Q: Jill, I just made it through a painful divorce and I’ve learned quite a bit about myself. I’m thinking about creating a book based on my experiences. How would I go about doing this? In the long run, I’d like to possibly provide one-on-one coaching for women in similar situations and maybe even parlay it into a motivational speaking career, too. I’m back in the driver’s seat.—Natasha K.

A: It seems you’ve not only revitalized the self-assured pep back in your step, but found a new career, too! I’m glad to know you’ve come out of this painful time with your head still held high. My first question is what experience do you have as a writer and as a professionally certified counsellor? We all have experiences and advice that could make us experts in our own right, but when we consider sharing with the masses we need to be certain our advice is balanced with some sort of professional or educational merit.

Visit the Professional Writers Association of Canadafor more practical steps about bringing your book idea to fruition. I’d also recommend becoming familiar with other similar self-help books dealing with divorce. You are sure to fail if your angle is nothing different from what’s already out there. You might try contacting publishing houses on your own. Try The Association of Canadian Publishersfor information or to shop around your transcript.


In the meantime, I’d take a crack at motivational speaking, as you mentioned. Within the public speaker arena there is more tolerance for someone who is sharing their story. Audiences don’t only relate to someone who has a PhD. The speaker who flourishes is the one who comes across as sincere and captivating.

Contact some local women’s organizations and begin casually networking.


jill’s tip of the week

  • Work isn’t always easy, and for some of us finding the easy way out has become our life’s work. For all of those who don’t like real work, author Stanley Bing has created a new book to let you know that it’s OK to want to get paid for doing as little work as possible. Check out 100 Bullshit Jobs And How To Get Them by Stanley Bing (2006) published by Collins — an Imprint of Harper Collins Publishers. However, my advice is to remember nothing good comes easy, so don’t just jump into a career because you think it will be a breeze.

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