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Guest Author: Nancy Levin
Jump…And Your Writing Life Will Appear
Nancy Levin has been the Event Director of Hay House for more than a decade. She cherishes this dream job and will tell you how very lucky she feels to have had the opportunity to travel the world with some of the greatest minds of our times in the fields of self-help, inspiration, motivation and wellness. When her marriage began to crumble, Nancy relied on their teachings to make it through. A couple of these visionary teachers even used her as a spiritual guinea pig, trying out self-empowerment experiments on her. All their attention, love and wisdom eventually led Nancy to undertake her own journey toward helping others.

When the reality of the dissolving marriage became apparent, Nancy began her healing process by immersing in shadow work taught by her dear friend and beloved mentor Debbie Ford and soon became a Certified Integrative Coach. At this time, Nancy also wrote her first book, Writing for My Life—a compilation of poetry, a kind of poetic memoir as she was ending this chapter of her life and searching for her own voice.

Nancy started speaking at the Hay House’s “I Can Do It!” conferences, which has led to many more speaking engagements and opportunities.

While journaling about this new chapter in her life and the major changes she was experiencing, Nancy noticed the many valuable lessons she had picked up by working so closely with some of the wisest spiritual teachers of our times—Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer, Marianne Williamson, Doreen Virtue, Gregg Braden, Cheryl Richardson, Caroline Myss, Brian Weiss, and more. These were the seeds that eventually sprouted the manuscript for her latest book—Jump…and Your Life Will Appear.

Nancy’s writing life began back at age 11 when she picked up a pen for the first time and expressed her innermost thoughts and feelings in a journal. She has been journaling ever since. Her love of writing poetry led her to Naropa University where she graduated with an MFA in Poetics.

Here, Nancy shares a few tips and insights on how she left her fears behind to jump into her new writing life:


Your Writing Life: Can you tell us when you first decided to pick up a pen and start writing? Do you remember the first piece you ever wrote?
Nancy: I began writing when I was 11 years old. I remember finding a bird on our driveway in Buffalo, NY where I grew up. The bird wasn’t doing very well and I began to notice that certain feelings were rising in me that I absolutely needed to express. I opened my first journal that day and started writing about the bird as a metaphor for my brother who had died. Eighty-one journals later and I haven’t stopped writing.

Your Writing Life: What’s easier: writing poetry or writing prose?
Nancy: Poetry is what comes most naturally to me. In my journal, I rarely write in full sentences. I hear, see, feel and experience life as a series of fragments woven together creating a tapestry. Poetry= Freedom. Prose, on the other hand, takes discipline and focus and is more forced than organic. In college, frustrated by all the boring assignments in the classes outside of creative writing, I’d often “poem a paper” – include all the content and research necessary, but write a long poem instead of a straight-up paper – for the fun of it, in fact I remember doing one in Astronomy 101, and I got an A.

Your Writing Life: You started out self-publishing both of your books—Writing For Your Life and Jump…and Your Life Will Appear. Can you explain how and why this decision helped pave the way for landing a book contract with Hay House?
Nancy: Self-publishing was a way for me to have a “calling card” that proved invaluable as I was – and continue to –  actively building my platform, which is the most important thing that every author must do, no matter which way you publish. When my second book Jump … And Your Life Will Appear came out – self-published with Balboa Press - I enlisted the aid of my author friends who generously offered to help me with the launch, and the book began having traction! So much so that Reid Tracy, President/CEO of Hay House called to tell me that he hasn’t seen Amazon numbers swirling down like that so quickly for a self-published book like mine and that he was serious about offering me a book deal! Now, you may be thinking, “Hello, you work for Hay House, of course he is!” but I promise you that thought was nowhere in my mind. Farther away than nowhere. I am still blown away and beyond grateful and honestly, if it happened for me, it can happen for you!

