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Celebrate World Teachers’ Day October 5th, 2019

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teacher appreciation

Celebrate World Teachers’ Day October 5th, 2019

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This year we’ve talked a lot about writing, publishing, and promoting your book because that’s what I love to do both personally and professionally.  But I want to take a moment to pay tribute to teachers.

World Teacher’s Day is very important to me. As a professional book coach, writer, and former collegiate professor, I am forever grateful to the teachers who ignited my love for all things “books.” I’ve always had an interest in reading and excelled in writing as a youngster, but it was my teachers who kept me motivated to pursue my dreams. They were there to offer a kind word of encouragement when I felt discouraged. There isn’t enough appreciation in our world for teachers. You usually only hear about the bad ones, when there are millions of terrific teachers who do what they do, simply because they care. 

Because their job is often underpaid, criticized, and unappreciated, many educational facilities find it hard to retain and attract excellent talent. Nonetheless, they still come to work each and every day ready to shape and guide today’s youth. 

What is World Teachers’ Day?

Held annually on 5 October since 1994, World Teachers’ Day commemorates the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers. This Recommendation sets benchmarks regarding the rights and responsibilities of teachers and standards for their initial preparation and further education, recruitment, employment, and teaching and learning conditions. 

In 2019, World Teachers’ Day will celebrate teachers with the theme, “Young Teachers: The Future of the Profession.” The early twenty-first century is not an easy time to be a teacher. While teachers were once highly respected professionals, valued, trusted, and accepted as inspirational role models for young people, nowadays they too easily serve as scapegoats for the failure of education systems. Indeed, in our society that tends to glorify celebrities, we’re more likely to heap praise on performing artists, sports personalities, and social media influencers than on outstanding teachers. 

With large numbers of teachers likely to retire in the coming decade, a major concern is that there aren’t enough young candidates coming into the profession to replace them. Over 69 million teachers must be recruited by 2030 for primary and secondary education to meet the SDG 4 education targets. Of this number, 48.6 million new recruits will be needed to replace those who are leaving the profession either through retirement or voluntarily. 

These challenges and transformations in the 21st century are very real. As we commemorate World Teachers’ Day 2019, we must take time to look at the future of the profession and the role of young teachers in it, taking on the changing climate of education and schooling, the need to draw in and retain a new generation of dedicated educators, and to prepare them for the 21st century challenges of “teaching in diversity” and “diversity in teaching.” (Source)

Take a moment today to think about what your life would be like if you’d never had a quality teacher. How would a shortage of quality teachers affect your children’s or grandchildren’s life and future? In honor of World Teacher’s Day tomorrow, tell the teacher in your life how much you appreciate and value their work in helping to shape our youth!


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Get a Coach-You Can’t Be An Expert In Everything

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No one can be an expert in everything. I talk a lot about the value of establishing yourself as an expert in your field, and I happen to be an expert book writing coach who helps people—people don’t think of themselves as writers—to write and publish their nonfiction books. I am not, however, an expert in everything! That’s why I want to share my own experience about working with a coach to achieve an important goal.

My husband, Tom, is an outdoor enthusiast, and he has a special relationship with the Grand Canyon. Every year for the past decade he has taken a couple of weeks to float the Colorado River at the bottom of the Canyon, enjoying the white water, scaling the canyon walls on challenging hikes, and sleeping under the stars. He is also a darn good photographer and likes to get up in the wee hours to photograph the deep black sky that radiates light from the millions and millions of stars. The Grand Canyon restores Tom and ignites every fiber of his being with its beauty and majesty. He can’t get enough of it, and he wanted to share it with me.

I also love the outdoors, but the thought of spending two weeks on a raft and living outdoors without the basic comforts of a bed or bathroom was a bit daunting. And then there was the hike in. To get to the bottom of the canyon, we would hike 8.5 miles down Bright Angel Trail, which has an elevation drop of one mile. We had to carry in all of our belongings in packs that weighed about 25 pounds. The hike usually takes between 5.5 and 6.5 hours, and it’s not for the faint of heart. You might think that hiking down is easy but, in fact, the hike down is harder than the hike up. Your shins and calves bear the brunt of the pounding, and afterward hikers often lose their big toenails. They are also prone to suffering intense calf pain for days afterward, pain that is nearly crippling.

