How to Write an eBook - In 10 Simple Steps | Steve McDonald | Skillshare

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How to Write an eBook - In 10 Simple Steps

teacher avatar Steve McDonald, Excel and Photoshop Geek

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

3 Lessons (16m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. The 10 Steps to Writing an eBook

    • 3. How to Dictate Your eBook

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About This Class

These 10 steps apply to any Kindle eBook you might want to write. They'll help you start the process of writing and follow it through to the finished book.

Use this framework for writing your book faster and more easily. I show you the entire process that you go through, step-by-step, to write a book. 

Writing a book isn't easy, but following this process will make a lot easier.

Meet Your Teacher

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Steve McDonald

Excel and Photoshop Geek


Learning is easier if you are given the right tools and instruction. In every one of my courses I take you step-by-step through the tools and knowledge you need to accomplish your goals. 

My talent is taking complex subjects (like Exce... See full profile

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1. Introduction: in this course, I'm gonna teach you how to write an e book in 10 simple steps. Now, this course doesn't cover the publishing process or any of that. We're just talking about the writing. If you have a book in you that you're dying to get out, I want to help you get it out there. And it can seem really intimidating and overwhelming at first. So that's why I've created this 10 step guideline so that you could just follow through the steps and it will make it easier to actually get through the process. It will help you flow. You always know what to do next. So you won't be wondering or guessing where the process goes from here. And I think it's just gonna help you a lot. I'm also gonna share one of my favorite tips with you about how to dictate your book, which is really fun, really easy and can actually help you to write a lot faster. So thanks for joining me. I really look forward to sharing these 10 simple steps with you. 2. The 10 Steps to Writing an eBook: in this lecture, I'm going to be talking to you about how to actually write a book. A lot of people have been asking for Maurin Formacion on this topic, and so here it is. The bad news about writing your book is that it's difficult. Writing is hard work, and in fact, that's a lot of the reason why in this course I talked so much about outsourcing and hiring other writers because the irony is that it's so much easier to edit and polish and publish a book that does not belong to you than it is to finalize and publish a book that is yours . And in fact, I'm in the process of this right now. I've had this course out for a couple of years now, and I still have not written a book to go with it, which is just silly. And recently I've been working on writing that book, and the reason I haven't done it yet is because it's really challenging to write your own book because you're kind of too close to the forest to see the trees. I can publish someone else's book on how to write Kindle books without a problem. But when it comes to my own, there's all of this emotion involved, and your sense of perfectionism gets really high. And it's just so easy to get into that sort of writer's block and analysis paralysis mode that it's difficult. So in this lecture, I'm really gonna try and give you some strategies for getting through the process and organizing your first book and actually sitting down and writing it. So the very first thing you need to do is set some goals, and there are two goals that you need to set. Right now. You need to set a deadline for your book, and a good guideline for this is 30 working days from today. So when I say 30 working days, I mean actual days that you're writing or working on the book. So if you can work a little bit every day, then 30 working days would be from today would be exactly 30 days from today. If you can only write, say, on weekends, which is two days a week, then your goal would actually be 15 weeks from today because you're working two days a week for 15 weeks. That's 30 working days you could make it longer. You probably shouldn't set your goal for shorter, because that's just super ambitious. I mean, unless you are really gung ho. But 30 days gives you enough time to go through the entire process, including editing and revisions and uploading your book to Amazon and all that. But it also gives you a quick turnaround so that you're not spending a year writing your 1st 5000 word E book. The second goal you want to say is your writing goal, and that's how much you'll actually be writing each day. I recommend that you try to write at least 300 words a day. If you could do over 500 words on some days, then give yourself a gold star on those days because you're a rock star. If you could do more, by all means, doom or that's great. But if you could do 300 words a day, then you'll make slow, steady progress on your book, and it will be finished before you know it. The next thing you need to do is create an outline of your book. I recommend that you aim for least 5 to 7 chapters and that each of those chapters is divided into three or four subheadings. Now I really do. You recommend a minimum of five chapters. In fact, I was just editing a book that only had three chapters listed, and it just didn't look like a book. It just looked like it needed more. And even in a short e book, it's pretty easy to break your information down into five chapters, and that will make the book flow better, and it will just make it easier for people to follow anyway. A great way to create your outline is to go right into a word and use heading one for your chapters and use heading to for your subheadings or sub chapters. And then you can actually activate the navigation pane in word, and it will show you your entire outline right down the left hand side of your page. And that's a really simple, easy way to just see your book kind of come together right in front of your eyes. Then, as you add, modify or take away chapters or subheadings, you'll see the changes, and you can see how well or how poorly your book is gonna flow. Based on that outline, once you've created a rough outline, you'll probably notice some gaps where it seems like you're missing some ideas, missing some information. This is the time to go out and do some research. So if you're writing a book about gardening, type in gardening into Google and read the top 10 articles or Web pages that you find a lot of times, what you'll find is there similar information from website to website. And if you're missing any of that basic information in your book, then of course you'd want to go and add that into your outline, assuming that it's something that you feel confident and capable of writing about a lot of times, this research will also lead to more unique ideas and even inspiration for new directions that your book can go. So that's how you get your outline created. Now it's time to actually start writing your book. Now I personally like to write my introduction to the book last. The reason I like to do that is because until you've actually written the book, you're not 100% sure what the book is going to include and what it's going to cover. So by writing your introduction last, you can better summarize what's going to be in the book, and you can better introduce your readers to the actual subject. So the first thing you're going to write then is Chapter one, and you're going to start with