Your Writing Life: What are the advantages of self-publishing and how can it help beginner writers?
Nancy: I recommend self-publishing for several reasons:

  • Timeline: You can have a book in your hand 3 months after signing off on final manuscript. With traditional publishers it takes 12-28 months on average.
  • Content and Design: You have full control over the content as well as cover and interior design of the book. Please note: The best money you can spend while creating a self-published book is for an editor and cover designer.
  • Money: You make more money on the sale of each book than you do with a traditional publisher. Yes, with traditional publishers you will receive an advance, but for first-time authors it will most likely be very small.
Your Writing Life: If you could sit down and have dinner with any author or writer (from past, present or future), who would it be and why?
Nancy: Anaïs Nin. I’ve always been drawn to the rawness of her writing and the courage she embodied to publish so many volumes of her journals. When I began writing it was for my eyes only, and that desire stayed alive. Even when I got my MFA in Poetry I had no intention to publish anything beyond a few poems here and there. After my ex-husband read my journals, the immediate exposure was so overwhelming that I destroyed every single one of the 70 volumes I had written. I can’t even begin to imagine having them published. Which begs the question of whether Anaïs was writing for herself, an eventual reader or both. With my prose – blogs, articles, books –  I have learned to write for a reader. My poetry first and foremost for me. My journals still for my eyes only.

Your Writing Life: What book are you reading right now? What other books would we find on your bookshelf?
Nancy: Right now, I’m re-reading Dani Shapiro’s memoir Devotion. On my shelves you’ll find memoirs, published diaries and journals, creative writing manuals, books on psychology, philosophy and art. Not to mention nearly every Hay House book in print! I was a self-proclaimed self-help junkie long before I came to work here!

Your Writing Life: Can you share one of your writing habits? Maybe a favorite place where you like to write? Or whether you write daily during a particular time of day?
Nancy: I always write in my journal first thing in the morning with my coffee – it’s a ritual. Sometimes it’s just a brain dump to clear my mind for the day ahead. Other times I’m working on something, or working something out. And most often it’s just about capturing whatever is most alive for me in the moment. I also write quite a bit on my iPhone…some of my best inspiration hits me in the middle of a hike or run and my iPhone is always with me to capture the moment. Also, as I finish a journal, I take some time to read back through it, mining for gems, and pull out any pieces that catch me along the way and add them to an ongoing word doc I have as a reference for fragments to return to while I continue weaving.

Your Writing Life: What are 3 things you wish you knew before you wrote your first book?
Nancy: 1) That writing a book can be a collaborative vs. isolating experience. 2) That while writing is clearly fundamental, there are so many more elements and components to it than I imagined…and I work in the business! 3) How vitally integral self-love, self-forgiveness and compassion are to the process.

Your Writing Life: What is the best piece of advice you have for someone trying to break into the publishing market?
Nancy: If you want to go the traditional publishing route you must craft an airtight, compelling book proposal. For self-publishing, even if you don’t have to write a book proposal, the exercise of it will be quite helpful as you pull together your ever-important book outline! Also – I know I mentioned this before – hiring an editor is invaluable! And most important, regardless of how you publish, it’s critical constantly and consistently to commit to building your platform.

Your Writing Life: What message do you hope your readers will take away with them when they read Jump…and Your Life Will Appear?
Nancy: We all have things we believe we need to hide in order to be loved and accepted. There is nothing more powerful than living in integrity and alignment with your truth, and giving it a voice. When you share your truth and ask for help, you invite the cumulative resources of many. There is no wrong way to live your life and your commitment to making one different choice has the potency to catalyze major change.


You can find out more writing tips and meet Nancy in person at the upcoming I Can Do It! New York and Pasadena. For more about Nancy and to sign up for her newsletter, visit her website at www.nancylevin.com.

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Publish It
From the Desk of: Reid Tracy
Are You Exercising Your Power to Say No?

