PATRICIA L. BROOKS, MAOM
Speaker, author, publishing consultant, business owner
and ASU faculty-associate
Three (3) Tips for Writing Self-Help
“Most people become writers because they are haunted by secrets they need to tell.”
David Morrell, Lessons of a Lifetime of Writing
Ø Why do you want to be a writer?
Why do you want to write self-help?
Ø Writing Inspiration for Self-Help
o Can you be an instrument for change?
o What is our purpose?
o Is your goal to have others follow you?
o Do you have objectives and strategies?
o Will your stories grab your audience?
o Do you understand good writing is not enough?
o What is your passion?
o What moves you?
o What is the cause and effect for you?
o For whom do you need to be a voice?
o What makes you who you are?
o Do you understand it is not about you?
Ø How serious are you about being prepared?
Ø The Importance of Research for Self-Help
o Practice strict research rules – Primary and Secondary
o Stay focused on the goal at hand
o Have a vision for success to stay motivated
o Do your homework and study history
o Realize there is no easy way and no basic formula
o Take copious notes in interviews and lectures
o Carry a notebook and camera everywhere
o Listen to people and ask questions
o Read ferociously on your topic for complete understanding
o Learn everything you can about your topic
o Understand yourself completely
o Have a follow-up plan, but don’t be obsessed
“Research is the reward not the penance to be able to write.”
Ø What gnaws at your soul?
Ø What incident in your life has motivated you to write this book?
Ø The Voice and Structure of Self-Help
o Rely on ideas coming spontaneously from within
o Pay attention to your subconscious
o Don’t doubt yourself, write daily
o Involve all of your senses in your writing
o Be mindfully aware of who you are
o Be clear on your goals, objectives and strategies
o Harness a distinct subject matter
o Secure a specific approach and be original
o Remember the five W’s of reporting
o Give yourself a timeline
o Emulate others you admire
Ø Ask yourself why would anyone care if you wrote this book?
Ø Ask yourself if it will hold interest?