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Full Moons, Corner Saloons, and Creating Community.

Full Moons. The October full moon is known as the “Hunter’s Moon”. According to the Farmer’s Almanac, the Hunter’s Moon gets its name from the Native Americans. After the harvest, animals would come to the fields for scraps. With the full moon, it was easier to see deer and other animals and successfully hunt in the darkness. I’ve always been fascinated by the moon and take tons of photos of full moons. I seek them out, add the dates to my calendar, and photograph them as often as possible. As a child, I could see the moon from the window by my bed and it became a reassuring friend. Although occasionally hidden behind clouds, I knew it would always return! Much like the longtime friends in my life today, we may not connect on a daily basis, but they are always there when I go looking for them! They, like the moon, are part of my COMMUNITY.

Corner Saloons. Some of you also probably know that I grew up in the Midwest of the United States . . . around farmers, ranchers, oil rigs, and the open prairie. A few of these tiny Midwestern towns and communities now still thrive as suburbs of much larger urban areas which have since grown around them. This past weekend, I got to revisit one such community for a family event, and although many of our relatives and former retailers have moved away, the one community element still thriving was the corner saloon (bar). Most of these smaller towns still have a corner bar on just about every corner. It has evolved into the new “town square” . . . a consistent place to create community. Kind of like creating their very own “Cheers”. . . a place to go “where everybody knows your name”. And, yes, after the family event, many of us moved to the corner bar for lunch and continued to reminisce and celebrate the new communities we were creating in our lives today.

Creating Community. Experiencing the Full Moon and the Corner Saloon during the same weekend caused me to reflect on the type of community we help to build on a daily basis at Davis Creative.

You see, we help authors create brands and publish books which
connect people, create community and celebrate the sacred connections
in us all — no matter the diversity of our faith, race, nationality, or gender.

We turn down projects which create division, isolation, and separation.

It’s really that simple.

 

Our COMMUNITY MATTERS to us, so we recently came up with Seven Simple Seeds of Success to help describe our community of clients. If you are looking for a creative community for authors and small businesses and you identify with our Seven Seeds of Success, we’d love to have you join us.

Do you see yourself as . . .

  1. A Helper, Healer, or a How-to-Do-er?
  2. Determined to make a difference in the lives of others?
  3. Honest, ethical, and inspired to help others?
  4. Ready to be seen as the expert at what you do?
  5. Results-oriented and determined to succeed?
  6. A proponent of inclusion and diversity?
  7. Pleasant, happy, and fun to work with?

Then, to quote Bob Barker (for the over-50 crowd)
and Drew Carey (for the under-50 crowd) from
“The Price is Right . . . “COME ON DOWN”!

We can’t wait to share the power of publishing to help you
fulfill your mission, share your message, and create community.

Contact Cathy to learn more. 

SHINE with ONE CHAPTER AT A TIME

It can be intimidating to think about sitting down to write an entire book in one session. 

You don’t have to.

Whether you are writing an entire book or submitting one chapter to an anthology, the process is pretty much the same . . .  simply focus on ONE CHAPTER AT A TIME.

In addition to helping our authors produce and publish about 50 books yearly, we sponsor and/or oversee at least 4 anthologies — also known as a collection of story chapters along a common theme — with each chapter written by a different author.

How to Write a Non-fiction Chapter that SHINES

We’ve noticed most first-draft writings tend to fall within one of 3 categories, those which either . . .

  1. Impress
  2. Inform
  3. Inspire

Although most writers tend to want to impress the reader with how much they know, it can sometimes backfire on them if the content comes across as too much about the author.

The writings which receive a more positive reaction from the readers tend to fall into the same 3 categories, but in reverse order . . .

  1. Inspire
  2. Inform
  3. Impress

The goal of any author is to use a balanced combination of the above.

Define. Describe. Depict. Double-back.

When writing for an anthology, you need to be succinct. It is your job to use your 2,000 – 2,500 words to get your point across and not leave the reader wondering what you are trying to say. When writing an entire book, you have quite a bit more room to get your point across, but either way, readers like to be engaged beginning with the very first sentence. If you want them to read your entire chapter (or entire book), consider following the 4 D’s . . .

