Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Book with a View February 2012

Title: Symbols, Meaning, and The Sacred Quest: Spiritual Awakening in Jewish, Christian and Islamic Stories
Author: Andrew Cort
Publisher: CreateSpace (November 10, 2011)
ISBN-13: 978-1467926706
Reviewed by Yvonne Perry

A New Perspective on Religion Worth Reading

Being one from a religious background and now a metaphysics major, I can relate well to Andrew's book. What I love most is the way he brings a story to life by revealing the meaning and symbols not easily seen in the basic text. The scriptures of the Judeo-Christian Bible are typically misinterpreted and misunderstood when taken at face value. Without the deep insight that Cort's book provides, it's easy to see why the Bible seems so negative and why Christianity is perceived as a religion of gloom and doom.

The excerpt below was taken from the author's Website. I present it as an example of how he uses symbols to find the true meaning of Jesus' wise teaching:

"Anointing the head with oil is a symbol for confirming and strengthening the Mind, and it is the ritual which many ancient traditions, including Judaism, have used to empower a King. In many traditional mythologies, this anointing would be done by a woman, the bride of the king.

But in this story it is the feet that are anointed. `Feet' symbolize the foundation and support of our physical life, but through the act of walking they also symbolize the soul's efforts to advance. `Tears' are a symbol of the soul's suffering in the pursuit of divine Truth, its remorse when looking squarely at its bondage to external life, and its compassion for those who remain asleep and enslaved. `Hair' sits at the apex of the Mind, and is a symbol of the highest qualities of the physical realm reaching upwards to touch God. A woman's hair in particular is a symbol of the pure feminine receptivity which alone allows Divinity to enter the world. Lastly, a `Kiss' symbolizes love and union, such as the `kiss of heaven and earth'."

This book is highly recommended to anyone who is disgruntled with the fundamentalist teachings of religion and is searching for deeper meaning.


Title: The Genesis Code: God Has Spoken
Authors: Abraham Lopian and Julie A. Snyder
ISBN: 978-1-46-115921-6
Publisher: Createspace, January 6, 2012
Review by: Dana Micheli

Welcome to the Rabbit Hole

Why am I here? Where is there so much suffering in the world? When will my life really begin? Is there an afterlife?

Have you ever wished that someone would take you by the hand and explain the answers to these questions? Well, now someone has, and it is God himself. Regardless of where you are in your spiritual journey, The Genesis Code: God Has Spoken will challenge and change the way you view both the spiritual and physical realms. In short, it will change your life.

Since the beginning of time, people have been wondering about the nature of God and mankind’s role in the world. In our efforts to answer these questions, we have both built temples and waged wars. We have created religious doctrines that influence everything from what we eat, what we wear, and who we vote for. It has also formed how we view the world, each other, and ourselves. Innumerable books have been written in an attempt to explain the nature of God, yet the answers have eluded us. Until now.

The Genesis Code brings to light a powerful message hidden in the Bible itself, and one that will undoubtedly turn the religious community on its ear. We have always been taught that we are acted upon by God, but now we are learning that we are the powerful creators, the actors through which God experiences itself. This revelation buried in the Five Books of Moses (also known as the Hebraic Bible, or Torah) brings with it not only a sense of power, but an awesome responsibility that comes with control of our own destinies. The Genesis Code teaches us that in realizing this, we are not turning away from God, but becoming one with Him.

The Genesis Code also explains why it has taken thousands of years for this message to be delivered, and in doing so, illuminates thousands of years of human history, back to the time of Moses himself.

Authors Abraham Lopian and Julie Snyder could not have come from more different places in life. Abraham is from London, and Julie from Las Vegas, but it was more than geography that separated them. Abraham had had a lifetime of Talmudic study, while Julie lived a primarily secular life. The events that brought them together are none other than Divine Intervention.

Together they have worked to bring us the coded message of the Torah to the rest of us. The Genesis Code: God Has Spoken is the culmination of that effort, but it is only the beginning. Abraham and Julie are planning a series of books to take man’s journey toward enlightenment to the next level.

The question now becomes: are we ready to accept the answers?


Title: Empowered Healer: Gain the Confidence, Power, and Ability to Heal Yourself
Author: Dr. Susan Allison
Publisher: Balboa Press (August 23, 2011)
ISBN-13: 978-1452537771
Reviewed by Yvonne Perry
Self-discovery, Self-Healing

I first learned of Susan Allison's work when I interviewed her as a guest on my show, We Are One in Spirit Podcast. I was intrigued by her simple but effective method of healing that she mentioned in our discussion, so I asked her for the CD that accompanies the exercises taught in this book. What a valuable tool that is! It makes it easy to practice the steps that work with the body and mind toward natural healing and restoration.

I agree with Susan that it is important to understand the relationship between life events and physical and emotional problems. I know from experience that listening to my intuition or inner voice helps me maintain a life that is healthy and balanced. That inner voice is our spirit, which speaks through intuition. It's when I don't pay attention to messages from my body, mind, and spirit guides that I experience things I don't really desire.

