Writing a cookbook should not be a mysterious process. Writing a cookbook is not a project available only to celebrities and TV stars. If you have a passion for baking, nutrition, special diets, or cooking, and you have an audience who needs something you know about, then you can write a cookbook.
Over the past 8 years, I have written four cookbooks and have coached, and interviewed, numerous published cookbook authors. I’d like to take the opportunity here to dispel a few myths about writing a cookbook that may encourage you to get started writing your own cookbook so that you can share your expertise and get your message out into the world! You can have an impact with a book of your own.
I need to have a successful food blog before I write a cookbook.
While a food blog might help with the promotion of a cookbook or it may provide the path for you to connect with an agent or your audience, you do not have to have a food blog before you write a cookbook. I have written four cookbooks. I don’t have a food blog. I dabbled with a food blog many years ago, but it didn’t take long before I realized I had no interest in food photography. Also, I am interested more in cooking, writing recipes for future projects, and building my coaching business than I am in taking the time to learn how to photograph food. There are other cookbook authors who also don’t have a food blog. What I will say, however, is that you need a platform, and a website where your audience can find you and where you can collect email addresses to connect with them. If you are a nutrition consultant, dietitian, cooking or baking teacher, food or nutrition writer, you have a connection with an audience even without a food blog. Agents and publishers like robust platforms, but this is not always specifically built through a food blog.
I cannot write a book because someone has already written about my topic or concept.
Let’s put this myth to rest. Take a trip to a local bookstore or the Food, Cooking, and Wine section on Amazon.com and look at how many Italian cookbooks or cookie books or Paleo diet books are published and in print. Even if your topic has been written about before, there is room for you and your unique spin on the subject. That is the difference between your book and everyone else’s book – YOU! -and your unique approach to the topic. Insert yourself in any topic you write about and provide for your audience what they want and need in a way only you can. No one has written that book before.
I have to follow the traditional path to publication.
There are several routes to the publication of a cookbook. Large, commercial publishers look for authors with extensive, robust platforms that can drive big sales. Think …