If there’s one thing people need, it’s hope and help. When you write your nonfiction story and share what you’ve been through, what you’ve learned, or what you’ve overcome, you become the voice of hope and help.
A few years ago, I completely stopped watching the news on television. I had to stop taking it in. It was always so negative — filled with terrorist acts, bullying politicians, violence, natural disasters, global warming, disease, mass shootings, overdoses, and mistreated people. But my swearing off television news doesn’t mean I’m uninformed. I catch the news on the radio or online, where it doesn’t affect me as deeply as when I viewed it on TV.
But I can still be overwhelmed by the complex problems in our world. We have so many problems we don’t even know how to name them anymore. But we do know what doesn’t work. Top-down solutions don’t work. Government won’t fix things; religion hasn’t solved our problems; and heaven knows we’ve tried to medicate our problems away. In many cases, these attempts have not only complicated the original problems but have spawned entirely new ones.
But there is a solution. I believe our problems can be solved. I believe the answers are trapped inside people like you. When you share what you know and what you’ve learned — when you start writing a nonfiction book — you become the solution. Someone needs to hear your message.
Hope and help
I believe there are two things people can’t live without — apart from food, water, and air. Those two things are hope and help.
When you publish a nonfiction book, when you share what you’ve been through, what you’ve learned, what you’ve overcome, what you’ve developed, or the path you took, you become the voice of hope and help. There are people like you who have answers, who have found solutions, and then there are other people who, in some cases, are literally dying as they wait for those answers. You can offer the hope and help they crave simply by telling your story. You are the solution.
Think about what you’ve learned and how you can be a force that changes lives, saves lives, or transforms society. Don’t waste your pain and struggles, put them to work. Share them with the world and let the mess become the messenger of hope and help because people need to hear it.
You don’t need anyone’s permission
Family secrets. Buried truths. Sensitive feelings. Things locked away. These can be real barriers to writing a book.
Some of us have stories that we’ve had to bury out of respect for — or fear of — others. All our lives, we’ve pretended things are okay and we’ve hidden truths that have hurt us in order to protect ourselves or someone else — or both. We’ve lived under the shadow of other people’s choices and we want to finally be set free. Except we’re afraid. Really afraid.
Perhaps you’ve been a victim of abuse or you grew up in a violent family. Maybe you’ve suffered under the lash of a parent’s alcoholism or addiction. Maybe your husband or sibling is struggling with a hard choice or a fatal disease. You know your story can literally save or change someone else’s life, but you’re afraid to tell the truth because it could hurt other people. Some of our stories are built from shame. I understand, because my story comes from that same place. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t tell it. I promise, someone else is going through the same thing and your story could be the hope and help they desperately need to walk through the darkness.
Keep the end in mind
It might be best to stop obsessing over the people you might hurt and focus on the people you can help. The problem with dirty little secrets is that they get stashed away and when you find yourself in the middle of one of them, you’re convinced you’re alone because people don’t talk about this stuff.
When you were deep in the middle of your pain, chances are you felt alone. There was no one to talk to, no one who understood. This type of isolation is deadly. You have to bury the pain and you eventually have to split off from yourself to survive. You maintain a public façade that you protect with all your energy, and in doing so, you lose touch with yourself because you’re living a lie.
What if you had connected with a fellow sufferer — the author of a book who survived a similar situation — and felt the wisdom and compassion of someone who was now on the other side of her pain? Would you want to know how things got better for that individual, to see a path out of darkness for yourself? What if you could be that author?
Human beings are resilient, but there are two things we can’t live without: hope and help. When you tell your story, you can be the lifeline for someone who is sinking. You can be that voice of hope and help.
Join Nancy and a host of great presenters, speakers, and exhibitors at BookBaby’s 2018 Independent Authors Conference, November 2-4 at The Sheraton Philadelphia Society Hill Hotel in Philadelphia! The Independent Authors Conference is the only writing conference dedicated to helping independent authors publish successfully. Register now! Don’t miss this opportunity to listen and learn from some of today’s leading self-publishing experts!
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