Many of our authors at Hay House have talked to us about the power you can experience by saying the word No. Cheryl Richardson dedicates an entire chapter she calls “Let Me Disappoint You” in her book The Art of Extreme Self-Care. Wayne Dyer tells us to let go of our ego and be authentic with our words, saying no when we need to. Dr. Lissa Rankin drives this point home in a chapter about “Death by Overwork” in her book Mind Over Medicine. Gregg Braden stresses the importance of speaking our truth. And in their book The Power of No released earlier this month, new Hay House authors James and Claudia Azula Altucher find that a well-placed “no” can not only save you time and trouble, it can also save your life.

Have we been listening to these authors and exercising our power to say no? I have had trouble with it. When new ideas are presented to me and I see the potential of all the new projects that we could be pursuing here at Hay House, my first thought is to do them all. Just recently, I have tried to make myself say no to all other projects except the ones that I truly feel will benefit our community and our company.

Although it has been difficult to stick with, I am happy to say that I’m making progress. I see that when I say no to some of these projects, my employees at Hay House experience great benefits. They don’t have to divide and deplete their energy on multiple projects and can focus their best efforts on the projects we do choose to produce.

I have learned something else about the power of saying no. It has an interesting side effect. It attracts more abundance of what we want. When I say no to the marginal projects, I attract more and more ideal projects to our table. All it takes is focusing more on what we want rather than what we don’t want.

Try exercising your power to say no. It may take some getting used to, but you can do it. When you say no to all but the best opportunities in your business and your personal life, you will begin to see positive changes.

Here is an exercise from James and Claudia’s book The Power of No that can help you in your writing and business projects:

Daring to Try New Ideas

Try this today.
Write down ten ideas for your book or platform that you think will add above-and-beyond value.
Write down the ten next steps for those ideas.
Write down the ten people you need to share these ideas with.
Write to those people.

Don’t be afraid.
The worst they can do is say no.

Reid Tracy is the president and CEO of Hay House, Inc, who transformed the company from a publisher of three books in 1988 to one of the largest independent publishing companies in the world. Reid offers insider publishing tips in a series of live workshops each year for new and seasoned authors and speakers. Upcoming events will be held in Australia, Pasadena and Chicago. Reid also conducts several ongoing online courses on Writing and Book Marketing. Sign up for Reid’s Present Moments newsletter where he writes a weekly column about Hay House’s newest authors and latest books along with his thoughts and tips about publishing. He always enjoys your feedback on his Facebook page.

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The Write Way
Susan Lander
Writing Tips from the Spirit of Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Susan Lander is a writer with a special gift. She has the ability to communicate with spirits. In her latest book, Conversations with History, Susan channels a list of famous people including Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., one of the great American writers of the 20th century. He wrote award-winning novels, essays, short stories, and plays and his appeal continues to endure across generations, with a mix of satire, humor and science fiction. His most famous works include: Slaughterhouse-Five and Breakfast of Champions.

One night while she was having dinner at an outdoor café with her friend Fran, Susan mentioned her desire to interview Kurt Vonnegut and immediately the deceased writer popped in. He had a mustache, and his salt-and-pepper hair was thick and just a little bit shaggy. Susan said Kurt just felt very comfortable to be around. She immediately turned on her phone’s recorder and began asking him questions. Here is a portion of that conversation:


Susan: Tell me your writing process.
Kurt: Rewrites, rewrites, rewrites!

Susan: When did you like to write?
(He’s showing me a cup of coffee. He liked to write in the morning, with his morning coffee.)

Susan: How did you get your subject matter?
Kurt: It was based on my personal history and things I wanted to write about. And “what-ifs.” “What if?” is a great question. “What-ifs” are the fertile soil of the imagination.

Susan: How relevant do you feel your books are today?
Kurt: I do feel that my books have special relevance because we need to not lose the value of human life and livelihood in the name of expediency, corporate welfare, and cheap profits. It’s about the choices that we make as a society. We need to make choices about how we spend our money and the things we value. Humans should never be subsumed by machines. We need to actually choose, as opposed to letting things slide by.

Susan: Do you have any messages for writers?
Kurt: Write and write and write. Do it because you can. Do it because you love to. Always be satisfied with what you write, but never be too satisfied. Stay hungry. But appreciate what you do, and appreciate that you’re doing it.

