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The Life Story Coach Podcast
51 minutes | Sep 18, 2019
69: Sex, Intimacy, and Life Story Books
Should we ask our life story clients about their sex life? If yes, how? Karin Jones believes sex and intimacy are a big part of our lives, and she challenges personal historians to gently explore this topic with their storytelling clients. Links & Stuff Karin's controversial article appeared in New York Times' "Modern Love" column. "What Sleeping With Married Men Taught Me About Infidelity" Find Karin Jones' bimonthly column, "Savvy Love," at the Erotic Review Magazine, or on her Savvy Love blog at https://www.savvy-love.com/blog. Follow Karin on Twitter: @mskarinjones Curious about Esther Perel? Read about her fascinating story, then check out her TEDTalk below.
28 minutes | Sep 12, 2019
68: Audio Life Stories with Gloria Nussbaum of Real to Real, Part 2
Gloria Nussbaum of Real to Real, a personal history company that produces audio projects, talks equipment, prices, and more. Gloria's website: https://www.real-to-reel.org/ Gloria's Equipment List
32 minutes | Sep 5, 2019
67: Audio Life Stories with Gloria Nussbaum of Real to Real, Part 1
Personal historian Gloria Nussbaum captures clients' voices and stories on audio recordings. She tells us why it's important and how she does it. Gloria's website:https://www.real-to-reel.org/ Gloria's Audio Equipment List
37 minutes | Aug 15, 2019
66: Lisa Kagan of Family Heirloom Arts, Part 2
Illustrated Heirloom Books, and What Goes into Creating Them In this episode, we're going back to the first part of our conversation with Lisa Kagan. As an artist and writer, Lisa is fascinated by the intersection of visual art and storytelling. She brings all her gifts to bear on the illustrated heirloom books her company produces, allowing the clients a chance to become intimately involved in the creation of the words and images of their life story book. She also talks about: connecting to her community as an artist and creative, and how that has helped her organically grow her business contracting other personal history professionals for editing, book design, production, and more the elements of her initial sales conversations If you missed the first part of our conversation, where Lisa talks about her workshops and retreats, you can find that here. Links & Stuff Family Heirloom Arts Website Book Designer Emily Garcia Workshop Offerings Upcoming September Retreat: Self Portrait of the Inner Landscape, Exploring Personal Mythology Through Writing and Mask Making
36 minutes | Aug 9, 2019
65: Workshops with Lisa Kagan of Family Heirloom Arts
Workshops serve clients and creatives, and help to build a personal history business Family Heirloom Arts offers the usual range of services to its personal history clients: interviewing, writing, editing, photo management. But its founder and owner, Lisa Kagan, takes things a step further by inviting clients to create their own personalized artwork to illustrate their books. That's just one of the things that makes Family Heirloom Arts unique. In this interview, we talk about: Lisa's roster of workshops and retreats, and how she leverages established organizations such as the library to market them the difference between outcome-based and process-based workshops and retreats how fans of her workshops sometimes turn into personal history clients a good place to start if you're just getting going with workshops We also talked about Family Heirloom Art's upcoming weekend retreat, Self Portrait of the Inner Landscape: Exploring Personal Mythology Through Writing and Mask Making Links & Stuff Family Heirloom Arts Website Workshop Offerings Upcoming September Retreat: Self Portrait of the Inner Landscape, Exploring Personal Mythology Through Writing and Mask Making
39 minutes | Jul 25, 2019
64: Write a Local Column to Market Your Business, with Lisa Lombardi O’Reilly