  • Define. Explain your concept so anyone can understand it. Remember, your readers are not experts in your topic . . . avoid industry lingo . . . this is not a textbook. Keep the focus on the reader and NOT about you. You are here to help the reader, not tout your credentials (save that for your bio).
  • Describe. Give the facts to set the stage and offer credibility. Think about what you really want to include which would be important to your reader. Don’t worry about telling everything you know — you can always go into more detail on your website and/or when you meet with a new client.
  • Depict. Share benefits through real-life stories of how it works so people will understand the practical application and why what you do is a good idea. Personal stories — whether about your personal or professional life — tend to really grab the reader’s attention. Share something fascinating that happened in your life, perhaps even inspired you to take a chance or make a change. Readers can always relate to something you, as the author, have been through and learned from.
  • Double-back. What’s your point? Readers want to feel as if the author really understands them, gets them, and wants to provide them some sort of relief. Give the reader something to “take-away”. Why is “this” (what you do) a good thing and how can it greatly improve the life of the reader?

Whether you are writing one chapter in an anthology or an entire book of chapters, our goal is to help you retain your author’s voice and appeal to your specific audience. Your reader is more likely to remember you and your intention if the writing relates to them. Taking the time to write for THEM is what puts the spotlight on YOU and helps you shine.

THANK YOU to Pam Wilson, our Creative Writing Coach
for help in writing this week’s blog!
If you’d like to reach out to Pam, you can contact her HERE.

If you are ready to write ONE CHAPTER and you’d like to learn
more about our upcoming anthology programs, contact Cathy HERE.

If you are considering writing a book and you’d like to learn
more about how we help you make that happen, contact Cathy HERE.

 

 

 

 

 

Books: Destination or Destiny?

I’ve been in a “purge” mode this past month . . . cleaning out drawers, closets, rooms . . . all in an effort to declutter and get rid of anything which we no longer need or haven’t seen nor touched in years. It’s been similar to a treasure hunt . . . but in reverse. On the one hand, I’ve been tossing/recycling all things which no longer serve where we are in life, and yet, in doing so, I’m able to notice, reacquaint myself with, and KEEP the things I treasure.

One of the treasures I found recently was a “book report” I made in grade school (c. 1968), titled “Stepping Stones of the Pacific.” I found it in a small stationery box with some other “valuables.” I’m pretty certain it hasn’t seen daylight in 25 years. I guess I had a “thing” for making books, even way back then! Although I do not remember the assignment, it appears I made a “travel” book, with the first stop-over being Hawaii. The entire book was handwritten and hand-bound (remember those brass brads we used to use to hold papers together?!). I’m amazed it didn’t fall apart in my hands when I picked it up. Finding this book was very much a “full-circle” moment for me – you know, the kind they sing about in the Lion King, the “Circle of Life.” I guess books were always meant to be part of my life.

Occasionally I get asked, “How did you get so interested in books?”
I guess it’s always been in my blood. As a child, I remember dreaming about living in a castle which had a floor-to-ceiling library in one of the turrets. I can still see the room in my mind and the vast green countryside out the stone window. After college, I took jobs as they appeared – not really having a plan – but grateful that I was always able to work in an artistic, creative environment. Looking back, I learned a lot in each job I had – valuable communication, design, branding, and printing skills – and can clearly see the path which led to where I am now. Once I let go of the job/career I really did not like, all-the-more books just started showing up.

One of our clients recently called me the “Book Doula” . . . because I help people “birth” books. Not a bad destiny to have.

No matter where you are on your path to publishing . . . REACH OUT . . . I can help. And I promise to not recommend using brass brads to bind your book! (Do they even still make those?!)

5 Steps to Confidence: Your Guide to Creating a Repeatable Path to Success

Please join us Thursday, September 26th as Cathy interviews Lisa Bianco, certified coach, professional organizer, international speaker, and author.
Lisa Bianco founded Power is Within Coaching, Organizing & Productivity in 2013. She is a certified coach, professional organizer, international speaker and author who leads highly interactive workshops at conferences and life-changing retreats.
Lisa believes that being an entrepreneur is the greatest self-discovery journey you will ever embark on. To be successful requires overcoming many obstacles with the biggest ones being; stepping out of your comfort zone and facing your fears. Lisa enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience with you in hope that you can find the power within yourself to create a business you love.
Public Speaking is the number one fear people have. It also happens to be an important tool that you can use to grow your business, make a difference in the world and share the wonderful work you do. If you have a vision of yourself on the stage and need help stepping out of your comfort zone, this session will get you there.
During this interview you will:
  • Learn Lisa’s easy 5-Step proven process which helps you say, “YES!” to your next speaking (or any other scary) opportunity
  • Identify the one skill to create an engaging presentation and guarantee your success
  • Access an easy-peasy outline to get you started on your next speech
Thursday, September 26, 2019 
12:30pm Eastern / 11:30am Central / 10:30am Mountain / 9:30am Pacific
All Webinars are FREE and will air live via ZOOM.
You will be sent a link to each call, in advance.
Calls will be recorded and you will receive a link to the recording after the event. 
 

