The #1 Step You Must Take Before Starting to Write Your Book - Jenn T. Grace—Book Publisher, Speaker, and Author Skip to the content

The #1 Step You Must Take Before Starting to Write Your Book

Blog-artwork(for-blog)You have the courage to write a book. Check.

You know what your end goal is. Check.

You’ve seen how your book can change lives. Check.

So, now what? It’s probably time to start writing.


Before you begin to put pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard, you need a plan. You could spend all of your time writing and writing and writing and never get to the end because you’ve never clearly defined what the end of the book would look like.

But before you begin thinking about books in the sense of beginning, middle and end, you must have a general sense of all of the ideas you want to talk about in your book, which at this point could be very overwhelming.

There is an easy way to start with an idea and the end goal of writing a book and be able to bridge the gap between the two. The answer is mind mapping.

Mind mapping is really the art of spewing everything that is on your mind down on a piece of paper, in the best order you can make sense of, to use at a later date to create an outline. Click here for some examples on what mind maps look like.

Mind maps don’t have to be pretty but they have to be comprehensive.

Start with your main idea in the middle of a page (digital or physical) and circle it. Then make thought/idea bubbles that branch off of that main idea that need to be included in the book. Then from the sub thought/idea bubbles write more ideas and/or supplemental info that further supports those thoughts. Just keep doing this until you’ve gone through all of your thoughts that need to be included in the book.

This is a working document. It does not need to be final. So for the following week after doing the exercise, refer back to it. Add on to it. Exhaust all of your efforts to make this a comprehensive document that puts on paper all of the ideas that you want to include in your book.

This is a great exercise to get you pointed in the right direction in regards to what your book is going to be about, in a non-scary way.

You don’t need to have all of the answers now. Just the courage to write and an idea of what you are writing about and you are well on your way to completing a mind map.

Next week we will talk about what you do next with that mind map. Sitting on a shelf and collecting dust is not an option! So come back on March 10th and learn the next step.

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About Jenn T. Grace

Jenn T. Grace (she/her/hers) is an award-winning author and founder and CEO of Publish Your Purpose (PYP), the acclaimed hybrid publisher of non-fiction books. Jenn has published 100+ books written by thought leaders, visionaries, and entrepreneurs who are striving to make a difference. Jenn T. Grace’s work elevates and amplifies the voices of others—especially marginalized groups who are regularly excluded from traditional publishing.

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