Writing a Book for the First Time?

Hello, everyone!

Writing a book for the first time. Here’s a secret that bi-vocational pastors and others can use to publish a wonderful and beneficial book even if they have never done so before.

Define a Problem

First of all, you want to define a problem. Once you have the problem figured out, then come up with a series of steps to provide the solution to the problem.

Once you have those steps, figured out, make sure you have them in the right order. Then you can prepare a series of sermons based on those steps.

Decide what you wait to write about.
Decide what you wait to write about.

It may be that that will be exactly what the Lord would have you to use for your congregation. If not, then you’re just going to have to prepare your sermons and deliver them to yourself or to your phone.

Either way, prepare a series of sermons based on those steps. A 30-minute sermon will provide a good chapter length for a book.

It would be best to have around seven steps to provide the solution to the problem.

Five to 10 would work and you can come up with a book by doing that.


Next, you have your recordings transcribed. You can do a search online and find services that will use artificial intelligence to transcribe your recordings, and they will be relatively accurate.

You can transcribe your book yourself, or hire someone.
You can transcribe your book yourself, or hire someone.

Depending on what kind of monetary investment you want to make in producing your book, you could hire a live transcriptionist. He or she may charge $1 or $2 per minute to transcribe your recordings.


After that, you’ll need to have the transcriptions edited.

You can hire editors to help you do that or, if you’re really good with grammar and writing, you can edit yourself.


Find a couple people you trust to offer their opinion on your book.
Find a couple people you trust to offer their opinion on your book.

You should then give the book-to-be to at least a couple of people to get their feedback on it.


Once you’ve done that, either send your book idea to a publisher or self-publish your book.

More and more people are self-publishing today, and they are not producing bad books. They are self-publishing good books.

Well, that is a way you can write and publish a book for the first time.

If you’re not a bi-vocational minister, just pretend that you are and prepare a series of talks and follow the steps above.

Whether you are a bi-vocational minister or just a regular person, these steps will work for you.

For more information about writing and publishing your own book, head to Randy’s Blogs where you can read many more posts with helpful hints.

For the ultimate guide to getting a book completed, my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death” on Amazon is what you need.

The best tips are in these pages!
The best tips are in these pages!

I hope this information has been helpful to you. I’m Randy Carney reminding you, YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!

Tips for Writing Fiction

A happy ending to your story.

I hope you’re having a great day. Today, I’m going to give you some tips for writing fiction. I’ll include four ways to develop a great story. As I discuss these four ways of developing a great story, I will place the tips into four different categories.

Video: Tips for Writing Fiction

Personal Tips

You want to make the story your story. It should be a story that you love, a story that you would like to read. You want to put yourself into it.

Write about things you know or love. Personal experiences can help develop a great story.
Personal experience can help write a great story

Then you want to make it your personal journey. As you do that, you don’t have to actually make it an autobiography. You might use elements of your own life story.

Practical Tips

Secondly, we have what I would call practical tips.

Daily writing can help avoid writer's block and keep you inspired.
Write every day.

First of all, write every day. I resisted journaling for many years because I didn’t know what to write about. I didn’t feel like I would be very good at it. Even when I had past attempts at writing diaries, I had trouble getting started. But in the past year and a half or so, I have discovered that I do actually enjoy journaling. The secret has been I just pick up the pen and start writing whatever comes to mind. Sometimes it is a diary entry, sometimes I talk about ways of doing things, and sometimes I talk about ideas for the future. But I just write whatever comes to mind. That is called free-flow writing. When you’re writing your actual book, of course, you will be writing daily in that regard. But write every day.

Next, you should read other stories. When you find a fiction writer that you really like, read a lot of his or her stories. Read other fiction writers as well.

There are also many ways to beat procrastination and writer’s block. I won’t go into all of that right at the moment. However, my book on how to write a book in 28 days or less goes into that in detail. One of the things that it involves is breaking your project down into smaller projects. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time? How do you write a book? Write a chapter. So you want to chunks.

Practice free-flow writing where you just write as fast as you can. Simply let the words come. Don’t correct that spelling mistake you obviously made, don’t correct that typo right there. Keep writing and get the flow of the story going. and practice that free-flow writing.

After you have your rough draft or a section you want to edit, read it aloud to yourself.

So far, we’ve had personal tips and then we’ve had some practical tips. Let’s go into general tips while you’re writing your fiction.

General Tips

First of all, ask questions. You can make your main character ask questions. You can have the minor characters asking questions. You want to think of what questions your readers might have and ask those questions. Ask yourself questions about the story. Ask yourself, how did they get in that predicament? Ask yourself, how are they going to get out of that? Ask yourself what comes next.

