Beauty Within All Generations

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The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

I recently edited a chapter of a book for an writer who is involved in a collaborative effort of publishing a Christian book. She asked me whether I was working on writing any new publications of my own.

“Yes,” I said, “Actually, I have finished writing my first piece of fiction and am hoping to have it published in the near future. First I need to have it professionally edited (yes, everyone needs editors). I have a deadline for the project but as you know as a person who is involved in an independent publishing project, funds are needed up front. Not quite sure if I can get it all together. I’d put the book in the genre of women’s fiction. It’s about relationships between friends.”

friendship-66v“I like those kinds of stories. Don’t you find that your friendships with women become more important as you age? Many of my friends I have had since I was young have become even more meaningful to me than they ever were.” she asked.

“Yes, definitely,” I said, “but I like being around with people of all ages.” Great wisdom comes from our elders and also from young children. In their naïveté they have candid and truthful things to say.

Interesting how divine life is designed, isn’t it?

This blog is brought to you by the author of the EVVY award-winning book Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

 

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Rise and Meet the Moment

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Whoever wants to reach a distant goal must take many small steps. – Helmut Schmidt

I’ve had memoir writing on my mind lately since I gave a presentation on the topic on Monday. When you think about it, our whole life is comprised of stories we tell.

The internet has changed the way we tell our stories. Words and images are now so easily shared through digital platforms, such as by publishing e-books. If you know how to use social media effectively, marketing e-books is made easy.  If properly “indexed,” finding your target market is no longer like taking a shot in the dark.

To further explore my path of thinking, the other day I was looking in our kitchen cabinets for something portable to put in my backpack to stuff my mouth with. I came across a box of Blueberry Crisp Clif ® Bars that I didn’t know we even had.

Hiking ArtistI noticed the verbiage on the packaging “No. 14 Adventure Challenge ‘Embrace the Uphill’ then followed the words “Share Your Adventure #MeettheMoment.”

The point is, we all have dreams, adventures and challenges in life and careers. If you are working on an  independent publishing project and don’t know how to use digital platforms effectively to draw people who are truly qualified leads, social media can be a big time waster.

There are companies who specialize in e-commerce and e-marketing for independent publishers. “Embrace the Uphill,” as Clif ® Bar suggests. Don’t shirk away from challenges. Get help if you need it in order to finish your writing and publishing project. There is no shame in that!

I can tell you as a published author that the feelings of accomplishment that come with having a published book far, far exceeds what having unfinished manuscript feels like. Every step, big and small, was well worth the effort in feelings of personal fulfillment.

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard. For more information on her book Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

 

 

Spinning Yarns

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The key to a healthy society is a thriving community of storytellers.” ~ Franco Sacchi

Yesterday our blog was about New Year’s resolutions, and the need for Americans to add PLAY MORE to their list of priorities for 2013. “Play more” means something different to everyone, depending on our own interests and hobbies.

growingbookLast fall I enrolled in a creative writing course, just for the fun of it. I enjoyed it immensely; it was enlightening. As a result of the class, I feel as if my brain has been fertilized and my garden pot of memories has sprouted and grown. I have thoughts that would be rewarding to share with others, in a way that never occurred to me before. Funny, how that has happened.

I made a decision for myself this morning.  Creative Writing II has been added to my “to do” list this winter. I have an independent publishing project I’m pondering; I wish to work through it, with the guidance of a skilled writing professor.

Finding inspiration is not always easy, but, researchers say that the more we create, our minds become more open and receptive to invention, ingenuity and artistry. I suppose this explains why “mad scientists” who come up with one great idea to patent, often go on to explore and invent other key concepts to copyright. Authors, after writing one book, often find the motivation to continue, and write a second.

 Imagination How Creativity WorksImagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer addresses how many factors in our lives  nurture creativity.Click for more info & ordering

There is an interesting review in Psychology Today magazine that both questions and validates what Lehrer says in his book. To read the article, please visit this link. http://bit.ly/W7A4xh.

There is also a good article for writers and artists on how to stay inspired. http://bit.ly/YlZKaS.  Many people who live long, fulfilling lives attribute satisfying lives to the fact that they never stop growing and learning. Is there something you have always wanted do but haven’t dared to? Perhaps 2013 should be the year to pursue it.

This blog brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, author of Gift of a Lifetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected

End of the Year Reflections

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We are the creative force of our life, and through our own decisions rather than through our conditions, if we carefully learn to do certain things, we accomplish goals.” ~ Stephen Covey

It is getting toward the end of year and we all know what that means – reflecting on the past year and setting goals for the coming.

Over the past year, it has been so very gratifying to have worked with a variety of authors consulting on selling publications through e-commerce and steering them with internet marketing strategies and direction. I’ve had the opportunity to learn of unique independent publishing projects, and meet authors who have creative minds and stories. It is extremely fulfilling work.

What I love about independent publishing is the vision people have for their projects and their ability to carry out those visions because the only “gatekeeper” is their own power of motivation, creativity and inspiration. “Independent publishing types” understand Napoleon Hill’s philosophy that “what the mind can conceive, it can achieve!”

My involvement with the Colorado Independent Publishers Association, http://www.cipabooks.com also grants me a chance to work with associate service providers who are so knowledgeable about what they do – from editors, to e-book formatters, cover designers, indexers, to copyright experts, traditional book promotion companies, proofreaders, legal experts in publishing issues and so much more.

decisionLast week, when I was walking about Steamboat celebrating my landmark day of 1,000 blogs that I had written on All Things Fulfilling, I made a decision for myself about this coming year. I am rather excited about it. Come on back tomorrow and I will tell you more about it.

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Honest Assessment of DYI Publishing

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Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” ~ Thomas Jefferson 

As a follow-up to yesterday’s blog Goals and Objectives in Publishing, there are more questions that you should ask yourself before embarking on an independent publishing project. Your response to the questions may very well help you control the financial outlay and  determine the costs, too. 

For some (such as for those wanting to publish for family and friends and not wishing to commercially sell their publications) an independent publishing project can be do it yourself. Researching the steps and deciding what parts you can do yourself and what parts you need to seek professional help with, is an important task in and of its self. 

  • Are you equipped with good computer skills to tackle DIY publishing?
  • Do you have time to engage in the process?
  • Are you a self-motivated person?
  • Do you finish what you start?
  • Would you find satisfaction in learning the process? 

If you can answer “yes” to most of these questions, perhaps DIY would be for you, thus reducing your need for professional help.          E-books are one of the best options for a Do It Yourselfer! Some of the process involves choosing and using templates, thus simplifying steps and reducing costs. 

Making decisions that are right for YOUR goals and objectives will reduce some of the frustration and will cut-down on an outlay of unnecessary financial resources. Research, compare and ask yourself those very necessary questions before you start down the path to independently publishing. Talking with others about their experience regarding the right and wrong decisions they made will give you information that may help you too.

This blog brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com.