As you float down the river, other hikes are part of the trip, and I don’t mean a nice little stroll down a trail. At times you have to plant your hands and feet on opposite sides of the wall in a slot canyon and then scale upward. On some hikes there are thin ledges — only two feet wide — that you must traverse. You have to inch yourself sideways and hope that your hands have a firm grip on the rock wall. It’s a long way down, but when you get past these challenging portions, you reach amazing scenes of beauty that you never knew existed.

I knew I could deal with living outdoors, but I wasn’t sure I could endure the hike down with a 25-pound pack on my back. I also knew I didn’t have the skills to climb a slot canyon or scale ledges.

If I was going to do this, I needed to get help. I needed a coach.

A Hike to Remember

I started training with Brent about five months before our trip. He planned a regimen where on Wednesdays we worked on building strength and on Fridays we worked on balance and agility. In between, I amped up my cardio so I would have the endurance I needed. When I went to my training sessions, I had no idea what we were going to do that day. I didn’t know how to get myself in shape, so I just did what Brent told me. All I did was show up and follow his instructions. When he told me to do twenty jump squats, I did them. When he told me to get on the stair climber and climb on my tiptoes, I did it. When he said to stand on the bosu ball on one leg and catch the ball he threw to me, I did it. No two sessions were the same, and week after week after week, I showed up and did whatever he said to do for that hour. Little by little, I built my strength and agility in those one-hour bite-sized chunks.

The day we hiked down the Grand Canyon, there was an excessive heat warning. Temperatures were expected to rise to 112 degrees on the canyon floor, which is exactly where we were going. We were fully prepared with energy snacks, plenty of water, and our hats and sunscreen, and there were water refill stations about every three miles. We were ready. I was ready.

It took us 5.5 hours to get to the bottom, and I felt pretty good until about the last half mile. It was my toes. They were screaming at me, and I was certain I would lose those toenails. The heat was exhausting, and by the time we reached the bottom it was 109 degrees, but we made it. I made it! Those small repeated increments of time I’d devoted to getting in shape for the trip carried me from the upper rim of the Grand Canyon to the Colorado river at the bottom. I never even had the deep muscle pain that some experience.

Get a Coach

So what does my trip to the Grand Canyon have to do with your book? You have a book-worthy idea inside you and might think, “I’m not a writer, I can’t do this,” but that’s not true. You may not be not a writer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t become an author. You can do anything you want to do if you get the proper help. You need a book writing coach who can take the idea for your book and help you crystallize your message, plan the contents, write the manuscript, edit it to perfection—and finally—publish and distribute your book. You need someone to take you the entire distance so that all you have to do is follow. A great book writing coach can turn a “liver” into a writer.

Here’s the thing: people who write nonfiction aren’t writers. They’re what I call “ livers .” You’ve lived through something; you’ve been through something, you’ve learned something, discovered something, or developed something, and you’re busy living your life. You’re not a writer because you’re a doer. You’re out accomplishing things. You don’t need to learn the publishing industry or take any writing classes to write your book. You simply need to get your message out of your head and out into the world, and you need a comprehensive book writing coach to help you do that.

All you have to do is take the first step and get started. You have a message, and I have a process. Why don’t we work together? Contact me today and I can help you take the next step!


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You’re Ready To Get Back Into a Writing Routine-Now What?

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This month we’ve talked a lot about the importance of a routine-especially when writing a book.  But whether you’re getting the kids back to school or coming off that last summer vacation, establishing a routine is critical for you and your family’s success. Let’s face it; we all know kids do better when they have a routine! And that’s the truth!

But if you’re ready to start writing again and want to join our upcoming Fall classes, you might be wondering: how does our writing classes work? I’m happy to help. As a professional writing coach with over 25 years of experience, I have the privilege and honor of helping busy professionals write high-impact nonfiction books that will save lives, change lives, or transform society. I’ve worked with countless authors and seen the pride on their face when they have that finished, published book in hand. If you ready to make your impact and provide a solution to those that need it most, I’d be honored to be your professor. 

successGroup Coaching Classes-How It Works

Each coaching group is limited to a maximum of 10 participants to allow for maximum participation and to give personal attention to each member. 

