Monday, January 21, 2008

So You Want to Write a Book -- Two

Where were we? Oh yeah. Week before last we had started on ten things you must know if you want to write a book. Here is item two: (Read or skim all the way to the bottom for another item two -- a second chocolate recipe.)

2. Who is your intended reader? Be as specific as possible. No fair saying, “Oh everyone will want to read it.” That won’t cut it. Narrow it down to sex, age, education, interest, and experience.

Be real honest with yourself. Who will really want to read this book? If you are writing a book about a medical problem, and you are critical of the medical community, will they want to read your book? Sure, maybe they should read your book -- but will they? You better have a compelling story, told in a compelling way, and some real credentials or experience to make it work.

A good example of such a book, that works, is Rachel Gifford's book, A Gift in Wolf's Clothing: Life with Diabetes. Not only has Rachel lived with diabetes, she is a research and medical expert in the field. And, the Forward is written by an M.D. who goes so far as to say: " . . . a book that so entertainingly, yet devastatingly points out the stupid and unfeeling things that health professionals do in the course of treating diabetes. . . . If you care for people with diabetes . . . buy this book and take its lessons to heart."

Note that all-important word -- entertainingly. So even if your intended reader doesn't want to read the book, make it so well written that they can't help themselves. You can do it.

On another subject -- last week I ran into Bonnie Tolson at a birthday party. Hadn't seen each other in years. After the "You! Oh my gosh," we hugged and caught up on things. When I got home I looked at her website, Take a look for yourself. Bonnie is an all-around interesting and creative person, writer, and artist.

This Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball recipe is from Judy (a great source) by way of her future daughter-in-law. We will let her remain nameless, just in case she isn't thrilled with the idea of being mentioned on some stranger's blog. Don't want to get Judy in trouble before the kids are even married.)

Something different for Super Bowl Sunday -- Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball

1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. butter, softened (1 stick)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 c. powdered sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3/4 c. mini chocolate chips
3/4 c. finely chopped pecans

Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until fluffy. Gradually add sugars until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. Shape into ball and roll in pecans. Refrigerate. Serve with chocolate or honey graham cracker sticks. (I don't know what honey graham cracker sticks are, but you can figure out something to serve with this.)

Meanwhile, until next week, work on your statement of your intended reader.