How to Outline a Nonfiction Book

Not everyone is as lucky as fiction writers, who can get away with being pantsers.

That’s writer-speak for “drafting by the seat of your pants” instead of following an outline — and it’s virtually impossible in nonfiction.

Nonfiction demands the use of facts and flesh-and-blood experiences that can’t be dreamed up on the page. There’s no other way to keep your facts straight and build them into a compelling narrative: you have to know how to outline a nonfiction book.

How to outline a nonfiction book

In this article, I’ll show you exactly how to do that.

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Which One Won? To give a puppy a PhD…or not?

A good book title hints at what’s between the covers while also piquing reader interest. It can’t be too confusing, too long, too short, too cheesy or too pretentious.

A title is often one of the most difficult parts of your book to write. That’s why one author recently created a poll on PickFu to weigh two title ideas:

  • Option A: D.O.G., Ph.D.: A Year of Conversations With One Very Smart Dog
  • Option B: Conversations with Minnie: One Dog’s Perspective on Life

Can you guess which one won?

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Which One Won? Book covers for the third book in a series

Even authors who’ve been writing and selling books for years can benefit from split-testing their book covers.

Take Trevol Swift, for example. Author of two previous books in the Justicar Jhee series, Swift took the third book to PickFu to find out which cover stood out best. Swift wisely tested with an audience of 50 fiction readers, stating that the book is a science fiction murder mystery.

Option A features a mysterious purple cover with a cityscape, water, and a moon (or two?).

In Option B, the cityscape changes. Swift does away with the enclosed feeling of the first cover but retains many of the same elements, including the super-cool type treatment of the author’s name and book title.

Can you guess which one won?

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5 Google Analytics Metrics that Will Move the E-commerce Needle

Editor’s note: Thanks to Spela Miekuz of Databox for this guest post on Google Analytics metrics.

To generate more e-commerce sales, sellers need to get good at analyzing data and spotting trends in Google Analytics. Because it’s easy to focus on vanity metrics like pageviews or get stuck in analysis paralysis, we’re sharing five crucial metrics to look at to help you move the needle.

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Which One Won? Subscription box packaging design

What’s the best way to display an array of products? How can you organize the multiple photos into a single, attractive, and enticing photo to feature online? This was the question at the heart of this PickFu poll, in which a seller asked 50 Amazon Prime members to select the subscription box packaging design they preferred.

Option A uses more white space and highlights “20 snacks” in the bottom right corner.

Option B fills more of the image frame, including the sides of the box, and moves the 20-snack highlight to the top right corner.

Can you guess which one won?

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Optimizing your listings for Q4

When it comes to optimizing your Amazon listings for Q4, what is your strategy?

Some sellers look at optimization simply as a way to game Amazon’s algorithm. But that’s only one side of the optimization coin. The other side is about creating a positive human experience. Remember, the algorithm looks at that too, through metrics like video views and conversion rates. And optimizing your listings for real people is something you can only do with a powerful feedback tool like PickFu.

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How to Send and Receive International Payments Safely

Editor’s note: Thanks to Ben Stein of Payoneer for this guest post about sending and receiving international payments.

Over the last decade, the digital payments landscape has undergone a significant structural shift and has continued to grow in popularity worldwide. Whether you’re paying for a received product from a global vendor or transferring payroll to a remote employee, it’s important to know how to protect yourself when sending and receiving overseas payments.

Online payment platforms can help make this process even easier. Despite the convenience, however, moving funds digitally can be an easy way for criminals to steal your information. Therefore, it’s crucial to know how to handle these payments beforehand.

These four best practices will ensure your payments are safe.

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Which One Won? Food packaging design

How often have you bought food because of its packaging? Even if you weren’t doing so consciously, food packaging design plays a huge role in what we buy to eat.

As a seller, how do you know whether your design is appetizing to your audience? Should you go for eye-catching bright shades or toned-down neutrals? What font style should you use?

In this PickFu poll, Natural Heaven, makers of a veggie pasta noodle, asked 50 Amazon Prime members which image they found more appealing. Can you guess which one won?

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Which One Won? Testing time travel covers for tween girls

For many authors, one of the most exciting parts of seeing their novels travel the road to publication is watching the creation of a book cover. In traditional publishing, the author rarely has any say in what the cover looks like. But that’s not true in self-publishing. And with PickFu, you can make sure the cover you choose for your book resonates with your target audience.

Take the case of a recent PickFu poll, in which an author tested covers for a time travel book aimed at tween girls. The poll asked a group of parents who are Christian and between the ages of 18 and 44 which fantasy book cover they prefer.

Option A shows the silhouettes of four girls striking a fierce pose.

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