Thursday, June 4, 2009

Mandela Recommends Dog Ear to Writers

"Dog Ear" spoke my language, says author Josette Mandela, who spoke at FCCW on Thursday, June 4th.


FCCW is blessed with many diverse writers.  Some always knew they  wanted to write, while others happened into writing.  Josette  Mandela is one of those writers that just happened into it.  She is  the author of Money is Freedom and Safety. Her book combines the  features of a workbook and works like a step by step guide on how to  get your financial house in order and have fun doing it.  She wrote  the book in just weeks, it just flowed out of her.  She wrote the  book freehand whenever she had the chance.  One time she was writing  in the repair shop while her car was being worked on.  The ease that  came with writing encouraged her to write another book.  This time  that plain white page seemed a little more daunting.

She shared her solutions for getting over writers block.  She  suggests going for a walk or really anything that will break your  routine and get your creative juices flowing.  Call that special  friend that always encourages you and stands by you no matter what.   Finally she said find your passion, the written word comes much  easier if you are passionate about what you are writing.

Josette explained how to get the most out of your walks;  observe your surroundings, you never know what unique information  you will discover from the simplest things.  She told a story about  this road she was traveling down.  The road had many different kinks  in the road, when she sat down to research why.  She discovered all  these kinks in the road turned out to be special places that the  builders decided not to pave over so instead they adjusted the road  to make room for the cemeteries and ancient places.  SO paying  attention to the littlest thing can bring out great inspirations for  stories.  Keep notebooks or a tape recorder with you all the time so  you can jot down ideas. After your walk take some quiet time to  meditate and let the information sit and sink in to see what God  will do with it.
Another trick for Josette overcoming writers block is to have  an accountability partner.  This is that person that you can talk to  and they never have discouraging words.  Many of us have friends who  can inadvertently discourage us from writing.  These are the people  that will often tell you "You can't write a book"    "What makes you  think you can be a writer"  Sometimes these people can be close  family and friends.  Don't listen and don't hold it against them,  just realize that in life there is always opposition.  More  importantly DON"T TALK YOURSELF OUT OF WRITING THE BOOK!  We all  have our little voices that can discourage us from time to time.  So  choose your support partner wisely, this should be the person that  would go skydiving with you!  You must allow them to be honest and  inspire you, remember they care about you and are not correcting you  to discourage you but to help you improve!

Once you choose your support partner you should now set  goals.  You will never complete the book unless you set goals.   Josette uses Outlook, creates tasks and  blocks off time to keep  herself accountable.  This helps her meet her goal of sending her  support partner an email at the end of everyday to make sure she is  working on her goals.  After a while you will discipline yourself to  write.

Once you've started writing, the key to keep writing is to be  passionate about your subject.  If you are not passionate about your  subject you'll notice you have dozens of start ups and never get  them done. Ideas are not the problem, its our passion about the  ideas.  Today with the Internet the world is literally at your  finger tip.  You can do research and bring Japan into your living  room.  If you are looking for ideas you can use Google trends, research  what people are talking about.  If you have an idea you are  passionate about research what's been written about it and maybe  find a new perspective on it.

If you need more inspiration Josette recommends the Prosperity  Bible.  It is a collection of short stories from successful people  such as Napoleon Hill and Ben Franklin.  It will help you see what  other people have done to be successful or inspired.

Josette learned from her first book that print on demand offers  the best publishing option.  She used Dog Ear Publishing.  She found  them very easy and fun to work with.  Her background in computer  science did not offer her any direction when it came to getting  published.  She found Dog Ear Publishing talked in a language she  understood, were reasonably priced and offered many extra  specialized services.

Right now Josette is focusing on marketing her current book.   She has a website and she blogs, to  help get the word out. She always carries several copies with her and found  that she could sell books just talking to people at the airport.   She has received positive feedback about her book, from how easy it  is to read to it offers immediate results.

By Tracy Redman, FCCW Treasurer

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