Next, you’ll want to withhold some information. Maybe withhold a lot of information. You don’t have to give the whole story the whole biography. What you need to do is to give enough info for the start of the story, and then you know where the story is going. Withhold information so you can have some surprises along the way.

Adding action or active voice to your stories will make them more engaging.
Add action to your stories

Use action and active voice. Active voice is where the subject performs an action. Passive voice, that’s where the action is being done to the subject. For instance, “The ball was hit.” In that case, you had the subject, which was the ball and the action was being done to the subject. But you can change that around and say “The batter hit the ball.” In that case, the subject is performing the action. The way to find this passive vs active voice is to look at your manuscript and find instances where you’re using that passive voice, and make changes.

So those are some general tips for writing fiction.

Story Tips

Now for some more specific tips: Give the main character a problem.

Next, get that main character into trouble quickly; very early in your story. Of course, the first part of your story should include a lot of information about your character’s regular life, before he/she gets thrust into the life-changing aspects of the story. But you want to get them into trouble as quickly as possible.

Then as the story progresses along, intensify the problem, make it worse in their minds.

Include a series of progress and setbacks.

Attempts to correct the problem seem only to make things worse. So show the attempts to correct the problem making things worse.

Finally, make the situation seem hopeless. Of course, you know the way out because you know where you’re going with the story. But write in such a way that the character doesn’t know how he or she is going to get out of this seemingly hopeless situation. Then guide your character down the path to where they get to a resolution to the problem.

A successful resolution to the problem or obstacle will nicely wrap up your story.

That will make for some exciting fiction as you’re writing your story.

Well, I hope this has been helpful to you. If you’d like more tips like these, go to www.randycarney.com. If you would like more information about how to write a book, just follow this link for my book How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death.

Well, I hope that you have a great day, and remember, you can write a book!

Writing Fiction 101 – Basic Concepts

A basic introduction to fiction writing.

Hello everyone! Today, I’m talking to you about Writing Fiction 101: Basic Concepts. If you go to college for a particular field, you will have various courses that will come together. Many times you will have undergraduate courses and one or two of those might relate to your field. Then you will have about 30 credit hours of courses that relate to your major. A course with a 101 in its description is usually a foundational course in that particular subject and covers the basic concepts upon which all the other courses will rest. Of course, this is not an actual college course, just a blog discussing basic concepts for writing fiction.

Have Compelling Characters

First of all, you want to come up with compelling characters. In another blog post, I went into this in a little bit more detail, but I will just remind you that your main character would be someone that you would want to spend time with. It is also a good idea to also reveal that character’s weaknesses and things that they might struggle with, and even some of the emotional things that might be involved in their journey. So create some compelling characters.

You should also come up with interesting villains. Sometimes people talk about the villains we love to hate. The villains are often complex characters.

Be sure to make the good guys and bad guys intriguing,
Have captivating characters

Decide on a Plot

Next, you need to decide on a plot. You can do a Google search and find a list of plots, which are the basic stories that are written over and over again. They range anywhere from six to 36. (You might even find more but these are the numbers I found in my searches.) Look those over and pick out one to be the major focus of what you’re going to write about in your fiction story.

Have An Ending Planned Out Before Starting

I recommend having the end or resolution of the story worked out in your head before you start writing. That way you won’t write yourself into a corner of which you cannot get out. That happens sometimes in writing. You’re just writing along and you don’t have a goal in mind as to where you’re going or what the action is building up to or what the climax is going to be, and you get stuck. Get that part figured out. Rough it out a little bit, and then go back to the beginning and work through the other details of your story.

Planning is crucial

Reveal Things Through Dialogue

Another tip is to reveal things through dialogue. Now you could have expositional paragraphs. Sometimes you have to do that in order to save time. But the more that you can reveal through pictorial material, actions, or dialogue between the characters, the better it will be and the more interesting your writing will be.

Overcome Obstacles Along the Way

Now, sometimes you will have a story where the character seems to be going down, down, down, and then you start having the rising action. The last half of your story should be rising toward a more positive direction. But even in that, there is an ebb and flow and ups and downs as the overall story progresses. So have some obstacles that need to be overcome, suchas little failures and victories along the way.

Have Two Stories Going on At the Same Time

You don’t always have to do this, but you often can have two parallel stories going on at the same time. You do not have to add any more characters. But if you will describe their emotions and emotional changes and have an emotional story going on at the same time, your story will be more exciting and interesting.

