So, you’ve always dreamed of being an author.
You’ve got the gift.
But are being an author and an editor the same thing? What about an author and a marketer? Or an author and a project manager?
The answer is “No.” However, a great author knows at least the basics of editing, book marketing, and project management. Self-publishers, who wear multiple hats, must have a working knowledge in each of these disciplines. And it’s becoming increasingly common for hybrid publishers and even traditional publishers to expect their authors to contribute in some of these areas.
If this all sounds like a lot to learn, don’t worry. In this article, I’ll show you how to take advantage of a really convenient shortcut:
That’s right. Professional software for authors can help you tremendously by cutting out all the extra time and trouble of manually doing extraneous tasks or hiring out to do so.
Let’s dive in.
Editing Software–It’s More than just Spell Check
Ah… the good old days. When a red underline and an annoying Clip-Art paperclip were the solution to all your editing problems.
Honestly though, that paperclip can stay lost because automated editing has become something greater than we could have imagined. Programs such as ProWritingAid, Grammarly, Hemingway, and more have paved the way for the future of editing.
Go ahead and ask one of your editor friends what software they’re using. You’d be hard pressed to find an editor that doesn’t take advantage of any editing tools.
Now, that doesn’t mean the human element of editing should be removed. I’m just pointing out that you can expedite your editing process through the use of pro software.
So the real question that remains is this… With all those choices out there, which is the best software for you? This article on the best proofreading and editing softwares really breaks down some of the major players in the game. Make the smart call and get some pro editing software.
Marketing Software: A Self-Publisher’s Best Friend
There’s nothing better as an author than getting your book published. And in today’s modern world, anybody can get their book out there through self-publishing.
That’s why if you Google “best instant pot cookbook” you’ll get “about 20,000,000 results.” Publishing a book has become so much simpler to do — especially with platforms such as Amazon. Amazon is the world’s leader in book sales. Whether you are self-published, traditionally published, print book or eBook, Amazon is a heck of a place to start getting your book out to the masses.
Extremely oversimplified, it’s like this: Write a book and publish on Amazon. Market book. Sell millions of copies and become a household name. (Well, maybe the last part is a little much.)
The tricky part to all of this is that second step. Marketing your book. Now, this doesn’t mean that it’s strictly ads from here–although they do help.
For example, did you know that when publishing on Amazon you get to register your book into different categories? And make them searchable via keywords? This is great stuff! But manually searching for categories and keywords takes a lot of time and effort.
A metric ton.
Thankfully, there’s a program out there that can help you cut through all the mess: Publisher Rocket. It’s a fully-encompassing Amazon category, keyword, and competition analyzer designed to make your Amazon marketing life fast and easy.
But don’t just take my word for it. Many great authors such as Joanna Penn, Jeff Goins, and even Orson Scott Card (author of the Ender’s Game sci-fi series) utilize this awesome tool.
For a more in-depth look at how Publisher Rocket works, check out this wonderful Publisher Rocket review by Sam Howard.
Project Management Software: The Joys of Staying Organized
The easiest part of writing a book is the writing. And that’s the truth.
Planning, organizing, outlining, formatting, and other tasks… Now that’s where things get tricky. Luckily, we can enlist the help of some pro software to help make our lives in those departments much simpler.
According to James Patterson’s MasterClass, the outline is what makes the book. It allows you to stay on target, minimize plot holes, and ensure major discussion points are brought up. A great book has an even better outline.
So, what do your outlines look like? Are you still scribbling away brainstorming webs in your trusty Moleskine? Or have you created a stiff and rigid outline from an MS Word template?
There’s nothing wrong with that. If that’s your method…you do you. But here’s an easier way. Create a flexible outline with software such as Scrivener. Scrivener is an absolutely must-have (or at least must-consider) tool for writing if not for its planning and outlining capabilities alone. It helps you cut through all the clutter and allows you to spend more time on what you’re really after: The writing.
And what about after the writing? After all that blood, sweat, and tears… What’s next? The editing and publishing of course! However, the publishing part can be a bit complicated. Especially if your manuscript isn’t properly formatted. There are so many different file formats out there such as ePub, MOBI, and PDF. Do you know the difference and which is best for you?
Once you’ve answered that question, you can once again turn to pro software (in this case formatting software) to get headed in the right direction.
The Bottom Line: Use Pro Software
Well here it is folks. The bottom line.
In today’s modern world, a quill and a book stand aren’t enough to make you a successful author. If you’re looking to give your books the best chance at success, opt for pro software. Make your life easier, so you can dedicate your energies to what’s going to keep your readers hooked: The writing. Remember, a wise person once said, “Work smarter, not harder.”