Many people believe they have to look outside themselves for answers but Susan teaches us how to heal ourselves by going within and partnering with the support and help of angels, spirit guides. Yet, she also advocates the use of medicine or a doctor to accompany this effort—a well-rounded approach. The thing I like most about her teaching is that it is so simple that anyone can do what she recommends and experience improvement in a physical or emotional health condition. That's because true self-healing comes from self-discovery and from listening to the voice within and following its directions. The book is divided into parts that help the reader understand his or her own power and ability to heal and then take doable steps to improved health in all areas of life.

I like what Dr. Allison wrote: "In order to get well, it is important to look at the possible reasons you have become ill, be committed to getting better, and be willing to trust the recovery process presented in this book. Then, you will have faced and released the past and can move forward with confidence, believing 100 percent in your ability to heal yourself."

I truly believe that you can become your own healer by reading the text, doing the exercises and downloading and listening to the CD from Susan's Website. I highly recommend this book!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Myth About Being Liked (on Facebook)

These days it seems everyone is after "social proof," that elusive number of Likes or Followers that will make you seem part of the "in crowd." Unfortunately getting someone to like you is only half the battle, you must now get them to stay "in like" with you.

Studies show that the expectation of content does vary by age, but the direction is still the same: it's more than just getting someone to "Like" your page, you now must learn how to keep them. With all the social media options out there it's critical to not just build numbers, but maintain them, too. In order to do this, it's important to know what users want and when they want to see you post new content.

As I pointed out earlier, content expectations vary by age. For example, Facebook users between the ages of 18-26 have the lowest expectations of receiving something in exchange for their "Like" endorsement. When you go up the next rung, ages 27 to 34, they are more likely to expect something solid delivered in a Facebook update. But the users with the highest expectations, and those you are likely serving, is the 35-51 age group. This is also the group most likely to unlike a brand if it fails to meet expectations.

But it's not only about having great content, it's also about creating great engagement. A study done by Roost.com evaluated 10,000 Facebook fans across 50 industries and found that certain posts leverage more engagement than others. Here are some of their findings:

* Photo posts get 50% more impressions than any other type of post
* Quotes get 22 percent more interactions
* Questions generate almost twice as many comments
* Ask questions to spark dialog (questions often see twice as many comments) and consider fill in the blank posts which tend to receive 9 times more comments than other posts

Now you have the content down, and you know about the types of posts that will get more play than others, is there more to posting than just content and post-type? You bet. There are also time-specific posts that often do better than others. Here are some quick tips on how to improve your Facebook Wall posts:

* Posts delivered between 8 p.m. and 7 a.m. tend to receive 20% higher user engagement
* Best day for Fan engagement? Wednesday - up by 8%
* How many posts does it take to increase user engagement? If you're thinking more frequent posts you are wrong. Posting one to two times per day produces 71% higher user engagement.
* When it comes to Facebook more is not better, sometimes it's just more. Posting with 80 characters or less receives 66% higher engagement. Very concise posts, between one and 40 characters, generate the highest engagement.

Finally, users do vary. How can you really know if your fans are engaged with your content?

Understanding Facebook Content Interaction

Fan Pages now have a fabulous feature called Facebook Insights. Head on over there for some really interesting information and insightful (hence the name) data.

First, you can find Insights on the left side of your page. Once you're there you can see all sorts of data on the information you post.

1) Reach: This is the number of unique people who have seen the post for 28 days after publishing the post.
2) Engaged Users: These are people who have engaged with your post in some way: i.e. clicked the link.
3) Talking about this: This is an interesting number and you've no doubt seen this pop up right under your "Likes." These actions are: liking the post, commenting, sharing the post, responding to a question, or RSVPing to an event.
4) Virality: This is the number of people who have created a story from your page post.

Watch these numbers for some great insight into what fires up your fans and what leaves them cold.

It's not just about getting "Liked," it's about staying "Liked." Creating insightful, helpful, and engaging content is one piece to the puzzle, the other is timing and receptiveness of your fans. Though I've outlined 'general' user guidelines in this piece, be sure to check the Facebook Insights for key data that will help your fan base thrive!

Quick Ways to Promote your Facebook Fan Page

* Put your Fan Page URL in your signature line
* Put is in an email to your newsletter list
* Add a Facebook Fan widget to your blog and website
* Add your Fan Page URL to your biz cards
* Tweet the link to your followers
* Notify your "Friends" on your personal profile that you now have a Fan Page

Reprinted from "The Book Marketing Expert newsletter," a free ezine offering book promotion and publicity tips and techniques. http://www.amarketingexpert.com

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Editor's Corner February 2012

Welcome to the month of love, sweet love! I trust you are doing something that brings you joy; hopefully, that project involves writing of some sort!

My public query was met with a huge response and I had a great pool of resources to consider as prospect to become part of the WITS network of referred writers and editors. It is a privilege to introduce to you the newest members of the WITS team: Rick Lewis and Vicky DeCoster. Rick will be handling all our business writing leads including resumes for Nashville clients who request a face-to-face appointment; Vicky will provide resume services for those who do not require an in-person meeting.

