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7 Lessons Learnt By Writing And Publishing an eBook In One Week

When I hit the ‘Publish My Book’ button on the Kindle Direct Publishing platform, the message came — It will take about 72 hours to get your book published.

It took them less than seven hours.

When I woke up this morning, an email was waiting for me.

To say that I was overwhelmed would be an understatement.

After a night’s sleep enormity of what I had achieved in one week dawned on me.

Just last week, I was at Point A (I want to write a book.)

Today I was at Point B (I have written a book.)

In a week, I have achieved one of my biggest dreams.

Image by the author

This project was an experiment. I got more out of it than just a book.

Here are seven lessons I learned from it.

Nothing beats “learning by doing.”

I have read countless books (and articles) on how to write books. How to outline them, how to structure them, how to publish them. But nothing registered. You read the information, and you forget it.

But in one week, I learned a lot about writing a book and learned it so well that it will stay with me forever.

I was super-charged. Tuned in. Everything was going straight into the mind. Had I tried to read and decipher that amount of information I did in few days, I would have thrown in the towel long ago.

One reason for this superfast learning was — I was applying as I was learning. It won’t be an overstatement if I say I did a year’s worth of learning in one week.

And poured it all in the book itself.

Focused effort is the key.

We are spread so thin with our time that it is ridiculous. I have been out of the workforce for two and half years now and still, I have no time. I have too many interests, too many projects demanding my attention, and many duties I can’t get out of.

Cal Newport, in his book The Deep Work, wrote that the ability to perform deep work is becoming increasingly rare while at the same time it is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy.

A lot can be achieved in short spurts of effort.

Many times I have tried to write a book by working a little bit on it. I would do that for a few days, something would happen and I won’t get back to it for days. Or rather never. The energy with which I would start would dissipate. I have several unfinished projects like that.

I am also a multi-passion person. I want to so many things and I do not want to let go of any of them. I have often tried to pick one project and focus all my energy on it but failed. I kept on spreading my attention and energy on multiple things.

Until I realized the power of a week.

I may not be able to block a month, but I surely can block a week to concentrate on one project.

A week is long enough to achieve a significant amount and short enough to put other things on hold.

Learning in the public eye could be exhilarating.

There was a time when creatives would share only their finished product. Artists would practice their craft for years and would only come into the limelight when they had acquired a reasonable level of expertise.

Not anymore.

Today, creatives are sharing while learning. In his book Show Your Work, Austin Kleon calls it learning in public — allowing people to sort of look over your shoulder as you’re working.

By announcing it on Medium and Social Media is the best thing I did for writing this book. Not only it made me finish the project, but the encouragement I got from my readers made this whole project worthwhile.

Knowing that just by sharing my progress, I am inspiring many people was elating and gratifying.

All you want is on the other side of fear.

We are all afraid of stepping out of our comfort zone. But unfortunately, everything we want is on the other side of the fear.

I was afraid too.

Afraid of not achieving my dream.

That fear was my driving force.

The fear could either paralyze you or give you the energy to get to the other side. Fear has a lot of energy in it. We think of it as negative energy. We need to learn to use it positively.

The universe comes to the party too.

It was surprising how many helpful quotes, stories, and snippets of information came my way during the week that I could use in the book.

Many appointments that I thought I couldn’t get out of got rescheduled.

Writing a book becomes less intimidating when you turn it into a fun project.

Writing a book is hard because we think we need to write like “authors.” We think we need to be an expert to write a book. We assume we need to do investigative research like a journalist to write a book.

But you can turn book writing into a fun project. It is less intimidating that way.

You can write a book as a student rather than as an expert.

Why not write a book about something you want to learn yourself. Then teach it to others by writing a book about it. Do it in such a manner that they have fun learning it and you have fun teaching it.

That is exactly what I did.

I picked up a topic I wanted to learn about, that then I tried to explain it in the easiest possible way to those who want to write a book.

And I showed them how to do it in seven days.

Check it out here, and let me know what you think.

Photo by Eunice De Guzman on Unsplash

  1. Margaret Smyth says:

    Congratulations Neera.
    Publishing your first book is a real achievement.
    I read the extract on Kindle. So good, it gives a real positive approach to writing a first book.
    I dare say most writers dream of publishing their story. I am far removed from that level of writing but can benefit from your positive insight.
    Well done.

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