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Let’s Add an Editor’s Challenge to Lia Mack’s “3 Things You Need to Finally Write That Book”

Editor’s Note: I promised a conclusion to Innovative Editing’s last three posts (part 1, part 2 and part 3), and this is it. What can we take away from Lia Mack’s powerful essay, “3 Things You Need to FINALLY Write That Book”?

So glad you asked! Let’s discuss it below…


I didn’t actually need that editor’s note, of course. But after three days of starting out with them, I find I’m a little addicted. They’re fun to write!

Do you know what else is fun to write? Your story. Your book. The one you keep saying you’re going to write yet never actually get to.

Yeah. That one.

“Ummm… a book takes a lot more time to write than an editor’s note,” you might be telling me through your computer screen or phone. In which case, I’m going to respond the same way with, “So what? You’ve clearly got some time on your hands if you’re reading this article.”

Seriously, how long did it take you to find this? How many posts on Facebook or LinkedIn, pictures on Pinterest or search engine hits did you go through first? How many seconds did it take? Minutes? Hours?

With our constant online connections, we have a really bad habit of thinking we’re busier than we actually are. Notice I said “we” there. I’m not just pointing fingers. I know I can be as guilty as you are.

To further indicate what a universal problem this is, I’ll be featuring November’s Author of the Month, Phyl Campbell, in a couple days. While I don’t want to spoil her actual interview, she literally wrote the book on procrastination.

Yet I’m going to be brutally honest here. Do you know what the difference is between Lia Mack and Phyl Campbell and Jeannette DiLouie… and you?

Chances are far too high that the answer is simply this: You haven’t written your book yet.

If you’re the exception, then awesome! Why are you reading this? Go write some more!

But if you’re not in the Lia Mack or Phyl Campbell crowd, then it’s high time you asked yourself if you really even want to be. For the record, there’s no shame in deciding that you just don’t care enough: that there are other passions you’d rather pursue.

Hey, I truly love the idea of playing piano. I have a watercolor set that I got for a reason. There are subjects – such as basic mathematics (1 + 1 = ?) – that I’ve bought skill-strengthening books on.

I really do want to get around to all those things. Playing and painting and studying. But there are other activities I simply want to do more, and there are only so many hours in a day.

If that sounds like you, just with writing, then go! Live your non-writing dreams. And here’s sincerely wishing you the absolute best in those endeavors.

If that’s not the case though… if you can’t shrug off your book idea so easily no matter how much you procrastinate… then here’s your editor’s challenge…

Go to Check out Further explore And see what you find.

Each of us writing coaches has a different specialty and approach to helping you FINALLY write that book:

  • Lia is absolutely amazing at motivating you to get your first draft done.

  • Phyl has a truly impressive ability to inspire children authors-in-the-making.

  • I’m great at giving editorial insights into the general writing process and encouragements into your personal writing process.

See which set of skills fits you – or your child – most closely, and which personality you think will best help you start and finish your manuscript.

Because that’s the only thing this editor’s challenge is really about… turning you into the author you say you want to be. It’s about finding whatever it’s going to take for you to FINALLY write that book of yours.

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