Self-Help through Writing Self-Help

How does the act of writing self-help help writers?
The benefits of writing are widely documented, as are the benefits of teaching others. This, combined with the growing popularity of autoethnography, provides an opportunity to examine self-help authors and their relationships with their material. What benefits (or issues) arise from the act of writing self-help? For example, Sarah Knight (author of the No Fucks Given Guides) says her writing reflects what she has learnt about managing her own anxiety. However, was she already codifying her strategies while learning to deal with anxiety? Did writing help her, or was she simply out to fill a gap in the market?

  • Maggie Nelson's 'The Argonauts' is a great piece of autoethnography that the potential writer could look at when approaching this topic. – Samantha Leersen 2 years ago
  • There's something here for sure. I would probably be interested in doing some research on this and writing it – mmbranagan 2 years ago
  • I second Samantha's suggestions on The Argonauts. Maggie Nelson's most recent work, On Freedom, also ventures into her personal experience with anxiety, making art, motherhood, and the act of writing and creating in her own life as she meditates on the world around her. – kkenny 2 years ago
  • That is a seriously interesting topic. Perhaps, the writer could write self-help to see how much helped themselves? :D – Paddy 2 years ago

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