Have Chapter Goals

You need to outline some goals for each chapter of your story.

Finally, you need to have some chapter goals. It would be good for you to write out a synopsis of your book, which tells what’s going to happen, just a paragraph or so, in each chapter. In my most recent book,(link below) I show you some ways to flesh out those chapter plans in even more detail. Using my system, you would come up with nine to 15 items that you would cover in each chapter and some ways of handling those. That would be a blueprint for your book. figured out in this way.

In Summary

Well, these are some foundational concepts for writing fiction.

  1. Have compelling characters.
  2. Decide on a plot.
  3. Have the or the resolution to the problem firmly in mind before you write.
  4. Reveal things through dialogue.
  5. Overcome obstacles along the way.
  6. Maybeay have two parallel stories: An emotional story and an eventfull story going on at the same time.
  7. Have some chapter goals. For example: How long you would want your chapters to be and the basic idea of what would be in each chapter.

Well, I hope this has been helpful to you. If you would like more tips on writing, go to randycarney.com. And also, if you would like to know more about fleshing out those chapters, go check out the book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death.

As always, I want you to remember you can write a book!

Writing Crime Fiction – 7 Things to Think About

Would you like to get into writing crime fiction? There are seven questions you’ll need to answer to get started.

Who Are the Characters?

First of all, who are the characters? You have the protagonist. This would be the hero or heroine. As I mentioned in a previous post, it’s often good to give your hero or your heroine a flaw within their character; something that they’re struggling with as they go about the process of solving the crime. It will make the story a little bit more interesting.

Make sure to have an interesting cast of characters in your crime fiction.
Make sure you have interesting characters.

Next, you have other interesting characters. Of course, you need the victim. Now, unless the victim is just an outright scoundrel you’ll want to honor the memory of the victim in some way. Especially if they really are a victim and what happened to them was no fault of theirs whatsoever.

Then you have the eyewitnesses.

Beyond that, you will have the suspects and the actual bad guys. If you want to make it more interesting, make your criminal a complex person. Write about the things that they have to deal with, the issues they have, and the thoughts they have. Maybe they are kind to animals. Maybe they have some things that you would not expect from a criminal and, and maybe they’re torn within themselves as to what has taken place.

What is Crime Fiction?

The second question is what is crime fiction? Well, it is writing that deals with everything related to the crime. It can range from a mystery to a who-done-it, all the way through to a thriller.

In most cases, the crime has already been committed, and you’re trying to figure out who committed it and why it was committed. But in some cases, like the cases of serial killers, for example, the crimes would be ongoing. In the cases of thrillers, oftentimes, the crime is ongoing. But, maybe it’s not been committed yet.

So we have the who and the what, next comes the when.

When Will the Parts of the Story Take Place?

When will the parts of the story take place? Well, your crime fiction setup, like many stories are set up, has three acts.

Act one, you have the protagonist, who is introduced to the problem or the crime.

Decide on the timing of your crime story.
When does your story take place?

In act two, you have the protagonist solving the crime. It’s how they go about managing to do that. In this act, you also have the discovery of what the story is really about. Sometimes, you have two stories going on at the same time. You have a story of the struggle going on within the life of your main character and the actual story of the events. That all takes place in act two.

Then in act three, you have the process of actually catching the villain and/or saving someone or saving the world. This is the when of your crime fiction.

We’ve covered when, what, and when. Next, we need to decide where.

Where Does the Story Take Place?

Where does the story take place? Well, it could be the world where the crime took place, or where the perpetrators of the crime would hang out, or where they would flee. But it is the world where that would take place.

It is often good to make this place an unfamiliar place to the protagonist, where the hero or heroine has to get used to being in a new place and discovering new things about that place as well as the obstacles they have in finding out about the story.

How Will the Crime Be Solved?

How will the crime be solved? Here is where you’ll have the process of following clues, and you often have helpers that come along and help the main character. You may even have high-tech science and high-tech devices in some cases. It may be forensics or forensic science, but not always.

Be sure to add a lot of informaiton regarding the investigation that leats up to the crime being solved.
The investigation is how a crime is solved.

Then the crime is solved by moving through moments of suspense. How do you create suspense in your crime fiction? You do it through conflict and descriptions of conflict. You do it through time limits. If something is not accomplished by a certain time, something dire will happen. You do it by distractors, which take a reader down the wrong path for a little while. Sometimes we call those red herrings. You can also do it through descriptions of mood like the ups and downs in the characters’ lives and moments of growth within their lives.

Why Did the Crime Happen?

