If you know anything about me, you know that I’m a huge advocate for indie and first-time authors — so when I heard about this book written specifically for those who are ready to get their own manuscripts published, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it.
Read on to hear what I thought!
Disclaimer: I received an advanced reader’s copy (ARC) of this book for free in exchange for an honest review. Links in this post may be affiliate. All opinions are my own and can’t be bought.
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I tend to be very particular about the books I choose to review. For me, reviewing a book is a highly technical process that involves a lot of annotating, highlighting, and note-taking — honestly, it’s a pretty physical process.
That’s why it was a pretty big deal when I chose to review Dan Janal’s latest, Write Your Book in a Flash: The Paint by Numbers System to Write the Book of Your Dreams — Fast!, because my ARC was in ebook.
I was worried that when I read Write Your Book in a Flash (which I will hereafter affectionately refer to as WYBIAF) that I wouldn’t be as engaged with the text as I usually am with my nonfiction. But all thanks to Janal, this wasn’t an issue.
That’s because WYBIAF is designed to function as a workbook. Janal provides ten simple steps to crafting your manuscript, and you can (and should!) follow along with your own work-in-progress while reading this book.
Let me explain.
If you don’t remember my review of Stephen King’s On Writing, my main complaint was that while the book was fun to read, it didn’t provide the kind of interactive experience I was looking for. I wanted a book I could recommend to the aspiring authors that I mentor, but King’s book just outlined his own personal process, without providing a breakdown of how that process could be used in practice.
Janal’s book is just the opposite.
WYBIAF is all about the process, and how to make it work for you. If you follow his steps one-by-one, you will indeed end up with a fully fleshed-out book by the end of it all. (There are even worksheets you can use to follow along!)
I don’t want to give away Janal’s secrets (you’ll have to buy the book if you want the full experience), but I will say that I found Janal’s super-structured methodology in this work to be refreshing.
As someone who works and thrives in nonfiction, I often feel forgotten by writing experts who focus solely on harboring creativity and crafting imaginative fiction. Until Janal’s WYBIAF, I hadn’t found a book that broke down the intricacies of nonfiction in a way that makes sense for linear, type-A people like myself.
That’s not to say that WYBIAF wouldn’t work for creative writers, but the market is so saturated with guidebooks for creatives, and Janal’s latest work has filled the void that once plagued more structure-minded writers like myself.
Additionally, in simple prose, Janal thrusts you into the book writing experience right from the start. There’s no time for waiting around, connecting with your muse: with Janal, it’s time to get to writing — and he’ll have you with a pen in your hand by the end of the first chapter.
Simply put, if you’re really ready to stop talking about your book and start writing your book — especially a nonfiction book, and especially if you’ve got an entrepreneurial mindset — you can’t miss Write Your Book in a Flash.
Janal’s methods are concise and well-planned, and simple enough for even beginner writers to understand.
Meanwhile, seasoned writers like myself will enjoy exploring Janal’s highly-efficient method for cranking out full-length manuscripts quickly, but with all the same passion that you’d see from a long-term project.
At the end of the day, if you’re the type who wants to mosey around and enjoy the slow experience of pouring your heart out onto the page for months on end — not that there’s anything wrong with that! — WYBIAF isn’t the book for you. But if you’re looking to get published “in a flash,” I can’t recommend Janal’s book to you enough.
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