You don’t need to produce salable books or magazine articles or journals or whatever is your preferred media. You don’t need to base your success on what you sell, because sales are based on other people’s opinions, and that doesn’t matter when you’re a writer. It matters to what you sell, but it doesn’t matter to who you are. And it should not, above all, matter to your identity as a writer.

Susan: What inspired your work more than anything?
Kurt: My personal truths and the truths that I didn’t tell anybody, except in my books.

Writing was cathartic for me. It saved my life. It allowed me to process everything I’d been through—all the hard things, all the wonderful things. It was nice for me to be able to look back at my body of work and see my own history.

Susan: Did you accomplish what you came to Earth to accomplish?
Kurt: Oh yes, most definitely! I would have written for another 100 years if I could have, but I had a good long run.

Susan: Who are you spending time with on the Other Side?
(Aw, he’s showing me Snoopy from the Peanuts comic strip! So he’s referencing Charles Schulz, the artist who drew him.)
Kurt: I have other literary friends. Authors like F. Scott Fitzgerald. Some war friends.

Susan: Are you writing?
Kurt: It’s more like creating. Creating is a high art here, and it’s very valued. It should be valued as much on Earth, but it’s only valued on Earth if you make a lot of money.

Susan: That’s so true! And it’s so not fair. Do you have any more advice for writers?
Kurt: As I said, my advice for writers is to always be yourself. Never feel ashamed to show who you are. Never be ashamed to show your vulnerability. Be proud of your art and your creativity, no matter what form it takes.


Susan Lander, a lifelong clairvoyant and a message medium, is able to see, hear, and feel spirits, and to transmit their emotional messages from the Other Side. In her latest book, Conversations with History you can read the entire interview with Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. and also conversations with famous historical figures and celebrities including Benjamin Franklin, Steve Jobs, Gandhi, Farrah Fawcett, Walt Disney, Eva Perón, and Patrick Swayze.

The Marketing Edge
Doreen Virtue
The Archangel Who Inspires Writers


Since 1995, when I began interviewing people about their angel experiences, I’ve heard and received many stories about how Archangel Gabriel gives motivation, courage and opportunities to those who feel guided to write.

I believe that the desire to write is a signal that it’s part of your life purpose. Those who continually think, I should write, are getting Divine guidance to express heavenly messages through a book, article, blog, or other medium. In some cases, Gabriel will suggest journaling or keeping a diary as a way of opening the creative pipelines. Whatever form the writing takes, the process of putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard is soul-stirring.

As this story below illustrates, Gabriel can also help you change the genre of writing you engage in:

Kevin Hunter had worked as a writer in the film business since 1996. He knew that he’d eventually write his own books, because of his passion for writing. Kevin feels that it is his calling and life purpose.

So he began calling upon Archangel Gabriel to help with his writing career, and has come to do so daily. As a result, ideas for writing pour into him, and he’s enthusiastic and motivated to write. He even polished and rewrote three old stories that had sat dormant for years.

Since calling upon Archangel Gabriel, Kevin has written, edited, and published three books, with more on the way. He says, “The ideas are overflowing in me and haven’t stopped. My writing continues to improve, and I owe it to Archangel Gabriel for being my own personal author’s agent.”

I also call upon Archangel Uriel to infuse me with ideas and highlight the next step. When I write a scene for my book, Gabriel and Uriel show me the next scene, and so forth. It’s like the old Michael Jackson video “Billie Jean,” where he’s dancing outside on the street and each of the steps lights up in front of him as he moves.