Why did the crime happen? Your hero or heroine will search out a motive during their investigation. The clues found will help point to a motive for the crime.

Finally, we come to question number seven.
So the first six of them are
1. Who are the characters?
2. What is crime fiction?
3. When will the parts of the story take place?
4. Where does the story take place?
5. Why did the crime happen?
6. How will the crime be solved?
Then number seven…

What Then?

Question number seven is what then? How is the hero or the heroine changed as a result of this process? Perhaps there is a hint to a possible future adventure that the hero or the heroine might be involved in.

How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death
Book cover

Well, I hope these tips have been helpful to you. If you would like more tips like these, go to www.randycarney.com. If you would like to find out even more about writing, go to Amazon and get my new (best-selling) book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death“.

Remember, you can write a book!

Book Writing Strategies

Book writing strategies. Are you a “pantser,” an outliner or somewhere in between? One is not better than the other. They’re all equally good. It’s just important that you figure out who you are.


I want to encourage those of you who are writers to find what your style is and what works for you.

Are you an outliner a pantser or somewhere in between?

What is your writing style?
What is your writing style?

Outliner, Pantser, or In-Betweener?

Now an outliner is someone who plans out the project ahead of time and develops an outline.

A pantser is someone who writes from the seat of his or her pants and is able to just start writing and go and have a lot of success doing that.

Maybe you’re somewhere in between.

I remember when I was in high school and grade school, they would ask us to write a paper and they would want us to give them an outline. They were trying to teach us how to be outliners and how to write from an outline.

I was a little bit more of a pantser, or maybe I just didn’t like to plan that much. But sometimes I would write the paper first, and then I would go back and make up the outline from the paper. That’s sort of like how a pantser works, although I don’t consider myself that much in these days.

Now, I have also learned the value of planning your project before you write it. Nowadays, I am more inclined to do at least some type of outline first before I write.

Book Writing Strategies: Be an Outliner

An outliner can be a very extensive outliner.

They may be a person who would write complete sentences for all the main points, all the sub-points, all the sub-sub-points, and so forth. By the time they had that done, they would have a lot of words already.

Sample outline
Sample outline

They know what direction their book is going to go and how it would end. Once that was done, all they would have to do is just go in and fill it out.

Some outlines may not be as detailed.

Some may have complete sentences for the 3-7 main points and then just have phrases or words for the sub-points and then just words for the sub-sub-points.

Or maybe just words for the main points and single words for the sub-points and so forth.

It’s whatever works for them, but they still have a pretty detailed plan before they start.

Book Writing Strategies: Be a Pantser

 Do you prefer to write by the seat of your pants?
Do you prefer to write by the seat of your pants?

Now a pantser would have an idea of where he’s going and just take off writing and keep writing toward the end in view. If it’s someone who is really good at it, that’s all they need to do. Ups and downs and twists and turns that the writing project would take in between just come naturally to them.

A true pantser has the natural ability to go up and down and use literary devices as they work.

Book Writing Strategies: Be an In-Betweener

Then there is the person who is somewhere in between.

In the area of writing fiction, Randy Ingermanson. has developed a method that’s called the snowflake method. That method is in between the two.

I consider myself to be sort of in between, although now I lean more toward a plan than I used to.

The in-betweener uses both methods.
The in-betweener uses both methods.

Let me give you some ideas if you’re an in-betweener. If you are a fiction writer, you might have a story that goes something like this: There is a character, (describe that character) who had a problem (describe the problem). Then you could have maybe three major disasters that happen.

In the first part of the story, you come to a major disaster. Maybe your character overcomes it, maybe not, but it leads to another one. Build that as you continue working on trying to solve the problem. So then the second major disaster comes about halfway through, and another major disaster about three-fourths of the way through. Then you have the resolution, the climax, the ending, and then you tie up the loose ends.

So if you’re a fiction writer, and you want to have the in-between of the outline and being a pantser you might think of the three major disasters and know how the resolution is going to come about.

If you are a nonfiction writer, instead of having major disasters, you will have either steps to a solution to a problem or different ways of solving a problem.

So you would want to have at least an idea of what the problem is and have some sentences or key words that would remind you of what you know to be the solution or the steps to the solution of that problem.

That would be an example of an in-between method for nonfiction writing.

More Tips and Information

There’s also a type of blueprint that you can do with 12 to 15 ideas. Take those ideas and turn them into questions, and have bullet points related to the questions.

Although that’s closer to an outline idea, it still allows your creativity to flow as you go through doing that.

Useful tool!
Useful tool!

I hope this has been helpful to you. If you’d like more tips like these, I would urge you to go to www.randycarney.com. You’ll find many more posts like these; several of them include videos.

