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You Are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One) [Kindle Edition]

Jeff Goins
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (426 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Becoming a writer begins with a simple but important belief: You are a writer; you just need to write.

In You Are a Writer, Jeff Goins shares his own story of self-doubt and what it took for him to become a professional writer. He gives you practical steps to improve your writing, get published in magazines, and build a platform that puts you in charge.

This book is about what it takes to be a writer in the 21st Century. You will learn the importance of passion and discipline and how to show up every day to do the work.

Here's what else you will learn:

- How to transition from wanting to be a writer to actually being one
- What “good” writing is (and isn’t)
- How to stop waiting to be picked and finally choose yourself
- What it takes to build a platform
- Why authors need to brand themselves (and how to do it)
- Tips for freelancing, guest blogging, and getting published in magazines
- Different ways to network with other writers, artists, and influencers
- The importance of blogging and social media and how to use it well to find more readers and fans of your writing

You Are a Writer will help you fall back in love with writing and build an audience who shares your love. It’s about living the dream of a life dedicated to words.


Table of Contents


Part 1: Writing

You ARE a Writer: Claiming the Title
Writers Write
The Myth of Good
It Gets Tough

Part 2: Getting Read

Three Tools Every Writer Needs
You Need a Platform 
Your Brand is You
Channels of Connection

Part 3: Taking Action

Getting Started
Before Your First Book
When the Pitching Ends
What Next?

Editorial Reviews


"In You Are a Writer, Jeff Goins shares the truth about writing. He provides the tools and insights you need to build your platform, develop an audience, and make meaningful connections. No writer should embark on his or her writing journey without reading this first!"
-Michael Hyatt // Author, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World

"Writers! Read this by Jeff Goins. Seriously. Go."
-Carrie Wilkerson // Author, The Barefoot Executive

"As an academic who doesn't have a marketing bone in my body, Jeff Goins helped me understand branding for my blog in a new way."
-Elizabeth Chapin

"Writers now have the option of building an audience, a brand, and affecting thousands -- maybe millions -- of people with their words. Jeff is showing you the door. The question is, will you open it and put your foot forward?"
-Paul Jun

From the Author

Hi, my name's Jeff. And I'm a writer. But I didn't always think of myself that way. In fact, for years, I dreamed of one day becoming a writer. But secretly, I was afraid of the risk. It took a gentle but firm rebuke from a friend to realize the dead-end course I was on, to finally understand who I was. After that, I was never the same.

One day, a friend asked me about my dream. I said I didn't know. "Really?" he said. "That's too bad -- because I would've thought it was to be a writer."

That hit me hard. I told him that was true. I did hope to be a writer. Maybe. Some day. If I was lucky.

He shook his head and smiled: "Jeff, you don't have to want to be a writer. You are a writer. You just need to write." So that's what I did, and it changed everything.

This is an eBook about a journey of becoming a writer. It's a guide to writing and publishing, including how to navigate the world of platform-building and getting your work noticed. Mostly, it's about believing in yourself. About the process of self-doubt we all go through and the declarations we make to do what were made to do.

Whether you realize it or not, you are a writer. You just need to write.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1229 KB
  • Print Length: 134 pages
  • Publisher: Jeff Goins; 1 edition (April 27, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,922 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
63 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yep. You are a writer. April 30, 2012
By Jen
Format:Kindle Edition
A few months ago I started following a blog called Jeff Goins Writer. I blog stalked for a bit and found mysef impressed with the way Jeff fills pages. Naturally, I was excited to read You Are a Writer.

You Are a Writer is half pep talk, half marketing course. The pep talk is for anyone with a dream. We all either have a dream or a lying problem. Sure, the focus of this book is writing, but much of it can be applied elsewhere. The marketing course covers the marketing of YOU.

In You Are a Writer, Jeff offers up some of his personal experiences in becoming a writer and specific steps that you may follow on your journey, from building a platform to pitching your work.
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62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome Writers . . . to the new age. April 30, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
There really hasn't been a better time to be a writer. Anyone about to read this book should be damn happy that they weren't a writer even a couple years ago. The tools, methodology, and insight readily available to spread your ideas and to attract an audience is viable than ever.

But the question is, are you up for it? Are you done making excuses for yourself that you aren't a writer? Are you going to go work that job you hate or partake a field that you don't fully love?

This book by Jeff Goins is the ULTIMATE guide to getting you back in love with your craft, develop a platform to convey your message and ideas, and to build a remarkable life that can be both fruitful and incredibly fun.

Simple, plenty of call to action and examples -- this book has everything you need to start.

Don't know how to blog? Read this book.
Don't know how to find your voice? Read this book.
Don't know where to start? Read this book.
Don't know what it takes to make it in this new world of writing and spreading life-changing ideas?


This book isn't a one-stop-shop.

Jeff openly shares his creativity, writing, and life tips on his blog, and this eBook has its own website: [...]

The value that you're getting from both this book, Jeff's newsletter (and his other free books, hint hint), is invaluable. Nothing can compete.

The tools are here. It's your choice to pick them up or not.

Enjoy, and please . . . stop lying to yourself. You are a writer and you know it.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Leaving Self-Doubt Behind May 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I am a writer. I have a story. Life has written this for me. This ebook has re-invented courageous for me. I am going to become who I am. I am a writer. Now. Jeff has taken his journey of becoming and convinced the leaders in self-doubt, procrastination, and fear to - Get Going and Write. Starting now. See you the finish line. Amazing!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A writer who wants you to write May 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I am not a writer. I write, but I write in order to. For me, writing isn't about writing; writing is a tool to achieve something else. A more concrete example: I cook, but I'm not a chef, and it's not because I don't get paid for it. I'm not a chef because my cooking is in service of eating, not of cooking. I cook in order to eat, or so others can eat, but cooking isn't at the core of who I am. Neither is writing core. I write in order to teach minds and train souls.