Marketing with a local newspaper column and more Lisa Lombard O'Reilly of Your Stories Written joins us for a conversation about personal history. Listen as we discuss: Lisa's experience writing her dad's life story book using Kindle Direct Publishing for cheap proof copies and supplying friends with print-on-demand books Lisa's monthly column on personal history for Coastal View, a local print publication Lisa approached the publisher of Coastal View after attending a workshop given by Annie Payne, a colleague out of Australia. Annie gave expert advice on mastering your community and becoming the go-to personal historian. Lisa also talked about being featured on a blog post by a woman with an historical press. Clairitage Press specializes in local history, with titles written by Karen Dustman. Read the article here or here. If you want more ideas about writing local history, check out Episode 47 with Patricia Hamilton. Links & Stuff Find Lisa Lombari O'Reilly at her website, Your Stories Written Karen Dustman's Clairitage Press Check out the book she did about her dad:
35 minutes | Jul 22, 2019
63: Lettice Stuart, Part 2
Part 2 of our interview with Lettice Stuart, Portraits in Words Join us for an insightful conversation about the business of personal history and the art of interviewing. In this episode, Lettice discusses: how much she charges for life story projects, and how that number has grown through the years a clever pre-meeting tactic that gets Lettice into the right frame of mind for that always-difficult money conversation with clients [Correction: with this technique, it doesn't have to be diffult!] how, when, and why to bring in outside editing help working with a partner the extreme importance of listening, no matter how you do it best [Knitting optional] Links & Stuff You can find Lettice Stuart at Portraits in Words Other episodes mentioned: 29: Rutger Bruining of Story Terrace 53: Part 1, Christine Norton Helps Life Story Writers Get Up and Running 54: Christine Norton, Part 2
30 minutes | Jul 11, 2019
62: Lettice Stuart of Portraits in Words
Lettice Stuart on Personal History, Part I Lettice Stuart was a journalist with stories in the New York Times when she shifted to writing life stories. While her writing credentials helped give her credibility, it was good old-fashioned conversations with people that grew her business. In part one of the interview, we discuss: the importance of talking about your personal history work in any social situation, and why it's easy how and why to contact groups looking for speakers what to include when you give a public presentation We also talk about why family members may not be capable of getting to the same stories that personal historians do. And what a magical moment it is when you see the light go on in the storyteller's eyes: the book is important, the telling of the stories even more so. In our next episode, Part 2 with Lettice Stuart Stay tuned for the second half of our conversation with Lettice, where Lettice shares how much she charges for her life story books, how she prepares for the money conversation with clients, working with outside editors, and more. Links & Stuff You can find Lettice Stuart at Portraits in Words Want to hear more about the art of interviewing? Check out Episode 3: How to conduct a great interview
49 minutes | Jun 10, 2019
61: Family Legacy Video founder Steve Pender
For Steve Pender, personal history comes alive in Legacy Video When Steve Pender started his legacy video company years ago, it wasn't to produce videos, but rather to teach DIYers how to make their own. Then technology changed. You still needed the know-how and the artistic flair to produce top-quality videos, but you no longer needed the big commercial studio. That's when Steve pivoted to do what he loved most: create compelling, beautiful legacy videos. Give them options I shape the production to fit the client's wants and needs." Steve uses a winning strategy when he sits down with potential clients for the sales meeting. Instead of shooting out a price right away, he asks lots of questions, then goes back to work up a proposal, complete with costs. He believes in giving the client options: a price for what they said they wanted, and a fallback option that's less expensive. His packages start at $7,500 for a Q&A-style basic video, and increase to $20-25K and up for more deluxe packages. These premium videos include music, archival footage, and more. Listen as Steve talks about: traveling to Italy to shoot as his client visits his ancestral home how Family Legacy Video was featured in the AARP Bulletin Steve's appearance on a local TV show [hint: This was a PR move any of us can use!] how using a freebie as a lead generator can build your email list how the Rotary helped launch his business A short clip of Steve's legacy shoot in Italy: Links & Stuff Family Legacy Video website