I’d like to familiarize you with the rest of our current team. Sarah Moore is a copyeditor for fiction and non-fiction manuscripts and also handles shorter-term writing projects like articles, press releases, and blog posts. Dana Micheli is a New York-based author’s assistant and book marketing expert, serving as our podcast coordinator and show host. She also provides manuscript ghostwriting and editing. Kristen House is a writing instructor assisting WITS clients with manuscript development and editing. Katie Perry is my daughter-in-law and virtual administrative assistant. She collects material to create Writers in the Sky Newsletter, which you are now reading. I encourage you to get to know the WITS team by reading their bios at http://writersinthesky.com/meet-the-team.html. Be sure to send your material for publication in this newsletter to Katie by the 24thof each month. Guidelines are at http://writersinthesky.blogspot.com/p/submit-your-material.html.

I’m making a great deal of progress on my upcoming book, Shifting into Purer Consciousness ~ Integrating Spiritual Transformation with the Human Experience. This book intends to take the spiritual seeker even deeper into relationship with the divine within as it teaches how to raise vibration in the shift we are experiencing in 2012 and beyond. I have set up a new blog (http://integratingfrequencies.blogspot.com/) for disseminating information and to provide a point of purchase.

One important thing you need to do to successfully market your own book is to provide an easy-to-navigate web page from which you promote your book in all its formats. You do have multiple formats—print, PDF e-book, Kindle and Nook readers, and audio book—for your book, right? I advise setting up a Website and then using your blog to drive traffic to the site. Both the Website and the blog should offer a point of purchase. Feel free to use my blog http://whosestuffisthis.blogspot.com/p/purchase-book.html or Website http://weare1inspirit.com/bookstore.htmas  an example. I also encourage you to check out the e-books designed especially to help authors promote books online: http://tinyurl.com/DanaWITS .

I often have the opportunity to share my writing, books, and love for Spirit and humanity through several speaking engagements. Below is my January and February itinerary. Be sure to scroll through this newsletter to check out those who have been guests on Writers in the Sky Podcast and We Are One in Spirit Podcast.
On January 19, I was a guest on Susan Allison’s Empowered Healer Show where I talked about how I overcame the emotional damage of being in a very strict religion for many years and how I broke free to experience spiritual transformation. You may listen to the replay at http://weareoneinspirit.blogspot.com/2012/01/empowered-healer.html

I presented “Setting Compassionate Boundaries” on “From Trauma to Transformation Telesummit” January 26.

I will be a guest on Sheryl Glick’s show, Healing From Within, at 4:30 p.m. Central Time on February 6. There should be an announcement at http://www.sherylglick.com/radio-show-guest.html to give you information about how to listen in.

On Tuesday, February 14 @ 2:35 p.m. CT I will present the pros and pitfalls of being an empath in an intimate relationship with someone who is/is not an empath. We open our heart to the wrong source when we look to another person to fulfill us, love us, and meet our needs. When that person disappoints or leaves us, we feel betrayed or abandoned. This presentation will teach you how to activate your heart and connect to the secret chamber of the Sacred Heart where unconditional love abounds.

An online telesummit is a great way to promote your books. Dr. Caron Goode is launching her new book, From Fizzle to Sizzle ~ 8 Steps to Relationship Repair. She and I have partnered for a five-week telesummit that offers listeners some high-quality content to help improve any kind of relationship. And, it’s free! See http://dld.bz/aHxyZ for details about speakers, dates, times, and topics.

Feel free to use this model to launch your next book!

Until the merry month of March,

Yvonne Perry,
Owner of Writers in the Sky Creative Writing Services

Friday, February 10, 2012

How to Get Testimonials for Your Self-Published Book

By Joel Friedlander

One way enterprising authors can level the playing field for their book marketing is to enlist the help of better-known, more-established figures in their field.

How do you do that? By getting people to read (or scan) your book and supply a positive comment you can use in your book promotion. These promotional quotes have many uses, whether you call them testimonials, blurbs, or something else.

Before we go into how to get these testimonials, let’s take a look at why they work.

How Testimonials Help Sell Books

The power of testimonials varies depending on:

1. the kind of book you are publishing
2. the specific niche into which you hope to sell it, and
3. the influence of the people who are giving the testimonials.

Two important elements that affect the effectiveness of your testimonials are social proof and congruence. Let’s look at each one.

Social Proof

A lot of the influence of testimonials comes through the persuasive effect of what’s called “social proof.” In an ambiguous situation, the influence of what other people are doing can determine how we react.

For instance, in considering a book in which you might be interested, if you notice that every authority in the field has recommended the book, that’s a powerful form of social proof in your decision whether or not to buy the book.

The Congruence Test

Testimonials also exercise another persuasive effect through the perceived authority of the person giving the quote. So if you have a book on how to throw the perfect pass in football, a testimonial from Aaron Rogers, the quarterback of the Green Bay Packers, last year’s championship team, will carry a lot of influence.

