In writing Retire Wealthy, a 186-page book about the basics of managing your money and financial affairs for a comfortable retirement, Eric D. Brotman had a straightforward goal.

“My motivation for writing the book was in part to help build a brand for the firm, and to become a thought leader in our field and in the community. We include the book in our welcome kit for our clients. If new clients have taken time to read the book they will already know about our philosophy before we sit down. If we are not in sync, it helps weed out the folks who might, say, be looking for a gunslinger stockbroker.’’

Brotman, CFP, is president and managing principal of Brotman Financial Group Inc., an independent firm assisting clients with wealth creation, preservation and distribution. He began his financial planning practice in Baltimore in 1994, and founded Brotman Financial Group in 2003.

Retire Wealthy. The Tools You Need to Help Build Lasting Wealth -- On Your Own or With Your Financial Advisor, was first published in 2014.

A lack of savvy among Americans about how to save money and build a retirement nest egg inspired the book’s subject matter. Brotman acknowledged that many workers can’t afford to save adequately.

“It is absolutely true that there are people who have barely enough to cover their living expenses and really don't have extra cash to save. Half of the American working public is one missed paycheck, or one set of tires, or a washer that goes up, or an illness, that will sink their savings plan. They are teetering on the brink; it is an awful way to go through life,’’ he said by telephone from his office in Maryland.

“For those folks, [help can come from] dealing with very, very basic things, such as, should there be second job? Could there be loan modifications? Are there other resources available, such as scholarships or financial assistance, for education or job training?’’

The title suggests that readers can do it themselves; in reality, Brotman said, most need help.

“People have no idea what it takes to retire. Two generations ago, you worked for one company for 30 years, a pension took care of your needs and Social Security did the rest. You spent it down until you died. Now, people are living to 100, and they need elder care and long-term care. Medical care is bankrupting the family. There are things that you need to do, and it’s not just about saving enough money. It’s being smart about debt, insurance, cost management, legal and tax issues. The average American has a very little shot at getting that right without professional advisors.’’

And how much does he think one needs to have saved to retire wealthy?