The Curriculum

There are three modules in the program. Each module lasts 16 weeks: 

◦ Module One: From Concept to Concrete Plan 

◦ Module Two: Write Without Ruts 

◦ Module Three: Polish and Perfect 

Weekly Group Coaching Calls

All three modules are delivered online in 16-week courses. We start with a weekly Group Coaching call, which is scheduled on the same day and time every week. This is your own Book Mastermind, and during these calls, we review the lesson for that week, discuss what you wrote, and get valuable feedback from the other members.

It’s a dynamic process, and you learn a lot from each other and enjoy the camaraderie of other professionals who are also writing their books. Group Coaching calls are recorded and are available for replay in case you miss a session.

Accessing the course 

During that week, you will log into the exclusive client portal and access the online material, which includes high-quality HD instructional videos, handouts to download and reference during the lesson, and your writing homework to complete before the next lesson. These online tools are available to you at any time of day or night and are accessible for a full year!

One-on-One Coaching Sessions

In addition to our weekly Group Coaching calls, you will also have two separate 45-minute Skype conferences with me to discuss your work in greater detail. Your first conference is at the mid-point of the module during Week Eight, and the other is at the end of the module. During your conferences, we will focus specifically on your work, crystallize your message, address any challenges you may be having, and get you ready for the next step. 

Cost

The cost for the entire program is $350 per month for 12 months, or $1050 per quarter. You can choose your payment plan!

Not sure if our group coaching program is for you? We also offer a self-directed program and personalized one-on-one coaching. Contact us today, and we will be happy to help you decide which program will work best with your lifestyle and budget!


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Be the Solution: Change the World With Your Book 2

Write Your Book and Be Part of The Solution This Fall

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Looking for a little motivation to write your book this Fall? 

Do you ever feel like the world has gone mad? When you turn on the nightly news it’s easy to become overwhelmed. We have so many problems, and they are so complicated that it’s hard to even define them anymore, much less solve them. We know that top-down, organizational approaches rarely fix anything and, in some cases, they make matters worse or spawn bigger problems. You may be tempted to think there are no answers.

write-your-inspirational-nonfiction-book

That’s not what I think. I firmly believe that the answers are trapped inside of people like you. You know what you’ve been through, what you’ve overcome, and what you’ve learned, but you may not realize how valuable that is. You may not know that you have an inspirational book inside of you that needs to be written.

A great inspirational book will offer real hope and real help

There are two things that people cannot live without: hope and help. But what we need is real hope and real help, not false platitudes that say, “This, too, shall pass” or “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” When you open up and share your story—what you’ve been through, what you endured, what you discovered, what you survived, what you’ve developed, what you’ve learned—you offer real hope and real help to people who are looking for and longing for your answers. You impart real hope to the reader who sees you walk through adversity and come out on the other side. You offer real help as you show them the steps you took to make it through.

My job is to give everyday people the courage to tell their truth and the tools they need to write a high-impact nonfiction inspirational book that will save lives, change lives, or transform society. Everything I do in my life and work is based on what I believe is my God-given purpose, which is to connect people who have solutions with people who, in some cases, are literally dying while waiting for that solution. On one hand, there are people like you who have solid solutions to the problems you’ve overcome. On the other hand are people who need your help and are seeking that solution. I’m simply the hallway that connects you.

You probably have a book inside of you but think, “I’m not a writer. I can’t do this.” Here’s what I’ve discovered: People who write nonfiction aren’t writers. They’re livers. They’ve lived through something; they’ve been through something, learned something, discovered something, developed something, and they’re busy living productive lives. They’re not writers because they’re doers, and they’re out accomplishing things. It’s time to put what you have accomplished and learned into an inspirational book that can help others be livers and doers as well.

Your legacy is about the lives you touch and the change you create. When you share what you know, what you’ve learned, and what you’ve overcome, you can make a lasting impact that extends far beyond yourself. You can change the world, one reader at a time, simply by telling your story.

write an inspirational book

Be the solution

If you or someone you know is ready to be part of the solution this Fall, please contact me today about joining our writing classes there’s still space left!


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How to Become an Author: Time Block 2

Nonfiction Writing Technique: Learn To Time Block

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Congratulations! You’re going to write your book and are ready to start. But how will you find the time? The rest of your life hasn’t changed, and your schedule was already full.

