Last week at EMC 2022, I presented my talk, “Emotions over Logic: Creating & Promoting A Book That Sparks A Reaction” – sharing a few of the insights into the creation, publication, and promotion of best-selling books that I have learnt over the years. I would love to share a few of these thoughts on using emotion to create engaging content with you.
Sharing messages which might be lost
At Write Business Results, our vision is, “Empowering everyone to share the ideas, knowledge and stories that are under threat of never being told.” Everyone wants to be seen, heard, and valued. We believe that everyone has a story and message to share that offers immense value to the world – we all lose out when these messages get lost.
I unexpectedly lost a parent this summer – Dad. Before he passed, Dad had been thinking a lot about sharing his story. He had recently found his father’s – my grandfather’s – journals from World War Two. Dad remembered my grandfather as a funny man with kind eyes, but also a man with a hard side – he was impatient and an amazingly shrewd businessman.
My grandfather’s journals revealed a completely different side to the man that Dad had never seen before. Just before he left for war, my grandfather wrote about his creativity – he loved writing and painting – and how much he didn’t want to leave home to go to war. He did not believe in fighting and wanted to stay with his family.
Dad had never seen this side of my grandfather. He wanted the same opportunity to share himself with the world – to reflect, to talk, to be seen and heard. We spoke about Dad coming to stay with me, looking at the journals, and writing something together. We never got the chance to do this and I wish we had. There is so much I wish I understood.
The power of emotions
I could research the facts myself, but it would never be the same. It wouldn’t be Dad’s words and his memories of Grandpa, who died when I was six – there wouldn’t be the same emotion. It might be possible for me to discover what happened and when, but the deeper emotional meaning is now lost. Relationships aren’t data-driven or fact-based – what matters is human connection.
The facts can’t tell me what my Dad felt about his memories of Grandpa – neither can they re-capture Dad’s relationship with Grandpa or the moments and thoughts that Dad never got to capture on a page.
The same thing is true for businesses too – a valuable business relationship can’t be measured by engagement statistics. If you aren’t sharing a heart-felt and sincere message, you probably aren’t getting the best business results from your content.
People may forget what you say but they’ll never forget how you make them feel. Dry and rational data might catch attention and “stop the scroll”, but what is going to be most memorable and continue the interaction is emotive and more colourful.
Emotive storytelling in book creation
Speech is an amazing way to share that emotion – body language and intonation can create an impact that can’t be beaten. However, reaching people by word of mouth is hard.
The audience needs to go to the speaker. Books allow you to send the message out to the reader. Not only does the written word make sharing your message easier, but it helps you to share a higher-quality message too.
The writing process happens over a longer period of time, is more carefully written and researched, and demands better accountability and structuring than a speech. It also allows you to be more genuine – imagine faking 250 pages of content, then liaising with the professionals who will edit, design, publish, and promote it.
Maintaining the necessary momentum in a message you don’t believe in is far more difficult than being sincere and passionate.
There are three ways to approach writing a book:
Writing it yourself – This allows you to embrace your creative flow and express yourself exactly as you want to express yourself. However, if you’re not an experienced writer and creative, this might just make your head hurt and be immensely time-consuming.
Hiring a ghostwriter – This takes the pressure of actually writing the book yourself off you – someone else can take charge of ordering the information and structuring it into a publishable format. It’s not a perfect solution though – ghostwriting can’t really achieve a free flow of information. The ghostwriter might be able to produce a technically competent draft, but recreating the author’s voice is far more challenging.
Using dictation-based authorship – In other words, speak your book. Using modern advances in voice recognition and transcription, narrate your thoughts and ideas in an interview with a content developer, which are then structured into a book by an expert writer. This allows you the freedom of expression and voice that writing your own book offers, while taking full advantage of the technical expertise of the team supporting you.
Writing a book with the power and emotion of your voice
The secret ingredient to creating emotive content is speech. Dictation-based authorship harnesses your voice to allow you to preserve your emotion and personality while shielding you from the pressure and stress of needing to craft the perfect sentence or phrase.
With dictation-based authorship, your spouse or best friend should be able to read the manuscript and assume you wrote it. Even better, you should be able to believe you wrote it: WBR client, coach and soon-to-be author Andrew Sillitoe’s comment about his recent draft sums this up: “This sounds more like me than the book I wrote.”
If you know you have a book inside you and would like support to get it onto paper and into print, we can help. We’re specialists in speaking your book, ensuring that none of your message or personality is lost in the process of production.
If you’d like to learn more, book a clarity call to discuss your book and to learn how our team of experienced professionals can support you on your journey to becoming an author.