Me and My Work David Berner

David Berner, Therapist, addictions counsellor, author, publisher, actor, broadcaster, lecturer…I do not wash dogs or cars. 

My top three values are:

  1. Kindness
  2. Persistence
  3. Civility

I do the work I do because:

It is creative and I feel like I am part of the energized universe.

If I could invite three people to dinner to discuss his/her life journey and career, I’d invite:

Mozart, Nelson Mandela, Woody Allen.

The next big challenge for me around my work is:

Capitalizing on my gifts; make more money working with more people.

If my clients hold on to only one piece of advice from me, I hope it’s:

You can and must persevere.

If I couldn’t do the work I’m doing now, I’d be:

A spy.

I can never get enough of:

Music.

A person in my field I admire greatly is:

James Joyce 

A famous person I admire is:

Johnny Carson 

My favourite question to ask people is:

How are you? Really…

If an hour suddenly opened up in my schedule I would:

Read or play tennis or walk.

The biggest compliment someone could pay me is:

Your work is so empowering to others.

My biggest accomplishment so far is:

I created the first residential treatment centre for addicts and alcoholics in Canada in 1967.

My top three bucket list items are:

  1. A month on Crete or Corfu.
  2. Learning to scuba dive.
  3. To play the piano beautifully.

I would love my name to be synonymous with:

Strength and Love

My favourite work of fiction is:

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

My favourite nonfiction book is:

Longitude by Dava Sobel

My Book:

All The Way Home: Building Recovery That Works 

What was the deciding factor that propelled you to write your book?

Friends kept insisting that this story had to be told. They were right.

What was your experience of the writing process?

It was never tedious. It was always work and joy and discovery and excitement. I started with a two week writing vacation and wrote 130 pages. A year later I spent another two weeks somewhere else and the following year, the same process. After, and in between those stints, I wrote in noisy busy coffee shops and loved it. It took 6 years, off and on. The finished book is 309 pages.

Do you have any advice for anyone struggling with the writing process?

Find the right writing environment for you. We are all different. I cannot write at home—too comfortable, too many easy diversions. But another house or apartment in another city or country works for me. So do libraries and cafes and trains. The moment I begin a travel experience, my mind is already writing.

What has been the feedback from clients and your community since publishing?

Oh, my goodness! I have been showered with overwhelming praise and blessings and support. People just love the book.

How has your book affected or changed your business?

There is a great mysterious power in having a book to your credit. It is legitimizing. It is a huge stamp of approval.

How has publishing your book given you a bigger voice as an expert in your field?

Wherever I speak, people buy the book. It is assumed that if you have written something, you must know something. This, of course, is not always the case, but it is the commonly held perception.

How/where did you publish?

I self-published and printed my book through Lightning Source. This is a division of Ingram, the world’s largest book wholesaler and distributor.

Why did you choose this route?

I examined half a dozen similar services and this seemed the most reasonable and least complicated. More importantly, this is a provider who my editor, Carole Audet, has used successfully and with happy results.

Were there any obstacles along the way?

There were endless little stumbling blocks, but they were all small and technical and I was happy to pay Carole to manage these, which she did with great skill and patience.

Do you have any suggestions or words of advice for others considering self-publishing (or independent publishing) for the first time?

Work with Carole.

What is the best advice you can offer authors-in-waiting?

Close this document and get writing—now!

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