You’ve heard about The Law of Attraction, haven’t you? The Law of Attractions says that what you think about is what you attract into your life. Your dominant thoughts will find a way to manifest. When you change your thoughts, you change your life.

So what will you think about—that you’ll never get your book written or that you don’t have enough money to pursue it? Of course not!! When that nagging voice in your head says, “you’re not good enough, you’re too busy, this is too hard,” you have to knock it down. You know what I do when that voice attacks me? I stand up and shout out loud, “ STOP LYING TO ME!”

You didn’t wake up one day and say, “Oh, I think I’ll write a book now.” No—something put that seed inside you. And it’s been growing over time. This desire came from something bigger than you, and its effect will be bigger than you, too. Your message can change the world, and that’s exactly how we change the world … one reader at a time.

Life is busy, and time is precious. You’ve got work, the kids, vacation, responsibilities, blah, blah, blah. That little voice that whispers sweet defeat in your ear even before you even get started needs to be put in its place. Tell it you ARE going to do this and you DO have enough time. This is a challenge, but you’re up to it.

Time Block and Finish Your Goals

So how do you find the time to write your book? I use a method for organizing my time called Time Blocking, and it can work for you, too. When you Time Block, you divide your time into blocks so that you can use it wisely and be productive. Of course, you have to be efficient when you carve out the time for writing, which means that you take a look at EVERYTHING you do, evaluate all your responsibilities, and organize the tasks into specific blocks of time. That’s how you get everything done.

Become an author by having a time block plan

Time Blocking also means that when your calendar is set, you HONOR the calendar, that you ENFORCE the calendar, and LIVE BY the calendar. It takes discipline, but it’s very effective once you get the hang of it.

When I was first introduced to the idea of time blocking, I thought Good Grief! I’m going to have to get up at 5:00 am in order to get everything done. I’m not suggesting that your days be as long as mine are, but on the other hand, if you need to pack more in for the short term in order to can get your book written, then so be it.

Notice how I block my time. Everything is color-coded, and you can see that I devote large blocks of time to my tasks– not just fifteen minutes here or there. I organize my time so I can concentrate fully on one thing, then move on to the next.

Every week, I have to schedule a time to plan, write, deliver, and produce my classes, as well as coach my clients, so I calculate how much time I need per week for those tasks, and schedule everything in blocks throughout the week.

If you need more help, contact me for one-on-one coaching or group writer courses or sign up for my newsletter for more information, class announcements, and tips for writers.

 

 


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It’s Almost Fall-Refocus On Your Goals And Finish Strong

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As an international book coach, I’ve had the honor to teach many individuals how to write a book. Writing a book not only helps many of my clients professionally, but it also teaches them how to organize their day to accomplish what they want and focus on their goals. Let me explain. When you learn to write a book through our program, you not only learn the mechanics and writing techniques to help you write a high-impact nonfiction book,  but we also teach you how to stay focused on your goals to finish your book. 

With Fall just around the corner, there’s no better time than now to refocus on your goals and refresh your mind with tips to help you finish the year strong. 

practicing gratitudeClear Your Mind and Stay On Task

I recently came across an article in Entrepreneur magazine that caught my attention because it reminded me of some of the lessons I’ve learned to help me stay focused on my goals and clear my mind. Here are some of my favorites the article mentioned: 

1. Stop multitasking

Instead of trying to do a million things at once, take a step back and tackle one task at a time. And while your inclination might be to start your day with busy work — like checking emails — and then move onto to the harder things, you should try to get your brain moving by challenging yourself with a bigger, more creative endeavor first thing.

2. Block out your days

An excellent way to hold yourself accountable when it comes to quieting the noise all around you is to specifically block out time in your day — maybe it’s 30 minutes or an hour — to spend on a given project. Color-code your calendar or set a timer to make sure you are accomplishing the goal at hand.

3. Get your blood pumping

You can’t focus if you’re stuck inside and staring at a screen all day long. Turn off your computer and phone, and go for a 20-minute walk. The fresh air and the movement will clear your head. Also, make sure that you are drinking enough water and getting enough rest.

