There’s a disturbingly large number of popular books that have been drawn out from a well-received op-ed (example,) blog article (example,) TED talk (example,) or commencement speech (example.) All puffed up with blather and personal anecdotes and exhortations that are often remotely relevant to the core arguments.
Beyond the obvious motives for writing a book (credibility, publicity, vanity,) many books aren’t really necessary. If they are, they deserve to be no more than page-length articles—paragraphs even.
The rise of self-publishing and on-demand printing has only exacerbated the precipitous decline in originality. Formula writing proliferates. There’re no gatekeepers to decide whether you can publish your book—and save you from your own ego.
If you believe you have a book in you, don’t even think about publishing it. Keep it inside you, where it belongs. Unless you’ve got something worthwhile and unique to say, or you can do good writing for its own sake.
Idea for Impact: Save the time. Save the typing. Save the trees. Spare us from your fluff.
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