You could also subscribe, subscribe to my YouTube channel, or Rumble channel to see all my writing videos.

For the best tips, get my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death.” In it, you’ll get three different methods are being able to write a book, even if you’ve never done so before.

Pretty soon I’m going to be releasing a free Writers Roadmap to Success. When you go to the website, look for that. It’s coming soon.

I hope you have a great day. Until next time, this is Randy Carney reminding you that YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!

How to Write with Writer’s Block

Today I want to talk to you about how to write with writer’s block.


Ah, the dreaded writer’s block. You look at a blank page, a cursor is just blinking and you can’t get started. You can’t get anywhere.

I want to give you some advice if you feel like you have it so you can write anyway, Here are seven tips to help you deal with writer’s block.

Write Something Unrelated

Well, first of all, just sit down and write. Write something unrelated. If you do journaling, this would be a good time to do your journal entry. It doesn’t matter what it is. You can write a letter, email, or a funny story. Just write something and then see if your creative juices have gotten started. Then you can turn back to your regular project.

Plan Your Writing

The next thing is to plan your writing.

Have a plan before you begin.
Have a plan before you begin.

If you’ve not already done this, sit down and devise a plan for your writing. Write down a series of phrases. That’s one way to do it.

In previous posts, I’ve talked about other ways to set up a plan for your writing. You can do questions followed by anywhere from two to seven bullet points. Then you will have a plan for your writing.

Pick a Time to Start

Then pick a time to start. Now this time the start is not based on your feelings. In fact, you probably don’t feel very good about it at all if you’re describing yourself as having writer’s block. But pick a time to start and don’t make it too far away.

Set a Word or Time Goal

Next, you’ll want to pick a word goal or a time goal. The time goal works better for me because I can just write and do free-flow writing and write as quickly as possible. But that may not be your style.

If you’re going to do a word goal you will need to pick the number of words you want to write. You can still write quickly with that method.

Pick a length of time that works for you.
Pick a length of time that works for you.

Set a Timer

Set a timer for a specified length of time. I recommend anywhere from five to 25 minutes, whatever seems to work in your situation.


Now, here comes the key. You have your plan set there in front of you. You have your timer ready to go off. Then you just count down 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, and push start.

Finish Your Daily Goal

Stay on target and finish your goals.
Stay on target and finish your goals.

Then use your writing prompts and finish the daily goal. Finish it regardless of your feelings.

Sometimes people say they weren’t very inspired on those days. My experience has been that after a few days, I can look back and try to find the day when I didn’t feel inspired, and really can’t tell much difference between the quality of the writing.

That is the key; you have to write. Just force yourself to go through it. If you do it the way I’m talking about, writing can be fun, especially if you use the timer method.

If you’re using the daily word goal method, just keep going until you get the number of words you have set as your daily goal.

I hope this has been helpful to you. Hopefully, you will no longer have writer’s block. When you get started writing and when you look back on it, you will probably find that it wasn’t that bad after all.

For more tips like these, go to www.randysblogs.com. For the very best advice, you can get my book, “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death” on Amazon.

Until next time, remember: YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!

How to Write a Book for Amazon

Today I’m talking about writing again; specifically talking about how to write a book for Amazon.

What you need to do first of all is to write your book. I’m not going to go into detail about that here. You can check out my other blog posts for that information, or check out my recommendation at the end of this post.

Libre Office

To write your book, you need some software. You may already have word processing software that is bundled with your computer program.

For years, I used Microsoft Word, and I really liked it. I think it’s where most people first learned word processing. Some may have learned on WordPerfect. Then I bought a new computer, and I didn’t have Microsoft Word anymore.

Find a word processing program that works for you.
Find a word processing program that works for you.

In the past, I had used Open Office and I was really happy with it. Then I found out that there was a successor to it, called Libre Office.

So if you want a free online word processing program you can download, Libre Office is something I have been very happy with. It’s been very stable. It’s worked for me very well.

With this program, you can save the files as PDF files or as doc or Docx files and so it’s been terrific.

So Libre Office is an alternative that you could use if you don’t already have a software program.

Book Length

I would suggest that you shoot for a book between 100 to 200 pages long. You might go as much as 250. That seems to be a good size, especially if you’re starting out writing a book for Amazon.


Amazon will want to know what size book you want, meaning whether it would be 8 1/2 x 11, or 6×9. They sort of like six by nine. I think you can also do you can do 5 1/2×8 1/2.

I just went with their recommended formats and I’ve really liked doing those books that way.

