Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 2,000,000,000...

Ever feel like you're playing that kind of guessing game?

Or how about his one:

"I've got a picture in my head.... can you paint it?"

This is exactly the feeling you might get if you get a gig writing a book for a client (or really any kind of project) without enough direction. How on earth will you ever know whether you've delivered what they had in mind if they don't tell you what they want in the first place?

Just imagine delivering a 100+ page book you've just ghostwritten for your client. They skim through and come back with an overwhelming "Eh.....?" Not quite the feedback you'd hoped for.

There's a really easy way to make sure you're covering exactly what your client wants you to cover - require a Table of Contents before the project gets underway. It's best if the client provides it, because you know you're getting the full picture of what's expected. But you can also add the TOC in as a deliverable at the beginning of the project, and write it yourself.

After you've submitted the TOC, NOW is the time to make any adjustments in the rough outline of what'll be covered. Not after you're done writing.

Make sure you're on the same page... before you ever write a single page.

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