How to write a book - your step by step guide

Do you want to write a non-fiction book of your own?


Writing a book is simpler than you think; but it comes down to preparation and clarity around what it is you are actually writing about.

Disclaimer* I never said it was easy, I just said it was simple!

Have you ever found yourself asking how to finally get that idea onto paper?

Well, you are not alone.

Since publishing my first book, I’ve had many people reach out to me and tell me they’ve been wanting to write one too, or that they’ve been working on one for X amount of years. Something I see all too often is talented writers waiting until it’s the “perfect time” to write their “perfect book”, and they remain in this state of inaction for many years.

Now, I believe it is entirely possible to write a book IN UNDER 6 MONTHS – I’ve done it, and I’ve helped one of my mentees do it too.

Sometimes, the very thing in our way is the dragon we have to slay in order to start; and that’s self-doubt.

Don’t worry, I’ve been there (too many times to count), and each time I chose to listen to my self doubt, I would act on it (by not acting at all)!

However, when I stepped around my self-doubt, and didn’t buy in to what it was telling me, I realised that none of it is actually true; it’s just a projection of our fears or past experience.

The quicker you can learn to keep taking steps forward, the more muffled your self doubt will become because you are so engrossed in the awesome work you are ACTUALLY doing!


Read on to see my process for how to write a book so that you can get started, take action, and share your ideas with the world!


1. The idea stage

So, you have an idea for a book, and you are excited at the possibility of exploring your chosen topic in more detail. You may have notes and chapter ideas scribbled down on pieces of paper, or on multiple documents on your computer. But, in order to take action on your ideas, you need clarity and direction around where you are going; which leads us into point 2.

2.Develop your book outline and collate your ideas

This is where you take your multitude of ideas and flesh them out sequentially into chapters and sections. Your book outline shows you where you are going from start to finish, which helps your writing stay on course. It is here that you can start to think about the key ideas you will discuss in each chapter, and the stories and statistics you will draw on to support your key concepts in the book.

3. Think with the end in mind

As a writer, you should always think about the end goal of your book. Who is your audience? How do you want the reader to feel as a result of reading your book? What actions would you like them to take? It’s important to write with your audience in mind. The end result of your book shouldn’t be that they simply read a story which gives them the warm and fuzzies. While that’s nice, there should be something deeper than this – perhaps you want to show them your expertise as a coach or thought leader, you may want them to join your online community so they can get to know you, or perhaps you would like them to refer you to their friends and get bookings as a speaker. Whatever your desired result may be for you, ensure that you’re prompting the reader subtly throughout the book.

4. Create writing habits and word targets

It’s all well and good to have an outline and your goals in mind, but the biggest question you probably have is “How am I going to do this?”

Your book won’t write itself, so it’s important to structure and schedule in your writing time to allow you to hit targets along the way. Your book writing journey will become really exciting when you break things down into targets. As an example: your goal may be to write 50,000 words. You set a target of writing 5,000 words per week (which could equate to 1,000 words x5 days a week). When you break this down, you realise that the actual writing time of your book is just 10 weeks (give or take)! Cool, right?

Now it’s important to structure this time into your week. Think about where you will choose to prioritise your writing – is it morning or evening? When are you most creative and give your best work? This is the time in which you should be scheduling your writing.

5. Put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard

Now is the fun part – writing the book! It becomes a whole lot simpler when you’ve established your targets, chapters, and key ideas. Each time you open up your computer, you should know exactly what you are working on for the session. This is where you will experience self doubt and slumps in productivity, but it’s important to work through this and keep on writing anyway. You may find you have days where your writing feels sub-par, (this is completely normal), but keep writing anyway! It is here that I recommend you enlist the help of an accountability buddy. This should be someone who you trust, and who you know is going to push you. After each writing session, your job is to message them and let them know what you achieved. For your buddy? If they don’t hear from you, it’s their job to check in and find out why!

6. Celebrate your completed book

Congratulations! You just finished the hardest part – getting out of your own way and writing your book! This is an exciting time, and one which should be celebrated immensely.

But remember, the fun isn’t over just yet; you still need to think about publishing, proofreading, editing, typesetting, cover design and launching your book. Whether you choose to self publish, or follow the traditional publishing route, your actions will change as a result.

For my first book, I chose to self publish because I wanted to get my message out to the world as quickly as possible; and I knew my book would help me to launch into a new career path. However, for my second book, I am taking the traditional publishing route; as I want to use it to raise my profile and reach, and create opportunities for future book deals. This is something you should take time in thinking about – there is no right or wrong approach, it truly depends on your goals for the completed book and where you wish for it to take you.



Writing a book is an experience which can bring an immense amount of joy and pride in your hard work. It is not a project which should be taken lightly, however it is something that you should do if you’ve always had a burning desire to do it.

It’s easy to sit on the sidelines of your own life, and play into the actions your inner critic wants you to take. However, imagine how amazing it would feel if you ignored those words, and instead chose to put yourself into the game and share your message with the world?








Imagine how amazing it would feel if you chose to put yourself into the game and share your message with the world?







And now, I want to help you make this dream a possibility.

In just a couple of months’ time I will be launching my very first writing mentorship program. This program will be specifically for those achievers who want to write a book or launch a blog, with an end goal of building their business and personal brand. It combines both writing development and mindset development, to help you take action and gain clarity and courage throughout the program.


Hungry to find out more?

Shoot me an email: zoe@zoehyde.com.au or a DM and you will join the list to be one of the first know more!

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Victoria, Australia |  0431 428 424  |  zoe@zoehyde.com.au

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