14 Things No One Tells You About Book Writing

You’ve got an idea for a book: maybe it’s a novel, or maybe it’s been rattling around in your brain for years. Either way, you’re ready to write. Congratulations! 

You might be surprised to learn how difficult this can be. It takes time, effort, and dedication and that’s before you even get into the business end of publishing. Here are some things I wish someone had told me about writing books before I started:

Becoming a Writer: 14 Things No One Told Me – YouTube
1. Writing Isn’t Linear: The process of writing a book is often non-linear, with ideas, revisions, and rewrites happening at various stages.
2. Embrace Imperfection: Perfection isn’t the goal; embracing imperfections and editing later can lead to a more authentic story.
3. Time Management Matters: Establish a writing routine and manage your time effectively to make steady progress on your book.
4. Writer’s Block is Normal: Almost every writer encounters writer’s block; take breaks, change perspectives, and keep writing through it.
5. Characters Have a Mind of Their Own: Characters may evolve and steer the plot in unexpected directions. Be open to their development.
6. Editing is Crucial: Editing and revising your manuscript are essential steps that can greatly improve your book’s quality.
7. Feedback is Valuable: Seek feedback from beta readers or writing groups to gain fresh insights and refine your work.
8. Perseverance Pays Off: Writing a book requires dedication and persistence; don’t be discouraged by challenges.
9. Marketing Matters: Promoting your book is as important as writing it; be prepared to engage in marketing efforts.
10. The Writing Community is Supportive: Connecting with fellow writers can provide encouragement, advice, and a sense of community.
11. Imagination Knows No Limits: Let your imagination roam freely; don’t confine your creativity with self-imposed restrictions.
12. Every Writer’s Path is Unique: Your writing journey will be unlike anyone else’s; embrace your individuality and experiences.
13. Enjoy the Process: Despite challenges, enjoy the process of writing and bringing your story to life.
14. Your Story Matters: Every writer has a unique perspective to share; trust in the significance of your story.

Writing Is Hard Work

Writing is hard work, but it’s also fun. Writing is a craft that takes time to master, and you’ll never be able to do it “right” on your first try. Like any other skill, you’ll need the practice to get better at it.

Writing isn’t just about coming up with ideas; it’s also about putting those ideas into words so that others can understand what you mean. 

It requires the ability to think clearly about a topic and express yourself clearly in writing and not just once but over and over again throughout the process of writing a book from beginning to end!

If there’s one thing that most people don’t realize until they start writing their first book: Once they’ve finished their manuscript (or even before), they realize they have quite a bit more work ahead of them!

Navigating the world of book writing can be a challenging journey. Explore our guide to discover 16 essential writing tips that I learned during my initial six months of writing, helping you refine your craft and storytelling.

You Need A Plan

The first thing you need to know is that book writing is not easy. It takes time, effort, and dedication but it’s worth it. You can publish a book when you are ready and have a plan in place to make it happen.

Here are some tips on how to make a successful publishing plan:

Read the Market–What types of books are already out there? Is there room for another one? Who does your readership want to read about? This will help determine what type of book (genre) would be best suited for your audience.

Get organized–You may want multiple drafts or maybe just one final draft before submitting it for publishing consideration or self-publishing through Amazon/KDP direct, or other websites like Smashwords.

BookBaby where they will convert your file into multiple formats for eBooks and print books without any hassle! Whatever option works best for you, make sure everything is organized so that nothing gets lost along the way!

The Difference Between A Good Book And A Bad One Is Research

Research is the difference between a good book and a bad one. If you’re writing about something that you know, it will show in your writing. 

You’ll be able to explain concepts clearly and give examples that are familiar to your readers. But even if you’re writing about something you don’t know much about, having done some research will help your readers trust that what they’re reading isn’t just made up out of thin air.

Researching doesn’t mean doing intense fact-checking on every detail included in the book, but it does mean making sure that anything factual has been thoroughly researched so as not to confuse or mislead anyone reading it (this is why we have fact-checkers).

I remember when I was first starting as an author, I wanted everything my characters said and did not only to sound cool but also to be true or at least believable within the context of their world (or universe). 

And while I’m still all for being realistic with my characters’ dialogue and behaviors, what helped me take my storytelling skills from amateurish to professional was realizing how important research was when crafting a compelling tale!

Writing a book is a marathon, not a sprint. Embrace the ups and downs of the process with insights from our guide on how to write a book without giving up. Overcoming challenges is key to bringing your story to life.

It’s Important To Read Your Genre

Reading your genre is an important part of writing because it helps you to understand the market and what readers are looking for. A lot of people think that reading only one author’s book will teach you everything about writing in a particular genre, but that’s not true at all. You also need to read other books in the same genre as well.

