May 1, 2017

3 Reasons Why You Need to Write a Book

Yesterday morning, I felt compelled to write this post to share with you today. In the last couple of weeks, I've written a combined total of probably 5K words for my two novels-in-progress. That might not seem like a lot, but the drafts will sit in my Dropbox file for weeks, untouched, while life and a lack of inspiration stand between them and me. But I've been writing and writing.

And I continue to write. And I started thinking about how I never imagined it going this far. Sure, I journal and write random blurbs to help me sort out my thoughts, but I didn't think that one of these "brain purges," as I like to think of them, would ever turn into more. And then that got me thinking....

How do you know whether or not you should write a book? It's not always a conscious decision— it definitely wasn't for me— so can it be a feeling, too? I believe that it can, so... here are three reasons why you need to start writing a book.

You have a story to tell.

This is probably the most over-cited reason why you should write a book, probably so because it's a very valid one. If there is a book idea in your head that you can't stop thinking about, it's probably because you were meant to take action on it and actually write it out. I didn't start the first draft of my first book with the intention of writing a novel or ever publishing it. I started writing it because I wasn't in such a great place the fall semester of my freshman year of college, and I needed a distraction. It was meant to be a short story of sorts... and now it's creeping closer and closer to 30K words with every passing day (I guess "every passing week" is more accurate because I'll write in surges of 3K words, but you get the point).

When I realized that the ideas were continuing to flow, and the words along with them, I knew that my "short story" was meant to be more than that and that I was supposed to share this story in one form or another.

You have something to teach.

Maybe fiction isn't your thing. Some people are comfortable writing anything and everything, and some people prefer to stick to one or two very narrow topics. If you fall into that category, but you still feel inclined to write more than a few 1500-word blog posts per week, maybe you're supposed to be writing a book, too. Today, it's not hard to write up and distribute a 30-page informational e-book on the topic of your choice. So, think about your niche and what you typically write about in a blog post.

Is there one topic that you find yourself drawn to and wanting to expand on outside of a post word count? Do it! Keep writing and see how much you have to say.

You have a lesson to learn.

One (major) thing that is holding me back from really discussing the content of my book with anyone, and that is probably the root of why I'm hesitant to wrap it up and share the manuscript, is that I put too much of myself into it. Some people would say that this is a good thing, that that is what readers want, but I... just don't know. It wasn't intentional, but I've managed to write a book (or part of one, at least) in which the main character, settings, and scenarios are so closely linked to me and my life that any criticism has the potential to cut even deeper. Criticism will hurt regardless because this book is essentially my child, but I fear that it will hurt even more because the pages are dripping with me.

So, logically, in the process of writing these pages, I learned a few things about myself. I won't share these lessons with you, but I promise you that I made new discoveries. If you feel inclined to start writing and you don't know why, this could be why: there is something that you need to learn and that can only be taught by putting words down on a page.


  1. I love the idea of this post! I've been wanting to get back into writing but haven't gotten the motivation too...

    Kendal // Life With Kendal

    1. This happens to a lot of people, Kendal! I personally can't imagine going one day without writing something, but that doesn't mean I don't get major writer's block. I did write a post about finding the motivation to write, which might help you! :)

  2. I have wanted to write a book since I was a little kid, but I never seem to be able to finish what I start - terrible, I know, but this post has motivated me a little to try and get back into it. Great article!
    - katrina // Yours Truly, Katrina

    1. Thanks, Katrina! You clearly have a story you're meant to tell if you've known that you've wanted to write a book since you were a kid. Best of luck! Don't hesitate if you ever want to shoot me an email about anything :)


Insta @_alexakoch

© Alexa Koch | Writing Coach. Design by Fearne.