How To Write And Publish A Book

How To Write and Publish a Book with Angela Treat Lyon

Want to write a book but don’t know where to start? Get Angela Treat Lyon’s book writing tips on how to write and publish a book for non-fiction authors.

Have you ever said, “I want to write a book – where do I start?” Have you ever wondered:

Of all the steps to getting published, how to start writing a book is the most difficult. Most people looking for a guide to writing a book need step-by-step instructions on how to start a book. Do you want to learn how to begin writing a book?

In this interview with best-selling author and self-publishing specialist, Angela Treat Lyon, you’ll learn about her Build a Book writing course that will teach you how to get started writing a book and how to write a book step-by-step.

If you’ve imagined becoming an author or book writer and authoring a book, this interview will introduce you to her book writing process of writing a book and publishing a book.

Although we focus mainly on how to write a nonfiction book, even fiction writers will benefit from her ideas for writing a book, learn how to write a book outline, and how to publish a book on Kindle.

You’ll learn about the book publishing process, what to keep in mind when writing a children’s book, the best format for writing a book, Kindle publishing guidelines for your book title and sub-title and the steps to publishing a book.

You’ll also learn how to write and publish your book with free book writing software for beginners so that you never need to buy expensive book writing apps or book writing tools.

Whether you want to learn to write books for a living or to brand yourself as a thought-leader, learn how to write your first book, how to write a self-help book, or how to write an eBook for Amazon, you’ll get the best self-publishing tips and advice in Angela’s guide to self-publishing.

So if you want to learn how to write a book and get it published, watch this interview with Angela Treat Lyon and check out her Build Your Book Course. In this interview, we discuss how to write and publish a book for non-fiction authors.

Resources mentioned in the show:

Transcript of the Interview:

Priya Florence Shah:

Today I’m interviewing Angela Treat Lyon. She’s a professional artist of over 50 years. She’s also a best-selling author and self-publishing specialist. She illustrates design that publishes both books of her own and for others.

Angela holds online international webinars and one to one sessions for artists and authors to help them make more money, create more success, and feel more fulfilled more easily and rapidly.

She designed online classes with Skillshare and Thinkific – if you hate marketing, look her up there. Angela teaches writers and authors a special unique sequence that helps them focus right easily and publish faster at write publish now.

So, Angela, I was telling you about how much my audience is interested in book publishing. And you’ve created a course in book publishing. So tell me a little bit about your journey. How did you get to where you are today?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Well, thank you for such a nice introduction. And yeah, I have put together like a culmination of over like 20 years worth of knowledge and expertise that I’ve used to create my own books and help others publish their books.

I started doing this because 20 years ago, I was encouraged to write a book. And I was afraid to because I didn’t think that I had any knowledge that anybody would respect. I didn’t know where to begin. I didn’t know how to do it.

And I was afraid that people would laugh at me and it took me a long time to really get the nerve up to publish my first book. And at that time, we didn’t have Amazon and the easy publishing platform that we have today. It’s just been amazingly easy now.

But back then I had to take my manuscript down to a local printer and have it printed in the mail or physical copies, you know, of this Xerox book.

Priya Florence Shah:

I remember. Yeah. I remember those days. Yeah.

Angela Treat Lyon:

So, ever since then, I just keep looking for ways to make it easier for people. And now it’s just incredibly easy. I mean, you can use Microsoft Word to publish your book. Nobody even needs to go out and get fancy software anymore.

Priya Florence Shah:

Absolutely. So, you’re an artist and a sculptor. I’ve been friends with you for many years on Facebook, and have admired your paintings and sculpture, you know, your sculptures and your beautiful creations. So, how has your publishing helped you build your brand as an author, as an artist, as, does all this tie in together?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, absolutely. You know, the strange thing is that people always say you need to do one thing and be known for that. Well, I’ve tried that. And it’s, it’s so frustrating because on the one hand is great, for instance, to be an artist and look to that for my living.

But I find that it’s not fulfilling to my soul. And so, I have to integrate all these other things. You know, like, for instance, I’m an EFT practitioner and teacher, and I have a radio show. And I write and publish books and illustrate them.

