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
You have a great idea for a book. You can’t wait to start writing it, so you just jump in and madly write for hours, perhaps even days. Then, just as suddenly, you hit a roadblock. Your writing stops and you have no idea how to pick it up again. The story/the article sags and is left unfinished. You leave the writing genre frustrated. What went wrong? You didn’t plan. It sounds like a real pain, and you may think that it’s a waste of time because you already know what needs to be written and in what order. But step back for a moment and take a more thorough look at your idea. Ask yourself: Is my idea feasible? Has it been written or even over-written in the past? Do books/stories on this topic sell well? Is it a topic worth pursuing? Then ask yourself: Have I organized my thoughts and ideas in a logical manner? Have I done any research? Did I cover all the important points?
Once you can answer these questions, and more, then perhaps you’re ready to re-look at your great story idea. Abraham Adekunle’s Plan, Research, and Outline Your Nonfiction Book in a Day: Writers' Guide to Planning a Book, Researching Without Fuss, and Outlining to Make Writing a Book Faster will help guide you through the many pitfalls of organizing and planning your writing idea. Quite simply, he explains: "Planning is what you do first before writing an outline for your book. The process goes thus: Find ideas/Confirm that it will sell/Plan it/Research it/Draw a first draft outline.”
Perhaps one of the author’s most insistent points is that a writer must always be writing, even if it’s just jotting down notes, ideas, or writing plans. He also stresses the importance of reading, not just to gain knowledge and insight into a topic you’re pursuing, but also to improve your own writing skills. Plan, research and write and, “You shouldn’t obsess on anything because perfectionism is your enemy.” This is a good resource to help writers go beyond their idea and write a good nonfiction book.