If you choose a size 6×9, you could set up your word processing program with that 6×9 format, then go through the process of writing your book.

My book talks about how to outline your book come up with your topic and themes, and all of that. That’s outside of the scope of what I’m talking about today.

Free Template/KDP

The next step is to have your book put in the template they want you to use. So since you’re writing for Amazon, I’d recommend that you use Kindle Direct Publishing or KDP publishing. That is especially for Amazon.

Then you will want to copy the words out of your book that you have written in your work into their document.

So they give you the template that looks like a book and then you can paste it in there.

There are a few templates that will help you format your book.
There are a few templates that will help you format your book.

Now if you’re going to write an ebook, it would be good to get to a template for the ebook. You could go to TCK publishing. He used to offer a free template that would help you format your book and he gave you good information as to what fonts to use, and other things like that. TCK publishing stands for Tom Corson-Knowles. (I hope he appreciates this plug) You can get that it’s very good.

Cover Creator

You will also want to paste the cover into the document. You have the option of having someone make a cover for you and then you can put it in, or there is a cover creator where you can create it right there.

I recommend the combination of both. Get someone to help you to create a good picture for a cover and format the cover with the words that you would like. You’ll also need to figure out your back cover copy. Once you get that then paste it into their cover creator.

The nice thing that they do with that is take the predominant color off of the picture that you pasted in and put it on the back cover of the book where the words for your blurb about your book will be placed.

There are so many possibilities!
There are so many possibilities!

So those are some tips for how to write a book for Amazon. I hope they’ve been helpful to you.

If you’d like more tips like these, you can go to randycarney.com and that will take you to my website, where there are many more blog posts and videos about writing.

Also, be sure to follow me on Facebook, YouTube, and Rumble.

Best option
Best option

Your best option, however, is to get my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death” on Amazon.

Until next time, I’m wishing you the best and reminding you that YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!

Stress-Free Creative Writing


I’m talking about writing again today. Stress-free creative writing.

I’m going to give you some steps to be able to do some stress-free creative writing. Basically, I’m going to talk about three different areas.


First step.
First step.

The first one is to brainstorm. You’re just going to come up with a list of ideas that you want to write about. As you’re making that list of ideas, just write wildly; nothing is too outrageous, because you will be able to choose what is on your list. Once you’ve done that, then choose some ideas from your list that you want to write about.

Statements, Questions, and Headlines

The second area I want to talk about is how to work with those ideas.

So first of all, take your ideas and turn them into statements, questions, or headlines.

Make a list of questions
Make a list of questions


Once you have those written down, to the right of your statement, question, or headline, write down a question word: Who, what, when, where, why, how, or what then. Now if you had already written a question then you don’t want to put another question after it.

Key Words or Phrases

Write down some key words or phrases that describe the answer to that question. They can be nouns or verbs, or strong words like that. They can be sensory words like what you see or elicit what you think the smell would be like or what you would hear but some strong keywords.

So once you have done that, you have a page that has sort of an outline. You have a list of questions, statements, or headlines followed by a question word unless your original statement or idea is a question. Then you have three suggested answers to that question.

Once you have your ideas set up in that fashion, then you are ready to go for stress-free creative writing.

Fast Writing

What makes it stress-free is you’ve already come up with the basis of your ideas So now the next part and the magic of doing that is to do fast writing.

Do some fast writing
Do some fast writing

Read your first question or statement with a question following it. Pick one of those key words or key phrases and start writing just as fast as you can. I find it good to set a timer and write just as fast and furiously as I can until that timer goes off. A good time to set your timer is five minutes. Write as quickly as you can for five minutes.

If that doesn’t give you about 250 words, depending on how fast you can type, then you may want to set it for six minutes or somewhere all the way up to 10 minutes. Just write as fast as you can.

There it is: stress-free creative writing.
✔Brainstorm without agonizing over what you’re writing down in your brainstorming.
✔Make it better by picking just the words and ideas that you want to write about.
✔Put a question word after those ideas
✔Write down three things that would trigger your writing or the answer to the questions.
✔Set your timer and write just as fast as you can.

In a future post, I’ll talk about the editing process. So it is stress-free knowing that the editing comes later.

Highly recommended reading
Highly recommended reading

I hope this has been helpful to you. If you would like more tips like these, I have written a book that outlines in more detail how this process works. It’s called “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death” and is available on Amazon. There is both a hard copy and a Kindle version. I would highly recommend that you get that.

Also, if you’d like more writing tips like these, you can go to randycarney.com.