But a mistake authors often make, in my experience, is assuming that authority in one field will carry over to other fields. If Aaron Rogers gives me a testimonial for a book on getting rid of garden pests, who cares? Rogers has no authority in the field of pest control (that I know of) so this testimonial would fail the test of congruence—there’s no connection between his field of authority and the subject of the book.

Authors fall into this trap in different ways, but the most common one I hear is something like this: “Well, Aaron used to babysit for my sister and said he’d be happy to help out any way he could, so I thought it would be great if someone as famous as him says good things about my garden pest book. I mean, millions of people love the guy, how could it hurt?”

My advice would be to resist this temptation and wait for your football book to be ready before you appeal to Aaron Rogers for a blurb. It’s important here to realize the difference between the kind of celebrity testimonials you see on TV and targeted book promotion. Aaron might be able to sell Cadillacs for the local dealer. After all, Cadillacs are the same no matter which dealer you buy them from, so Aaron’s testimony that “Charlie’s Caddys is the best place to shop!” could carry some weight.

But if your book presents you as an expert in the field, you are selling something quite different and unique. Here, people really care about whether you know your stuff, and no amount of testimony from an unrelated, non-expert, non-authoritative source is going to help.

Okay, now we’re ready to look at how to get this done for your book.

Getting Testimonials: A 3-Step Process

In order to streamline your efforts at getting blurbs for your book, I’ve condensed this process into three pretty simple steps.

1. Identify Your Targets

This is a very important part of the process, and here’s where you have to really stretch yourself the most. What I mean is that you are going to want to “shoot for the stars” and try to get the very best quotes you can from the people who are at the top of the mountain in terms of notoriety and influence over the people you’ve identified as potential buyers of your book.

It’s super important here to rigorously apply the law of congruence we talked about before. You have to know who your readers are and who influences them. That’s much more important than whether they are “famous” or on TV or a friend of the family.

But don’t hold back. Spend a few minutes fantasizing about the “perfect” blurb, the one that might really change the sales of your book, and what it would look like on the cover of your book or in the first paragraph of your press release. Then go for it, and include those people in your campaign.

In this step, you’ll also need to get the email or regular mail addresses for the people on your list. And don’t limit the number of people you ask. Get your list together and plan on approaching every one of them.

2. Send a Well-Crafted Query

Your query letter will make or break your testimonial campaign, so it’s important to spend time on it. Here are some tips to remember as you draft and review it.

 Keep it short. It’s likely that the people you are querying are pretty busy. If you send a four-page letter explaining your book and marketing in detail, many people won’t even have time to read it. So how short should it be? As short as possible to still get the job done, but in no case should you go more than one page.

 Introduce yourself. If the people you are writing to don’t know you, you’ll need to include some information on who you are and why you’re qualified to write your book. However, no one wants to read a resume or long list of accomplishments; that’s boring and will put people off if you include it at the beginning of your query.

 Why is it important? Tell in a sentence or two what you hope to accomplish with your book and why other people should care.

 Connect to a common cause. This is crucial. Try to establish a commonality between yourself and the person you are querying. For instance, if their last book is on a similar subject, point out that you are both trying to educate people on these issues. It’s also important here to mention whether the person’s work is noted in your book, or if they or their works are quoted, and where.

 Be specific about what you want. You need to include in your query exactly what you’re looking for and what you intend to do with it. For instance, you might say “If you enjoy the book, would you give me a quote I can use in my book promotion?” Don’t forget to mention that you may edit the responses for length, since some authors will send you much more material than you can reasonably use.

 Set a deadline. You will get far more responses if you set a deadline, and this is quite common in publishing where we’re trying to meet publication day deadlines. You can say something like, “It would help tremendously to have your response by February 1, but of course I would be grateful for any responses that come in after that if your schedule doesn’t allow you to meet that date.”

 Make it easy. Don’t send your book with the query letter, but do offer it in whichever formats you have available. If you are doing a print or print on-demand book, offer the printed copy as well as a PDF. If you have an eBook version, offer that as well. I particularly like PDFs and use them extensively because they look just like the printed book but can be delivered instantly.

 Leave options open. Be aware that there may be reasons a particular person won’t blurb your book, and that’s just the way it is. Don’t take it personally, since the person may just be very busy, on a deadline of their own, traveling, or the brother-in-law of your biggest competitor. You never know, but the idea is to invite enough people that you’ll end up with some really great testimonials even if a number of people don’t respond.

3. Follow Up

About a week before your deadline, send a very gentle reminder to people who have agreed to review the book but who haven’t yet responded.

Even more important, when someone sends you a blurb you can use, make sure to thank them. This simple step, often overlooked, can help ease your way when you want to do more promotion or you’re ready to promote your next book.

Another way to show the people who blurbed you that you really appreciate their help is to send them a copy of the finished book with another thank you note.