Kevin is correct in that Archangel Gabriel does function like a modern-day literary agent, who motivates writers to complete their books and articles and make their deadlines. I’ve heard stories of Gabriel urging writers to stay awake late at night in order to finish their manuscripts. For this reason, I’ve often referred to Gabriel respectfully as a “nudging angel.” I’ve even “warned” would-be writers that if they call upon Gabriel for help, they won’t be getting much sleep until their manuscript is complete.
Doreen Virtue holds B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees in counseling psychology and works with the angelic realm. She is the author of dozens of books and card decks that have valuable information and inspiration for writers—including Assertiveness for Earth Angels, The Angel Therapy Handbook and The Miracles of Archangel Gabriel, the patron saint of those who work in communication careers, such as journalists and writers as well as musicians and artists. You can listen to Doreen each week during her Hay House Radio Show, “Angel Therapy” and even call in for an angel reading. She is also very active in social media, so check out her Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for more messages from the angels.
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Rising Stars
Fabienne Fredrickson
Embrace Your Magnificence

Fabienne Fredrickson is an inspirational mentor to thousands of clients worldwide and is the founder of The Client Attraction Business School™. Last year, she decided to self-publish her first book Embrace Your Magnificence with Balboa Press. Fabrienne originally wrote the book as a love letter to her young daughter about self-esteem, but its message of courage and self-love resonated with women of all ages from around the world. We are proud to announce that Hay House has picked up this amazing book and Fabienne is now one of our newest Hay House authors.

Here is an excerpt from Embrace Your Magnificence:

Sharing Your Brownies

We’re all here to be of service, in our own special way and in a big way. You see, each one of us came into the world to contribute, to serve others. We’ve each been given specific talents, unique abilities and skills, ways of being and ways of doing, and life experiences (both good and not so good) that have contributed to the whole package of who we are. None of this was by accident. It was all for a purpose, one that is much greater than you may be able to see right now.

I call it sharing your brownies.

Imagine that you are alone in your kitchen while the rest of your friends and family are in your living room. Quietly, secretly, you’ve been baking up a batch of ooey, gooey, chocolaty brownies. As they’re about to come out of the oven, a close friend pokes her head into the kitchen and says, “Something smells really good! What are you making in there?”

Imagine that your response is, “None of your business! I’m not doing anything. Go back to the living room.”

Puzzled, your friend leaves. You take the tray of brownies out of the oven. Once they’ve cooled a bit, you cut up them up into perfect squares and stack them beautifully on a round platter. You pick up the tray. But instead of taking the platter out to your friends and family who are eagerly waiting for you, you choose to go to the corner of your kitchen and eat all the brownies by yourself—the entire platter, down to the last crumb.

Would you consider that being stingy? Maybe even a little greedy? It’s the same thing with your gifts, talents, and unique abilities.

You were given these, along with your personal life experiences (remember, the good ones and also the not so good ones), and the combination of all of these things makes up who you are.

You were not given these gifts to squander or to hoard. No—you were given these tools and created exactly as you are for the purpose of making a difference in other people’s lives in the way only you can. There is no one quite like you, and there never will be.

This is why I believe that if you don’t say yes to your natural inclinations and use them in a big way, you are hoarding these divine gifts. Would you consider that being stingy, too?

I continually tell my clients that it is their divine duty to share their brownies with the world. Otherwise, it is the equivalent of slapping your Creator in the face.

This person you’ve become, the one who’s here to be of service, absolutely must get out of her own way. Use your life to serve in the way only you can serve. This can be through your work, by embracing your creativity, volunteering, teaching, even creating a movement. Most especially if you’re in business for yourself, I believe that you must play a much bigger game. Do whatever you can to let yourself be found by the legions of people who need what you provide but don’t know about you yet.

Your gifts are meant to be shared—even if you’re scared, even if you don’t want to, even if you fear failure, or success, or criticism. If you choose not to share your brownies, my belief is you’re wasting the gifts that were divinely given to you.

Deep down, we’re here for one thing. It doesn’t matter what we do for a living, what industry we’re in, what our strengths and skills are. Life is about living in a way that matters. When you realize that it’s your divine duty to use these skills, and you do so, you begin changing the world.

