Angles make your blogged book unique. Themes give them value. When you blog a book, or simply set out to write a book, train yourself to think about your book in these terms so you write a book that isn’t like those previously published and that addresses your readers interests and provides them with value.
First: The Idea
A nonfiction blogged book begins with an idea. This can be defined as an opinion, conviction, view, belief or principle. It might be quite broad. It could be based on a principle that has meaning to you. Hopefully you find it interesting or feel passionate about it. You might even think your idea helps you achieve a purpose or goal, which usually means the subject will offer benefit to readers as well.
Novels begin with the idea for a story or the idea for a character. Typically, the writer feels strongly about a tale, but I they feel that story serves a purpose, it then it also will serve readers in some way.
Second: The Angle
To create a unique blogged book, your idea must have a particular angle, or a subtopic of the main subject area you have chosen, as its primary organizing principle. You must take an idea and give it a slant so the book you write is different than those already in the marketplace and interesting to the most people or to a particular set of people in your target market.
Let’s say you want to write about training dogs; that’s your idea. Dog owners represent a huge market. Dog training constitutes a general subject area. You must now find a unique and marketable angle on that subject. You need to find one aspect of dog training about which to write. Maybe you want to write about how to train dogs without using treats, for example. (Of course, I have no idea if other books on this topic exist; if you have a unique angle on that subject, however, your book will remain unique.)
Angle your fiction idea based upon genre. Details of your story, such as location, character age and sex and plot elements, will affect the angle as well.
The broad idea for your romance novel might be: “A woman goes to New York and has an affair with a man.” The angle of your novel might be: “A failed actress travels to New York after agreeing to a separation from her husband, has a fling with a young actor, and realizes the bright lights of Broadway now have less allure than her marriage.” The angle can be found in the details of your story.
Third: The Theme
Your blogged book needs a theme, which is a dominant idea that unifies your book, if you want it to add value to reader’s lives. Readers purchase books that offer value—benefit—to their lives. For this reason, you wan to identify your blogged book’s theme and write to that theme.
Nonfiction writers forget to consider the themes of their books, but they exist. For the dog-training book example, the theme statement might be: “Human encouragement and love quickly and easily accomplishes canine training goals.” You would want to keep this in mind as you write your manuscript.
Novels and memoirs tend to stress themes, so writers of these books are more familiar with this concept and often focus upon themes when writing. Yet, novelists have a harder time identifying the benefits their books provide to readers. They key lies in their books’ themes. Finding benefits can seem difficult if you focus on the fact that you’ve simply created a great romance story. Focus instead on the fact that in the story a woman learns to forgive or to reclaim her self-confidence. That’s a theme that offers benefit to other women. The theme of the novel we used as an example above might be: “Old dreams sometimes cloud current realities.”
Before Your Write…
To recap, before you begin writing, take the time to look closely at your idea:
- Make sure it is not too broad.
- Specifically angle it so it is unique in your category.
- Identify a theme you feel will work for your angle and provide the most value for your readers.
At that point, you are ready to write a unique and valuable blogged book. This is a book that has never before been written on a particular subject and that great benefit to the readers in your target market.
Have you tried this tip? Let me know by leaving a comment? Are you blogging a book during National Book Blogging Month (NaBoBloMo)? Tell me about your progress.
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