44 minutes | May 30, 2019
60: Starts at 60 Founder Rebecca Wilson
Baby Boomers Get Their Own Media Platform in Australia This week's episode isn't about the life story profession per se, but about connecting with the Baby Boomer generation, what their needs and wants are, and how one woman built a media platform catering specifically to this underserved market. Rebecca Wilson was a marketing specialist when she put two and two together. First, the Baby Boomers—those roughly 60 years old and up—were being ignored by marketers and the companies whose products and services they touted. Second, the Baby Boomers in Australia (and it's not much different here in the US) hold the purse strings in terms of assets and consumer spending. That translates into a market of people looking for the things they want and ready to spend money to get it, but not finding it online. Enter Starts at 60. Starts at 60 coffee group With a $40 template and a hypothesis, Rebecca set out to change this. She invited people to submit there blog stories and was astounded by the response. Not only did people want to be heard, they wanted to be engaging with the others on her newly-minted site. Word grew, contributors multiplied, and Rebecca's idea took off. In six short years, Starts at 60 has grown to a platform with a million and a half visitors per month. They've also launched a travel arm, Travel at 60, where they can bring the best value in travel offers to an audience hungry to pack their suitcases and go. Now Starts at 60 is looking toward markets outside the US, and there's room for us life story professionals to leverage the systems they've already built. The idea I like best is starting monthly coffee groups. Maybe it's because I saw how lonely my dad was after my mom died. Maybe it's because as a waitress in my teens, I saw how the people who lingered over coffee after dinner seemed to be the best conversationalists, the ones I liked to eavesdrop on as I cleared away their plates (and ashtrays; yes, this was a long time ago!). And what better way to get people interested in preserving their life story than getting them talking about it over coffee, in a safe place among new friends? In this episode, we also discuss: the need to find a group of people with similar mindset, especially after a transition like retirement how Baby Boomers, like the rest of us, want a hybrid experience of online and off-line the importance of building and safeguarding trust among clients or in a community how storytellers of all ages are turning to online research when looking for services (Hint: Have your website and Facebook page up to snuff!) why Baby Boomers make great storytellers (let me know what you think about my new slogan: More wrinkles, better stories). and more. Links & Things Visit Starts at 60 Want to get your client a byline and possibly feedback? Contact Starts at 60 about blog submissions. Establish a Starts at 60 coffee group in your area
35 minutes | May 24, 2019
59: Mike O’Krent of LifeStories Alive, Part 2
Running and growing a video life story business This is part 2 of our interview with Mike O'Krent (listen to part 1 here). In this episode, you'll hear Mike talk about public speaking and how it can grow the public's awareness of our services. (Hint: Check out Toastmasters for improving your speaking skill and spreading the word about your services) the power of seeking out influential people and connectors in your community how to ask for referrals and virtual introductions (via email) how being humble can hurt—read Mike's article, "Being Humble is Nothing to Brag About" listening with your whole body (check out this TED Talk with Evelyn Glennie) speaking at family business programs Mike's TEDx Talk It wasn't easy, but Mike made his dream come true: After sending out over 60 pitches, he landed a spot on the TEDx stage in Wilmington. One of the key factors was enlisting the help of Taylor Conroy of The Idea Collective, a company that helps people "land the talk, do the talk, spread the talk." Mike's video for Beldon Roofing Beldon Group of Companies video (short version) from Mike OKrent on Vimeo. Mike's TEDx Talk Links & Stuff Mike's company, LifeStories Alive, LLC Toastmasters USC Shoah Foundation Listen to our interviews with Rich Polt, episode 55 and 56.