So it kind of combines all levels of my being, you know, from the intellect to the intuitive, to the creative, visual process, so I guess my brand would be no brand.

Priya Florence Shah:

Actually, you have built up a brand as an artist, right? And that’s, that’s not an easy thing to do. Because I know that many artists have a really hard time selling their art online.

Angela Treat Lyon:

True. Yes, true. Yeah. You know, I think that rather than thinking about, oh, what’s my brand, I think artists that think about, what message am I trying to convey? You know, like for me, my message is just simply to do your best and love it.

I mean, it sounds so corny, but really love is the basis of everything. And if you can convey that with your art, that’s your brand. You don’t have to have a fancy logo or anything like that.

But what is the message that you’re trying to bring across? You know, are you an environmentalist? Are you a human rights advocate? Do you love the tropics? You know, what is it that you most care about? That’s your brand?

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, I mean, what are you trying to share of yourself? You know, so tell us a little bit about your writing and your course. Because, as you know, that’s very important for a lot of people today, especially entrepreneurs.

They want to learn how to brand themselves and a book is one of the best branding strategies that you can use to create instant authority and thought leadership and recognition. So can you tell us a little bit about your writing workshop and your course?

Angela Treat Lyon:

We’ll do that. And you’re absolutely right about that, you know. Think of the word author. Author means you’re doing something yourself. You know, it comes from the word auto, right? And so when you have authored a book, you have created authority.

And if you’re out there doing speeches and you’re teaching, and you have a book, it really supports you in boosting your credibility. It’s an amazing tool for anybody who is teaching or instructing or leading people in any way.

If you’re a thought leader, you’ve got to have a book. But the problem is that a lot of people don’t know where to start. They don’t know which material to use, they get all bogged down, or will I know this and I know this and I know this, but which do I use for my book? What should write about?

And that’s one of the things that my course, the Build Your Book Course gives you. For instance, if you go have a fabulous meal at a restaurant, and you’re sitting there, you’re thinking, oh, I wonder what ingredients are in this and how did they cook it? And how did they prepare it?

The Build Your Book Course gives you exactly the recipe for your book because it shows you the exact elements that you should write about. And it shows you how to put them together.

It shows you how to cook it, and it shows you how to present it and publish it on Amazon, self-published. It’s a 123 step system. It’s not about you knowing how to write a sentence. It’s about how to put your book together. So, that’s the exact material that your reader needs and wants to read.

And I have a specific exercise that nobody else that I know of uses that helps you decide exactly what to write. You know, it’s like about a five-step process where you go through answering these questions. And at the end of it, you know exactly what you’re going to write.

And you can put aside the other material for later on. Because it’s like, you don’t have to have a whole compendium of everything that you know in one book. You want to choose exactly what your reader needs.

And at the beginning of the course, I help you decide who your reader is. So it’s really it’s a very integrated step-by-step system, that anybody whether you’re an experienced author, or you’re a wannabe author, or you’re just starting out, anybody can use this system.

Whether it’s for fiction or non-fiction, I’ve focused on non-fiction. This particular course even though you can use it for fiction because so many of my own readers are non-fiction writers,

The thing about it is that you can use the material in this course, to write a How-To, to write about your energy practice, to do a dissertation or report, you can use it for low content books.

You can use it for colouring books, or picture books, art books, photo books, colouring books that you can use it for just about any kind of book there is out there.

So, if you want to write a book, and you want to have it be, boom, boom, boom, really fast and easy. And now that’s not to discount the material, your material can be really important.

But you don’t have to sit there and tear your hair out about how am I gonna do this and what steps should I do next? You’ve got an exact sequence to follow 123 step-by-step from the beginning of your idea to the end when you hit click on Amazon to publish.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, that’s what holds people back from publishing because they don’t know where to start. And if you’re giving them a step-by-step, by the numbers approach to writing a book, a lot of them are going to love that and they’re going to find it very useful, including me as well.

