Over the years, I’ve helped several authors take short nonfiction they’d already written and see if it could be shaped into a book. It’s been fun for me because I love seeing people get excited about new ways to share information with the world.
Since I’ve just finished helping another nonfiction writer created a book out of his existing material, I thought it would be useful to create a podcast episode out of my thoughts on the matter. It’s a bit long – I can’t seem to turn off my teaching brain! 😀 – but it’s good material for anyone who’s been thinking about turning their blog into a book. I hope it helps! Good luck!
I’ve been attending the Malmö International Rotary Club for the last few months, and in November I gave an “ego speech.” It sounds a little too self-centered to be comfortable 🙂 but it’s basically a “getting to know you” speech.
I wanted to share the real Kitty, but I still didn’t want it to center on me. Then I realized I could do with the speech what I try to do with my podcast episodes, and even in my fiction: encourage the audience in their own lives. Interestingly, I found myself veering slightly from my notes in the end and telling the club that I was thinking about starting a new project to better use my gifts…but it would be scary and I hadn’t had the courage to take the leap yet.
Here’s the speech. If you’re thinking about starting something new, or even if you’re just planning your work for next year, I hope it encourages you. Let me know what you think.
I’m a planner and an organizer. I like to know what to expect, how much time it will take, how much it will cost or earn me, and what I’ll need in order to get it done. I’m also big on reminders – remember to water the plants, take my vitamins, leave for the meeting on time.
In the past, I’ve juggled all sorts of ways to keep track of all the aspects of my life, and it usually involved several different methods at once. But last year I heard about author Susan May Warren‘s My Brilliant Writing Planner, so I ordered one. I love this planner! I can put everything from my whole life in one place – writing, appointments, To Do’s (including remembering when to water my plants 😂), tracking money spent and earned in writing, and personal stuff like a place to jot down weekly menus and track my weight and water consumption. Plus the 2020 one has STICKERS!! Need I say more?!
The 2020 planner is $20 off through this weekend as a NaNoWriMo special. If you’re reading this later, check it out anyway. There is so much more to the planner I haven’t mentioned. You may find it’s just about perfect for you.
I interviewed Susie May about planning and organizing for the new year on my podcast a few weeks ago. Look for the October 17, 2019 episode, #159, on your favorite podcast app, or listen to it on my website, or watch the video interview on YouTube. Good luck with your planning! 😀
I was out buying an electric blanket yesterday (it’s winter in New Zealand) and I passed by a rack of blank books and journals that were on sale. I can’t not stop when I see pretty journals despite the fact I haven’t yet used all the ones I have. So I paused and looked them over and what do you know, one of them caught my attention.
If you’ve seen any of the pictures I’ve been posting on Facebook, you know I live in a spectacularly beautiful area with amazing sunrises and sunsets. And this journal reminded me of the view right outside my front window. But more than that, the title really spoke to me.
Not just “start” or “do it now” or “get moving” but it seemed to say, “jump in, even if you don’t know how deep the water is.”
That’s a little scary, and that’s exactly why I sometimes procrastinate doing things I want to do. I know the wisdom of “count the cost” and I don’t think it’s a good idea to jump into something when you don’t know how long it will take or how much it will cost. Not unless you have plenty of time and money, and who does?
I’ve been talking about starting my own podcast for two years or more, and I’ve done a lot of research on what podcasting entails. I’m excited about it. I know what topics I’m going to cover and the format the show will take. I have all the right equipment and software. But I haven’t put a start date on it yet because, as usual, I never know when I’m suddenly going to up and move (husband’s job). I’m scared I’ll get started and suddenly find myself out of time and behind in my schedule and disappointing my listeners.
I bought the journal. I’m starting my podcast now by getting the information in my head written down. Step 1 on the journey.
The blank pages are calling out to me, offering excitement and adventure. And you know what’s doubly exciting about that to me? That’s what I want my podcast to do for my listeners. I want to encourage people to get started, to keep going, to see the hardship as part of the adventure, to understand that trepidation grows along the sides of every new path.
Hopefully, I won’t release the first episode or two and find myself in the middle of another round-the-world move. But I’ve got lots of blank pages here to fill with ideas on how to manage the work despite a potential move.
Some writers hate the blank page, the blinking cursor. But something about journals begs you to fill the pages. Now. With something. Maybe you’ve got a beautiful blank journal sitting around that you forgot about. Go find it. See if the pages call out to you like this one does to me.
Write down your ideas.
Begin your adventure.
Many of us are wrapping up the summer, vacations, and watching or helping students go back to school. It’s one of those natural times of year to see what else we want to accomplish in the last few months, and figure out the best way to accomplish our goals.
I teach a time management class most January’s, and I help people do all they can to accomplish the tasks they set for themselves. But this past year or so, I’ve been very careful about not helping you to the point where you burn out, too. One of the things that can help is planned time off. I marked last Sunday off my calendar specifically to have no plans. It was blissful! So in addition to planning some time off, we also want to plan the most important things we want to get done before year’s end.
You can plan forward – how much time do you have each day or week, and how much can you get done in that time. Or plan backwards – what do you need to get done, and how many hours a day or week will be necessary to do so. Planners can also be a big help.
Check out Susan May Warren’s My Brilliant Writing Planner for a discount on the 2019 version, and a discount when preordering the 2020 one. Susie May will be on the show again in a few weeks to tell you about all the new updates in next year’s planner.
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