Being able to issue your book with the strong recommendation of a host of experts and authority figures in your field will give your book a boost in many ways. So shoot for the stars, and give your book the help it deserves by getting the best testimonials you can.
Joel Friedlander is a self-published author and book designer who blogs about book design, self-publishing and the indie publishing life at TheBookDesigner.com. He's also the proprietor of Marin Bookworks, where he helps publishers and authors who decide to publish get to market on time and on budget with books that are both properly constructed and beautiful to read.

Join Us for an Interview with Author and Adventurer Leon Halfon

Leon Halfon is a very busy man. After all, life is short, and each day brings a new adventure for him to pursue. So it was a real treat that he slowed down long enough to discuss his new book, The Mathematics of Life.

The book chronicles Leon's amazing story, beginning with his early childhood on the island of Djerba and the horrible accident that left him paralyzed at the age of 7. He spent months in a wheelchair, angry at life, until a miraculous experience changed him forever. With a fortitude uncommon at any age, he overcame his paralysis and went on to live life on his terms. This meant joining a circus, working as a stuntman, and now, sharing his story to inspire others.

Sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic, the book dares us to do the most difficult thing of all: challenge what we have been taught by our families, governments and religions in order to discover our own God-given potential.

Click here to listen:

Like what you heard? Go to http://themathematicsoflife.com/ to buy the book or read Leon's blog. The Mathematics of Life is also available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Writers in the Sky and We Are One in Spirit Podcast Schedule February 2012

We Are One in Spirit Podcast allows for people of all walks of life to discuss their spiritual journey and life-transforming experiences that remind us that we are all ONE IN SPIRIT. Uplifting, enlightening, and insightful topics include healing, empathy, intuition, spiritual/psychic gifts, metaphysics, soul development, afterlife, spirit communication, and more. This interactive podcast has with a Q&A session at the end of each guest presentation. To join the call, dial 1-605-475-6350 and enter participant access code 356172. The metaphysical shows are archived at feed://nashvillewriter.audioacrobat.com. You will also find us on iTunes.

January 5 - Michelle Casto is a renowned life and business coach, and advocate for everyday enlightenment and full soul expression. Her mission is to awaken people to their purpose through her unique Destiny Success Process. Her new book, The Destiny Discovery: Find Your Soul's Path to Success, teaches readers how to connect with their soul to live their greatest life. This book will touch and inspire people from all walks of life who are looking to wake up to their purpose, access their personal power, and be a contribution to themselves and the world. You can listen to the replay here.

January 19 - Mal Duane is the author of Alpha Chick: Five Steps for Moving from Pain to Power. Mal and I talked about why women suffer from a lack of self-esteem and what can be done to change your life. Become empowered by the Goddess (Divine feminine) energy as you listen to the replay.

January 26 - Susan Allison. Do you get bits of information that seem to just pop into your head? Would you like to know how to better interact with your inner guidance? Listen to the replay of my interview with Dr. Susan Allison who shared how poetry and songs just seem to float in from the universe—not only for creative pursuits but these "divine downloads" also come as daily inspiration and guidance to help steer our lives on a spiritual course. Dr. Susan Allison has a doctorate in Transpersonal Psychology and has maintained a private practice for 20 years and currently works with individuals and groups to bring about healing, using traditional therapies, as well as hypnosis, process therapy, shamanic journey, and energy medicine.

During the month of February WAO podcast is combining forces with Live-Spirit.com to co-host “From Fizzle to Sizzle Relationship Telesummit ~The Relationship Virtual Conference of the Year.” To join the conversation on February 2, 9, and 16, please register at http://dld.bz/aHx3h. You will get an email with the login info.

Thursday, February 2–offers a preview call with authors Dr. Caron Goode and Dr. Minette Riordan as they share two of their eight steps to easy relationship repair. They will also announce the relationship contest, which runs February through March 2012, and discuss the prizes and giveaways to celebrate sizzling relationships. During this session, a 25-minute presentation, “Raise Your Sticker Price” will be given by Traci Shoblom. This idea, based on a concept in Steve Harvey’s book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man will teach listeners—both men and women—how to set standards for their love relationships. Register at http://dld.bz/aHxyZ

Thursday, February 9 Podcast has two guest speakers:

2 p.m. CT - Dr Minette Riordan will give some quick tips on identifying values that can help strengthen your existing relationship or determine if your budding romance is headed in the right direction. When a couple enters into a romantic relationship, hormones and romance can take over, leaving little time for serious conversation. As the relationship continues and conversations deepen, it’s important to understand your own and your partner’s values. No matter how sexy and romantic your partner might be, if she doesn’t want kids and you do, the relationship will not last. http://dld.bz/aHxyZ

2:35 p.m. CT - relationship recovery expert and coach Geoff Laughton shares with you three of the biggest traps that consistently cause relationships to go sour without even realizing it’s happening. The good news is that these traps can be avoided altogether with some of the suggestions that Geoff will provide in his talk. And, if you’ve already noticed that your relationship is suffering because you and your partner have fallen prey to some or all of these traps, Geoff will offer ways that you can turn things around and recover the relationship you’ve been longing for instead of the one you’ve been settling for. http://dld.bz/aHxyZ
Thursday, February 16 Podcast has two guest speakers:

2 p.m. CT - Week Three of “From Fizzle to Sizzle – The Relationship Virtual Conference of the Year Michelle Barr presents “The Energy of Relationships, Understanding Yourself and the Way You Relate to and Interact with Others in Your Life.” Understanding the energetic dynamics of being in relationship can help you identify and clean up what is your own “stuff” playing out and experience relationships in your life that are more fulfilling, healthier and more authentic. Michelle shares with you specifically information about the dynamics of the evolution of intimate relationships and also talks about the interesting ways our children serve as mirrors for us. http://dld.bz/aHxyZ

2:35 p.m. CT - “America’s Romance Guru,” Leon Scott Baxter, is the author of The Finance of Romance, Out of the Doghouse: A Man’s Secret Survival Guide to Romance and A Labor With Love. We have become a nation of financial experts having lived through an economic recession. We are keeping closer eyes on our finances and have learned strategies that will keep us afloat. Why not use these same strategies that we have mastered in our relationships? I’ll take simple, savvy, familiar and practical money strategies, like “Get Rid of Your Debt” and “Invest Regularly and Diversify” and apply them in ways for couples to implement them in their partnerships. http://dld.bz/aHxyZ

We are back to our regular podcast format on Thursday, February 23 when Faith Ranoli is my guest as she talks about soul shifts on We Are One in Spirit. With advanced degrees in metaphysical studies and as a graduate of a mystery school, Ranoli is uniquely qualified to help you realize who you are and then to help you implement the changes needed to live your self-empowered life. Ranoli is also a bestselling author, international speaker, life development coach and a radio host on HealthyLife.net. She is the owner of Heart and Home Healing, a consulting service designed to empower people and create healthy homes that support the health and dreams of those living in them. To join the call, dial 1-605-475-6350 and enter this participant access code: 356172.

WITS Podcast

Writers in the Sky Podcast is a Nashville-based talk show about writing, publishing, and book marketing. An educational tool for people who want to learn more about the craft and business of writing, this show offers interviews with authors and writers, as well as the latest news about books currently on the market. You will also learn about publishing methods and marketing techniques as we interview publishers and publicists. Listen to archived shows via RSS Feed. Download WITS Podcast on iTunes for your iPod or iPad.

February 10: Leon Halfon speaks with Dana Micheli about his inspirational book: The Mathematics of Life. When a horrific accident at the age of 7 left him paralyzed, Leon was forced to question everything he had been taught about life and God. He eventually taught himself to walk again, and since then has lived a life full of spriritual and physical adventures. The book explores his journey to wholeness and what he believes can be achieved by anyone, if only they understand The Mathematics of Life.

Network with Us February 2012

As a subscriber to Writers in the Sky Newsletter, you are entitled to share your announcements with our readers. See guidelines at http://writersinthesky.blogspot.com/p/submit-your-material.html and send your material to us before the 24th of each month to make the next month’s issue. Anything posted in WITS Newsletter is also shared with our blog readers at http://writersinthesky.blogspot.com/ .
WITS Team Member Kristen House is holding query writing classes for authors seeking traditional publishing.

Queries are the one and only way to pitch your manuscript to a literary agent and/or publisher. The query process is complicated and requires a really specific set of skills - both writing and organizing. When I started the query process on my own several years ago, it took me more than 6 months to figure it out. By then, I'd already messed up so many contacts from playing my hand wrong that I had to stop querying and start on a new book! I'm putting together a curriculum now for a 2-day class that would cover all the ins and outs of querying agents. The information is below.

If you'd like to take the class, be sure you can attend both sessions for the whole time. Be sure to bring note-taking implements and/or a laptop computer. Parents, if you'd like to enroll as well, you're welcome to do so. I'm also not segregating middle and high school students from adults for this class. In the publishing world, we're all playing on the same field, so the same rules apply. This class will be taught with the same general Kristen-style enthusiasm, but on a college-level. Bring your A-game, authors!

Also, if you're not ready to query your novel right now but you think you may want to in the future, you should sign up for this session. Why? Because I won't be offering another one for quite some time (maybe October).

Class Dates:
Saturday, February 11 and Saturday, February 18
1:30 - 3:30 p.m.
Cost: $200, Discount of $50 for multiple family members
Location: Parent Resource Room at Abintra Montessori School

Part 1: The query process: what to expect. Parts of the query: writing, drafting, and creating a query portfolio

Part 2: Organizing your query efforts: spreadsheets, email folders, and paper trails. Workshop of participants' query letters.

Be sure to eat lunch before you come, and bring a little snack or a bottle of water if you'd like. Register ASAP by sending your name and a 50% deposit to Kristen via her Website: http://www.thisisanovelidea.com/#!__anovelidea-open/contact.

