A guide on how to write a nonfiction book correctly

how to write a nonfiction book

What is non-fiction book writing?

Nonfiction book writing relates to written or multimedia content that provides information based on real-life events. In simple terms, it must contain information that is not based on one’s imagination. Since you are here, you might wonder how to write a nonfiction book and whether it’s worth the time and effort. It definitely is! First of all, let’s narrow things down to one of the three types of writing: 

  • Expository nonfiction. It explains a certain subject or provides your target audience with information on specific data.
  • Narrative nonfiction. Here the talk goes about a true story related to a person, a place, or an event.
  • Persuasive nonfiction. It’s a type of argumentative writing where an author takes a side or poses against some belief or an issue.

While learning how to start writing a nonfiction book, remember that non-fiction is one of the broadest ranges. Whether writing a nonfiction book is easy or challenging depends on your subject and the complexity you aim for. At the same time, you may encounter creative writing that still implements inspiring elements like descriptive imagery, metaphors, figurative language writing, character development, and other literary devices. It will always depend on what you want to achieve with your writing. Learning how to write a non-fiction book, take your time and ask yourself a list of questions to determine things you’d like to explain or explore.

Nonfiction book writing examples

Examples of non-fiction writing include biographies, technical literature, historical fiction, reflective writing on certain events, research books, travel diaries, and informative books. For example, a celebrity or athlete may look for a memoir writer to place one’s thoughts on paper. This case is also one of the nonfiction book examples. The talk here concerns real people, places on Earth, and events to explore. It is why textbooks, newspaper articles, interviews, or memoirs are also related to non-fiction books. If you are not using a fictional narrative technique, your writing will most likely relate to non-fiction books. Of course, it does not mean you should keep your style dry and avoid humor or philosophical discussions that make things vivid!

How many words are required for a nonfiction book?

It will always depend on the type of nonfiction book you write. Nevertheless, the common average word count is around 60,000 words. If you approach phantom writers for a particular objective, the most important is to choose the sub-genre and estimate the materials to use. By publishing a nonfiction book, all issues are usually discussed in the agreement between you, as an author, and the publisher. Unless you deal with a complex issue or encyclopedia, you may run into a non-fiction book between 20,000 ─ 40,000 words. Still, it’s recommended to avoid setting strict limitations because focusing on structure and clarity is way more important!

How long does it take to write a nonfiction book?

Writing speed is not the primary variable to consider. It is only possible to tell how long it would take to have all the supplementary details. There are many aspects, like writing a nonfiction book, where to start, or how to narrow things down. In general, it will depend on the personal author’s writing skills, the type of nonfiction book, the research, the book’s length, and more.

As a rule, you may end up with three months or even a year, as you must research properly. Of course, if you have all materials ready and structured, writing, editing, and proofreading the final manuscript will take less time. For example, if you deal with biography writing services with a verified draft, you may complete the writing part in a month or more. Remember that getting up to speed is only one of the critical aspects as long as you have to do everything right!

Planning non-fiction book writing

When learning how to write a nonfiction book correctly, the most important thing is to narrow things down and outline the list of general objectives. Let’s take a step-by-step approach to make things easier and come up with a clear checklist:

  • Determine your mission’s goal and evaluate the challenges of your nonfiction book.

Provide a list of essential questions and try to answer them as a writer. Ask yourself about the subject of your book, why it is necessary, how different your approach is, and how it can be helpful for the readers.

  • Determine your target audience.

It is one of the most important factors as you must analyze who might wish to read your book, why, and what vital questions should be explored.

  • Do some market research!

You can visit one of the major bookstores or a digital platform like Amazon. Thus, choose the keywords reflecting your subject, e.g., self-help books, psychology, encyclopedias, biographies, etc. During writing a nonfiction book, take notes and do some research based on the style of titles, abstracts, and formatting aspects. Besides, find a book looking similar to what you wish to write. If a website provides such information, look at the best-sellers and take your time to read the comments.

Setting the genre

When determining how to write a nonfiction book without delays and confusion, you have to discuss the genre. As a rule, there are certain conventions and standards to explore. If you are dealing with a memoir, it will include lots of discussion and structuring. It is the most important aspect of biography and autobiography books as well. Likewise, if you plan to compose a how-to nonfiction book, you have to focus on the facts and always narrow things down. Finally, the self-help books will require additional analysis to provide something that stands out and inspires the audience.

Another nonfiction niche is related to business book writing, which is quite popular today. Whether you plan to write in the first or the third person, approaching a trained business book writer is an option to consider. It will help you maintain the correct tone while writing a nonfiction book, and unfold the writing talents and skills you’d like to share. You must help every sentence reflect your personality!