DynaMighty Books: Tiny Books . . . MIGHTY Impact!

Smaller books are the new “calling card” for authors, speakers, and trainers. As content powerhouses, their smaller 4×6” or 5×8” size makes them easy to customize, quick to read, and most importantly, AFFORDABLE. Publishing industry trends show the smaller, printed book outsells the e-book and audiobook (even for Millennials!)

TAP INTO THE BENEFITS OF A DynaMighty BOOK!

  • Receive a sense of achievement upon completion
  • Gain confidence in sharing your message with more people
  • Be the speaker/trainer who always offers MORE
  • Generate additional revenue by adding a DynaMighty Book to your offerings
  • Get your book and message to your audience faster
  • Open the door to relationship building
  • Increase your credibility ratio by being able to include a book with your next engagement
  • Stand out as an expert when used as a marketing tool
  • Emphasize your WHY and draw attention to your mission and message
  • Promote the smaller book as a synopsis of your larger book, containing more robust content
  • Replace handouts with a compact all-inclusive synopsis of your talk
  • Customize the front and back covers to more specifically target your next audience
  • Leave the audience with a concrete takeaway, leading them to want more
  • Offer your own bulk discounts for larger orders
  • Share real stories to support your message and help your audience relate to you better
  • Make getting in touch with you so much easier by including your contact info with EVERY book
  • Placed in each attendee’s seat, your DynaMighty Book will get picked up before sitting down (helps to fill the front row seats!)
  • Create a series of DynaMighty Books to generate interest in getting the “complete collection”
  • Sell your book from your website to gather emails and create long-term relationships

“I LOVED how easy they made the process!”

You’ve been thinking about writing a book . . . but might not be sure where to begin . . . start with a DynaMighty Book! The DynaMighty Book is your chance to motivate the masses by sharing your Mission and Message . . . and we make the process easy for you!

“They answered all my questions . . .
even the ones I didn’t even know to ask!”

Perfect for professional service providers, especially the “HELPERS, HEALERS and HOW-TO-DO-ers” . . .

As a life coach, mentor, therapist, physician, educator, speaker, trainer, or any other professional service provider, a DynaMighty Book helps you engage a larger audience. If you are speaking in front of an audience, you need a DynaMighty Book!

  • Establish Your Credibility
  • Inspire More People
  • Project a Professional Image
  • Develop Greater Visibility
  • Attract, Retain and Solidify Your Client Base

CLICK HERE to learn all the details!

Contact CATHY to reserve your DynaMighty Book spot on our project list and learn more about how you can become a published author at an easily affordable rate!

IT’S TIME TO BE KIND

A True Story About the Kindness of Total Strangers in St. Louis!

My friend “B” was recently volunteering for a downtown non-profit. She was told to park in one specific multi-level garage where they would validate her ticket so she could park for free.

I worked in downtown St. Louis and parked in one of those multi-level garages for over 12 years . . . they can be quite scary, especially if you are navigating the elevators and stairwells alone. It also does not help that STL has recently been dubbed one of the most dangerous cities in the United States.

When it came time to exit the garage, B had her validated ticket in-hand and proceeded to “swipe” the ticket in the reader to no avail. The security gate did not budge, and she was stuck. There was no human within eyesight, and the “squawk box” to her left found her trying to converse with a difficult-to-understand static-filled voice.

With no one in line behind her, B backed up into an empty spot, got out, locked her car, and proceeded to walk around a bit looking for help. She spotted and walked up to one of those city worker-bee trucks and proceeded to ask for help in getting out of the garage. The two employees (a man and a woman) in the truck explained they worked for the St. Louis City Schools and weren’t sure if they could help. (NOTE: I know you are thinking it, so allow me to answer . . . B is white and the workers were black.)

