An elderly woman's adventure in solitude, the gay man's guide to pleasuring women, a housewife's battle with obesity, an elementary school teacher's encyclopedia of all things disgusting...best-sellers all. And all written by ordinary people.
Examples of lightning striking? Not at all. Housewives, teenagers, gym teachers, even high school dropouts have cashed in with astonishingly simple best-sellers.According to Marc McCutcheon, author of the new Book-of-the-Month Club selection, Damn! Why Didn't I Write That?: How Ordinary People are Raking in $100,000.00...or More Writing Nonfiction Books & How You Can Too! (Quill Driver Books, $14.95), "The beauty of nonfiction book writing is that the field truly is wide open to anyone, regardless of race, sex, age, education, financial background or personal appearance."
And talent? McCutcheon says talent is overrated. According to McCutcheon, competency and perseverance are more important than talent.
Why nonfiction books instead of novels? Of the 50,000-plus new books published each year, only about 3,500 are fiction. That means publishers need at least 46,000 new nonfiction manuscripts every year. Manuscripts about every subject under the sun.
Thinking you might have a nonfiction book in you? Well, undoubtedly there's a subject in which you have sufficient expertise or one for which you have a passion and would be willing to research that would work to fill one of those 46,000 slots. So how do you learn how to join the ranks of ordinary people cashing in on this bonanza? That's where McCutcheon's new book Damn! Why Didn't I Write That? comes in. In it McCutcheon reveals all his own secrets from how to test your book idea to beating writer's block to negotiating a publishing contract.
And that high school dropout who writes the best-sellers? McCutcheon, with more than a dozen books in print four of them Book-of-the-Month Club selections books that have sold hundreds of thousands of copies, doesn't hide the fact that he is a high school dropout. "I almost invariably get unpublished authors' complete attention when I tell them I dropped out of high school. Something about it fascinates people. Maybe it gives them hope that if I can do it, they can too. And they can!"
Book of The Month CLub Selection. Quality Paperback Bookclub Selection. Writer's Digest Book Club Selection.
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Forget everything you've heard about the travails of the freelance writer. In Damn! Why Didn't I Write That?, Marc McCutcheon contends that "you can learn the trade and begin making a respectable income much faster than most people think possible." To illustrate, McCutcheon lists 17 pages of bestselling titles, including Bear Attacks: Their Causes and Avoidance (150,000 copies sold) and Golfing, a humor book (525,000 copies sold). McCutcheon himself wrote a few well-chosen titles and claims to be "easily support[ing] a family of four, working part-time." How? Think niche, says McCutcheon. Think backlist. Think about perennially hot topics like dieting/weight loss, relationships, parenting, health, low-fat cooking, sex, spirituality, money/finances, cats, career and leadership, and computer and Internet. McCutcheon is quite helpful about things like contract negotiation, agents, proposals, and promotion. He also confers a real can-do attitude on his readers. "In the corporate world," he says, "tall, beautiful people rule. In the writing world, even Yoda can climb to the top of the success ladder." --Jane SteinbergAbout the Author:
Former literary agent and best-selling author Marc McCutcheon has thirteen books currently in print, including Descriptionary, The Compass in Your Nose & Other Astonishing Facts About Humans, and Roget's Super Thesaurus, all Book-of-the-Month Club selections.
The editors at Amazon.com recently voted Roget's Super Thesaurus one of the "Ten Best" reference books published in the last several years.
Marc doesn't hide the fact that he is a high school dropout. "I almost invariably get unpublished authors' complete attention when I tell them I dropped out of high school. Something about being an autodidact fascinates people and gives them hope that 'if he can do it, I can do it.'"
He lives with his wife, Deanna, and two children, Kara and Macky, in South Portland, Maine.
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