If you’re trying to decide if you should do NaNoWriMo or #BlogLikeCrazy next month, there is a way you could do both. Sort of. You could blog your book, which is what I plan to do this year.
For the second year in a row, I almost didn’t host #BlogLikeCrazy, my annual challenge to anyone who’s game to publish a new blog post every day for 30 days in November. Last year I was sick of blogging but fortunately, it was #BlogLikeCrazy that helped me get my blogging groove back. This year I was going to skip #BlogLikeCrazy so I could use November to work on the book that I’ve been ignoring for nearly two years, but then I realized I could just blog my book!
The Elephant in My Writer’s Room
I call it the elephant in my writer’s room. The fact that I haven’t published a book is one of the main things that keeps my imposter syndrome on 10! How can I be the founder of a group for women writers when I haven’t published a book, I often ask myself. I’ve had poetry and short stories published in literary journals and essays published in books. And as a journalist, I’ve written hundreds of articles. Plus, as a coach, I’ve helped plenty of women write and publish books. But I have yet to publish a book that’s all my own.
I’ve certainly been trying. In January of 2017, I spent a weekend away at Hotel Finial to get started on my book. And I had my first draft done by the end of the year. But I hated it. So I spent most of 2018 and this year pretending my book didn’t exist. A printed copy of the manuscript has been literally collecting dust in my home office since December of 2017.
How to Blog Your Book
Just when I was about to give up on my book project altogether, I got inspired to give it another go when I was at this year’s WordCamp Birmingham.
Kathryn Lang, a longtime friend of the See Jane Write community, gave a presentation called “Blog to Book” during which she broke down how we can use our old blog posts as content for a book. But during this talk, Kathryn also explained how we can reverse engineer this process by blogging with our future book in mind. First, decide on the topic of your book. Next, write down 10 points related to your topic. Then, break down each point into 3 to 6 bite-sized ideas. After that, you will write a blog post on each bite-sized idea. And finally, bundle those posts together with an introduction and any necessary transitions and there’s your book!
Can #BlogLikeCrazy help me FINALLY finish my book?
So, here’s how I plan to #bloglikecrazy and work on my book in November. First, I’m going to get crystal clear on exactly what my book is about. The lack of focus is one of the reasons I’m unhappy with my manuscript. Next, I’m going to write down 10 points related to this main topic, just as Kathryn advised. And then I’m going to break down each of the 10 points into 3 smaller ideas. This will give me 30 ideas which will then be my 30 blog posts for #BlogLikeCrazy 2019.
In December, I will turn these posts into a book by adding an introduction, transitions, and extra content from my first draft.
If you plan to participate in this year’s #BlogLikeCrazy challenge, let me know in the comments of this post. If you’re planning to blog your book, let me know in the comments below. And whether you’re doing NaNoWriMo or #BlogLikeCrazy, don’t miss our virtual planning party set for Tuesday, October 29 at 6:30 p.m. CT. RSVP here.