Reading will help you understand what publishers are looking for in a manuscript, as well as what conventions exist within the genre. By understanding these things, you can better write your novel so that it meets those expectations and thus sell more copies!

You Don’t Have To Outline, But It’s A Good Idea

Outlining is a way to plan your story. It gives you a roadmap and allows you to stay focused on what needs to happen next. It also keeps your story on track, so that nothing gets left out and no one will be wondering about what happened between point A and point B in the plot.

Additionally, an outline will help avoid writer’s block by giving you something concrete to work from as opposed to just sitting around waiting for inspiration (which may not come). 

You won’t have time for this during the actual writing stage, but it will ensure that when things get tough later on, there is something solid at hand that can keep things moving forward instead of getting stuck in any ruts or getting lost trying new things randomly.

Some Days You Won’t Get Any Words Down On Paper At All

When you’re a writer, people think you have to be writing all the time. They think that if you don’t have a regular schedule and a set amount of words to write each day, then you’re not working on your book.

But sometimes it’s okay to take a break from writing. This has nothing to do with how much time you’ve spent in front of the computer or how many words exist on paper at any given moment. It has everything to do with what is happening inside your head and heart and how those things affect how well or poorly your book will turn out when its time comes around again.

Sometimes it’s good just to get away from the story entirely for a while; sometimes it helps to go back through previous work and make notes as far as potential revisions go.

Sometimes it’s even necessary just so that when next month rolls around (or later today) when some big thing happens that alters everything about a said manuscript when an idea springs fully formed into existence during one fleeting moment between sleep cycles…you’ve got somewhere else besides mid-paragraphs filled with.

 “I’m too tired” type monologues where this new thing can fit neatly into place without having created too many gaps along the way for readers like me who might wonder why there are suddenly three-page rants about whatever topic happens across our path at random intervals throughout chapters where nothing else seems connected at all.

Except maybe this one character who used up all his energy explaining why he hates everyone else so much.

Starting your book writing journey can feel overwhelming, but guidance is at your fingertips. Dive into our article for advice tailored for beginners to help you lay a solid foundation and overcome the initial hurdles.

It’s Vital To Have Good Software To Write Your Book In

Before you can write, you need to know what software to use. You have a few options that range from the simple to the complex.

Many writers start with a word processor like Microsoft Word or Apple Pages and work directly in that program. While this is fine for the initial writing process, it’s not ideal for editing your book later on. 

Editing is not something most people enjoy doing, so if you’re using a program that doesn’t have specialized tools for editing (like grammar checking), then it’s something you won’t want to do manually anyway! 

Dedicated writing programs like Scrivener and Ulysses were created for exactly this purpose to make writing and editing easier so you don’t have to suffer through those tedious tasks yourself!

Get Yourself An Editor And Beta Readers

You need an editor and beta readers. You need someone to help you with your grammar, spelling, story, and cover. The same goes for marketing your book once it’s published. 

No one gets published without some kind of professional help. I know authors who write their books and then hire an editor, but the majority of them use either a freelance editor or a publishing house service like Query Shark or Writer’s House Editors (which offers editing packages ranging from $150-$495 depending on how many pages are being edited). 

If you plan on self-publishing, there are still many things that can be done to improve the quality of your book before publication:

A proofreader will check for typos and grammatical errors in your manuscript before it goes into print so readers won’t have anything distracting them from enjoying your story.

A developmental editor will make sure that there is a clear beginning/middle/end structure in place and that all characters have motivations driving their actions throughout the plot.

A copyeditor will look at sentence structure as well as punctuation consistency throughout each chapter.

In short: if you want people to read what you’ve written (and not just skim over it), get yourself an editor.

Have you ever considered writing a book? Discover 12 compelling reasons why taking on this endeavor can be immensely rewarding, both personally and professionally. Unleash your creativity and share your story with the world.

Don’t Get Too Attached To Your Words While You’re Writing The First Draft

You’re writing a book. It’s a lot of fun, but it can also be intimidating and exhausting especially if you’re trying to write a book that’s good enough for people to pay money for. 

If you’re just starting and hoping to get published someday, all of this stress may seem like it’ll never end, and it probably won’t but there are ways to make your first manuscript even better!

One thing that many beginning writers don’t realize is that they should stop worrying about their words during the first draft stage. 

Even if you think you know what you want your story to say, remember: that the first draft is just something tangible for you to refer back to when making edits later on in the process. You’ll come back later on down the line with fresh eyes after taking some time off from writing (which will help immensely).

English Isn’t Perfect, And That’s Okay

Writing in English is tough there’s no denying it. And as authors, we have to face the fact that English isn’t perfect. It’s flexible and can change over time.

So there’s nothing wrong with using contractions like “can’t” or “we’re” in your writing (unless you’re writing something very formal). There’s also nothing wrong with using slang words like “it’s” instead of “it has,” or saying things like “I’m going to take a shower.”

