Why I Wrote The Hero’s Choice

Why I Put Off Writing a Book on Personal Development

I put off writing a book on personal development (The Hero’s Choice) for many years mostly because of the incredible number of self-help books written every year. The marketplace is flooded with people who want to teach you to to succeed, make money, be happy, and so on. And the advice in many of these books is quite good, although redundant. So, I wondered how I could approach the subject matter in a unique way.

And then a friend suggested I write my message as fiction. The idea immediately resonated with me as I realized that the challenge is not so much intellectually understanding principles and skills in self-improvement, but in applying them to our own lives. I got excited as I thought about creating real, flawed characters facing career and relationships challenges, perhaps not unlike those you and I have faced in our lives. Maybe watching these characters struggle would make the principles more real and also give my readers insight into how to apply them in their lives.

Am I a Creative Writer

My biggest worry was creative writing. I think of myself as left-brained more than right-brained. I’ve done a lot of technical and academic writing on topics of personal and organizational development. But a story? Only one way to find out. I jumped in and started cranking out chapters in The Hero’s Choice. Pretty soon the characters took on a life of their own and became as real to me as anyone I’ve every known.

I have to say that I loved working on the book. It became my highest priority (my wife would say obsession) for about six months. There were points when it was hard–deciding what to include and not include as I considered the flow of the story. Once in a while I’d hit a wall and not know how to proceed or best organize my thoughts. But I plowed ahead and am living proof that we don’t know we can do something until we try. And today, I’m deeply appreciative for all the feedback I’ve received from people telling me how much they liked the story and how it’s empowered them and given them tools to deal with their own challenges.

Today, I feel good about The Hero’s Choice. It conveys a message that I consider to be important and, hopefully, in a way that will draw people in and help them learn. Although the feedback I’ve received has been very positive, I’m now beginning to realize the challenge of marketing. My hope is that I will be as passionate about marketing my message as I was putting it on paper.


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