Five words every creative utters at least once: “I should make a course!”
Few, however, go through with it and even fewer succeed. After several grand failures and one minor success in this arena, I realized I wasn’t ready to teach.
For four years, I kept my head down. I wrote. I learned. I lost. I won. And then, on a random Tuesday six weeks ago, the thought popped up again.
This time, it was different. I felt like maybe, just maybe, I could create something of value. So I got out of bed and started taking notes.
The 3 Deaths All Writers Must Die
When I fell into the rabbit hole of self-improvement blogs in 2012, I instantly knew that was what I wanted to do.
“Just write cool stuff and get paid for it.”
How naive I was. That’s not how it works. My first blog post tanked. My first ebook tanked. My first online course — you guessed it — tanked. I always had fun creating, but it was very painful to watch all these things fail.
However, after failing relentlessly for the past four years, I’ve come out the other end alive. Looking back, I see three critical problems all writers face.
Problem #1: You Have No Idea Where To Start
The very first thing I did on my way to becoming a writer was…to offer translation services. Ha! How ridiculous! I didn’t even have the guts to dip my own toe into writing, so I translated other people’s.
I studied online marketing. Constantly. I watched videos, read blogs, and listened to podcasts. Oh yeah, I would growth hack the sh*t out of writing. Except I never started writing.
Then, it was ‘optimizing the website.’ Can’t get clients if it doesn’t look pretty, can you? Of course you can. All those things are excuses.
The first death all writers must die is self-inflicted paralysis.
No one has an idea where to start. Everyone is scared to publish. So most people never do.
Problem #2: No One Reads Your Stuff
If the high we get from two friends and our mom congratulating us on our first blog post lasted, we’d all be six-figure authors with a Hollywood movie in the works. But it doesn’t. Once you’ve dropped the “I’m a writer” bomb, no one cares.
I attracted a glorious 100 email subscribers in my first six months of blogging. As soon as I smelled a hint of interest, I would bombard people higher up the food chain with promotion requests — and promptly got myself blocked.
Once you get out of the desert, “no one cares” quickly becomes “not enough people care.” You’ve landed right in the Rocky Mountains.
The second death all writers must die is constant rejection.
If you can’t find a source of motivation to continue when no one cares, soon you won’t either.
Problem #3: You Don’t Make Any Money
One of my first little successes was a how-to tutorial for using Google. After getting some credit, I immediately upgraded it into a book. Screw writing for free, I’m going straight to the big leagues! Moron.
I spent a week putting together the most poorly formatted Amazon ebook you’ve ever seen. Imagine the big plot twist: it didn’t sell. That was only the first of many failed attempts to monetize my writing in an authentic way.
The third death all writers must die is financial despair.
Writing was never an easy career, but it’s only gotten more confusing over the last thirty years.
The Hardest Job In The World
After four years of blood, sweat, and tears, I finally made it. I can “just write cool stuff and get paid for it.” But the one thing I’ll never forget is this:
Writing looks like it’s the easiest job in the world, but it’s actually the hardest.
First, there’s no one to tell you how to do things.
How do you structure your thoughts? Where do you publish? How do you format? What voice? What words?
Second, there’s the constant struggle for ideas.
What will you write about today? Tomorrow? 33 weeks from now? Which ideas are good? Which suck? And how do you make them better?
Third, there’s the everlasting fight for people’s attention.
In a world of tweets and videos, how do you get people to want to read? For minutes. Hours. Days. It’s an active, strenuous task. You must stand out not just from other media, but from other writers too. How do you do that?
Fourth, there’s the undying myth of the poor poet.
“Writers get paid squat.” “Authors make no money.” “You can’t make it unless you sell out.” Are the voices are right? How can you prove them wrong?
Finally, there’s no one but you fighting the loneliest battle of all.
Writing is a solo game. As such, writers live and die in their heads. We must. Sometimes, it gets dark in there. It is where all our hardest battles are fought. Fear, doubt, procrastination, all these ugly forces attack us. Constantly.
- As a writer, you write alone.
- As a writer, you don’t get a head start.
- As a writer, you only advance when you don’t move; you must sit still.
- As a writer, you’re the only one to hold yourself accountable.
- As a writer, you can only write one page at a time.
- As a writer, you only have one voice: your own.
- As a writer, you are your own worst enemy.
How do you shut those dark forces down and deal with these things? In my new course, Write Like A Pro, I will help you find answers to those questions.
True Writers Don’t Have A Choice
If you’re a wannabe-writer, a struggling writer, a frustrated writer or a broke writer, all of these will sound familiar:
“Why am I doing this? Am I crazy? What the hell is wrong with me? Why can’t I do something else? Why can’t I be normal? Is there no better way than this?”
One of my favorite writers answered the following to those questions:
“In the end I answered the question by realizing that I had no choice. I couldn’t do anything else. When I tried, I got so depressed I couldn’t stand it. So when I wrote yet another novel or screenplay that I couldn’t sell, I had no choice but to write another after that.”
True writers don’t have a choice. We never did.
We MUST write. Because we can’t NOT write.
But just because your heart is set on something does not mean there’s only one way to get there.
Hi, My Name Is Nik…
…like you, I didn’t have a choice. Today, I have been a professional writer for over 4 years. Now, it’s my turn to step up and teach you everything I know.
A professional writer is someone who publishes frequently, is read widely, and benefits from their work financially.
Here’s how you know I am one:
- I have written over 1,000,000 words. One. Million.
- I have published more than 1,000 pieces to date.
- For four years, I’ve made a full-time income from writing.
- This year alone, I’ll earn more than you’d make starting at one of the Big 4.
- Over 100,000 people read my work on Medium each month.
- Another 130,000 visit my website Four Minute Books.
- I have 17 million views on Quora.
- I’ve been a Top Writer on Medium in multiple categories and on Quora for two years in a row.
- I have 26,000 followers on Medium, 41,000 on Quora, and 23,000 email subscribers.
- My work has been featured on Medium, Lifehacker, Pocket, CNBC, The Muse, Thought Catalog, and many other reputable publications.
The best part? This year I took zero freelance gigs. None. Just raw, unbound creativity, and lots of hustle.
Does that sound like a pro to you? Wanna be one?
What Can I Teach You?
The road to becoming a professional writer was so much different from anything I could ever have imagined. And while yours isn’t going to be remotely the same, I’m now ready to help you take that road.
I want you to have proper headlights, better driving skills, and a map of shortcuts. Write Like A Pro will teach you how to finally establish a consistent writing practice, reach a wide audience, and monetize your work in different ways.
- Adopt the mindset it takes to continue in the face of rejection.
- Cement a regular writing habit and create a publishing schedule.
- Learn to market yourself without being sleazy.
- Build a huge arsenal of writing techniques.
- Reach thousands within weeks, not years.
- Discover how to monetize your writing in multiple ways.
Most importantly, you will soak up YEARS of writing experience in just a few hours.
You’ll digest over 10,000+ hours of hard-earned lessons in this industry in the most structured, easy-to-consume way there is: video lessons.
>> Join Write Like A Pro <<
One of my favorite writers is someone most people do not consider a writer at all. But he is. He recently suffered the biggest failure of his career. And then he came back stronger than ever.
Because he’s a pro. Once upon a time, he wrote:
Look, if you had, one shot, or one opportunity…
To seize everything you ever wanted; in one moment…
Would you capture it, or just let it slip?
He took his shot. And so did I. I’m still taking it. Will you take yours?
Sometimes, one shot is all you need. But sometimes, it’s also all you get.
This is your shot.
>> Take it <<