Before getting too far into writing your book, it's vital to take a step back and create "the big picture" about your book's subject, your target reader and how you're going to use your book as a marketing tool.

So many times we get a business idea and rush right into action to "make it so." (Trust me, I am more than familiar with this concept having done it dozens of times myself.) I admire great energy, and sometimes quick action does pay off. But, when it doesn't, it usually turns into a cosmic and financial slap-upside-the-head experience I'd rather avoid.

In fact, you might have heard the story about how I failed to do proper market research before writing my second book, Get a Job! Put Your Degree to Work. The result was I wasted a lot of time, energy and money on writing a book that never took off in the marketplace.

As a friend of mine recently told me, "Go out and make new mistakes, don't repeat mine." So I'm passing on what I know on to you.

3 Ways to Write a Book That Sells

1. Do "lazy research" first. Even I don't mind doing research when it's called "surfing the web." So I recommend you start there by doing several Internet researches surrounding your book's topic. In addition to similar books, you'll also find websites, blogs and the names of other who are experts in your book's topic. (But don't let all this "it's been done before" information scare you. You're an expert, too, you just need the book to prove it.)
2. Do store research. Check out your local bookseller to find out what's on the shelves. Although your chief goal might not be to get your book in Borders, you can find out what's prominent and selling. As you check that out, see what's selling in general and think about how you could take your subject and give it that "best seller" slant.
3. Do in-person interviews. Don't be shy about your book idea. Chat it up with clients and prospects and tell them the basics and then sit back, shut up and see what they have to say. If you get a lot of "push back," it could mean you're on an "uphill track" (or, dare I say it, wrong track) with your subject. Write what you want--this is your masterpiece, right? At the same time, I wished I would have talked less and listened more when I was creating "Get a Job!"

Great books aren't written in a vacuum. Before sitting down at the keyboard to start pounding yours out, take the time to see what else is out there. The best benefit from doing market research is that you will come away with a clearer idea about what people want to read--so you can write just that book.

P.S. What else do you want to know about book writing and promotion? I'm here for you. Shoot your questions to

Author's Bio: 

Donna Kozik, founder of, is a book writing & publishing consultant who shows business owners how to write their book quickly and easily to create a no-fail marketing tool. Find out what mistakes to avoid and how close you are to publishing success with a Free Special Report & Quiz at