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Summary: Got a great idea for an ebook but can't get started? You
need a structure.
Structuring Your Ebook
Copyright (c) 2002 by Angela Booth
(Angela Booth has been a professional writer for 25 years, and is
published by mainstream publishers.)
Got a great idea for an ebook but don't know how to start writing
it? Find the book's structure, and it will (almost) write itself.
I've got three partially-completed books on my hard drives that
I'll complete one day. Maybe.
All three books are viable, with great information and great
ideas. What they lack is a structure. They're books with a body
but no bones.
I started each book thinking that the structure would come to me
as I wrote. Many thousands of words later, I'm still waiting.
With luck, I'll manage to work out a structure for each book, and
will turn them to profit. However they taught me the importance
of working out a book's structure BEFORE I start writing.
Having the structure in place makes a book easy to write. Writing
a book without a structure is like trying to build a house
without a blueprint.
=> The structure starts with your working title
How easy do you think the following ebooks would be to write?
* 101 Ways To Secure A Retirement Income
* Ten Secrets Of A Successful Day Trader
* Every Writer's Quick-Action Guide To Writing An Ebook
* Improve Your Golf In Thirty Days
* Seven Days To Your Own Successful Home Business
These titles make excellent working titles for an ebook, because
they provide a built-in structure for the book.
You may use your working title, or can change it. You can also
use your working title as a sub-title.
Tip: when you decide on a title, print it out and stick it on the
side of your monitor. While you're writing, you can go off on
tangents if you don't keep your book's premise in mind at all
=> Create an outline
Come out from underneath that desk! Please don't whine. I don't
mean the kind of outline that your English teacher harassed you
into creating when you were 12.
You don't have to create a strict outline. The kind of outline
you need to create is one based on components.
Non-fiction is much easier to write than fiction because these
books contain similar components.
Let's have a look at some of them:
* A foreword. This is similar to an introduction, but a foreword
is usually written by someone other than the author of the book.
It helps if you can get someone famous to contribute the
foreword. (They'll expect payment.)
* An introduction. This is optional. If you can't think of
anything to put in an introduction, leave it out. Think of
including an introduction if you want to tell your own story:
how you came to get the information you're about to share.
* A "How To Use This Ebook" chapter or page. This can be short,
or quite long. For example, if you're writing a book on yoga, you
could use this chapter to give four or five exercise routines,
compiled from the various poses that you discuss in the rest of
* Chapters with problems and solutions. For example, if you were
writing a book on dieting, you could write seven chapters all
posing a typical problem, and then provide solutions for each
* The last chapter is the wrap-up. In this chapter you'll want to
give readers instructions on where they go from here, and you'll
also want to include an inspirational message.
* A glossary is useful if it will be necessary for readers new to
the subject area. For example, if your ebook contains a lot of
industry jargon with which your reader is unfamiliar, give
explanations of terminology here.
* An index. I'm always disappointed when an otherwise excellent
book, that I'll be referring to again, omits an index. I know
creating an index is a hassle, but if you think your readers will
use it, then go the extra mile and include it.
There you have it. The bones of your ebook. With the skeleton in
place, you'll find it easy to write.
==> Resource Box <==
Writing a book? Author, journalist and copywriter Angela Booth
has written novels and non-fiction for major publishers, and can
help you write your book. Visit: http://www.digital-e.biz/
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Australian author, journalist and copywriter Angela Booth
has been writing professionally for over twenty years. She writes
business books and copy for businesses.