And I’m going to review your course also. Well, since you’ve so generously given it to me, I would love to go through it and review it because I think a lot of people can benefit from that paint by numbers kind of thing, absolutely.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Well, you know, a lot of authors, they don’t know where to start and they know so much and they’ve got so much to share. It seems like a shame to leave them in the dark and say, Oh, you know, just write a book.

Well, how do you do that? Where do you go in and find exactly what to write about? It starts with your reader, who do you want to read your material? If you’re an energy practitioner, and you’ve got a lot of important tools that you want to share with your people, that’s where you start.

Who are your people? That’s where you start. You don’t start with what do I know? You start with, what do people want from me?

You know, for instance, as you say, I’m an artist. And so my first book was on my artwork because I knew that that’s what my reader wanted. I’m not going to write a book on quantum physics, you know. My people don’t expect that from me. Yeah. So that’s where you start is, who are your people?

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, I mean, you have to absolutely know your target audience. You have to know who you’re writing for, because otherwise, otherwise you can’t get the focus that you need to address them and address their pain points and their problems and the questions that they want to be answered. So, you have to know who they were talking to.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Yeah. And one thing that I have to add here is that in the course, you start out not with the reader, but you started with WHY exactly are you going to write this book? Because when you determine why you’re going to write your book, it determines the size, the physical size of your book.

And it’s cool because if you want to write a brochure for kids, you don’t want to write giant, eight and a half by 11 books, you want to write a small pocket-sized book.

So your reasoning behind why you want to write a book is actually where you start. Once you find out what your reader wants, then you go, well, why am I writing this?

Am I writing a little how-to for kids they can take in their pocket? Or a woman who can take it in their purse? Or am I writing a college dissertation? Or am I writing a how-to because that would be like a six-by-nine book?

So every step of this course has been thoroughly thought out as to why are you doing this and who is it for and how are you going to do that according to your own expertise.

So even if you have a zillion things that you could teach, once you determine why you’re going to write this book, and who it’s for and, like you say, their pain points. Because now you know what to focus on.

That’s been the hardest thing for most of the people I work with is what am I going to focus on? How am I going to tell them exactly what they need? So this really helps you do that. And it helps you step-by-step.

You know, there’s one part in the very beginning that, like I say, nobody else teaches this. You would think that you write your book first. And then you do your covers, right? That’s what most people think.

But I have you do your back cover first. Because on the back cover, if you do it the way I tell you to, it will determine your chapter headings.

And once you get your chapter headings, then you know precisely what to write. And so easy from there on out. Because it’s like a road map, you go here and you go here and you go here.

You don’t take any detours, you don’t fall into potholes, you know, you just go from here to here and you take the steps and boom, your book is done.

Priya Florence Shah:

That’s great. That’s a lovely approach. I think that’s very helpful. Since I’m going through the course I’m going to go through that part and think about my next book.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, good, good. What are you going to write about?

Priya Florence Shah:

I have no idea what. As and when I write, it’s usually material that I’ve already written. And I’ve got a part a segment of that material written. And then I realize, Oh, this might make a good topic for a book.

And then I write it out, I flesh it out into an actual book and then I put it up. So, it’s usually an article that I’ve written that I realized, Oh, this might be a good topic for a book, I should, work on it and flesh it out a bit.

Like, for instance, recently I created a course on personal branding. And I realized the chapters are already done, because it’s a weekly email course, you know, 21 segments.

So I said, Oh, the book is already done, I can just take this and put it into an eBook and give it away, you know, so I mean, that’s a great lead generator.

It depends on what you want to use a book for, right? So I did that, and I put it up on Amazon as a free book. So it depends if you already have the material and you don’t know that.

Angela Treat Lyon:

True. That’s a really good method of writing a book is to take articles that you’ve already written.

Another way to do it would be if you have case studies or stories from people you’ve worked with, and put like, 10 of them together in a concerted stream of doing this, this, and this, and this.

That a really good way. I mean, your book is already written, you’ve already written it. Right?

Priya Florence Shah:

Right, exactly. Got the material for it. Now you just have to put it in a logical format and a logical sequence of chapters. Then, of course, there’s work to be done.