Find out more about how you can publish your book at Balboa Press.
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Your Writing Life is a quarterly newsletter for all who have a passion for writing, speaking and taking your book, your product and your business to the next level. Subscribe Now »
In This Issue

Do You Question the Value of Your Writing?

Guest Author: Nancy Levin

Reid Tracy: Are You Exercising Your Power to Say No?

Susan Lander: Writing Tips from the Spirit of Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Doreen Virtue: The Archangel Who Inspires Writers

Fabienne Fredrickson: Embrace Your Magnificence

Learn Publishing Secrets in Free Online Workshop
Editor’s Corner
Image Do You Question the Value of Your Writing?
Picasso Will Help You Brush Your Fears Away

I usually start off my day with a soul recharge from Alan Cohen’s A Daily Dose of Sanity. I believe this book was meant for all deadline-afflicted writers everywhere. Here’s the message I read today:

How Long It Took

One morning in the 1950s an American woman named Joan was shopping in an open-air market in the French city of Nice. When she saw a familiar-looking man holding a sketch pad, she approached him nervously and asked, “Excuse me, but are you Pablo Picasso?”

“That’s right,” he answered softly.

“I am one of your biggest fans!” she told him excitedly. “I don’t mean to disturb you, but is there any way you would take a few minutes and do a sketch of me? I’d be happy to pay you.”

Picasso studied the woman’s features for a moment and answered with a smile, “Yes, I will.”

The two walked to a table at a nearby sidewalk café. Picasso opened his pad, reached into his pocket for a piece of charcoal, and went to work. Fifteen minutes later he turned the pad around and showed Joan his finished work. It was spectacular—an authentic Picasso, and of her!

Joan took the portrait and thanked the master profusely. Then she took out her checkbook and asked, “How much will that be?”

“Five thousand dollars,” Picasso answered in a matter-of-fact way.

Joan’s jaw dropped. “But, sir, with all due respect, the picture took you only 15 minutes.”

“No, madam,” he replied quite seriously. “You don’t understand. The picture took me 80 years and 15 minutes.”

Did you read this and think that Picasso had some nerve doing what he did? I did, too. But then as I read further, I began to understand the message that the author was trying to convey:

Everything you have ever done has led you to become who and what you are today, and bestowed you with what you have to offer.

Here’s the question that this story poses: Do you have the level of confidence in your work that Picasso has in his?

You didn’t wake up on a particular morning, look in the mirror and say, “Today, I’m going to be a writer.” You’ve been evolving on this creative journey from the day you picked up a pencil and started scribbling on a piece of paper. All of these scribblings, homemade cards, school projects, notes to friends, journal entries, Post-it reminders, doodles on restaurant napkins and other expressions of your creativity over the years have helped mold you into the unique writer that you are—at this very moment.

As Alan reminds us in this beautiful story:

You bring to the table a huge bank of wisdom based on past learning. This moment is not disconnected from those that came before it. It stands at the apex of the pyramid of your life.

As a writer, you have the power to change lives. So, the next time you’re not feeling very confident about what you just wrote or you’re worried that your latest blog post or chapter in your new book aren’t worth the sum of the years you’ve been living your dream as a writer added to the time it took you to write it, practice the affirmations that the fearlessly confident painter Pablo Picasso and the wise inspirational author Alan Cohen have imparted in this simple story:

I have a beautiful gift of writing to share with others.

I bring a lifetime of experience to any new writing project.

I am valuable not just for what I write now, but for all the valuable experiences leading to now.

Me and my writing: PRICELESS.

Write On!
Donna Abate


Our mission at Your Writing Life is to provide you with the information you need to help you on your path to writing, publishing, and promoting your work. If you’d like to see a particular topic covered here, please write to us on our Hay House Writer’s Workshop Facebook page.

A Writing Excercise
Image Why Keep Staring at a Blank Page?

The best way to sharpen your writing skills is to write, write and write more. In this issue, Hay House author Nancy Levin (Jump…and Your Life Will Appear) shares an exercise for you:

Here’s one of my favorite writing exercises that I do quite often, especially when I am staring at the blank page and know something needs to be pulled up to the surface. It’s also a great way to generate jumping off points for content creation using your own personal stories that you can return to for blogs, articles, books, talks, etc.