4. Meditate

Get a recommendation for a yoga or meditation class, or even make it an office outing, so everyone gets some time to quiet their minds. Or look online for a plethora of apps and platforms whose stock and trade is mindfulness, like Meditation Made Simple, Calm, and Headspace. For slightly more of a monetary investment, you could look into wearable tech like Thync, a device that produces electrical pulses to help your brain decrease stress.

5. Help your technology help you

A platform like RescueTime, a software that runs while you work and shows you how you’re spending your day, could help you understand why something is taking longer to complete than it should. Options like Cold Turkey, Freedom and Self Control block out the internet entirely to keep you off your Twitter feed when you should be meeting deadlines. (Source)

 

There’s no better time than now to refocus on your goals and finish strong. Whether your goal is to finish writing your book or something else, incorporate these techniques into your day, and you’ll be amazed at what your capable of accomplishing! If one of your goals is writing a book, contact us today and we can help you take the next step!

 

 

 


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The Successful People I Know Are Voracious Readers

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This article originally appeared on bookbaby.com

Reading — in addition to being plain fun — can make you a better (smarter, more informed, satisfied) person. In my experience successful people are often voracious readers.

All successful people I know have one thing in common: they never stop learning.

That’s why so many CEOs, thought leaders, and politicians read so frequently. There’s a limit to how much time, money, and effort people are able to dedicate to formal education, which is why reading voraciously, as part of a dedicated personal routine, is one keystone of lifelong personal development.

I call it personal development because a big part of what you learn from reading is about yourself. I’m a student of writing and of words — reading helps me understand who I am, how I should approach my writing, and what I want to focus my attention on outside of my literary ambitions.

But that, of course, is not the only benefit of reading.

Reading keeps your mind balanced and sharp

The most successful people are both scientists and artists — they utilize both the left and right brain. As such, they consciously nurture both sides of the coin, often through reading.

One approach is to actively read both fiction and nonfiction. This is advice I give regularly: immerse yourself in the worlds and adventures of books like James Clavell’s Shogun: The Epic Novel of Japan, and educate yourself with biographies and intelligent opinions — such as Dwight Eisenhower’s account of World War II, Crusade in Europe, which I’m reading now.

Reading instills discipline

Reading doesn’t just strengthen or nurture both parts of our brain — it strengthens more intangible skills, too. For one, reading can make you more disciplined and foster an appreciation for learning and growth.

How, exactly? Well, people who make the decision to read everyday are actively deciding to engage, improve, and challenge their brains instead of doing more passive activities, like surfing YouTube videos or binge-watching Netflix.

That’s why some of our most effective presidents, for example, have made reading a personal priority. When President Obama was in office, he talked about how books were a sustaining source of ideas and inspiration during his terms. Books helped focus him amidst the maelstrom of world crises and 24-hour cable news analysis. Books also gave him a renewed appreciation for the complexities and ambiguities of the human condition.

That’s precisely what reading does. It’s why we see so many leaders in so many different verticals of human activity devote time to reading.

Reading benefits your business

There’s one last benefit that most people don’t associate with reading, and that’s the manner in which it can actively benefit your professional life.

For one thing, reading encourages curiosity. And people who are curious are, more often than not, high achievers. Understanding this, you yourself can use reading to feed your curiosity and acquire more knowledge.

But you can also apply this awareness to elements of your business life, like honing your hiring practices. At BookBaby, when we’re hiring a potential candidate, I always ask, “What are you reading right now?” or “What have you read in the last six months?” I know reading behavior can be a barometer in measuring a person’s level of curiosity, discipline, and zeal for learning — and curious, disciplined people who are hungry to learn are the sort I want in my company.

I don’t particularly care what these candidates are reading. I just want to see that they are reading.

It’s also true that reading helps people improve as communicators. As a student of writing, I appreciate great communication, and as the CEO of a publishing company, I see it as something of a requirement. A writer who communicates effectively with his or her audience can help readers do the same in their own lives.

At the end of the day, reading provides a variety of tangible and intangible benefits — for both the mind and the soul — and the simple awareness of this fact is the most obvious reason successful people prioritize it as a means of professional and personal development.


