Posted in non-fiction, Writing

Tips for writing a non-fiction book

Some time ago one of theĀ  people here asked me for a method to work on a book of non-fiction.Today the cats wrecked one cardboard box which contained files on which my second book was based. I glanced through them, and remembered the question. The method I use is simple, but it works particularly well if there are a large number of chapters. If there are very few, each chapter should be broken up into sub-chapters.

The tips below are not for established writers, but for those working on a book for the first time.

So here is the method:

1. Choose a topic you know something about or one you are genuinely interested in.

2. Make a list of chapters.

3. Write each chapter heading on a separate sheet of paper. If you want to work on a computer, make a separate file for each.

4. Think of topics that each chapter will contain and add subheads.

5. Add your thoughts or any information you find under these subheads. Read everything you can, and add information wherever possible.

6. Always read the source, think it over, and add the information in your own words, and provide the source. Otherwise you may forget that the words are not your own. For all quotes make sure you have the title of the original book or website.

7. Use authentic sources, books, rather than websites. If you do not have access to a good library check for books you can read online.

8. Don’t write based on one source or book. Read everything possible.

9.You can fill in information on any subhead, you do not need to work in sequence.

10. When all the information is in place, choose from it, and write your book. Keep extra information to use at some other time.

Hope this is useful–let me know!