Making the decision to write and publish a book about your journey, your business, or your industry is difficult. Entrepreneurs and business owners are extremely busy people and have difficulty, to squeeze in a time-consuming project like writing a book. So, is it worth the effort especially if you don’t even know if someone will read the thing? And how can anyone do it?
Here’s our funny interview with Hamza Aboulfeth: an entrepreneur who published an autobiography at the age of 34:
Who’s hamza Aboulfeth? Tell us more about yourself…
You’ve read the book, there is nothing more to add.
As stated in the book, Hamza Aboulfeth is an autodidact tech serial entrepreneur. He started his first business at the early age of 17, dropped out of college at 21, became ICANN accredited at 24. Hamza attended the World Economic Forum at 25, went to Harvard at 26, Hajj and burning man at 27. He got married at 28, a baby on the way at 29, and he fought through cancer before 30.
When and why did you decide to publish a book?
I had the idea for a while until the day I got an email from ForbesBooks to write a book about me and that was it.
Hamza was contacted by ForbesBooks, an award-winning publisher associated with one of the top media companies in the world. During the meeting, he discovered that their proposal was for him to pay 50000 $, when he asked them what the return on investment will be, they told him that the ROI is authority, plain and simple. He turned them down, but the seed of publishing a book was planted in his mind and that’s why he decided to self-publish his book.
Even though self-publishing can be hard because you have to do all the work yourself, you have to take care of writing, editing, proofreading, getting reviews, marketing, advertising… But it has a lot of benefits:
- When you self-publish, you can have your book up and running with in day. Since you will be in charge, you don’t have to wait to go through all the stages of a traditional publisher’s process. Which is Book proposal, agents, meetings, lawyers, edits, packaging, catalogs…
- It’s easier to implement changes. When you’re self-publishing, you are the final arbiter of when the book’s done. And while this may seem like an advantage, it can be a little bit difficult writing a whole book without a second set of eyes. But don’t worry, you can still work with freelancers or companies to do proofreading. And still be able to implement changes faster than in a traditional publishing process.
- Your slice of the pie will be a lot bigger with self-publishing than the traditional route, as publishers keep a large percentage of the profit.
Walk us through your experience self-publishing “FROM STARTUPPER TO CANCER FIGHTER BY HAMZA ABOULFETH”
As mentioned above, self-publishing a book can be very hard since you’re taking care of everything. From writing to advertising through proofreading, editing, getting reviewers to review your book, convincing bookstores… We know, we know. You’re thinking why would I want to go through all of that ! keep reading and we’ll tell you what you can gain from publishing a book.
What did you gain from this experience? Can you share some numbers with us?
Moroccans don’t read books.
Apparently, the book didn’t meet expectations of Hamza aboulfeth. Even though I know a lot of people who read the book. But here is what you can gain from publishing a book:
Influence and authority: When competing in any industry, it’s all about the influence you and your business have over your competition. Everyone realizes that writing a book isn’t easy. So when you publish a great one you are portraying yourself as an expert in your field. Publishing a book is a technique that many entrepreneurs use to raise their authority status and hyper grow their businesses.
Increased visibility: Once you publish a book, you can get visibility through social media, google searches, blogs, speaking engagements, television interviews, special events…
Attracting great talent to your business: The late Tony Hsieh published a book about the culture he was building at Zappos. This book became one of his best-recruiting tools.
What kind of entrepreneurs you think can publish a book?
Indeed, everyone can. You need just the right tips and techniques so you can succeed at it.
Can you share with the audience your blueprints for self-publishing a book, step by step?
You just need to get that book out, ASAP.
Sure, but here’s a more extensive guide:
1) First, write the book: Writing a book is hard. You might stare at a blank page for hours with nothing to show for. If you don’t know where to start, you can hire a ghostwriter. A ghostwriter will interview you to gather all the information you want to include in your book. Don’t worry, he will make it sound like it’s coming from you. You’ll be able to review everything and make edits throughout the process.
In case you want to write the book yourself, you can opt for a writing coach, this person will guide you throughout the entire writing process.
2) Editing and proofreading: Even the most prolific authors have to put their work through editing. Using professionals can help you catch grammatical errors and typos. It gives you ideas to improve your content so you can get your book in tip-top shape before publication.
3) Choose a book title: Contrary to popular belief, you should never decide on a book title until after you are done writing your first draft. A good rule of thumb is to follow the PINC Acronym, coined by Michael Hyatt. Make a Promise, Create Intrigue, Identify Need, State the Content.
4) Write a book description: The cover of your book draws a person in, the title intrigues, and the book description closes the deal. Keep it simple and straightforward, somewhere between 150 and 250 words, don’t overdo the language, and keep it interesting.
5) Design your book: Your book cover design is the first impression readers have of your book. It should be unique, clear, simplistic, and most importantly memorable.
Don’t forget about interior design to make your book more readable and to ensure a pleasant reading experience for your audience.
6) Publish it: There are multiple self-publishing companies. You can choose to publish with one or more of them: Kindle Direct Publishing, CreateSpace, iBooks, Barnes & Noble Press, Kobo…
7) Distribution and marketing: I’m sure you’ve been an entrepreneur for a very long time. You probably sold and marketed multiple products… So, figure it out for this one too.
Any final thoughts?
As for our final thoughts, the next generation of aspiring entrepreneurs is hungry for inspiration. They’re dying to know how you succeeded, how you overcame the obstacles along your way. So, don’t hesitate to write that book. Share with them the knowledge, the tips, the techniques that helped you get to where you are right now.