SELF-HELP BOOK CONTENTS AND STRUCTURE: A HANDY GUIDE

In my YouTube video on structuring a self-help book, I described the six parts of a self-help book. When you divide those parts into chapters, you may have one or more chapters per part. However, you might find that one of those parts, such as the action plan, just needs to be a section of a chapter. (When that’s the case, you probably have exercises scattered throughout the book.)

Here’s a handy guide to how to write a self help bookremembering the way these six parts are commonly broken into chapters in a self-help book:

Self-Help Book Contents

Introduction: How I Came to Write This Book and Do the Research, And How It’s Organized

Chapter 1: The Urgent Problem (Don’t Worry—You’ll Solve It!)

Chapter 2: How You Came to Have This Problem (The History of Your Woes)

Chapter 3: What You Need to Know Before Tackling Your Urgent Problem (Trust Me, It’s Important!)

Chapter 4: More Stuff You Have to Know Before Taking Action to Solve the Problem (No, You’re Not Done Yet)

Chapter 5: Even More Stuff You Have to Know Before Taking Action (Be Patient—Each of These Chapters IS Necessary!)

Chapter 6: The Action Plan (What You’re Going to Have to Do)

Chapter 7: The Action Plan, More Details (It’s More Complicated Than You Thought, So We Need Another Chapter)

Chapter 8: The Action Plan in Action (What It Looks Like, With Lots of Anecdotes So I’m Sure You TRULY Get These Ideas)

Chapter 9: Troubleshooting When Problems Arise (Those Special Times When You’re Stressed Out or Things Get Complicated)

Creating a Brief for a Car Production

The best briefs are succinct and clear on what you are trying to achieve. Think of the project as a campaign instead of a single, stand-alone video. This will help you think more broadly about what needs to happen before and after people watch the video. For more information visit Introduction to car Marketing for Business.

There are a few things that when working with JD classics which you should be clear on from the start.

Business Objective – What are you trying to achieve? What is the best outcome for the video and campaign?

Communications Objective – What do you want to say?

Audience – Who are you trying to reach?

Messages – Isolate three to five key messages you want to convey through the video.

Themes – What are the best themes to help you reflect these messages?

Journey – Identify the key events and basic structure which you would like the piece to include.

Tone & Brand – Identify the tone relevant to your business and audience.

Stats – Present key information and figures that support your thought process.

References – Present visual examples and other projects that represent what you are trying to achieve. It is important that everyone in the team shares their thoughts, so you all have the same understanding of the project and ensure there are no surprises later. Don’t limit or restrict a project by only using one example, as you need the creative treatment to evolve freely. Where possible, also use examples of what you don’t like.

Script – Write a script for the piece. This might not make it into the treatment but it can still be used as an important reference.

Timing – Identify when, why or what you need the piece for.
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