24 minutes | May 14, 2019
58: Mike O’Krent of LifeStories Alive on Personal History Videos, Part 1
How volunteering for Steven Spielberg sparked a career saving stories (This is part 1 of our interview with Mike O'Krent. Listen to part 2 here.) Mike O'Krent was volunteering for an organization in Austin when he learned about Survivors of the Shoah, a foundation created by Steven Spielberg to interview and record the stories of Holocaust survivors. His training in L.A. set him up for successful interviews with survivors in Texas. In an article by Rich Polt (a previous guest on this podcast), Mike says, “These conversations are not going to be easy, nor should they be. In some cases, you’ll be asking loved ones to recall events and memories that have long been dormant. That’s OK. Don’t shy away from asking the hard questions.” Don’t shy away from asking the hard questions." Mike's work with the Shoah Foundation helped him discover his passion for interviewing people and helping them save their story. Today, he runs LifeStories Alive, LLC, a video company that documents the stories of individuals, non-profits, and businesses. Links & Stuff Mike's company, LifeStories Alive, LLC USC Shoah Foundation
58 minutes | May 3, 2019
57: Maureen Taylor, Photo Detective
Photos contain hidden clues, and Maureen Taylor knows how to find them. Maureen Taylor's early career as a curator exposed her to lots of photos. But it wasn't until she opened shop as a photo historian that she discovered just how many unidentified photos people have. Frequent questions she hears: Who is in the photo? What is happening in the photo? Where was the photo taken? Rachel Rifkin's photo experiment Rachel Rifkin, a fellow personal historian, posted photos of herself alongside images of her relatives. Donning similar clothing and mimicking the subject in the old photos, she bore a strong resemblance to her relatives—including a bearded man from yesteryear. Click on photo to see Rachel's post. Patterns Change perspective to see the unseen in photos. That's where the big reveals come in. Not everyone can see faces; not everyone can see details. Some people suffer from "face-blindness," the inability to differentiate the faces they see. Go here and scroll down to find the quiz, "Are you a super-recognizer?" Maureen does her detective work on my family photos Links & Stuff Visit Maureen's website View Maureen's photo detective courses The Burns Archive, a collection of post-mortem photos Listen to The Photo Detective Podcast on iTunes or watch on Maureen's YouTube channel And just because it's so fun, take a look at her video on hairstyles through the years: Maureen's books:
40 minutes | Apr 26, 2019
56: Rich Polt of Acknowledge Media, Part 2
Recording and Editing Video Legacy Stories In part 1 of this episode, Rich Polt talked about the lead-up to recording day. Today, he breaks down exactly what happens when he and his crew show up to film the storyteller. He also discusses phase 3 of the process: editing the footage. When he first started Acknowledge Media, Rich spent hours teaching himself Adobe Premiere Pro. But while he sees the need to have the skills that are foundational to the projects he creates, he recognizes that his team of videographers (including Jordan Freeman), editors, archival producers, and media directors are better suited to the technical side of things, while he handles the rest of it: new business development, sales, marketing, HR, and, of course, the most important task of all—conducting the interviews. Backed by a solid (and growing) team, Rich makes sure that all the projects are up to his standards, with each undergoing a final pass by him before being delivered to the client. Types of Projects Rich's offerings have grown over the years, and now include three distinct packages: a 3-4 hour narrative, including all footage shot a showcase, including the above 3-4 hours plus a 5-6 minute highlight reel a feature, including both products above, plus a highly edited documentary film with music score, b-roll footage, archival assets, and more. Gear When he began, Rich and his videographer used two DSLR cameras and lav mics on all. Today, they've switched to two high-end video cameras and a boom mic for the storytellers. My biggest surprise? When Rich said that a beginner can get great results with two iPhone cameras. It won't be the same quality as what he produces, but it's the listening and questioning skills you bring to the interview that will define your core value, not the high-tech gadgetry. (Hint: Two cameras, no matter what kind you use, will give you far greater results than just one.) Rich also spoke frankly about his prices: where he started, what he charges now, how those prices will likely rise in the future. The important thing is to make your prices reflect the quality of your work. And then, of course, identify the market willing to pay for that exceptional quality. You can find part one of our interview here. Bonus: We didn't mention this in the podcast, but if you want to know what a great email newsletter looks like, check out how Rich does it here. Better yet, subscribe to his newsletter. Links & Stuff Acknowledge Media