Read the first chapter for free and then decide if you want to download the 3-hour-long mp3 audio book of More Than Meets the Eye ~ True Stories about Death, Dying, and Afterlife for only $7.00 http://deathdyingafterlife.blogspot.com/p/chapter-1.html
Summer applications are now being accepted for A Novel Idea. This summer, we are adding a Little Middle class for rising 5th and 6th graders.
Each story in The Sid Series ~ A Collection of Holistic Stories for Children focuses on life skills such as environmental awareness, helping others, being true to one’s self, overcoming fear, and following inner guidance. http://thesidseries.com/
Kristen House is published 3 times in the February issue of Her Magazine. She is the new Home columnist and now a regular feature writer. Her February feature is called "Wed in Red."
Sixteen Candles Shine Forever in memory of Johnny Maestro (Outskirts Press, 2012) by Irene Brodsky is available on Kindle and all online book sites.

Mr. Maestro was the lead singer of The Brooklyn Bridge & The Crests (1957 - 2010) He devoted 50 years of his life to beautiful love songs, to be a family man, devoted husband & father, charitable to many telethons and public broadcasting programs but most of all to be a fine gentleman in every sense of the word. He rose from the streets of the lower East Side of NYC to become a legend and role model to other young men who were interested in the field of music. Sadly, he passed away in 2010. Irene’s book is a celebration of his life and music.
Whose Stuff Is This? Finding Freedom from the Thoughts, Feelings, and Energy of Those around You is a guidebook for empathic people who have been unknowingly carrying energetic burdens that belong to someone else. See all purchasing options at http://whosestuffisthis.blogspot.com/p/purchase-book.html.
Alpha Chick: A Book for the New Woman in a New Era

Throughout the 20th Century, there were many waves of feminism throughout the world. First were the waves that helped give women the right to vote and changed laws around property ownership. Later, feminist leaders helped bring about equality in the workplace. Today, women all around the world owe much to the progress made by these voices of the past. But now, as we find our feet in the 21st Century—and especially at the beginning of the year 2012, which holds so much symbolic meaning for many people—the role of women in society is evolving yet again.

We have made great strides in protecting the rights of women at a legal level, but many women have not yet fully come to embrace who they are, both within society and within themselves. In so many books and popular media, we hear the word "empowerment" tossed casually about, but all too many women have struggled to become that "empowered" woman they once imagined would bring them happiness. In trying to become what they've been told they should strive to be, they often push themselves through decades of stress, feelings of helplessness, lack of self-esteem and even self-abuse in the form of addictions, eating disorders or dysfunctional relationships. These days, many women are beginning to realize that trying to become an "alpha female", in competition with the so-called "alpha male", is not the answer to life's problems.

Author Mal Duane knows all about this struggle. When she was a young woman, she battled with alcohol dependency, low self-esteem and abusive relationships. But these days, Mal is a happily married and highly successful entrepreneur in the real estate world, as well as a coach and author. In her work as a certified recovery coach, has helped hundreds of women find the path to "empowerment" without sacrificing their femininity and natural personality. In fact, it is within these very things that true empowerment lies. She calls this type of woman—markedly different from the "alpha female"—an "Alpha Chick."

In her new book, Alpha Chick: five steps for moving from pain to power, Mal shares her reflections on what her own life as an Alpha Chick is like:

"Living my life as an Alpha Chick, I am aware now of my true potential and purpose. Self-awareness and serenity are my reality. Most of the time my life runs like a finely tuned piece of machinery, with all parts working in harmony with one another. I am no longer pulled in conflicting directions. I begin each day knowing and loving the woman I am. I appreciate everything I have: my husband, my health, my homes and my work." (Alpha Chick, page 161)

The book Alpha Chick: five steps for moving from pain to power is celebrating its official Amazon launch on Tuesday February 14th, 2012. Mal says she chose Valentine's Day because she "wanted women to give themselves the gift of self-love by buying themselves the book on that day."

On Valentine's Day, you can buy Mal's book, and receive a great collection of FREE gifts, including a free class from Mal where she will PERSONALLY take you through the five Alpha Chick steps of "F-A-I-T-H", so you can apply them in your life easily and quickly.

To register for a launch reminder, so Mal can let you know when the book and free gifts are available, just go to: http://alphachick.com/book-launch/pages/pre-launch.html
When you register, you'll also receive a pass to the Alpha Chick Telesummit, A free 3-day online event with a panel of leading experts on how to awaken your alpha chick consciousness. If you cannot make the live event on Feb 7th, 8th and 9th, 2012 (12 p.m. Pacific; 3 p.m. Eastern; 8 p.m. UK; 9 p.m. Europe), register anyway so you can download the MP3s. To find out more about this event, go to http://alphachick.com/book-launch/pages/telesummit.html.

Monday, February 6, 2012

This Week's Podcast Guest: Leon Halfon

It is not often we meet someone who has, not only complete confidence in himself, but a true understanding of this adventure we call life. It is even rarer that we meet someone who came to these realizations before the age of ten. Leon Halfon is one of those people, and it was truly a delight to speak with him about his book, The Mathematics of Life.

