Interview with Terry M. Drake: 'I believe self-promotion is extremely important...'

Terry M. Drake is a Licensed Social Worker, National Board Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Certified Trainer of Ericksonian Hypnosis and Nero-linguistic Programming (NLP). He has spent the last 15 years learning about himself and others, through his academic studies resulting in his MSW, his professional studies, as a family therapist, program director and his vast training and research into hypnosis, NLP, the law of attraction and positive psychology. Terry, also has a wealth of personal experiences related to depression and addiction, which he shares in his writings and work with others. Terry is currently a Director of mental and behavioral health programs for a non-profit agency, a Life Coach and Hypnotherapist in private practice, as well as author, speaker and consultant.

His latest book is Live Happily, Ever After...Now!

Welcome to The Writer's Life, Terry. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?

I am married with 4 children, ranging in age from 3-16. I also work 40+ hours a week as a program director and another 10 hours a week in private practice as hypnotherapy and life coach. I am very busy, but I have lots of support, good time management skills and have created a healthy balance.

My wife and I, as well as the kids and especially our 3 year-old love the Finger Lakes in upstate New York. We spend as much time there as possible and vacation at least one week a year and several weekend excursions throughout the year.

I noted the Finger Lakes, because that is where I love to do my writing. I actually started about a year ago and I wrote the whole first rough draft for Live Happily, Ever After… Now! over a weekend stay on Keuka Lake.

Can you please tell us about your book and why you wrote it?

Live Happily, Ever After… Now! uses age old, time tested secrets (found in NLP, Law of Attraction, Positive Psychology, and Hypnosis) to teach you how to create the life you want! The key is learning how much control you have over your life, your beliefs and attitudes about yourself, others and the world you live in. Once you understand that you are in control (and you will), then you can use the 9 simple steps to begin living the life you want. This is accomplished by teaching you how your mind works and processes information. You will then learn how you already use these same methods, with varying results, to get what you don’t want or in falling short of true success and happiness. Then I will teach you how to reverse this process and develop healthy and positive ways to think, act and feel about yourself and others. Live Happily, Ever After… Now! is also filled with professional, personal and historical examples that demonstrate how it’s done.

I wrote the book to help others, because I realized that I had a lot to offer them and could do so by writing a self-help book
.

How did you come up with your title?

I’m not sure exactly, I just kept thinking about what would get people’s attention, was easy to understand and get the idea of the book across. When I thought of the title it stuck and never changed.


What kind of research was involved in writing your book?

I have a life’s worth of research and experience into Live Happily, Ever After… Now! My 6 years in college, my 10 years of professional experience as a family therapist, program director and hypnotherapist and my 4+ years of studies into Ericksonian Hypnosis, Neuro-linguistic Programming, the Law of Attraction and Positive Psychology. I also used these to change my life and then when I put it all together and started working in my private practice, I realized how powerful the methods were, not only for me, but for others to. I decided I wanted to share this and put pen to paper and it flowed out.


Has it been a bumpy ride to becoming a published author or has it been pretty well smooth sailing?

It has been a bumpy ride. I have learned a lot of valuable information through the whole experience. Some mistakes are financially costly and others are time consuming, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I started my own publishing company, Lake House Publishing, and I am better prepared for my next book.


For this particular book, how long did it take from the time you signed the contract to its release?

I started writing the book in May 2009 and the book is being released in May 2010, so it was a year long process.

Do you have an agent and, if so, would you mind sharing who he/is is? If not, have you ever had an agent or do you even feel it’s necessary to have one?

I don’t currently have an agent, but I do believe I may need one in the future.


Do you plan subsequent books?

Yes, I have two books in my head now, just waiting to get on paper. I plan to start my next one later this month.


Can you describe your most favorite place to write?

That’s an interesting question and I note where that is in one of my early chapters, Don’t Think of Purple Elephants!. I love to write overlooking one of the Finger Lakes, preferably Keuka Lake. When the weather is nice, I can spend the whole day outside writing and when I need a break I look up and enjoy the beautiful scenery, it’s refreshing and recharging. I wrote my whole first draft in a weekend on Keuka Lake.


If money was no object, what would be the first thing you would invest in to promote your book?

I would incorporate a huge online extravaganza, offering fee products and gift certificates, maybe making it a week long event. It would include blog visits, hosting chats and discussions, etc… I would have fun and make it fun for others.


How important do you think self-promotion is and in what ways have you been promoting your book offline and online?

I believe self-promotion is extremely important, especially with me being new to the industry and not having a large marketing budget, I need to be very creative at it. I have developed my website www.livehappilyeverafter-now.com, I have a blog that is attached to the site, I have a facebook fan page and you can join it, it’s Live Happily, Ever After Now!, I am also on facebook, twitter @terrymdrake and I have a profile on linkedin.


What’s the most common reason you believe new writers give up their dream of becoming published and did you almost give up?

I think it’s because theirs way more to being a writer then just writing and once you find this out, it can be easy to give up or not follow through and get published. I almost gave up several times. In Live Happily, Ever After… Now! I describe that most of us have self-doubts or a need for perfection or fears that prevent us from following through or staying with things once they become tough. I really had to follow the principles set forth in my book to stick with it and I am proud that I did, while having fun doing it.


Any final words of wisdom for those of us who would like to be published?

A quote that I use in my book and is from the great motivational writer and speaker Napoleon Hill, who by the way was a phenomenal person and understood that you can accomplish whatever you want, as long as you take steps to make it happen.

“Don’t wait. The time will never be just right!”

You can find more quotes like this or the inspiration and formula you need to succeed in getting published, as well as being successful in everything you choose to do in Live Happily, Ever After… Now! Visit www.livehappilyeverafter-now.com and learn more.


Thank you for your interview, Terry. I wish you much success!

Thank you!


Terry’s email address is tdrake@livehappilyeverafter-now.com, his website address is www.livehappilyeverafter-now.com and his blog is also on this site, as well as more information about him and his book Live Happily, Ever After… Now! On twitter @terrymdrake or become a fan at Live Happily, Ever After Now! On facebook.
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