Angela Treat Lyon:

It’s really not hard. Yeah, it’s just time-consuming. And the thing is that when you have a system, whether it’s my system or somebody else’s, you can take your material and put it together, format it and plop it into a book so fast.

I mean, I have one client who refuses to do any of the formattings. So I do that all that for her. But, she had her material. So we’ll organize that. We had her book done within 13 days.

Priya Florence Shah:

Wow, that’s really fast.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Yeah, that was the fastest I’ve ever done a book for anybody. And usually, her books take us about two months. And it’s neat because you don’t need fancy software.

I use Adobe InDesign because it’s the best book creating software there is and I’m used to it, and I’ve been using it for years. But other people can neither afford it, nor they don’t know how to use it. It would be a huge learning curve.

And so I’ve put together instructions in how to how to build your book outside of those fancy software as I show you how to do it in an Open Office document, which is just like Microsoft Word.

Priya Florence Shah:

That’s great because those kinds of tutorials are essential if you want to self-publish on Kindle and actually, Kindle has made it so easy for us to create an eBook and put it up in just half an hour. Doesn’t take even half an hour to upload the book.

Angela Treat Lyon:

No, it doesn’t take long at all. It’s very easy. And with the system, I use it, you know, with creating that back cover, you’ve got all the information that you need to put on Amazon.

Yeah, so it’s like you’re cutting your time in half. You know you don’t have to go to Amazon at the end and go, Oh, what am I going to say here? What am I going to do here?

Priya Florence Shah:

True, that’s very true. Now, do you have any recommendations for categories and things like that? Because I think everyone talks today about Amazon’s algorithm and how you have to put it into the right categories in order to become a best-seller and things like that. So is that something you focus on?

Angela Treat Lyon:

No, actually, that’s part of your part of the marketing. And I go over it very lightly. Because they make it pretty simple to do. They have a list of categories and you choose one.

And what’s neat about Amazon is that later on, you can go in and change just about everything. You can republish your manuscript, you can change your cover, you can change the categories, you can change your keywords. The only thing you cannot change is the title and subtitle in your name.

Priya Florence Shah:

You can change the subtitle. I have done that.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, can you really? That’s awesome. I get to learn something too.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, you can change the subtitle. I’ve done that for one of my books, because I just decided that I want to make it a more keyword-rich subtitle, you know because I’m the SEO person.

So, I’m very focused upon getting that search engine traffic to my book. Amazon gets amazing search engine rankings, so why not? Why not put the keywords in your title or subtitle.

So I had this other subtitle, which was okay, it was, you know, kind of hyperbolic, so I decided I’m going to just put the keywords in and keep it so simpler so that people can understand what the book is about, rather than have some something that is a little over the top.

Angela Treat Lyon:

That makes sense. I mean, really your title is to attract somebody, right? Your subtitle is what the book is really about. I’m talking nonfiction because you know, in most fiction books, they don’t have a subtitle.

But the thing that annoyed me at first was that Amazon demands that your title be the same thing that you enter into the information when you publish it.

You know, for instance, you can’t have a title that says, read my book, and then have you enter the title, read my book, because it’s exactly what you need in order to do blah, blah, blah.

You know, it has to be exactly what’s on the cover exactly, what’s on Amazon. And at first, I was annoyed by that, because I used to put keywords into the title field, and they won’t let you do that anymore unless it’s the exact title. So like you say, you do that in the subtitle.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yes, they allow you to change the subtitle, and I did that for one of my books. So, the subtitle ultimately has to give people an idea of what they’re going to get out of the book and why they should buy the book, right? The title – that’ll be something grabbed that grabs their attention.

Angela Treat Lyon:

And the thing is that when you go to sell your book, whether it’s to a single person, or to a library or to some organization, you’ve got to have a back cover that sells your book for you.

Because you’re not standing there saying this is what you get out of the book. So it’s really critical to have a really good back cover. Whether it’s funny because you think, oh, on Amazon, nobody even sees the back cover.

Well, they do because they show you the “Look Inside” feature? And you can contact Amazon and say, “Listen, I want an image of my back cover to be up on that particular sales page.” And you can get them to do that.

