5 Keys to Turn Your Idea into a Manuscript

Are you full of good ideas that you’ve been itching to share? Not everyone has the drive and focus it takes to bring those ideas to life in a book. But if your goal is to publish a book, with a little support and a lot of motivation, you have what it takes to write that manuscript you’ve been dreaming about.

Here’s what you need to complete a book:

1. Accountability

Set a deadline for completing your writing goal. Then, tell people about! Ask your friends, family members or co-workers to help you stay on track. Start a blog to keep readers updated on your writing progress. Find beta readers who are anxiously waiting for each new chapter. With other people expecting your work, you’ll have an added incentive to finish on time.

2. Direction

Create an outline, write a synopsis, draw a map, or make lists. It's best to have a rough idea of where you’re going with the book. Establishing ideas and structure early on can help you stay on track. Of course, any plan you make is not set in stone. Remember to stay flexible, and be prepared to alter your course if your original plans aren’t working.

3. Support

Don’t work in a vacuum. It’s important to surround yourself with fellow writers who can challenge, motivate and inspire you. Look for existing writing groups in your community — search online or check your local library. If you can’t find an established group, create your own! Organize a meet-up at a local coffee shop, or start something online.

4. Writing

Don’t wait for it to be good. Don’t wait for it to be right. JUST WRITE. You must make a real commitment to writing. If you wait for divine inspiration to tap you on the shoulder before you sit down to write, you could wait forever. Set aside time every day to write. Soon you'll find that writing becomes a regular part of your day.

5. Reality Check

Finishing a first draft of a manuscript is a wonderful accomplishment, but it’s only the beginning. If you’re serious about becoming an author, make sure you put your best work out there. Find people who will read your book and give you honest feedback. Critiques, rewrites and editing are crucial steps in creating a quality book that’s ready to publish.

Learn More

Whether you're curious to learn more, or you're ready to get started publishing, take the first step by claiming your free publishing guide.