What is a transformational book & why you might want to write one?

A transformational book is one that creates change in the reader – whether it be their thoughts, feelings, beliefs, or actions (and normally all of them).

Ayesha Hilton - author of Who Gets the FarmWhen I wrote my first book, Who Gets the Farm, with my former husband, Nick Shady a farmer, I had no idea that I was writing a transformational book. A book on farm succession planning, how can that be a transformational book, you might wonder.

We wrote the book to inspire farming families to take action and start the succession planning conversation. I didn’t realise the impact the book would actually have until it was published and people were sharing their stories with me.

Nick and I had seen many families suffer because they didn’t have a succession plan in place. We wanted to help families avoid the conflict that often arises when it’s too late to put a plan in place.

I knew that mostly women would read the book, so I was really writing to the women on farms who often had to suffer the most due to lack of farm succession planning.

I heard many sad stories while researching the book as well from readers after it was published. Marriages, deaths, and family disputes were not uncommon. I also heard positive stories of how the book helped get the conversation finally started.

What I learnt from this experience was that a book may not initially appear transformational, but that doesn’t mean it won’t impact the reader and create change.

After having provided the draft manuscript of Who Gets the Farm to the publisher, I had breast reduction surgery. I had blogged about my breast reduction surgery and many people had asked me a lot of questions.

As I lay in hospital, high on pain killers, I knew I had to write a book about breast reduction surgery. I started taking notes on my phone. A couple of days later, as I recovered at a friend’s house, I started outlining the book and writing the first few chapters.

My breast reduction book has now been published and has helped a lot of women who were considering having surgery make a decision, prepare for surgery, and understand the recovery process.

Once again, an odd topic – breast reduction – became a transformational book for the readers. It empowered them to make an informed choice about surgery and to be prepared as possible.

I even had a young girl message me on Facebook. She was only 17 and desperately wanted a reduction. She was facing criticism from her family. I was able to offer her information to support her.

So, if you are thinking of writing a book, and perhaps pondering if it is worth the effort, my question for you is:

What transformation might you book create for the reader?

No doubt you have overcome more than one challenge and sharing your stories and the strategies you used to overcome adversity could help someone who needs your unique perspective.

There are a lot of books on recovering from cancer, but if you have had cancer and recovered, your story is unique as is your voice and perspective. There is someone who will relate to your specific story and experience. And perhaps sharing it will give them hope, connection, and relief that they are not alone in their struggle.

What could you share with people through a book that could create transformation for a reader? 

I would love to know, so feel free to share below.

Ayesha
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