Writing a First Book: The Big Picture in a Nutshell

Writing a first-time book, the big picture in a nutshell.


Today I’m talking about writing a first-time book. I want to talk about the big picture in a nutshell.


I’ll talk about the two different kinds of books that you can write and then give you steps for making a basic book in the first category. Then I will talk about how you can make that look fabulous.

Then in the second category, I will talk about four methods of writing that book.

Okay, writing a first-time book in a nutshell. You might not have thought that you could do this but you can.

Step One

Now I’m going to talk first about writing nonfiction.

As you think about writing nonfiction, first of all, you should write a basic book. After that, you should expand that book, edit it, and make it fabulous.

That’s the first two of the four steps to success that I have outlined in book writing and marketing.

Simple steps to writing a book.
Simple steps to writing a book.

Ten Chapters

In our nonfiction book, my advice to you is to write a basic book. To do this, write the 10 most important chapters of that basic book; your 10 key chapters. You can do it like this:

Chapter One

The first chapter will be telling why this book is important. Why people should buy your book, why people should read your book, how it will help them. Take them to everyone’s favorite radio station: which is WIIFM – What’s in it for me? Talk to them about that.

Chapter Two

Chapter two would be an overview of the plan that you have to solve their problem. Most nonfiction books are going to be ways that you would go about helping people solve a particular problem.

Chapters Three Through Nine

Then in chapters three through nine, you take seven steps to solve that problem. Now, they may not be chronological, sometimes they are chunked, they are equal, just put down in chunks, side by side, you can do that too. However, if there is a series of steps that go one before the other, then you would want to do that.

I would recommend that you come up with seven. You might have more ideas, but I suggest that you come up with seven steps to the solution.

Chapter Ten

Then in chapter 10 you would have the summary of that and the next steps they could take.

Research and editing can make it an amazing book!
Research and editing can make it an amazing book!

Make it Fabulous!

The second thing I’m going to talk about with writing nonfiction books is take your basic book, and make it fabulous.

What you will do is take your basic book, which is uniquely you because you have come up with those ten chapters, and you’ve come up with your experiences out of your own mind. This is where you add them in.

Also compare books on that same topic. Look at their tables of contents, see if there’s anything that you have not covered on that topic in your book. Then you will add those chapters in yourself.

So you will take that basic book and edit it somewhat by cutting out some of the unnecessary words and doing a light edit.

Then you will expand it by adding more material that needs to be added. Add in more stories and come up with some of your own stories. Sometimes you can tell your own story but to protect yourself or to keep people from thinking that all you ever do is talk about yourself, you can change the name of the character that you’re talking about.

So you write a basic book, then you expand it and edit it and make it a fabulous book.

Writing Fiction

Create your own story.
Create your own story.

The second category would be writing a fiction book. This depends on your personality. What kind of person are you?

Are you an outliner? If you are then you need to outline your entire book. Go for it if you’re really good at that. Then go through and produce a detailed outline for your book.

Others, that just drives them crazy. Some people are known as being “pantsers” which means they write from the seat of their pants.

If that’s you, then you have to have the basic idea of your book. You need to know three conflicts that would occur about a third of the way through, halfway through, and three fourths of the way through. Then you would just write from the seat of your pants, writing toward those conflicts or disasters.

Finally in the hand you bring the resolution.

There is a third method if you would like something between those two. It is from a writer named Randy Ingermanson He has written a book called “The Snowflake Method” which talks about coming up with a basic ideas of where you’re going to go.

The "snowflake method" might work for you.
The “snowflake method” might work for you.

He talks about fleshing out your characters and giving good summaries of your characters. Then he takes your book in one sentence, then take that one sentence and come up with a one page statement of your book.

Then you take each of those sentences and you write paragraphs on each of those sentences and come up with a synopsis of your book.

Combining that with what you have done for your characters, you can come up with a good nonfiction book.

(I don’t get any commission off of his book but I do recommend it. I think it is very good.)

There’s a fourth one and it is my combination. If you have read my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yousrelf to Death,” you will notice that I take an outline and turn it into a special type of writing plan.

Some call it a blueprint like a blueprint for a house. You can do that for both fiction and nonfiction.

Great writing advice!
Great writing advice!

Having said that, I would urge you to go to Amazon and purchase my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death.”

I hope this has been helpful to you and also if you’d like more tips like these click on www.randycarney.com. There, you will find many more videos, blog posts and tips like these.

Well, it’s good to talk with you again. I hope you have a wonderful day. Remember, YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!

Writing a How-To Book: Simple Steps to Get Started

Steps to Success

Be sure to check out the video that accompanies this blog. You can see it here.

