How to Write a Book: Who Is Your Ideal Reader?
By Ronda Del Boccio
NABBW’s Entrepreneurial Authoring Expert
As an author mentor, I attract poetry and fiction authors as well as nonfiction authors. Truly, any author needs to think like an entrepreneur, because there is more to writing the book than simply writing and publishing.
One of the biggest stumbling blocks that causes my students to fall and skin their knees is getting to know your ideal reader.
Who is your ideal reader?
Knowing your audience is key. Here are just a few questions to get you thinking. These work no matter what you write (fiction, poetry, nonfiction):
- Who is my ideal reader?
- Where does she live (not only city VS rural, but what kind of dwelling, with whom)?
- What are her hopes and fears?
- Where does she hang out?
- What motivates her?
- What does she crave?
I started my own journey as a fiction writer. Creating a character sketch is something I brought into my entrepreneurial world from fiction writing. I\’m really a fantasy author at heart!
Doing a character sketch for your ideal reader is the same ideas as crafting one for a character in a novel or story. Simply a different application.
Here is how well cozy mystery novelist Susan Santangelo knows her audience: These quotes are all from an article she wrote for a blog tour, posted on the National Association of Baby Boomer Women blog. (See the original article source.)
- The subtitle for all the book titles is: “Every Wife Has A Story.”
- I write about situations that thousands of Boomers, especially women, identify with.
- At least, that’s what my readers tell me.
- Many women have contacted me to say that I’m writing their lives, and wonder when I’ve met their husband. Hmm. Gotta think about that one.
She clearly writes directly to the understanding of that perfect reader, a boomer wife.
Susan writes a Baby Boomer mystery series, which thus far has these books:
Another important aspect of Susan\’s ideal reader is she is a dog lover. She knows this and incorporates it into the series. Here is what Susan says about her dog:
“You’ll see my muse and partner in crime, Boomer (get it?), my three-year-old very spoiled English cocker spaniel, who’s the cover model for the books.
In the series, Carol and Jim Andrews have two English cocker spaniels, Lucy and Ethel. Boomer doesn’t like posing as girls, but he works cheap. A few dog biscuits and he’s a happy guy.”
If you are a boomer man or a college student, these books may not be as appealing to you, and that\’s fine. They\’re written for boomer women.
Hanging out with your ideal audience can inspire! Here\’s how Susan found her latest book idea:
I recently attended my high school reunion. Had a great time. And as I looked around at my classmates, I wondered what secrets they were all hiding. And if any of those secrets could lead to…murder.
And I decided to write the next book in my series about a high school reunion. None of the book’s characters are based on anyone in my class. Honestly.
Oh sure…right! (wink)
True confession from Ronda: While I don\’t duplicate real people, I have to admit that some people who have annoyed me have lived up to a saying on a shirt I own:
“Careful or you\’ll be a villain in my next story!”
But I digress.
When you get it right, you will receive comments like the ones Susan says she gets, including the people who will “wonder when I’ve met their husband.”
More Help Knowing Your Ideal Reader
Need more help understanding your ideal reader?
The free 30 Day Awakened Author Challenge is a complete course on how to write a book, publish it, and sell at least one copy.
You\’ll also get help on researching and understanding your ideal reader (Module 5 and 6).
Being an author is more than writing. It\’s the way for you to follow your BLISS.
Develop your own BLISS Butterfly when you join the FREE Awakened Author Challenge, and let your dreams take wing!
Receive inspirational thoughts, quotes, stories & more at http://ProfitableStorytelling.com/inspirationalstories. #1 bestselling author Ronda Del Boccio is known globally as The Story lady because she teaches you to create the best ever: The story of YOU living with passion, love, joy and purpose. She is legally blind but never lets that get in her way! Do you want to write a book? The free 30 day Awakened Author challenge guides you step-by-step through how to write a book, get it published, and sell at least your first copy all within 30 days! Tutorials guide you along the way, and there is a community where you can interact with other participants in the challenge and celebrate the success of your book when it is published. Join free now at www.profitablestorytelling.com/NABBW