If you think you have a great idea for a book, treat it like a seed. Be a book-idea gardener and follow these 5 steps to fruition.
1. Prepare the soil.
Dig and sift–why do you think yours is a great idea?
- If the answer is, “Because it’s trendy. My book is similar to so-and-so-best-selling-author’s # 1 hit,” please forget it. No spectacular creation ever came from someone who jumped on the bandwagon. Your gifts and your perceptions are unique to you. Please write the book that only you can write.
So we ask once more, why is yours a great idea for a book?
- We hope your answer will be: “I can’t stop thinking about this idea. It feels like it was given to me. It’s the book I would want to read. It’s who I am!” Now that’s a fertile seed of an idea.
Write the title and a brief description of your book on a slip of paper and bury it in a file drawer. If it’s fertile, the idea will grow.
One of the fundamental principles of life is that you can’t force growth. You must patiently wait (James 5:7). You’re waiting to see whether the idea is persistent in growing without your manipulation of it. And if it grows large enough, you’ll be able to clearly distinguish it from a weed.
After you’re sure this seed has a God-given power to grow into a good plant, it’s time to do the work of tending it. Plan, plot and outline (for how to plan your book, click here).
Do the work of writing your first draft. It’s long and hard work. But if your idea is a great one, the work will be rewarding.
But isn’t the publication of the book the harvest?
The way we see it, the harvest comes in the middle of a process that brings food to the table. The harvest alone doesn’t put food on the table. There comes the work of cleaning the produce, then chopping, seasoning and cooking it, setting the table and inviting the guests to eat. After writing your book comes editing, revising, publishing and marketing.
We believe this 5-step process (turning a seed into a harvest) grows a book that can feed the soul.
(2 Corinthians 9:10)