Leon would say his philosophy comes down to the difference between "believing" and "knowing". Born on the island of Djerba to a religious family, Leon learned his fair share of dogma as a child. But he had little reason to question it until the age of 7, when a horrible car accident left him paralyzed.

Leon spent months in agonizing pain, and many thought he would spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair. But then he had a miraculous experience that showed him another way of living. He taught himself to walk again, climbed out his wheelchair, and never looked back. Since then his life has been one adventure after another, and now he has written The Mathematics of Life to show others that they too can live the life they want.

Tune into the WITS Podcast this Friday to learn more about Leon's inspiring journey!

The Mathematics of Life is available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-0104947003/The-Mathematics-of-Life.aspx

Friday, February 3, 2012

4 Core Values That Foster Good Relationships

To provide the best practices for living in loving intimacy with partners, From Fizzle to Sizzle is that kind of eye-opening, spectacular experience that offers YOU offer practical, hands-on tools and strategies for relationship repair and reconnection. Enroll here now!

In our personal and professional relationships, a set of basic core values serves to guide our relationships, whether parenting, partners, or friends. In the world of relationships, these four values are words of action, not just a mental representation of some nice thing. Since values are abstract to many people, here is the way adults in relationships can make values work with your friends, children, colleagues or lovers. See these values as sequenced strategies to repairing relationships.

Connection – to be linked or bonded to another person or people.

When a child is born, the bonding process involves touch, empathy and positive regard. Empathy is established through eye contact with the baby, which programs the brain to recognize, connect, and feel the parent or caregiver. Empathy and positive regard for the child are also connected through conversation, cuddling, holding, movement (walking and rocking). When a parent treat and speaks to the babe or toddler with kindness, softness, love, tenderness, the child feels valued and develops an emotional foundation for feeling safe, cherished, respected, cared for. Our bodies grow and change, and out human needs for attachment to a loving person and bonding to establish feelings of connection do not change.

Think of the most horrible anguish a child can experience: feeling abandoned, feeling tiny and disrespected through being yelled at, treated like an object, dismissed, hit, screamed at, and threatened. These are emotional memories in the making that will hijack this child as an adult.

Do you think adults feel any different? Each person’s core needs are to be met, and when not met, the pattern for emotional abandonment is triggered. You are hardwired for relationships and feeling connected is a priority for communication and commitment.

Question for Your Review: HOW do you feel connected to those most important relations?

Communication - as a value, communication is more than sending a message or conversing. As a value, this means to be in rapport with someone is to be aligned.

Being aligned in the gut with each other helps you feel safe. Being aligned in the heart with each other helps you feel loved or valued. Being aligned in the head with each other implies no judgment, acceptance and the ability to share, argue, debate, and plan without taking it personally.

To be in rapport means you

• Can disagree without being disagreeable,

• Make an effort to control your emotional hijacking and not dump on another,

• Can move away from the need to be right and shift to listening, being open or reflective

• Can be objective, even while being emotional.

Question for Your Review: HOW high do you rank communication as a core value in your relationships?

We suggest you make it number 1 on your values list for one month and cultivate this quality within yourself. See how your relations improve.

Courage - to be brave – to have guts, audacity, valor, going forth or moving ahead despite fear

We believe that relationships absolutely requires guts, especially for you types that love harmony, peace, and not making waves, or you who love to escape pressures of modern relationships. Others need courage to face the world, step into and participate actively in their relationships. And others can be fearless, so you might not believe that you need courage. You might be right in that your achievements speak to bravery, but do you need more courage to be sensitive in your relationships, where you dismiss sensitivity and feelings. Even if you feel like a total wimp, frightened or like a doormat, list courage as a value. Each morning, repeat your mantra of courage in action.

• I am courage in action.

• I have courage to face…

• I see courage in my eyes.

• My act of courage to day will be…

Question for your review – How are you courageous in facing your fears and moving through any emotional hijacking situations?

Commitment – to pledge or promise to follow through, accepting a responsibility Some people might take commitment more lightly than their partner or child would like. That is because you might make promises that you can’t keep in a reasonable length if time. Some people get caught up in their actions and visions and planning. Others get overwhelmed and put promises on the backburner. While others shift priorities like the wind and may even forget if you are out of their sight and out of mind.

This happens because all of you have good intentions. You make commitments fully intending to keep them, but…life happens. Those to whom you commit can only assume you have forgotten unless you take some sort of action like communicate, make an action plan or settle on a date for delivery.

When you forget the promise, the person in relation to you can feel disrespected and devalued. If that is not the result that you want in your relationships, then add a timeline to the commitment that you make. Responsibility, then, is the twin to Commitment and means that you can be counted on, depended upon to follow through, complete the task or commitment, and be accountable for doing so.

Assessment of these core 4 values in your relationships provides a compass for you to be authentic and aware enough to fully enjoy and be fulfilled.