And when people look at your back cover, that’s what sells the book. That’s true because the back cover will say, who is this for, what are they going to get out of it.

And it shows you reviews, three or four reviews or testimonials, and it shows a little mini-bio. And then it has a call to action at the bottom. So that’ll sell your book for you.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yes, that’s very important, especially when you have a print book out. I mean, the print book has the back cover and sells the print book.

Because for the longest time, all my life, I’ve looked at the back cover and then decided whether I want to buy the book or not. It’s a deciding factor. It’s the deciding factor whether people are going to buy the book or not.

Angela Treat Lyon:

It really is. And, you know, especially since most books don’t have that inner flap anymore. Because the inner flap used to be all about the book and what it was about now we have to put it on the back cover, right?

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah the inner flap, that outside cover, right? The flap cover and they had the authors picture there with those old books that we read.

Now everything is on Amazon itself. You get the author bio and the description and everything is available there. But it’s not like how it used to be.

Angela Treat Lyon:

And you know, it’s interesting, because I’ve been doing this for so long, I’ve been able to see the trends and the different things that have changed over the years.

It’s really amazing how totally easy it is now. It’s almost silly. How easy it is, no matter what kind of book you’re gonna publish.

Priya Florence Shah:

Well, that that also that’s a good thing and a bad thing. Because, of course, you get a lot of rubbish books being published, but then people will not buy them, right? If they don’t get good reviews and people don’t like them, obviously they’re not going to get any buyers.

So I think that’s a natural weeding-out process that happens on Amazon and all these sites, the book reviews and things like that. Do you cover that also in the course, you know, getting reviews and stuff with the marketing or just focus on the writing?

Angela Treat Lyon:

I talk a little bit about book marketing, in terms of how you’re talking about your book and what to do for your back cover and stuff like that. Because when you write those things, you are marketing and I also talked about how to get reviews and why you want to get them right off the bat.

You know, for instance, you don’t wait until your book is done in order to get reviews. You start talking to everybody, say I’m writing this book about such and such. And you know, they’ll go, either they don’t care, OR they’ll say, “Oh, that’s wonderful. Tell me more about your book.”

And that’s how you start your marketing. It isn’t about great marketing programs or email this or funnel that. It’s about telling everybody all the time about where you are in your book, you know, I’m halfway done, I’m so excited.

Or, God, I’m having this problem with blah-di-blah, whatever it is. You talk about it. And this is the big thing that a lot of people struggle with because they’re not used to talking about what they’re doing. And it gets you used to talk about what you’re doing and the material in your book.

So that, by the time you get up on stage and start presenting your material, you’re ready. Yeah, by the time you publish your book, you’re ready, and you are marketing already.

And the way to get reviews is to start writing people of influence, not necessarily even in the same field. And you start writing and you say I’m writing a book on such, and I’d love to have a review of this chapter. Okay? Not the whole book, just a chapter.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, cuz nobody can get time to read the whole book, right?

Angela Treat Lyon:

No, that’s ridiculous. You can’t expect them to read the book. So you have them review a chapter and then what you do. I’m giving away my secrets here.

But, what you do is you say, “Listen, I know you’re really busy. Take a look at this chapter. Skim over it if you have to. And here’s a review that I could put your name to.”

You pre-write it for them. And they’ll either say yes or no. Or they’ll say change this word or this word. But you’ve done it for them so that they don’t have to have any effort at all.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, that’s true. Make it easy for them to give reviews and yes, that’s something I haven’t been doing. I should be focusing on that more. Yes, definitely. I’m going to do that.

I would love to see all the books that you published. So, I’m gonna go and check out your Amazon author profile as well. So can you tell us a little bit about all the books you’ve written? I’m just curious to know.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Well, I have a lot of books out there and not everything is under my name because I’ve got some, of what they call, low-content books out there. So, I use a pen name for those.

Okay, so when you go to my author profile, you’re going to see books by other people. My most important book is my EFT book, that’s my foundation book on how to use tapping to clear your emotions and create a better life.

