Am I Good Enough to Write a Book?

It doesn’t matter anymore if you are good enough to write a book, by anyone’s definition. You, and anybody else, can write a book and self-publish at Amazon. It doesn’t matter how good you are, or bad. You can find plenty of examples of both at Amazon, just browse through a genre you’re interested in and choose a book. That book has errors, and the author almost surely at one time, asked, “Am I good enough to write a book?”

So, that answers the question. You’re good enough. But wait, there’s more…

To help you find the motivation to write and to ignore your own shortcomings (we all have them), here are some things I want to share with you.

My First Fiction Book was a Horror-show!

I had written 120,000+ words and that was the entire story from my perspective. It was easily 30,000 words too long. That’s OK, except I just never found the time to go back and edit all the extra out. Even today, I see it as too time consuming to go back and do something with it. The drive to continue the story has faded, and I’ve moved on to other ideas now. It’s a shame, but it was a great teacher. Not only was the book too long, but it was packed with grammatical errors, even spelling errors, and I’m pretty good at spelling. After releasing it at Amazon and getting crucified in the comments, I gave it to my sister (English lit degree), and she did her magic with it.

We all make massive mistakes. You’ll make them too. Everyone makes them. I love when I find errors in books by the best in the world. It happens all the time. Every time. I’ve never found a perfect novel. Though “Hannibal” by Thomas Harris came close. I found an error in punctuation (obvious error), that couldn’t have been intended. One error in that entire book, but see – even he has ’em.

Have a look at these errors in major books:

  • Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein. In this book, the author calls the same character by two different names – Alice and Agnes.
  • Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe. The main character swims naked out to a boat to retrieve some tools, swims back to the beach with them in his “pockets.”

My first fiction book that had all the errors and is still dreadfully too long, has 3 stars out of 5 at Amazon. Not horrible. Some of the best selling books on the planet have 4 out of 5, and even less.

Are you good enough to write a book?

The better question is,

Are you determined enough to write a book?

Above all else, it takes drive to finish 20K, 50K, 80K words of writing. Once finished, it takes a near maniacal determinism to edit – and stick with it, until the book becomes a finished product.

If you get through that, your book is almost certainly of value to someone. One person, ten, or ten million will like or even love your book. You won’t know how many, until you finish.

Tick-tock… time is flowing by whether you write it or not…

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