Don’t worry about being grammatically perfect either: Most people won’t notice if you use commas incorrectly, so go ahead and write however feels natural! The same goes for spelling if you’ve never heard someone say something before and don’t know how to spell it, just spell it however sounds right when reading aloud (and make sure not to confuse its/it’s). 

It doesn’t matter if you occasionally use words that aren’t actually in the dictionary; I guarantee someone will know what they mean anyway!

Sometimes You Can Do Everything Right, And Still Fail

There are many things that you can do right in the writing process, but there’s still a chance that your book won’t sell. You can write an amazing book, use all the right marketing strategies, and have an incredible cover design but if no one knows about it, no one will buy it.

This is why I recommend doing everything in your power to get your writing noticed while also keeping your expectations realistic. There are a few things that will help keep those expectations low:

Don’t get too attached to your words while you’re writing the first draft; don’t worry about typos or grammar or spelling; don’t worry about getting it perfect; just write! Write like crazy and don’t stop until you’ve finished at least one entire draft of your manuscript without stopping to edit anything along the way (or editing only small things here and there). 

It’ll be much easier for you to edit once you’ve finished than if you keep stopping every few minutes because something doesn’t sound quite right yet (which happens all too often when I’m trying not to think about my word choice). And even then, editing is more fun than having writer’s block!

Indie Publication Might Be The Best Route For You (If You’ve Got The Money)

If you have the money, consider an indie publication. You might think that getting your work published by a big New York publishing house is the ultimate goal. But there are some things to consider:

  • Self-publishing gives you control over every aspect of your book, from editing to cover design and marketing. You can also publish in multiple formats (print, ebooks).
  • You don’t need an agent or editor to get published—just do it yourself! Plus, once you’re self-published, you’ll be able to update your book whenever you want. No delays!
  • With indie publishing comes reviews and feedback from readers—which means more eyes on what YOU created!

Every book writing journey is a unique learning experience. Gain insights from our exploration of what can be learned from writing a book. Discover the unexpected lessons that come from the process of crafting a compelling narrative.

Written Words Are Timeless

When you write a book, you are essentially creating a time capsule that can be shared with anyone, anywhere in the world. The words will be available for generations to come and will live on even after you’re gone.

Not only that, but written words are also timeless: they can stay relevant for centuries or more! So if you want your book to stand out from the others around it, consider what it means for someone who might read it hundreds of years from now.

If You Want To Be A Writer, Just Write!

Many aspiring writers ask, “How do I become a writer?” The answer is simple: you have to write!

The first step in becoming a published author (and putting food on the table) is to write. When you start writing, it’s hard and frustrating and confusing, but stick with it because it gets easier over time. The only way to get better at anything is to practice writing is no different. 

You can’t learn how to play music without playing instruments or singing without singing songs; you can’t know what it feels like to be an experienced runner if you’ve never run before; likewise, there’s no way around having written several bad books before getting published.


If you’ve read this far, then it’s clear that you’re serious about writing. And that’s a good thing! Writing is a tough gig, but if you stick with it and keep learning from your mistakes, eventually you’ll get better at it. 

The best advice I can give is to just keep going. Don’t stop writing because of setbacks or disappointments they happen to everyone at some point (and no one cares about them anyway). So just keep going and enjoy the journey!

Further Reading

Expand your understanding of the writing journey with these insightful resources:

11 Things No One Tells You About Being a Writer: Uncover lesser-known aspects of the writer’s life, from creative struggles to the joys of literary success.

The Shit No One Tells You About Writing: Dive into this podcast series that candidly explores the unfiltered realities of the writing process, offering valuable advice and anecdotes.

The Shit No One Tells You About Writing Podcast: Tune in to insightful conversations with experienced writers, where they discuss the often overlooked challenges and triumphs of the writing journey.


Have questions? We’ve got answers about book writing:

What are some common challenges in the early stages of book writing?

Embarking on your book writing journey can be daunting. Common challenges include finding your writing rhythm, refining your story concept, and overcoming self-doubt.

How do I stay motivated throughout the writing process?

Maintaining motivation can be tough, but setting achievable goals, seeking inspiration from other authors, and creating a supportive writing routine can help you stay on track.

What should I do when facing writer’s block?

Writer’s block is a common hurdle. Try switching to a different writing task, taking short breaks, exploring new environments, or engaging in creative exercises to overcome it.

How can I effectively edit and revise my manuscript?

Editing is crucial. Start by taking a break before revisiting your work, focusing on one aspect (like character development or pacing) during each pass, and seeking feedback from trusted peers or professionals.

What’s the best way to approach publishing my book?

Publishing paths vary. Research traditional publishing, self-publishing, and hybrid options to determine which aligns with your goals. Remember that each route comes with its own pros and cons.