The Author-Fu logo.

The Author-Fu Power Pack is designed for players who want to write a non-fiction book. It walks them through the steps of writing, editing, and self-publishing their book. The name Author-Fu is derived from the martial art kung-fu, representing the strength, discipline, and fine-tuned skills of the author.

[Note: Unless otherwise specified, all Quests, Power-Ups, and Bad Guys build mental resilience.]


1. Change Your Scenery

Get away from your desk for a while. Take your netbook or tablet to a new location--a park, a coffee shop, wherever--and spend time working on your book. It may refresh you and help you write some more.
(Builds emotional resilience.)

2. Pound the Keys

Every day you write adds a little more to your success. Even if it's just 300 words, just put something on paper.

3. Reach Out and Touch Someone

Are you stuck? Do you need ideas? Do you want to know if a certain paragraph sounds good or stupid? Ask someone else for help! Workshop your book with another person to gain a fresh perspective.
(Builds social resilience.)

Bad GuysEdit

1. What Book?

If you set your book aside for another day, then another day, then another'll never finish writing it. Defeat this Bad Guy with the "Pound the Keys" Power-Up.
(Type: Trap.)

2. Hung Up on Details

Every time you stress about little things in writing your rough draft--spelling, word choice, sentence structure--you frustrate yourself and hurt your emotional attachment to your book. Gently remind yourself that you can address these concerns after the draft is written and you've passed the book off to your editor.
(Type: Mental Blocker.)

3. Hitting the Wall

Writer's block--it happens to everyone, no matter what they write. You can defeat this bad guy by doing one of these things:

1. Re-working your outline.
2. Finding a new source.
3. Expanding on something you already wrote.
4. Using the "Reach Out and Touch Someone" Power-Up.
5. Using the "Change Your Scenery" Power-Up.

(Type: Symptom.)


1. Have a Clear Idea

Picking a book topic is challenging. It can't be too broad, and it can't be too narrow. Your Quest: Create a clear idea of the topic in your mind.

2. Create a Statement

Just as you wrote a thesis statement for your research papers in school, so you must do so for nonfiction books. Your Quest: Write your thesis statement for your book.What message do you want to give to the reader?

3. Go on a Treasure Hunt

There are so many writers who have come before you, and they have a wealth of knowledge for you to use. Your Quest: Do the research for your book. Find as many sources as you can.

4. Draw a Map

You've done your research; now put it in order. Your Quest: Create the outline for your book. (Bonus: It can double as the Table of Contents!)

5. Write, Write, Write!

You know how you're going to get, get there! Your Quest: Write the first draft of your book. Don't worry about vocabulary, sentence structure, or when to use commas. Just get the words on paper.

6. Clean It Up

You've pounded out your word, but now you need a second pair of eyes to look at them. Your Quest: Give your first draft to your editor.

7. Write, Write, Write Some More!

Your editor has given their input, which you can use to perfect your book. Your Quest: Create the second draft of your book (and as many other drafts as you need to make).

8. Clean It Up Again

Draft Two is complete. You know what comes next. Your Quest: Give your second draft to your editor. Repeat as necessary.

9. Get Your Art On

So, you have the final draft. How about we give it something for the readers to judge it by? Your Quest: Create the cover for your book. Think of all the art and design knowledge you'll put to good use!

10. Get Social

How is anybody going to know that you wrote a book if you don't tell them. Your Quest: Get on all the social networking sites you can and tell people when your book is coming out. Don't forget to ask them to tell their friends!
(Builds social resilience.)

11. Write the Blurb

People are going to ask you, "What is your book about?" Now, you'll have something to tell them. Your Quest: Write the synopsis of your book.

12. Do a Test Run

Nobody wants to read an unreadable book. Your Quest: Check the .epub formatting of your book. Does it look pretty? Do the page breaks make sense? Can you navigate the Table of Contents?

13. Publish It!

The time has come! Your Quest: Publish your book. Put it out there for the world to see!
(Builds emotional resilience.)

14. Plug It!

Remember how you told everyone that you wrote a book? Now you have to tell them that it's published. Your Quest: Get on your social networking sites and announce that your book is available for purchase. Let everyone know where they can find it and what formats are available.
(Builds social resilience.)

15. Plug It Some More!

You can't stop now...not when there are still so many people who need to hear your message. Your Quest: Find new ways to promote your book. Brainstorm with friends, look for ideas on the internet, and put them into action!
(Builds social resilience.)