It is surprisingly difficult to be able to explain what a project is really about while you are working on it.
If you are not careful, you can write and publish an entire book, get it into bookstores, and even have some readers and still have a difficult time explaining what it is.
Worse still, if you don’t take the time to think deeply about your book or your project, it will become about too many things at once. This is the mistake I’ve made with a couple of books already. It makes it extremely difficult, then, to talk about your project in interviews and on stage.
When it comes to book marketing, however, the single most important thing to do is write a book people will share.
If you can’t describe it clearly and quickly, then your readers won’t be able to talk about it and share it either.
Ryan Holiday describes a method to avoid this mistake in his book, Perennial Seller.
It is called One Sentence, One Paragraph, One Page.
One Sentence, One Paragraph, One Page
What is your project supposed to be? What is it supposed to do?
Answer these questions in . . .
Here is a description of the process from Holiday himself: One Sentence, One Paragraph, One Page.
And here is a great example of how Shane Snow used the method to describe his new book: How To Write The Book Of Your Dreams: An Outrageously Detailed Guide.
There are two things I liked about Snow’s personal example:
- He helps visualize where each description might be read: NYT bestseller list (sentence), Anderson Cooper interview (paragraph), and book flaps (page)
- A good sentence/paragraph/page sets up a paradox or problem that only reading the book can solve.
Snow also cites The Snowflake Method, which I know a lot of fiction writers have used to write their novels. You can read more about this method at Randy Ingermanson’s website.