On a Christmas more years ago than I care to count, I gave my mother and my grandmother each a beautiful leather journal.
Mom looked baffled and said, “But I’m not creative like you. I don’t have anything to write. Anyway, I’m not a very good writer.”
Grandma nodded her agreement. “I wouldn’t even know where to start.”
“It doesn’t matter,” I said. “Just write down all those old family stories. Your favorite memories.” I looked at my grandmother. “How the cousins played together and made Mom be a coat hanger, the time she spilled the ink , the way she used to be your chocolate drop but never your strawberry gumdrop. Your evil first grade teacher. That recipe for graham cracker pie you always make.”
In her late 80s, my grandmother had a stroke that triggered a progressive dementia and damaged the part of her brain that told her how to put words into coherent speech. She died at 92, and I miss her every day. Neither she nor my mother ever wrote a word in those journals. None of us have ever been able to replicate my grandmother’s graham cracker pie.
If you’re on this page, chances are there’s a book in you and it wants to come out. Maybe that book is a memoir, a family history, a how-to or self-help book, a technical guide, or a mystery novel. Maybe it’s something else. Whatever it is, if you’re like most people, you keep putting it off because either you’re afraid it won’t be good or you don’t know how to start.
“I really want to write a book,” a friend of mine once said, “but I don’t think I have anything new to bring to the table. And even if I did, I have no idea how to go about writing a book.”
A good ghostwriter can help you with the “how,” but if you’re still on the fence, let’s talk about the “why.” Here are five of the most compelling ones.
You have knowledge to share.
You have a story that might inspire others.
Your family and friends will cherish your memories and insights.
You can offer perspective on your life, someone else’s life, or a historical period or event.
You will understand yourself better.
If you have a book inside you burning to be told, don’t wait. The world needs your graham cracker pie.