There was the research writing project I ended up doing all by myself because my partner suddenly had severe medical problems. There was dissection lab with the girl who was became obsessed with "getting the brain out" of the fetal pig. There was the college poetry group project that was really more like organized flirting.
So as an adult, I've steered clear of anything resembling a group project until several years ago when I was working at a publishing company and my boss asked if I would be interested co-authoring a book about babysitting co-ops. Co-authoring sounded like it could be perilous. Would there be struggles for control? Would there be missed deadlines or guilt if I failed to live up to expectations? On the other hand, people co-authored books every day. How bad could it be?
I agreed, and I began working with Samantha Nielsen on the project. As it turned out, we worked very well together. We didn't have the same strengths, but that turned out to be a great advantage for our team. The result Babysitting Co-op 101: A Win-Win Childcare Solution, _a well-written resource for parents of young children who need babysitting options and don't have much money to spend on childcare. And along the way, I learned all about the advantage of co-authoring.
3 Seriously Awesome Advantages of Co-Authoring
Best friends Taksh Gupta and Akhil Ahuja came upon the idea of co-authoring their novel Love@365 Kmph as they told each other stories. Their combined ideas came together, and they decided they might as well write a novel together since their ideas worked together so well.
Many co-authors send chapters back and forth to each other via email, but Gupta and Ahuja talked through their story and took turns writing it down. Of course, they didn't always agree on the course of the story, but they hashed it out and turned it into a seamless narrative.
Even for traditionally published books, marketing can be a real headache for authors. Most authors just want to start working on their next project when they finish a book, not start peddling their book like a virtual door-to-door salesman.
This is another area where it really helps to have a co-author. When there are two of you, you have twice as many social media contacts, professional contacts, and friends and family members who have their own contacts. This can make a huge difference with marketing, which can get you focused on your next project sooner.
If procrastination is one of your major weaknesses, co-authoring can be the key to keep you moving. Why? Because you're more likely to keep a promise to someone else than you are to keep a promise to yourself.
With a co-author, you'll be saying things like, "I'll finish up Chapter 12 and get it to you by Friday." Guess what? Chapter 12 will be done by Friday, and your book will steadily march along toward completion. For some people, this is the biggest advantage of co-authoring. Accountability to another professional is a powerful tool on your path to publication.