That’s a really important book and it’s my mainstay, really. I’ve got a lot of art books with pictures of my art and little stories or quotes. I like a bunch of things, so I will write about a bunch of things.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, right. I mean, it’s so true. I’ve actually written on everything from self-improvement to marketing to food and health and nutrition and stuff like that. So I’m multi-passionate, I think most of us are.

It’s just that we’re told to focus on one thing and yes, this is who you are, but there are lots of multi-passionate entrepreneurs out there, including Marie Forleo. Have you heard of her? I’m sure you have.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, sure. Yeah, she’s fantastic.

Priya Florence Shah:

She’s amazing. And she’s also a multi-passionate entrepreneur, and she’s proud of it. So she’s one of the role models I have when it comes to allowing myself to express all these things that are inside me.

So, I think everyone should do that. Express everything. And of course, when you’re focusing on creating something, then you go niche, and then you know who you’re talking to, and then you kind of niche down, right?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, yeah. She’s amazing. She knows about so much stuff and she presents it so beautifully. She does. I really admire her. You know, sometimes I feel like just a dumpy old woman.

That’s something I want to address here. How you feel about yourself is not necessarily how people see you. So you have to get over that.

You have to think, “Well, okay, people are going to see me in relation to my expertise, they’re going to see me in relation to what I create and what I put out there. They don’t necessarily have to know anything about me personally.”

A lot of people that I’ve worked with, we had to do a lot of tapping on getting over those fears. You know, somebody’s gonna laugh at me because I’m fat or I’m in a wheelchair or I don’t speak English well, or fears like that. They can really cripple you.

You have to put that behind you and just say, “Okay, get over it. I got this amazing thing that I know. And people need it.” And if you don’t write it, people are going to miss out. That’s a big deal. People are gonna miss out on what you’ve got to say.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah. That is so true. And, and your knowledge could be a gift to the world, you know? And the fact that you’re holding back, you’re doing a disservice to the people who want to read about it. Want to read what you have to share.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, imagine if Gary Craig, who invented EFT, had not presented it to the world. Imagine if he’d been afraid to and hadn’t done it.

Priya Florence Shah:

I know. So many people wouldn’t have had the help they needed. That tool that they need to heal from so much trauma and all the stuff that they’ve gone through.

Angela Treat Lyon:

He saved my life.

Priya Florence Shah:

He did? Oh, that’s wonderful.

Angela Treat Lyon:

He really did. I was in such an emotional pickle. At the time that he came out with EFT, I was suicidal. And when I learned how to use his tool, the tapping, I was able to completely eliminate all of that emotional upset that was in my system for so long. I wouldn’t be here without him.

Priya Florence Shah:

That’s amazing. And I’m sure there are many stories like yours, right?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Oh, absolutely. You know what, even if you get one tiny thing out of a book. Yeah, that book has changed your life.

Priya Florence Shah:

I’ve had, books that have completely changed my life. I’ve had that experience. Yes.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Yeah, I’m sure everybody has in some way. So, to think about somebody not writing a book because they’re afraid or something. It’s a crime, I think.

Priya Florence Shah:

Yeah, it’s true. You need to get over your fears. And you need to put your message out there, right? And that’s what Angela’s course is going to help you do.

So I’m going to put a link to Angela’s course in the description of this video and the article also so that you can go through it, and please buy the course and get started with your book because we need to hear your message. Right, Angela?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Absolutely. And thank you for that. And thank you for taking the time to interview me and find out about it. And you know, I’m grateful for it. So I’m going to give everybody huge savings. Ordinary ordinarily the course is $699. And it’ll probably go up this summer. But for you guys, you can have it for $199.

Priya Florence Shah:

Wow, that’s a big, big saving, Angela. So, should they go to the same link that you sent that you’ve given?

Angela Treat Lyon:

Yep. Yeah, it’s

Especially for you, Priya.

Priya Florence Shah:

Thank you, darling. Thank you, Angela. I’m so happy to have met you finally, after being your Facebook friend for so many years and admiring your beautiful art and your sculpture. And it’s really wonderful to finally meet someone that you’ve been friends with for such a long time.

Angela Treat Lyon:

Absolutely. It’s a pleasure to meet you, too. Thank you so much.

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