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It’s Friday the 13th-Push Past the Fear and Live

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Today is Friday, the 13th. Doom, doom, doom. If you’re like most Americans, you might consider this day bad luck. I’m not sure how this day became stigmatized with doom, horror movies, and just plain old fear, but most people like to avoid making any major life changes on this day. 

Just like walking under a ladder, crossing paths with a black cat, or breaking a mirror, many people hold fast to the belief that Friday the 13th brings bad luck. Though it’s uncertain exactly when this particular tradition began, negative superstitions have swirled around the number 13 for centuries (Source)

But do you know what I say to fear and this supposed “day of doom?Vámanos! I’m not sure about you, but I’ve lived long enough and can recall seasons of my life where I’ve felt paralyzed by fear. I mean debilitating fear that, if I wasn’t careful, could have stopped me from living a life on purpose and fulfilling my dream of being an international book coachIt was torment. I don’t want to minimize the feelings of anxiety and fear that millions of people across this country deal with every day, but as someone who has learned to work through it, I want to share some important truths about fear to keep things in perspective.

“Feel the fear and do it anyway.”

                                                                                                             -Susan Jeffers

Five Tips on Working Through Fear

Best selling author Dr. Susan Jeffers is a leading pioneer in helping millions of people work through fear. In her classic best-selling book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, she shares the five following truths about fear that help put the lies it tells us into perspective. 

FEAR TRUTH #1

Fear will never go away as long as you continue to grow!

Every time you take a step into the unknown, you experience fear. There’s no point in saying, “When I’m no longer afraid, then I’ll do it.” You’ll be waiting for a long time. The fear is part of the package.

FEAR TRUTH #2

The only way to get rid of the fear of doing something is to go out and…do it!

When you do it often enough, you’ll no longer be afraid in that particular situation. You will have faced the unknown, and you will have handled it. Then new challenges await you, which certainly add to the excitement in living.

FEAR TRUTH #3

The only way to feel better about yourself is to go out and…do it!

With each little step you take into unknown territory, a pattern of strength develops. You begin feeling stronger and stronger and stronger.

FEAR TRUTH #4

Not only are you afraid when facing the unknown, so is everyone else!

This should be a relief. You’re not the only one who is afraid. Everyone feels fear when taking a step into the unknown. Yes, all those people who have succeeded in doing what they’ve wanted to do in life have felt the fear – and did it anyway. So can you!

FEAR TRUTH #5

Pushing through fear is less frightening than living with the bigger underlying fear that comes from a feeling of helplessness!

This is the one truth that some people have difficulty understanding. When you push through the fear, you will feel such a sense of relief as your feeling of helplessness subsides. You’ll wonder why you didn’t take action sooner. You’ll become more and more aware that you can truly handle anything that life hands you. (Source)

As a book coach with over 25 years of experience, I’ve met hundreds of people that decided to stop writing their story out of fear. If that’s you and you’d like to start again, I’d be honored to walk this journey with you. Regardless of what specific fears you’re overcoming, life is too short to sit on the sidelines! In the words of Susan Jeffers, learn to feel the fear and do it anyway! You’ll be proud of yourself once you do.

 


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Nonfiction Writing Technique: Show Them the Real You

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Nonfiction writing requires that we be authentic. Webster’s dictionary defines authentic as “not false or imitation” and “true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character.” Webster makes it sound so simple. But if you’re like me, it took a long time to become the person I was created to be, to truly embrace my authentic self.

As a child, did you feel pressure to become the person an authority figure thought you should be? Did you feel accepted when you behaved and acted in ways that they approved? As an adult, did you realize that the person you present to the world wasn’t really you at all, but because of an underlying need to be accepted by others, you kept up the facade anyway? For a long time, that’s what I did. Living an authentic life was something I had to learn.

Your Audience Deserves the Real You

As a nonfiction book coach, I have the opportunity to work with people from all over the world. Whether their nonfiction writing is about a new method of cooking or how they overcame a painful childhood trauma, I always tell them the same thing: your audience deserves to know the real you.

Your personal story is one of the most important parts of your book. Some writers, particularly if they’re writing a business book, want to leave out this part and simply share their knowledge or instruct the audience. That would be a mistake.

Before you can tell your readers anything, you must earn the right to be heard. Nobody likes to be told what to do, especially if they don’t know anything about you. What makes you an authority on this subject? Why should they listen to you? Those are the questions you answer when you share your own story.