49 minutes | Apr 17, 2019
55: Rich Polt of Acknowledge Media on creating legacy videos
Rich Polt started his legacy video company in 2016; three years later, it's growing by leaps and bounds. (This is part 1 of our conversation. To see part 2, click here.) Rich Polt left a lucrative career as owner of a public relations firm to pursue his passion—helping people record their legacy stories on film. And he did it all without knowing a thing about movie-making. It started with a personal project called Talking GOOD, where Rich interviewed change-makers with the power to inspire others. The epiphany came when Rich went off-script to ask his interviewee a highly personal question, something he didn't normally do. The man cried, and so did Rich. That was all Rich needed to understand the power of sharing stories. Acknowledge Media brings the same high production values of documentary filmmaking to the world of legacy preservation. Listen as we discuss: how Rich gave himself a year of working for free to build up his portfolio some of the mistakes he made as a novice interviewer (hint: get comfortable with your inteviewee's emotions!) the benefits of having regular meetings with his mentor, Mike O'Krent of LifeStories Alive (and soon-to-be guest on this podcast) the three phases of any legacy video project Because Rich had so much great stuff to share, we're breaking this podcast into two parts. In this episode, we get into the specifics of phase one of his projects. Rich gives a breakdown of the 2-3 hour session he spends with the interviewees before the cameras make their appearance. He uses this conversation to create a detailed roadmap for the recorded interview. A few tips: In order to keep the storyteller from launching into an anecdote during this first conversation, Rich asks them to name the stories that come to mind with a headline. He includes it in his notes, a reminder or tag to include that topic in his recorded interview. As part of phase one, he sends the storyteller's adult children a questionnaire, which includes the following questions: What are the stories you want to hear? What are the red flag topics that may be difficult for your parents to talk about? What are the things you've always wanted to ask but never have? Rich then creates a spreadsheet with questions, pouring in the answers to those he already knows, examining the whole to find the narrative shape that will guide him during the recorded interview. Listen to part two of our conversation, where Rich discusses the recording, editing, and pricing. Bonus: We didn't mention this in the podcast, but if you want to know what a great email newsletter looks like, check out how Rich does it here. Better yet, subscribe to his newsletter. Links & Stuff Acknowledge Media Mike O'Krent's LifeStories Alive Talking GOOD The interview that changed the trajectory for Rich: Real Father from Matthew Paul D'Agostino on Vimeo.
28 minutes | Apr 12, 2019
54: Christine Norton, Part 2
Christine Norton has expanded her life story business by taking on business licensees.
25 minutes | Apr 4, 2019
53: Christine Norton Helps Life Story Writers Get Up and Running
How a life story writer ramped up her business with licensees Christine Norton is passionate about telling people's stories. And she knew others were, too. But not everyone is comfortable with creating a business from the ground up, and that's where her Forget-Me-Not Life Stories writing partner program comes in. In exchange for a business license fee, her writing partners get everything they need to get their own memoir-writing service companies up and running. Listen as we discuss this and much more, including: the high-end, hand-bound book design, created especially for Forget-Me-Not Life Stories, that allows clients to later add more pages to their books the value of celebrating photos and memorabilia in highly designed life