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36 minutes | Jan 16, 2022
Polygamist’s Daughter Anna Lebaron on How She Wrote Her Memoir
Anna LeBaron was born into a polygamist cult. She endured the unimaginable: abandonment, horrific living conditions, child labor, and sexual grooming. At 13, she escaped to a new life, though it took decades for her to recover. In our interview, Anna discusses the process of writing her memoir and how she used a professional editor to help her create the scenes for her story. Anna gives practical insights for new writers, such as how she protected both the guilty and the innocent in masking the personalities in her story. If you aspire to write narrative nonfiction, you'll come away motivated to start your project today!
48 minutes | Jan 2, 2022
Jennifer Risher on her 14-Year Memoir Writing Journey
There's a ancient saying that money is not so much the problem; it's the love of money that causes the trouble. There's another truth about the topic: It's really hard to write about money - specifically, your money. And yet, that is exactly what Jennifer Risher does in "We Need to Talk: A Memoir about Wealth." She and her husband became what only can be described as an "ultra high net worth" family through their stock options from Microsoft and Amazon. In this interview, Jen inspires all of us as she describes her 14-year writing journey of rejections, rewrites, and, ultimately, publication. In her memoir, she writes beautifully about a tough subject with candor, warmth, and humility.
40 minutes | Dec 19, 2021
Executive Coach Rose Hollister on Train Time and Writing with a Co-Author
Life is not easily broken down into writing segments. Executive Coach Rose Hollister made time for writing while commuting into Chicago from her home in the western suburbs. Rose runs a coaching and consulting practice and has written for the Harvard Business Review and MIT Sloan Management Review. She has also written a book for young adults who've just landed their first corporate job called "Nobody Told Me: 129 Unwritten Rules for Career Success." In this interview Rose discusses "train time" and how she works with co-authors on her writing projects. She also explains how she uses her publishing to promote her consulting practice.
49 minutes | Dec 5, 2021
Virtual Assistant Kaitlyn Bouchillon on Creating a Book Launch Team
There are at least three distinct phases in launching a book into the world. The second phase is the six-week to three-month window when the book is released. It's when your book is new news. Kaitlyn Bouchillon has built a business as a virtual assistant helping authors launch their books. Her focus is on creating and managing book launch teams. In this interview, Kaitlyn explains the role of a book launch team and how to set one up. She also offers up tips and hacks to make sure your team promotes your book to the largest audience possible.
40 minutes | Nov 22, 2021
Bookbaby.com President Steven Spatz on the Power of Self Publishing Your Book
Gone are the days when the phrase "self-published" referred to a second-rate book. Today, many authors choose the self-publishing route because it gives them control over their book rights, a faster time to market, and a higher margin per book. Bookbaby.com has ridden the self-publishing trend to become one of the largest book services companies in the world. In this interview with Bookbaby.com president Steven Spatz, he provides an overview of the self-publishing journey while offering some practical tools for book promotion. He also identifies the one area where many authors fall down when self-publishing.
40 minutes | Nov 9, 2021
Literary Agent Adria Goetz Thinks You‘re Not Persistent Enough as a Writer
Positive, warm, and encouraging - three qualities not typically associated with literary agents. But literary agent Adria Goetz exemplifies all three. In this practical interview, Adria explains her process for sorting through all the queries she receives by email. She also discusses how to pitch your book to agents via Twitter and how she discovers new writers through the social media platform. She argues for the importance of researching books similar to yours before you pitch an agent and explains how she works with an author. And yes, she thinks you should send your query to more than twenty literary agents.
49 minutes | Oct 24, 2021
HarperCollins Executive Editor Mickey Maudlin on the Elements of a Great Memoir
What, exactly, is a memoir? Is it simply a great story? Or is it a style of writing that addresses a larger theme? Yes. In this practical interview with Mickey Maudlin, Senior VP and Executive Editor at HarperCollins, he distinquishes between memoir as a genre and memoir as a writing style. He also helps aspiring writers ask a basic question, "Why would someone buy my memoir?" A few authors might be able to engage readers by telling a good story, but most will need to have something to say over and above their experience.
47 minutes | Oct 4, 2021
How Patrick Gray and Justin Skeesuck Co-Wrote Their Memoir, ”I‘ll Push You”
How do two authors write one memoir? Patrick Gray and Justin Skeesuck co-wrote ”I‘ll Push You,” and their awards for the memoir speak for themselves. The book chronicles not just their unique journey on the Camino de Santiago, a 500-mile trek through Spain, but the lifetime friendship of Patrick and Justin, who suffers from a neuromuscular disease that has robbed him of the use of his arms and legs. In this episode, the authors describe their writing process and help aspiring memoir writers on how to create a strong story architecture.
34 minutes | Sep 19, 2021
The Ways and Means of a Literary Book Agent
"How do I find a literary book agent?" is one of the most common questions of aspiring writers. In this episode with literary agent Don Gates, founder of The Gates Group, he identifies the three C's that agents seek in a new author: Concept, Crowd, and Content. In other words, the book concept needs to rock, the author must have a following or some means to distribute the book, and he or she also needs to write in a compelling way. Gates also discusses the importance of referrals and how agents often find new authors through the referral of an existing author whom they manage.