And your readers don’t want the whitewashed version of you. Share your high points and the deep canyons, the wins and the demoralizing losses, the beautiful and the ugly. You must be real and transparent. When you’re open and honest, you give the reader permission to be open and honest, too.

I’m not saying it’s easy. It takes a lot of courage to be this vulnerable. We all want to put our best foot forward to make a good impression. We like to hide the messes we’ve made, but sometimes the mess has become your message.

That’s what’s so effective about my Executive Group Coaching classes. You get to share your failures and foibles in a safe place, test out your message with others in the class, and gain strength from doing so—before you bare your skin to the world.

What about you? Are you ready to show people who you really are?  If you or someone you know wants to learn to how to write a nonfiction book, please contact us today!

 


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comfort books

National Read a Book Day-Find Your Comfort Book

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In honor of today’s National Read a Book Day, I hope you take some time to honor this holiday by curling up with your favorite book. Books provide comfort in so many ways. But what exactly makes a book a “comfort book?” The truth is, it depends on the person and their current circumstances or mood. A comfort book could be something that allows you to escape into a new world for a little while or a book that makes you laugh. For some people, comfort books are novels that whisk them away into a fictional world, while others prefer to delve into a memoir for real-life inspiration. If you are unsure of what book to grab for your next comfort read or today’s National Read a Book Day, consider a few of these options.

Re-reading

Re-reading an old favorite is a great place to start. Since you have already read the book, you’ll be familiar with thecomfort books characters and the plot, and familiarity is always a good thing to look for when you are in need of comfort. Re-reading also gives you a chance to experience the book in a new way, and makes it possible for a book that you didn’t previously consider a “comfort book” to become one. This BBC article points out that there is actually a science behind the comfort of re-reading:

Scientists have weighed in, too, citing the mental health benefits of re-reading. Research conducted with readers in the US and New Zealand found that on our first reading, we are preoccupied by the ‘what?’ and the ‘why?’. Second time round, we’re able to better savour the emotions that the plot continues to ignite. As researcher Cristel Russell of the American University explained of re-readers in an article published in the Journal of Consumer Research, returning to a book “brings new or renewed appreciation of both the object of consumption and their self.”

Allow yourself to get reacquainted with characters you love or a page-turner you tore through the first time. Try re-reading a series like Harry Potter or revisiting a classic such as Little Women. You can even head back to your childhood with favorites such as A Wrinkle in Time or Matilda.

Inspirational nonfiction books

Inspirational reads make great comfort books. Many people find that reading nonfiction helps them take a step back from their own life to see the world through someone else’s experiences and struggles. Stories of overcoming obstacles and survival could give you a new perspective on your current struggles. Self-help books and stories of big life changes can bring you a sense of calm and motivate you to improve your own life. Inspirational books become comfort books when the reader finds a story they need to hear.

Emotional rollercoaster fiction

Books that focus on tragedy, stressful situations, or dark topics may not seem like obvious choices for comfort books, but for many people, the gritty, dark stories are exactly what they need, especially when the books are fictional. Author Kameron Hurley discussed why when she feels overwhelmed by real-life problems, she turns to fictional books full of stressful, anxiety-inducing issues,

“But a fictional problem?

Somebody else is dealing with that. You’re just along for the ride.

It means you get to spend the whole ride actually feeling things, instead of buttoning it all back up so you can live.”

She goes onto say,

“Reading tragedies, I realized, connecting with characters who persevered in the face of grim odds, and certain ends – were actually comfort reading for me. They put me into high-stress situations with no personal stakes, so I could actually feel the fear and discomfort and rage and horror without having any skin in the game.”

Many people feel the same way as Hurley. For many, knowing that the book is fictional and will have to have some form of resolve is incredibly comforting. Escaping through a fictional tragedy can bring a strong sense of comfort and calm.

Find your comfort books

There is no set definition for a comfort book. It is simply a book that works for you at a particular time when you read it. When on the hunt for a good comfort read, consider what you want to get out of the book and what sort of story might be helpful for you in the moment. Let yourself get lost in a great book today and celebrate this wonderful holiday!


