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  • Writer's pictureJosh Wymore

1+1: Why you should write a book (but not publish it) + 9 tips for clear writing

Updated: Dec 20, 2023

Hey there! Here’s one leadership idea and one resource I’ve found beneficial this week:

Man writing in a journal

1 idea: Why you should write a book (but not publish it)

"Many people assume they are bad at writing because it is hard. This is like assuming you are bad at weightlifting because the weight is heavy.

Writing is useful because it is hard. It's the effort that goes into writing a clear sentence that leads to better thinking." - James Clear

When people ask me what writing a book was like, I tell them I loved it. In fact, I think that everyone should write a book. However, most people shouldn’t publish it.

When I sat down to start writing Humbler Leadership three years ago, I thought I knew what I wanted to say. I was wrong. Over the course of those three years and 74 drafts, I probably threw away two books’ worth of content. Why? Because my thinking changed as I researched and wrote. By draft #74, I no longer agreed with everything I wrote in draft #1. As I learned more, my thinking became clearer. And as I edited more, my narrative flow became tighter, too. Extraneous points had to fall away so that they didn’t bog down my argument.

That’s why you should write a book (or an essay, or a research paper) but not necessarily publish it. Writing is not just a process of downloading what you think onto a page. The act of writing and revising forces you to clarify what you think and why. To create a compelling argument, you must arrange evidence to support your claims and build a case that will persuade the reader to agree with you.

In these ways, writing is more for you than the audience. The words you produce on the page are even less important than the clarified thinking the exercise imparts to you.

So if there’s something you’re passionate about, write a book about it. Even if you never show it to anyone else, you’ll be better for it.


  • What's an idea or proposal you are passionate about? (Consider both the personal and professional domain.)

  • What would writing out your thoughts force you to do?

  • How could you take a baby step in this direction this week?

1 resource: 9 tips for clear writing

If you don’t fancy yourself a writer, getting started can feel vulnerable or awkward. How do you make your message clear to yourself and others?

This short article captures nine practical tips for writing more clearly. Check it out!


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