Set a timer for 5 minutes and write a list, each line beginning with “I remember…”

I remember…
I remember..
I remember…

When the bell rings, you’ll most likely notice a few things, including: you now have access to many memories/stories perhaps forgotten about; you have several starting points for new blank pages; and best of all: you want to keep writing!

Off the Wall
Image Literally, You’re About to Be Confused!

The dream of an editor is to polish all copy so it shines brightly whenever anyone reads it. And the quest of a writer is to keep your editors happy! Here are inside tips from the razor-sharp and talented Hay House editors at our Carlsbad, New York and global offices:

Today’s Tip: The Correct Usage of Literally and Figuratively

If you’re a baby boomer, your hands may have been literally whacked with a ruler if your grade-school teacher heard you misusing either of these words.

Okay, here’s the real deal. These two words have two distinct meanings. Literally means “The event you are describing really and truly happened.” Figuratively means “You are implying an event that would be impossible to occur.” For example, if you say your writing deadline is literally giving you a headache, you’d be correct, especially if your head is pounding. But if you say your writing deadline is making your head explode, you’d better use figuratively because it’s unlikely that your deadline is about to detonate your cranium.

However, here’s where it gets tricky. Since the digital kids (Gen Xers and Millennials) are continually using literally to state the impossible, and since popular TV shows (Parks and Recreation, How I Met Your Mother) are encouraging them to do so by creating characters that blatantly misuse the word, the tables are turning. Last year, several dictionaries (including Webster, Macmillan and Cambridge) and Google have given their go-ahead to use this word if you want to emphasize a point, even if it isn’t true. Are you literally kidding me?

So what is a writer to do? As crusaders for truth, justice for all words and the grammarian way, we’d like to lovingly suggest that you use these words as they were originally intended. Remember, you can create a new list of colorful words if you want to add extra emphasis to your stories. We also believe that most seasoned book editors will literally toss your manuscript to the nearest receptacle for this type of grammatical violation. The choice is yours.

If you have any other grammatical violations or writing faux pas you’d like us to address, send us an email.

Tips and Tidbits
ImageSpeaking Tip of the Month
5 More Ways to Engage Your Audience

So you have a message you want to share, but you have no idea how to deliver a compelling speech? Did you know that the most well-known professional speakers weren’t always so, um…professional? Most, if not all, of them had extensive training and coaching to become the stage stealers they are today. While not everyone is meant to be a public speaker, anyone can learn to become a professional speaker with a little training and a lot of practice. If you have a strong desire to spread your message, here are 5 more steps to help you deliver your message with confidence, conviction and class!

Step 1: Rehearse. Set up a video camera, a timer and practice, practice, practice. Then practice some more. Did I mention you have to practice?

Step 2: Watch yourself. Review your recorded sessions as an objective observer, or better yet, recruit a friend or coworker to give you feedback. And don’t choose that friend or coworker who likes EVERYTHING you do. Pick the person who is honest and able to give you constructive feedback, even if it means hurting your feelings.

Step 3: Bring in the New. Now that you have good solid feedback, record your speech again, incorporating the feedback you received from that brave honest friend or coworker. Repeat Step 2.

Step 4: Memorize your lines. If you have any problem areas, like tongue twisters or sentences that sound awkward, now is the time to make final edits. And please, for the love of your audience, remove filler words such as “like” and “you know.” These absolutely make you look ill-prepared, unprofessional and downright juvenile. Sorry for the harshness, but if you do nothing else on the list, at least remove these words for a vastly improved speech.

Step 5: Dress to impress and enjoy the limelight! Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to primp and plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to your scheduled speaking time. Take a deep breath. If you’ve followed these steps, you’re prepared, ready and able to share your message with your audience!

