150: What’s Your Biggest Challenge When It Comes to Writing a Book with Azul Terronez

Azul Answers Questions From Listeners

“The truth is books aren’t written, they’re rewritten” – Azul Terronez

When it comes to writing a book, there are many challenges that you may encounter. They can come at any point of the writing process — when you’re first inspired with an idea, during the actual creation process or, afterwards, during the editing phase.

But, remember, these obstacles are normal and you can overcome them.

On this week’s episode of “Authors Who Lead,” I’m answering your biggest questions about your greatest writing challenges, pushing you one step closer toward getting your book out of your head and into the hands of your ideal readers.

“How Do I Connect Strongly With My Reader?”

Even before we start writing, we have a desire to write a good book. We want our book to matter, and to connect with our audience.

I often advise authors to approach writing as if they are crafting a personal letter, or sitting down by the fire, sipping tea with their ideal reader. Note what kind of emotions or questions may be present in the conversation.

This more relaxed tone will help you be authentic and allow your unique message to attract your ideal readers.

“The Expert Dilemma”

Sometimes, an author will have a life-changing experience that sparks a desire to learn more about it, prompting them to gain expertise and knowledge — and, with it, an assumption that he or she now needs to write as an “expert.”

But this is a trap. To avoid it, think of yourself as the guide, not the guru.

First, even though you have all the expertise, you need to reconnect with that life-changing moment. Remember how you felt, the ways you reacted and how you saw the world at that point in time. Your reader needs to see, empathize and relate to the person you are today — and why.

Second, show the reader you understand them by writing in a way that will allow them to connect to the emotions and thoughts you share. Even though you may have gained a lot of knowledge and expertise since your personal experience, your reader wants your wisdom in drips, not a firehose.

The Importance of Daily Discipline

During the writing process, it may feel like your book will never get done. Staying focused and putting words on the page is one of the greatest challenges authors face.

My best advice is to make writing a daily habit — but a gentle one. Commit to 500 or less words each day, or any number that feels doable for you, and then write those words every day without fail. All of those consistent words will add up, and soon your book will be done.

Using a word tracker will also help you stay disciplined in your writing, and you will gain confidence as you see your progress.

“How Do I Not Loathe Editing?”

We all wish we could write perfect first drafts — but books are not written, they are rewritten.

The key is to make the editing process as short as you can. Don’t think of it as a long, hard process. Instead, imagine it as an event on your calendar, a task that has a concrete beginning and ending.

Allow yourself to trust your editors. You may have several in the process and they will help you through it. Treat the editing process as you putting your best foot forward, and remember, don’t try to edit everything.

There are many challenges you will face writing a book, but this is just a normal part of the process. You can get through them. Just remember:

  1. Write your book as if you are sitting down next to a cozy fire with your ideal reader.
  2. Be the guide, not the guru. Even if you’ve gained expertise, your reader still wants to go back in time with you to understand the emotions you felt and how you saw the world as you were going through that shared experience.
  3. Set a gentle goal of writing every day to gain discipline to finish your book.
  4. Books aren’t written, they are rewritten. The editing process is a necessary part of getting your book into the hands of your ideal reader. Treat it as an event, not a long, drawn out process.

What was your biggest takeaway from the episode? In the comments, share the greatest challenge you faced while writing your book.

That’s all for this week. If you have a message inside you that needs to be written, know that any obstacles you encounter can be overcome. Don’t delay — each step you take in writing your book brings you closer to finishing it.

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