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It’s Labor Day-Enjoy These Nonfiction Books About America’s Labor Movement

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As someone who teaches people how to write a nonfiction book, I—like everyone—need a day off every now and then. But before you venture out for that last trip to the pool this weekend or enjoy some barbeque before back to school really kicks into gear, have you ever thought about the real meaning behind Labor Day? 

Labor Day was created because workers felt they were spending too much time on the job. In the 1830’s, a time when manufacturing ruled, workers averaged 70-hour work weeks! Yikes! They were overly exhausted and had no free time to spend with their family. These long working hours caused many union organizers to focus on winning a shorter eight-hour workday. They also focused on getting workers more days off, such as the Labor Day holiday, and reducing the workweek to just six days. (Source)

 So while you’re enjoying your well deserved day off today, take a moment to curl up with these nonfiction books to learn more about America’s Labor movement. I promise you’ll appreciate this holiday even more!

Great Nonfiction Reads About America’s Labor Movement

  1.  The Man Who Never Died: The Life, Times, and Legacy of Joe Hill, American Labor Icon, by William M. Adler

One of the most beloved and controversial figures in labor history, Hill was a Swedish immigrant, songwriter, and Industrial Workers of the World activist who was executed in 1915 for double murder. Adler’s biography of Hill posits what many of Hill’s admirers have said for a long time — that the activist was innocent of the slayings.

  1. There Is Power in a Union: The Epic Story of Labor in America, by Philip Dray

Dray’s history of the American labor union is certainly comprehensive — it’s more than 800 pages long, covering two centuries of labor history. He examines the importance of unions to the nation and looks at notable figures in the movement such as Mary Harris (“Mother”) Jones, Samuel Gompers, and Karen Silkwood.

  1. The Crusades of César Chávez: A Biography,  by Miriam Pawel

Former Times reporter Pawel won a California Book Award for her look at the life of Chávez, the labor activist and co-founder of the United Farm Workers. Her book is honest about Chávez’s dark side—he ruled his union with an iron fist and alienated a long string of friends and supporters—as well as his numerous accomplishments, bringing fieldworkers together against fierce opposition. (Source)

Enjoy this Labor Day holiday and celebrate your much deserved time off! And when your break is over,  join us for our next Group Coaching Class!


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Back To School Isn’t Just for the Kids

As a creator of book writing classes and the mother of two daughters, I can remember the bittersweet “back to school” season very well. I was secretly excited to return them to a structured routine, but I also missed having them with me. Time with my children was priceless. Both daughters are now grown with children of their own who are going back to school, and I imagine they’re feeling the same way too. There’s something about the “back to school” time that not only gets kids back to their school routine and learning, but it’s also a time for parents to think about their own “work” outside of their family. By work, I’m referring to your personal goals, dreams, and aspirations. Have you thought about your goals lately? If not, now’s the time.

Writing Your Book is Like Going to School

Writing your book is a lot like going to school. You have this major project that you work and work and work on, and you think you’ll never get finished, you’ll never get out of school. Then one day—voilà! It’s over! You have your book in hand, and you can start doing the other things you love again. The year it takes to write your book is going to pass anyway. You might as well have something to show for it. I assume that you’re a busy professional and you’re not looking for extra things to do. Life is busy enough with work, but when you layer on the more important things like faith and family, there’s no wiggle room, no gaps where you can sneak in a major project like taking a book writing class to learn how to write your book. And yet it’s something you want to do. You want to make a difference.

You Have the Time

You actually have the time to do the things you want to do—if you make those things a priority You just have to change your attitude. It would be ridiculous, of course, to think that you’re going to drop everything or possibly even quit your job take a book writing class to write your book. That wouldn’t be healthy or wise. But it’s not unreasonable to expect you to shift your schedule for the next year to make the project a priority.

You can’t create time, but you can capture pockets of it and repurpose its use. Don’t get me wrong. Your life is going to be busy, perhaps busier than you like. But if you simply get up an hour earlier each day, or commit your lunch hour to your book, or give up a TV show to write, you can absolutely accomplish this, step by step by step. Just like there’s a season for going to school, there’s a season for writing your book. But it’s only a season. You must adopt this mindset.

What are you waiting for?  The kids are back to school so now it’s time for you to get back to writing your book.  Contact us today and we can help you take the next step!


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