If you really get stuck and don’t know how to begin, one great way to get started is watch a couple of speakers you really enjoy and make note of the qualities you like. Then, try to use a couple of these qualities in your own speech. One word of caution here – don’t lose your unique voice or style in the process. The audience spots a fake like an eagle spots his prey. Be yourself, do the work and commend yourself for being so brave!

—Kelly Stokes Brown, Hay House Email and Web Marketing Copywriter

In a Word

Affirmations for Writers

I am always presented with new and wonderful writing opportunities.

I am pleased with all that I write.

I recognize my writing as my good friend.

I am the creative power in my world. I express myself creatively as much as I can.

I was born to write. And so it is!

Quotable Quotes
ImagePablo Picasso on Inspiration

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find us working.”
Pablo Picasso

Events Calendar
Workshops for Writers

Insider Publishing Secrets
FREE Live Online Event

Aug 6, 2014

The Writer’s Workshop Weekend
Sydney, Australia • Sept 13-14, 2014

Writer’s Intensive at
I Can Do It Pasadena

Pasadena, CA • Oct 24, 2014

Speak, Write, Promote:
Become A Mover & Shaker

Chicago, IL • Nov 7-9, 2014

Recommended Reading
Recommended Readings
Here are a few inspiring products to help you recharge your creative batteries and keep your words flowing:
Power Words
Sharon Anne Klingler
Buy Now
Love Your Voice
Roger Love
Buy Now
God Is My Publicist
Gabrielle Bernstein
Buy Now
News for Writers
Image Learn Publishing Secrets in Free Online Workshop

Do you want to become a successful published author? Do you want your book to stand out from the rest of the competition? Do you want to be financially successful doing what you love to do—write? Then you’ll want to sign up for “Insider Publishing Secrets”—a free online event that takes place from noon to 1:30 PM on Wednesday, August 6th.

During this event, Reid Tracy, president and CEO of Hay House—today’s leading publisher of self-empowerment books, and Keith Ogorek, senior vice president of Author Solutions, will be sharing their insider secrets and answering your questions on how to become a successful self-published author.

Whether you’ve been published in the past, you’re a multi-product author or you’re a first-time author, Reid and Keith can give you the tools you need to get your important message to the people who need it most.

REGISTER TODAY for Insider Publishing Secrets FREE Online Event.

Hay House Offers Writer’s Intensive Workshop in October

During this one-day Writer’s Workshop, you’ll get the wisdom of Reid Tracy, president and CEO of Hay House, who has acquired 45 New York Times best-selling books and sold more than 53 millions books in the US and Canada. Reid will cover such topics as the publishing process, creating a book proposal, finding an agent and securing a publishing deal as well as key components of building a successful platform that will allow you to market your work to a larger audience.

Reid will also be joined by Hay House author Nancy Levin (Jump…and Your Life Will Appear), who will share her writing tips as well as conduct hands-on writing exercises.

The Writer’s Intensive will be one of four pre-conference workshops during Hay House’s I Can Do It! Conference in Pasadena, California, which runs from Friday to Sunday, October 24-26. REGISTER TODAY for the Writer’s Intensive.

Here’s a Workshop to Help You Launch Your Writing Career

How do you build the kind of platform that not only reaches millions, but also grabs the interest of publishers, producers, editors, and the speaker’s bureaus? That’s what you’ll learn when you sign up for Hay House’s new Speak! Write! Promote! weekend workshop, which will be held Nov. 7-9 in Chicago.

During this interactive workshop, New York Times best-selling author Cheryl Richardson and Hay House CEO Reid Tracy will work with you directly to catapult your career. Some of the topics they will cover include: the ins and outs of multimedia writing and publishing, building the right kind of Web presence and online community for you, affiliate marketing, personal branding and more!

And here’s the best part: workshop participants can enter a contest for these amazing opportunities: win a $10,000 advance and a publishing contract with Hay House, host a weekly radio show for 1 month, and participate in a live online event.

REGISTER HERE for Speak, Write, Promote event in Chicago.
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