Each month, the Nonfiction Authors Association asks a burning publishing question of its very own Authority and VIP members. Here’s what they have to say!
NFAA: What do you hope readers will gain from reading your book?
Everyone has a story. In 2014, after leaving the classroom that became my second home, I was challenged to write my story about the hopes, dreams, and tears that encased the four walls of room 123. For me, it was cathartic. For the reader, I hope for it to be a lesson in the importance in knowing that relationships matter. Showing others we care is a reward that keeps giving. My students, some of which came from the harshest of conditions, thrived because they knew I genuinely loved them. Our classroom was their safe haven. Their peers became their family. We challenged each other in ways I did not know existed. I learned with them and from them. What do I hope others will gain from reading Heartprints? I hope they gain compassion. I hope they gain the understanding that everyone has a story.
In 2017, a colleague and I joined together to compile Writing Through the Mess: Seeking Healing through Writing. Writing has healed me, in more ways than I can explain. It has allowed me to put my past onto paper, accept it, throw it away, and survive. With this book, our hope is that anyone can pick it up, grab a pencil, and begin to write their story. Forty different exercises. Forty different ways to explore who you are, where you have been and who you want to be. It is a book designed to discover your voice while giving yourself the power to make your words heard. Our hope is that others will understand they have a story and their story is their own to share, throw away, or keep locked in their hearts. Our hope is that others will see the power of writing to heal.
Both books complement each other in a way I never intended. Both books help readers to know the importance of “everyone has a story,” including themselves.
I am a wife, mother, “Juice” to two beautiful grandchildren, and a person who believes in the power of writing. I am a former autopsy-assistant-turned-English-teacher who thrives on learning the stories of everyone I meet. I am the biggest Ellen fan, a Notre Dame football cheerleader and a parrot head who loves pink tulips and gin with a bit of ginger ale thrown in! I love to laugh and sing loudly while driving in my car! Life is good is my mantra and I live by it every single day!
Books: Heartprints and Writing Through the Mess: Seeking Healing through Writing. I am also a contributing author of Teaching Hope with Erin Gruwell and 150 Freedom Writer Teachers.
My hope is that every reader recognizes that it is right and true to give permission and acceptance to whatever emotional experiences they may have as a reaction to loss in their life. And, that no matter what, they are not alone on this journey and tending to it is essential to the growth of the soul.
Grief is a universal experience of the heart. This book offers readers vulnerable and tender insights into the journey through grief, as well as practical tools and steps to take along the way. My hope is that readers find strength, comfort, and courage to enter and move through their own loss and grief.
Michele Mariscal is a speaker, skilled facilitator, and grief recovery specialist. She combines her background in health, wellness, and spiritual development and healing to help individuals find greater meaning and movement forward in their life.
Growing Through Grief: The Alchemy of Healing From Loss http://www.EnergyM.org
Since I’ve published several nonfiction books, the exact thing I’d like readers to take away varies by title. However, for all my books, the overall goal is for readers to gain a better understanding of the issues they are facing in their writing and small business pursuits. I always describe my books and other content as providing real world, practical insight. I’m sure that many of my readers may feel a sense of relief that they are not alone in their challenges.
Dr. Heidi Thorne, MBA/DBA, is a business nonfiction author and speaker. Her podcast, The Heidi Thorne Show (available on iTunes and YouTube), discusses real world self-publishing and small business.
The next book that I am releasing will be on Developing an Author’s Mindset… so with that in mind:
Many writers never experience the ultimate essence of a vocation in writing…they are faced with an array of anxieties in the requirement to navigate many internal thresholds on the way to feeling like “a writer.” They often lack the mindset to give their best and develop a skill not rife with struggle, yet remain open to opportunities, connections and problem-solving skills, which are important and valuable parts of the learning process.
Debut authors learn how to:
* bend with an ever-changing industry;
* write for the reader;
* embrace innate talent and evolve additional skills, when appropriate;
* use a “growth” mindset to hone a unique craft;
* create a mindset conducive to productive, quality writing;
* look at each book as a brand and business; and
* capitalize on planning and processes.
Anna Weber Literary Strategist
Working Title: Dancing with Greatness
SERVING…writers who inspire, influence and impact the world. www.SuccessfullyPublished.com
ONALEE G. MARSH
Love & Kisses, Max: An Untold Story of World War II is a collection of love letters written to a wife and daughter, entries from a private and secret journal, actual news reports from World War II, and memories from a little girl who misses her daddy because he now “lives at the war.” The story of my family’s attempt at normalcy, while living in the shadow of the essence of war, provides a glimpse into the depth of sacrifice endured by all families who experience uncertainty and separation caused by war.
The spirit of my family invaded my mind and heart as I put this WWII collage together. It personalizes the sacrifices our military families make to preserve and protect our freedom. My hope is that the reader will gain a better understanding of the impact of war on families. Clark Miller, a writer for the “Northern Express,” wrote that he found Max’s very human reaction to life at sea during war and his deep love of family especially compelling. The Reverend Kathy Snedeker used what she got from Love & Kisses, Max in a sermon she delivered which ended with, “When everything around you is shaking, everyone needs to know that there is an anchor of love praying for them and waiting for them.”
I continue to be surprised and delighted at the reaction to my book. And I keep hearing from readers and in reviews, “It should be made into a Hallmark movie.” Perhaps…
Love & Kisses, Max: An Untold Story of World War II
Most recently I have been writing a blog for Psychology Today (psychologytoday.com). My blog is “Can’t We All Just Get Along?” and the focus of my posts is “Helping people get along better, and treat each other with greater respect, especially across racial, cultural and gender barriers.” And that is the message I hope people will take away from my blog (and other writings).
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