Sam wanted to write a book but he didn’t know how to go about it. Then he came across his friend Jim who had written a book before.

Jim gave Sam some good advice.
Jim gave Sam some good advice.

When Jim found out it was a how-to book, he told Sam, “Well, you can write a how-to book. What you need to do first is to figure out what the problem is. Then define that problem. Then come up with some steps to a solution for the problem.

“So when you write your book, you talk about the problem first. Next, you talk a little bit about the plan for accomplishing the problem. Then show the steps to the solution. Finally, at the end, you summarize what you did to get to the solution and suggest a next step for the reader.

I want to start off by talking about writing a basic how-to book and then I’ll talk a little bit more about how you can expand that.

Getting Started

Getting started with your how-to book
Getting started with your how-to book

First of all, define the problem. Then picture the solution to the problem and what life would be like when the problem was solved. Then brainstorms some steps that it takes to go from problem to solution. Sometimes those steps will be in order, but sometimes they may not be chronological. Either way, figure out a number of steps to get from problem to solution.

The Steps

We think of seven as being the perfect number, at least in my circle of friends. Our Christian worldview and our Biblical worldview, think of seven as being the perfect number. So I would urge you to reorganize what you come up with in your brainstorming into seven steps.

That’s not set in stone. You may not be able to get everything done in seven steps, so maybe you would have eight or nine steps. Or maybe you can cover it in six steps or five steps. So somewhere between five to nine steps, but aim for seven. You may be able to combine some of those steps to make a chapter or split up a step if it looks like it would take longer than the other chapters.

While having done that then you can come up with a basic book. So you may have a little attention-getting introduction at the beginning of your book. But then in your first chapter, you will be introducing the problem, and then it’s a good idea to agitate the problem. For example, “What will life be like if we don’t solve this problem?”

This will get the reader wanting to look at the book and the steps that it will take to solve his problem.

Making progress.
Making progress.

Chapter Two

Then, in chapter two, describe the plan. You’re going to go into detail with the plan in chapter two. Give a brief description of the plan and what they can look forward to in the rest of the book.

Chapters 3 – 9 (ish)

Then chapters three through nine, especially if you had the seven steps as your perfect number, describe the steps. Those would be your chapters three through nine.

Finishing Up

Finally, you come to chapter 10. There, you will summarize and visualize what life is like with the solution to the problem and give the reader the next step.

That’s how to come up with your basic how-to book. These are simple steps to get started.

Roadmap to Success

Now, my roadmap to success in coming up with a great book is to follow these four steps:
1. Come up with a basic book like I just described.
2. Make your basic book, your a good book, a great book. A fabulous book. Take a period of time, (not too long) maybe a month or so. to make your good book, a fabulous book. You will do this by adding stories and examples from your own life. Look at other books in your field. See if you’ve left anything out. If you have then you could add some chapters. You will have trimmed your book and then you will have expanded your book. Then you’ll go back through the editing process again and trim it until you have it where you want it to be.
3. Step three is publishing your book. We will look at the different options for publishing books. There are basically three options for publishing. I guarantee that you can get a book published in this day and age.
4. The fourth is to monetize that book. Get royalties off of it. However, there are also other ways of getting income from a book.

Roadmap to success in writing.
Roadmap to success in writing.

So I urge you to write a basic how-to book and then turn it into a fabulous book. A book that will help others and a book that will fulfill you.

New Coaching Opportunity for You

I also want to let you know about a cool new coaching program that I have, instead of a traditional coaching program which has set times maybe an hour or so per week where we meet together, you can now have unlimited access to me where I coach you using support just like this.

Now the price of this program is much lower than my normal coaching program, and there’s a reason for that. It’s because you can reach out to me and I can reply to you at any time of day. That’s convenient for each of us. This helps my calendar not be so full, allows me to have more time for my own personal writing projects, and it allows me to get back to you within one business day.

I'm offering a new coaching opportunity!
I’m offering a new coaching opportunity!

Plus, you can do it not just once a week, but throughout the week. You would think that unlimited that would cost more, but not actually because it does help free up my calendar.

If you’d like more details on this, just let me know. I’d be happy to make a quick video personally explaining my programs.

How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less
How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less

Well if you would like more tips like these, then click here to be taken to Randy’s Blogs. If you would like a book that explains the writing process. in great depth, click to get my book “How to Write a Book in 28 Days or Less Without Stressing Yourself to Death” on Amazon.

I’m Randy Carney wishing you the best. I want to remind you that YOU CAN WRITE A BOOK!