Jeff Goins is a writer. More than that, Goins is a writer who wants you to be a writer too. He doesn't just want you to write, or to write in order to. Goins wants you to be a writer too. In his new e-book, You Are A Writer (So Start Acting Like One), Goins tells you how to be a writer when writing is core. Even when something else is core for you, like teaching minds and training souls is for me, there's a lot to be gleaned here.

In his easy, conversational style, Jeff Goins lightly shares his own failures and successes, so that you, his reader the writer, might find succor and sustenance in them. But his warm tone is just slightly deceiving, because Goins isn't going to let you off the hook. He is very clear: writing is work, and sharing your writing is work too. You must find your audience (they are there), find your voice (you have one), and get your voice out where your audience can hear it. It's that piece that Goins wants to help you with, "building a platform, so you don't have to pitch or sell yourself." How does he help you? By teaching you how to pitch and sell yourself.

Goins' insights are summarized with this early claim, "Every successful communicator has three important tools, in some form or another. They are: 1. A platform to share your writing. 2. A brand to build trust with readers.
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40 of 48 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Will Passion Get You Published? May 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
One of my favorite writers, Thomas Merton, wrote:

"If you write for God you will reach many men and bring them joy. If you write for men--you may make some money and you may give someone a little joy and you may make a noise in the world, for a little while. If you write for yourself, you can read what you yourself have written and after ten minutes you will be so disgusted that you will wish that you were dead."

I love this quote, but I disagree with Tom. And so, it seems, does Jeff Goins. Early in You Are a Writer, Jeff says, "[Writers] need to do what they love. They need to write. Sounds idealistic, right? But I believe this is the key to creating your best work."

In other words, you should write for passion, for love of the craft, for the implicit joy of writing.

For yourself.

We hear a lot of people this these days saying, "Follow your bliss. Live your dream. Make money off your passion." It sounds great. If only it worked. Unfortunately, passion only takes you so far, and following your dream is easy until it's not, until you run into some obstacles and things get painful and then really painful. Jeff himself admits following your passion to be a writer is really hard, and step two of the book, after you follow your passion, is to learn how to market and sell your writing. To write for yourself, in other words, you have to write for others.

And there's the problem with this follow your bliss advice. The dream of writerly bliss becomes painful and then you have to discipline yourself and learn how to write for others. Eventually, Jeff seems to say that if you're just writing for yourself, you'll quit. You have to learn to enjoy writing for an audience.

I don't disagree with Jeff. I disagree with Merton.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Are You A Writer? Jeff Goins says YOU ARE!
This fantastic little book was a great choice for me! Please let me share why.............

Is your goal to be a writer? Read more
Published 4 days ago by Terri
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Read
This was a good read. A lot of helpful advice...but disagreed with some of his methods, mostly because I'm going the self-publishing route and although it is extremely important... Read more
Published 6 days ago by Jenna Brechma
5.0 out of 5 stars If you want to write . . .
This author I've grown to deeply appreciate for his practical applications and help for those who desire to learn more about writing...
and I'm one. Thanks, Jeff!
Published 7 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars I AM A WRITER
Such a wonderful book to motivate someone who is a writer but says they're only a "wannabe writer" or "aspiring writer" or "Just a blogger". Read more
Published 15 days ago by Samantha
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and useful.
Interesting and useful. The true picture of writing market.
Published 17 days ago by Bob Ueland
4.0 out of 5 stars For writers who aren't writing enough
If you want to be a writer, but haven't written much, you need to read this book! It will help you blast through many of the doubts, excuses, and other bits of crap that so many of... Read more
Published 18 days ago by Peg Cheng
5.0 out of 5 stars fun, easy and inspiring book.
I found this book really helpful in getting me to think straight about writing. While there are quite a bit of "how to's"', this book is rooted in reminding writers of... Read more
Published 19 days ago by Gino Curcuruto
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy, practical, worth the money
This is a practical and easy read. I love Jeff's material, whether it be his blog or podcasts or this book. He is direct and feels like a friend.
Published 24 days ago by Miriam E Gunn
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book! I have read several such books on ...
Good book! I have read several such books on how I must write in order to be a writer. Still, writing to me has been tedious and difficult. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Charlene L. Colerick
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for any new writer
This book is full of practical tips to help people who have thought they may want to be an author realize they already are. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
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More About the Author

Jeff Goins is a blogger, speaker and author.

Originally from the Chicago suburbs, Jeff graduated from Illinois College with a degree in Spanish and Religion. Junior year, he spent a semester in Spain, which opened his eyes to a whole new world.

After graduating, Jeff spent a year on the road with a band. Then he moved to Tennessee to chase a girl. In 2008, he married her.

Jeff's blog,, is one of the fastest-growing blogs on the web and a well-respected resource for bloggers and writers. In 2011, it won the Top 10 Blogs for Writers award. Each month, he receives over 100,000 visitors to his website.

Jeff's work has been published online and offline in a variety of publications, including RELEVANT Magazine (which has a circulation of over 150,000) and (voted one of Time Magazine's Top 50 Websites).

Jeff and his wife, Ashley, live just outside of Nashville, TN with their son and dog.

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