Hi! I was wondering how would I go about writing a book about something if I’m not really a subject matter expert at anything? I find that most people tell you to share your knowledge if you have experience with something, but that isn’t really an option for me, I could be, but I usually get into something, without fully getting into it, where I couldn’t really teach anyone else about it. For example, playing guitar. I have had one for over two years but I haven’t really mastered it, or learned a lot so what, or HOW could I possibly teach others? On the other hand, [an Internet guru] mentioned publishing other’s books for them in one of his videos, what are your thoughts on that? I wouldn’t even know where to begin!
Hi Alessandra -
Thanks for reaching out.
How would you go about writing a book about something if I’m not really an expert at anything?
Well, to be honest, you can’t. You have to acquire knowledge of your topic in order to produce a valuable book for your audience. This can take a bit of time depending on your level of familiarity with your subject matter.
The good news is, sometimes the best way to learn about something is through teaching it to someone else. Just like you went to school as a kid and learned something cool and new, you more than likely couldn’t wait to come home and “teach” your parents what you’ve learned.
So let’s say you’re still interested in learning guitar. First things first, refresh your knowledge of guitar lessons and see where your skills are. What is it that you now know about guitars that you didn’t know before when you initially started playing? Now, what do you want to learn about guitars that would make you a better guitar player?
Read books on playing guitar, take a few lessons if you must. Afterward, try to write down the basics of your experience playing guitar, and you might try your hand at giving people a few lessons in person.
Essentially these experiences combine to help you become a better guitar player, instructor, and ultimately a professional with the skills to communicate your knowledge verbally and through written mediums.
Don’t half ass on your product. That’s my biggest mistake right now. My books, initially flipped profits quickly, but there are people making THOUSANDS of dollars in book sales WEEKLY because they took the time to skillfully develop books that truly helped the audience.
I won’t say that mine hasn’t, but in retrospect, if I took some more time and focused on creating a stronger product that had a clear target audience in mind, I would be way better off than I am now. This is something I’m working through as we speak.
And I personally see no reason to publish other people’s books. Unless you’re getting paid a flat fee – not royalties – but a flat fee to make sure the book is properly set up and published on Kindle – or you have exclusive rights to the book, it sounds like a waste of productive, creative energy. Instead, focus on creating your own books and reports.
P.S. When becoming a subject matter expert requires a high level of education and certifications, you don’t have to force yourself to become the expert. You can always reach out to experts in the subject matter area you’re interested in and interview them for professional and accurate insight.
P.P.S. By getting acquainted with professional experts in your field of study, you become equipped with high-level information that your competitors may more than likely fail to get for themselves.
(Because, keeping it funky real, right now, most books and resources on writing books and making money do not encourage writers and business owners to take their time. From what I see, the majority see Kindle publishing – and self-publishing as a whole – as a means to an end financially.
— And, don’t get me wrong, it is, but have some damn class and ethics with it; give your audience real information… written in full sentences with a voice that sparkles with clarity.)