Work on the subgenre aspect!

Based on the three types above, you have to work on the nonfiction type:

  • Narrative non-fiction includes memoirs, autobiography writing, and biography.
  • Expository nonfiction includes textbooks, self-help books, and various how-to writing content. Addressing explanatory issues, ask yourself, ‘What is a nonfiction book for me?’ for inspiration.
  • Persuasive nonfiction includes research books or discussions regarding a certain person, school of thought, or event.

Estimate the structure of your nonfiction book!

There are four major types of structures. Here are steps to writing a nonfiction book based on structural methods: 

  1. Three-act Structure. It’s the classic chronological order: set the beginning (an introduction), describe the content, and provide the conclusion or culmination. It doesn’t have to be written in the first person, as you may talk about certain beliefs or describe the process. You can also tell a story you have witnessed through the lens of a specific paradigm.
  2. Manipulating Time. It is where your story starts and provides flashbacks or memories. It is good for memoirs, and are often done by the autobiography ghost writer.
  3. The Circular Structure. Start with the climax and describe what brought you to a certain event. It is where you help your readers see the chronology. 
  4. The Parallel Structure. Tell more than one story in the same book as you interweave the stories together to make sense. It is a great move for self-help books to describe case studies or talk about business concepts.

Draft an outline!

Once you have determined your nonfiction book’s genre and basic structure, you have to narrow things down even further. It can be done by creating an outline. It helps to manage your time and allows the ghostwriter (if you choose that option) to see how much work must be done. Here are the steps to take as you learn how to write a non fiction book:

  • Focus on the main parts of your book. If you write a nonfiction book narratively, you approach things like a story. It means you include the beginning, the story’s progress, and the final part. When dealing with expository subjects, introduce the topic first and explain why you choose such a tone.
  • When you have all the important parts, consider the key elements you want to describe.
  • Think about bridging words and sentences to connect the paragraphs. As you learn how to outline a nonfiction book, it makes things accessible and logical.
  • Focus on your nonfiction book’s “most important ─ less important” aspects.
  • Leave space for certain things you wish to extend as you write.
  • Consider the subtitle and title of your book carefully – they should offer a glimpse into what the book is about without revealing too much of the plot.

Remember, your outline is not static ─ it’s your guide. It’s natural when writing a non-fiction book process is flexible. Always take your time and do as much research as possible because this helps set your nonfiction book apart!

Remember the style guide

Remember to work with the style guide, rules, and conventions to be applied to your writing. It includes anything from first or third-person writing to the rules based on formatting. While it is not obligatory to stick to a certain style, the publisher will likely choose the Chicago Manual of Style since it is the de facto citation style used for manuscripts and publishing.

When you talk to book editors, you will have an expert to handle this aspect as you receive unique tips for writing a nonfiction book. Depending on your target audience and style, you can also address UK or US English.

The writing part

When your outline is ready, you can approach experts or do some basic work as you work with the manuscript or in the digital environment. Remember to take your time and do as much writing as possible!

Nonfiction writing techniques checklist

Since there are many methods on how to write a nonfiction book, let’s narrow things down and create a basic checklist you should follow:

  • Help readers remember your story by adding emotion and literary devices.
  • Use a hook sentence and the setting to draw your readers in and help them relate by offering real-life examples.
  • Describe the characters’ traits, and always offer some background.
  • Do not overfill your nonfiction book with information.
  • Keep your dialogues memorable and the timing clear as you describe who, what, and why.
  • Use simple language to keep things accessible, even if it’s a nonfiction writing textbook with scientific language.
  • Remember to use an active voice and always explain unknown terms.
  • The use of jargon should be avoided unless it’s necessary.
  • Keep your sentences short and provide bridging elements to connect the paragraphs.
  • Always provide due credit if you are quoting someone or borrowing information elsewhere.
  • Avoid nominalization. Changing the verbs makes things overly formal and hard to comprehend!
  • Check your facts to gain more confidence as you write. If you need expert help, remember about deadlines; yet it will always pay off with an accurate book.
  • Writing a nonfiction book, take your time to work on editing and proofreading your result!

Get expert nonfiction book writing help online

After all necessary elements are ready and all aspects of the how-to-write nonfiction book guide are followed, questions are OK! When you need to make an online book and wish to get it checked by a trained specialist, we are ready to provide immediate assistance. We know how to help your talents unfold and stand out!

You are in the right place if you have any non fiction writing questions and need an expert ghostwriter for a nonfiction book. We shall discuss things and help you determine the best solution matching your budget and vision!

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