the first sub heading that you put in your outline in Chapter one. So if you're writing a book about, say, raised bed gardening, your first chapter would probably be about how to build a raised bed so your subheading number one would be materials, so you'll start writing about what materials you would use in the construction of a raised bed. Your second subheading would probably be construction methods, so you'll go into detail about how to use those materials that you've gone over to actually build your raised bed. Your third section could be about your location selection. So where are you going to put those raised beds for optimal light, optimal water, easy weeding and things like that, And then your fourth section could include raised bed plans where you actually go into detail about a specific style of construction and show people step by step, how to put those together, so that would summarize your first chapter. And then you just continue down your outline writing chapter by chapter subheading by subheading until you're finished. Think you'll write a conclusion which essentially summarizes everything that they've learned in the book. You don't have to rewrite the book in the conclusion, but you do want to touch on each chapter at least and possibly even the most important subheadings in each chapter to just remind your reader what they've learned and highlight some of the important points for them. And generally speaking, you want to either thank them for reading your book or you want to tell them where they can find you, or whether they can connect with you on social media or if you have a website or other books, anything that basically gives them more opportunities to connect with you as a writer. Then once you finish your rough draft for the book, you're gonna go back and you're gonna right the introduction to the book. And now that you've written the book and you know exactly what's included in it, you'll be able to write a compelling introduction that really summarizes what the book is about connects with what problems your book will solve for your reader and even talks about who you're targeted reader is and who will benefit the most from your book. At this point, you have a completed rough draft. The best thing now is to just put the book aside. And I recommend letting it sit for a least 5 to 7 days to weeks is even better. And you're just gonna let the book sit and you're gonna let your brain take a rest from writing and thinking about what you've been writing. This is a good time to G O. Concentrate on other aspects of your book like cover creation, writing a description for your book, working on your title and things like that. Or you could just completely rest if you have the time and really let the book sort of settle out in your brain. After that week to two weeks, you're gonna go back through and you're gonna add it. Your book. Now I highly recommend hiring someone. You can go to somewhere like up work and hire a freelance editor for anywhere from 20 to $50 orm or for someone that's really experienced. They confined spelling and grammatical errors, and you can ask them to edit it for flow so you can have them look for gaps in information places where you're not communicating very effectively and things like that, so that you can work on revising your book and get closer to a final version. If you don't want to pay an editor or you're not able to do that, then you can still go through and edit your book yourself. And you just need to have an extra keen eye for mistakes, and you need to read it kind of from a fresh perspective to see where you have issues with your flow, or just where you may not be communicating effectively. It helps a lot if you read your book out loud to yourself at this point, because sometimes when you hear the words of the sentence structure, you'll hear where it may sound strange, and it will just help you to catch more issues. And that's really the process of writing a book. In a nutshell. Now writing a book really is not easy, but you can make it a lot easier, but kind of following these steps because it gives you a framework from which to work because it just makes the writing process so much more enjoyable. 3. How to Dictate Your eBook: OK in this video, I want to talk to you about how to dictate your work. In other words, how to write a book without typing. Let's be honest. Don't we all fantasize about dictating anything to someone else and allowing them to do the hard work for us? I know I do. And the beauty is today. You can do this for free, using any one of a number of free dictation software online. Um, I'm using dictation dot io, which is just a free one that you can do in the chrome browser, and it is super simple, and they're much fancier ones that you can pay for. But this really does the job, and I'll just give you an example. If I just click, start dictation and then I continue talking into the mike, it's going to just record everything that I say. And if I was going to be talking about a book and I'll use our example of gardening again, I would just say enter and that would drop me down to the next line and then I'll start my book. Enter. This is my book about gardening. The thing I love about gardening is that you can go out any time during the summer and find fresh, homegrown vegetables right at your fingertips. You also get to be involved in the process so you see everything that goes into the creation of these and you get some good exercise in the process. My favorite thing ever to eat out of the garden is fresh, son Sugar tomatoes warmed by the sun, and then you go over here to click. Stop listening and it stops. Now you go and copy this and paste it into a word document and you have a paragraph of your book. So imagine if you do that over and over and you just talk about each subheading in your book, and you just continue to do that. Copy and paste. Copy and paste. Talk about what you're passionate about until you have an entire granted, really rough draft but an entire rough draft of your book. Then you go into that word document and you just edit it. And of course, you'll add some. And when you're adding, you'll go in and you'll start typing, which is great because at that point you really are doing the writing process of writing your book, but see how much I was able to get down on paper digital paper? That is, in just a very short time, just by talking. The added benefits, of course, are that you can, actually, while most people can talk a lot faster than they can type, and I'm actually a pretty slow talker, and I can still talk probably twice as fast as I can type. And while the dictation software isn't perfect and it doesn't do punctuation and a lot of other things like that, it actually is more accurate than my typing. And the advantage of this is that if you can essentially right as fast as you can talk, your writing is keeping up with your thoughts. And one of the big drawbacks and the big challenges to writing is that you have a lot of really brilliant thoughts that come into your head and then you start to write them. And by the time you get past the first sentence of all the mechanics of finding keys and typing in words, you've lost 3/4 of those brilliant thoughts because you're stuck on the first thought. So by being able to talk and dictate what you're communicating. The writing will keep up with your thoughts so you'll get a lot more written. So whether you have writer's block or not, where you feel intimidated or not, grab yourself a dictation software for free online and take advantage of that technology to help you write books faster, easier and to get mawr of the important information in your brain in Dear Book.