Writing a Self Help Book

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Bhaskins
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Writing a Self Help Book

Post by Bhaskins » 25 Jun 2019, 13:29

Hello! I am a therapist and am in the beginning stages of writing a "self help" book. I have what I feel is a good idea, but am self conscious about my writing. I am wondering if anyone has seen any good guides to tackle writing fears? Or help with writing this style of book. I see a lot for help with writing novels, but nothing else!
"I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book." -J.K. Rowling

RawRis1124
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Post by RawRis1124 » 25 Jun 2019, 19:41

I'm sorry I don't have advice to tackle writing fears, but as someone who reads more self help books than anyone should, maybe my opinion will help. Typically by the time I reach for self help, I've already done my research on the topic. Not to say some insight isn't helpful or educational, but if the book is full of information that I've already read on Google and there's very little advice or instruction on how to actually battle the issue I tend to feel like my time was wasted. If it doesn't contain help, I feel cheated. I may not represent others' feelings on this, but since I found the topic here I've added it. Good luck! I hope you get over your fears. There will never be too many books on personal growth.

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Nisha Ward
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Post by Nisha Ward » 26 Jun 2019, 09:54

Hmm. This isn't a hard and fast rule and it's usually given for fiction but should work just as well for this, but don't try to write it all at once. Set realistic goals for yourself and take the breaks you need. I think that might help make it seem less daunting.
"...while a book has got to be worthwhile from the point of view of the reader it's got to be worthwhile from the point of view of the writer as well." - Terry Pratchett on The Last Continent and his writing.

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Post by WhiteLotus » 28 Jun 2019, 06:33

What kind of fears are you trying to get past that you feel are unique to non-fiction? I think you will find most novel writing advice can be applied to non-fiction as well.
You already have a degree on the subject, so you clearly know your stuff. In the initial stages you should not worry about whether your writing is good or not, but just on getting an outline, and then the content, out on a page.
Particularly with a self-help book, I feel like you shouldn't be overly conscious of your writing, because you don't need pretty prose; you need clear, helpful content (that preferably doesn't sound like a textbook :P).
I think if you work on getting all the information down first, ignoring all the nagging little voices by telling them you're just gathering the content in one place, the rest might come naturally.

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Post by Amanda Howard » 05 Jul 2019, 00:04

The book “How to Write a Lot” really helped me! It challenges all the barriers we create for ourselves that prevent us from writing.

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Post by Jeonju Sil » 06 Jul 2019, 17:24

i don’t known of any books to help with the writing, but I have also read a few self-help books. As an amateur, I’d say to not worry right now about what others think. Read and reread your writing. Fine tune it. Feel good and confident about what you write. When you believe the information you are sharing is true and good, positive and helpful to others going through a difficult situation, and you’ve given it your best-then that’s it. I’d be happy to read what you’ve written.

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Post by Inkroverts » 29 Sep 2019, 19:37

I read a few self-help books, and most common thing they all have is case studies. You can give an example of a real case to show the readers your point. Of course, the names would be changed to protect the others' identities.

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