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The Three Fundamentals of a Good Book People Will Treasure

I’ve edited dozens of manuscripts, written hundreds of articles and devotionals, and read at least a thousand books in my life and career. I love the written word so much I made studying and publishing them my job.

In that time, I’ve noticed an interesting pattern between the books you carry with you for years and the ones you throw onto the “did-not-finish” shelf on Goodreads.

Each author communicated a clear message to their focused audience with well-written words.

Their marketing budget, publishing deal, or platform size helped, but those were just the container for the message. If these three pieces weren’t in place, the whole packaged deal rang hollow.

Let’s talk about them a bit more.

Three Fundamentals Of an Impactful Message

1. Clear Message

Your book’s message should be the one key idea/belief/fact that your reader will walk away knowing, believing, or doing.

The key here is to keep it simple. Readers won’t remember three messages. Give them one idea you want them to remember.

Your message should be one sentence (8-10 words max). Use a strong, active verb with your audience as the subject.

2. A focused audience

If you try to talk to everyone, you talk to no one. We’re too busy to listen to all the messages out there. We need to know what will help us.

So, for example, if you write on growing faith in God, you’ll want to narrow down to a more specific group. Would you like to talk to busy stay at home moms? The high school senior girl about to enter college? The person new to the faith or the old timer who has lost hope?

You don’t have to choose a life stage. You could choose families who have endured grief or women who often feel left out.

Don’t be afraid to go too narrow! The more specific, the more your people will feel seen. Bonus points if you’ve lived through (or are currently living through) the situation you want to address.

3. Well-written words

A lot of writers skip over this because writing well requires heavy effort and often, discouraging revision. Plus, what one person thinks is beautiful, another finds a rambling mess. Cool.

Yet, poorly written words can actually distract your reader from your message. Tight sentences with strong verbs and dynamic openings drive your message home.

Ultimately, the writers who take the time to develop their craft stand out from the others.

So what’s your next step?

Which of these three do you want to improve?

If you’re not sure, the best place to start is with your audience. As you narrow down your people, the message will become more clear!

I would love to help you figure that out. My Confident Writer’s Course dives deep into defining your audience, clarifying your message, and discovering that sweet spot where your passions, expertise, and opportunities collide. Click here to learn more!


Hey, I'm Mikaela. 

I'm an editor and writing coach. 
Want to overcome the panic of a blank page? 
Discouraged by negative thoughts? 
Want to improve your writing? 
I'd LOVE to help you. 
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