51 minutes | Sep 13, 2021
How Curiosity Makes Your Writing Memorable
Unless you are writing a textbook, curiosity is what makes your writing memorable. It all starts with the questions that you ask of others. More specifically, the follow-up questions that evoke emotion, stories, and insights. You also want to be curious of your ideas as you write, asking, "Why do I really believe that?" In this episode, we discuss the role of curiosity and how it raises the quality of your writing.
34 minutes | Sep 6, 2021
The 6 Writing Discipline Models
A few of you rise before dawn, run 10 miles, and write 1,500 words - all before 7 AM. Bully for you. The rest of us, however, structure our lives a bit differently. In this episode, we identify the six models of writing discipline. The first is the aforementioned Early Riser model, and the second is the "Edge of the Toilet Seat" model. The goal is to find a writing discipline model that works for you. We hope you find encouragement in this episode as you seek to fit writing into the white spaces and seams of your life.
35 minutes | Aug 31, 2021
How to Start Writing a Book
There are a thousand clichés about how to take the first step of a long journey. But they all have one thing in common: you have to start. In this episode, we offer up a series of tips for taking that first step, including the importance of fighting through and overcoming the so-called imposter syndrome. At some point, no matter how insecure we feel, the only way to overcome our emotion is the physical act of writing something down. We hope you come away encouraged and the inspiration to sit down and write that first sentence.
46 minutes | Aug 30, 2021
What Magazines Teach Us about Writing Well
The golden era of magazines is a distant memory. Part of their demise was the Internet, which flooded the world with free content. Even today, however, magazines feature some of the best writing for a variety of reasons. In this episode, we identify five lessons from magazines that can help you improve your book writing. One of those is the hook or angle of every article in a magazine. Each article begins with a hook that grabs you by the collar and refuses to let go until you read the article.
33 minutes | Aug 15, 2021
5 Hacks When You're Lost Writing a Chapter
You're not a writer if you've never been absolutely lost while working on a piece, whether a blog, an article, or, especially, the chapter of a book. Writing is thinking in motion. You may have not thought about your idea in this way before, until you laid down that sentence. In this episode, we offer up what amounts to five writing hacks to help you find your way once you've become lost. One hack is to go back to your thesis for the article or chapter: What is your topic? And what do you want to say about that topic? And, ultimately, how does the thesis of this chapter support the overall book idea? When you're lost, it's time to strip it all back a bit.
39 minutes | Aug 8, 2021
Prenup Book Author Emily Bouchard on How She Lands Media Interviews
Emily Bouchard's approach to landing media interviews for her book was quite simple. She reached out to a journalist and asked for one. She didn't know how to create a press release, so she googled it. And then created one. Seems like we all can do that! Emily is a Family Dynamics Coach to ultra high net worth families, and author of "Estate Planning for the Blended Family" and "Beginner's Guide to Purposeful Prenups." Emily didn't let what she didn't know stop her. Her persistence and tenacity give hope to writers who are starting from scratch.
46 minutes | Aug 1, 2021
An Introduction to Writing a Memoir
The reasons for writing a memoir are many. Some write to understand their past; others share truths from their past to help others. Still others write memoirs as a way of preserving their family history. In this episode, we introduce the topic of writing a memoir and identify five basic elements to keep in mind when starting out to write one. Every person has a story to tell. It's how you tell the story that makes it a memoir.
55 minutes | Jul 14, 2021
A.C.T.S. - the 4 Essential Elements of Writing a Great Story
Story. Story. Story. No one argues with the idea that stories are one of the primary ways we communicate as humans. It's one thing to enjoy a great story. And quite another to write a great one. In this interview with Steve Mathewson, author of "Art of Preaching Old Testament Narratives," he lays out the four essential elements of writing a great story. He also discusses the importance of "strategic delay" - creating tension in your story. He says that when the tension is gone, your story is over, whether your done telling it or not.
52 minutes | Jul 4, 2021
Tech Founder Dave Parker on the Whacky Economics of Book Publishing and Promotion
It can never be about the money. No realistic financial model for book publishing exists, unless of course, you hit the lottery with your first. In this episode, tech founder and book writer Dave Parker applies start-up thinking to writing, publishing, and promoting his book, Trajectory Startup: Ideation to Product/Market Fit. Our interview with Dave is realistic yet practical. The time is now to get back to your laptop. And buckle up and write.
37 minutes | Jun 27, 2021
5 Ways to Overcome Your Writing Self Doubt
Self-doubt is the constant road companion of the writer, and especially of the aspiring writer. Self-doubt can be paralyzing. Contribute to procrastination. Even derail the writing journey altogether. In this episode, we discuss at length the shadow of self doubt and how aspiring writers can step into the light and overcome their self-doubt. The only way through the self-doubt is the act of writing. Doing the work itself goes a long ways towards dispelling the shadows.
47 minutes | Jun 10, 2021
Book Publicity Expert Andrea Martin on Arresting the Attention of Media for Your Book
When your book is launched, you've got about three months. And then your book becomes old news. Your publisher moves on. So does the media. And then the long slog to promote your book begins. In this episode, we interview Tyndale Publishers author relations director Andrea Martin on how to stay focused when the promotions don't go as planned. You'll come away encouraged to keep pressing on and to come up with creative ways to tell the story of your book.
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