story books her mentoring and coaching program, offered to clients who need some help as they write their own life story how the success of her business licensees equates to her own success what her licensees get as an official Forget-Me-Not Life Stories writing partner Because Christine had so much great stuff to talk about—and I don't want anyone missing any of it—I split our conversation in two. Check back next week to hear part two of the interview. Curious about how her writing partners are finding clients? Check out this incredible list of their speaking gigs. Talks given by the Forget Me Not Lifestories members up to end September 2017 AUCKLAND Bupa Wattle Downs Retirement Village Bupa Erin Park Retirement Village Ryman Grace Joel Retirement Village Ryman Bruce McLaren Retirement Village East Coast Bays Library Highgrove Retirement Village Rosedale Retirement Village Lady Allum Retirement Village Bert Sutcliffe Retirement Village The Poynton Retirement Village Birkenhead Rotary Club Northcote Rotary Club Devonport Rotary Club Takapuna Probus Glenfield Probus St Andrews Parish Ginger ‘n Bread Group One Tree Hill Ladies Probus Club Inner Wheel Club of Auckland East One Tree Hill Rotary Club, Onehunga Lynfield-Hillsborough-Mt Roskill Rotary Club Auckland Harbourside Rotary Club Ponsonby Probus Rotary Western Springs Manurewa Gardens Probus club Summerset Retirement Village, Manukau Ormiston Probus, Auckland Takapuna Probus, Auckland Selwyn Park Retirement Village, Hillsborough WAIKATO (including TAUPO) Views on Vogel (Resthaven) Retirement Village, Cambridge BUPA St Kilda Retirement Village, Cambridge BUPA St Andrews Retirement Apartments, Hamilton Lauriston Park Ret Vill, Leamington, Cambridge Selwyn St Andrews Ret Vill, Cambridge Tahuna Lions Club, Tahuna Golf Club Trevellyn Retirement Apartments, Hamilton Cambridge Lyceum Hilda Ross Ret Village, Hamilton Cambridge Senior Net North Gate Community Church, Hamilton Alandale Retirement Village, Hamilton Aged Care Network Hub, Hamilton Age Concern, Hamilton Summerset Retirement Village, Taupo BAY OF PLENTY (including the Western and Eastern BOP) Aged Care Network Hub, Tauranga Recycled Teenagers, Mount Maunganui Age Concern, Tauranga Branch Ryman Bob Owen’s Retirement Village, Bethlehem Ryman Bob Owen’s Retirement Village, Bethlehem (Show and Tell) Katikati History Group Association of Anglican Women, Gate Pa, Tauranga Tauranga Women’s Lions Group Sunday Scribblers, Katikati Baptist Church, Mount Maunganui Papamoa Branch of the New Zealand Society of Genealogists Lions Club, Omokoroa Somervale Retirement Village, Tauranga Age Concern, Tauranga Vision Retirement Village, Papamoa, Tauranga Metlifecare Bayswater, Tauranga Rotary Club Sunrise, Tauranga Rotary Club of Tauranga Rotary Club of Katikati Althorp Retirement Village, Tauranga Rotary Club of Otumoetai Carmel Country Estate Retirement Village, Tauranga Bureta Probus, Tauranga Vision Probus, Tauranga Avenues Probus, Tauranga Katikati Probus Mt Maunganui Probus, Bay of Plenty Men's Group, St John's Church, Otumoetai, Tauranga Kowhai Rebus Probus Omokoroa Beach Probus Omokoroa History Group Acacia Park Rest Home, Omokoroa, to celebrate International Elders’ Day Workshops,
40 minutes | Mar 28, 2019
52: Life Stories for the Dying with Dr. Janet Bieschke
End of Life Coach Janet Bieschke on serving the dying. Dr. Janet Bieschke has turned her retirement into a double career: She serves the hospice community as both life story gatherer and life coach. In her work with the dying, she makes room for a "sigh of relief"—the chance to share not only stories, but also regrets, forgiveness, and "I love yous."
40 minutes | Mar 21, 2019
51: David O’Neil from Story Trust, Part 2
Wealth Managers and Financial Advisors as Referral Partners This week, David O'Neil talks to us about how and why we should be developing relationships with financial advisors and wealth managers.
24 minutes | Mar 13, 2019
50: David O’Neil from Story Trust, Part 1
From Life Stories to Business Histories David O'Neil founded Story Trust in 2007; several years later, he recognized the natural connection between life stories for individuals and stories that recount the history of a business. His most recent book was an outgrowth of an oral history conducted several years ago. With the upcoming centennial anniversary of the family's company, they reached out to him to create a book of memories, recipes, and memorabilia, with an initial a print run of 2,500 copies.
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