Frustrated, B started walking back to her car to figure out her next best step when she noticed the two city workers following her. The woman asked to see B’s validated ticket to see if she could possibly help. That’s when they all noticed the ink on the ticket was so weak, there was no wonder why the reader couldn’t read the ticket so B could get out.

The two STL workers stayed with B and continued to “talk” with the person beyond the “squawk box”, reading the numbers on the ticket the best they could . . . trying to convince the voice on the other end to open up the gate. Their efforts eventually proved successful! They even asked the growing line of cars behind the security gate to back up enough so B could pull her car through when the “squawk box” voice finally agreed to open the gate for B.

With a heart full of gratitude and new-found friends, B proceeded safely out of the garage!

We all cross “intersections” with people in our lives on a daily basis, most of whom are total strangers. At any given point we have the choice to trust and reach out, taking the chance that one of those strangers might actually become a friend. Quite often, we get exactly what we expect.

The kindness of strangers is alive and well in St. Louis, and I personally expect to encounter more of these KIND of people.

So, whenever I hear someone use the phrase, “Stick with your own kind,” I cringe. Maybe it’s not about the color of your skin . . . or your national origin . . . or your political preferences . . . or where you celebrate your spirituality . . . or where you park your car . . . perhaps it’s simply about the KINDness in your heart.

______________________________________

IT’S TIME TO BE KIND . . . BIG TIME.

BE KIND TO YOURSELF. If you are no longer willing to “play it small” and find yourself ready to attract a larger audience through the power of publishing . . . give us a call, 888-598-0886.

We’ll kindly help you create that BIG author-brand connection you’ve been dreaming about.

BE KIND TO OTHERS. With Amazon/KDP publishing more than a million titles each year, it’s easy to get lost in the DIY Dead-End. Step out of the DIY publishing traffic jam and let our concierge team connect you with the resources you need for Global Distribution, Bestseller Campaigns, and National Media Exposure.

Find Your Voice. Tell Your Story.
Make a Difference.

LET THE WORLD KNOW IT’S TIME TO BE KIND . . . BIG TIME.

Finding Rainbows Along the Road Trip of Life

I am often invited to speak about publishing and this past June we planned a road trip around an invitation to speak in Cedar Falls, Iowa. According to Google Maps, we could make the drive in an easy 4 hours. We packed the car (Jack and our dog, Chewy, went with me) and headed out a day early, ready for our grand adventure.

I have always loved road trips . . . there’s something about being able to drive where you want to go and stop when you want to stop. As a young child, my step-father was a traveling salesman, so our Summer Vacation usually meant my Mother and I would travel with him and we would “vacation” while he worked. I spent many a Summer Day in a Holiday Inn pool, from Little Rock to Albuquerque, to Denver and back home to Tulsa.

Around the age of 10-11, once such road trip found me playing water volleyball in a Denver-area hotel pool with two young boys about my same age. My mother later explained that their dad was the TV star of Sea Hunt, Lloyd Bridges. Yep . . . unbeknownst to me at the time, I was hanging out with Jeff and Beau while their Dad read a newspaper by the side of the pool. I had no clue we were in the midst of mid-century TV royalty . . . it probably took me another 10 years, once Jeff and Beau began their own Hollywood careers before I even made the connection.

Needless to say, road trips have always meant adventure, excitement, and the thrill of “something new” just around the next hill or curve . . . kind of like finding the rainbow on the horizon. I can vividly remember my excitement as a child, wondering what great adventure we’d encounter next.

Our Summer 2019 road trip TO Iowa was fairly uneventful. If you’ve ever driven north out of St. Louis, up highway 61, past Hannibal into Iowa, you know you get to see LOTS of agriculture fields and not much else. Chewy LOVED his first road trip and immediately fell asleep in the back seat as soon as the car hit the highway. It was the drive home, two days later, that brought the excitement.

The sky was overcast as we left Cedar Falls and Chewy had settled into his preferred sleep zone in the back seat when we realized we had missed our exit. The grey skies and misty rain prevented either of us from noticing that we were headed straight east, rather than the more direct southern route home. At about 45 minutes into our trip, Jack mentions, “I don’t remember seeing any of this on our way up here,” which immediately prompts me to check our maps app to see exactly WHERE we are.

A quick U-Turn and a sharp left got us headed in the right direction without too much time lost, yet we found ourselves driving into a thunderstorm. The skies grew darker, the rain became more intense, and out my passenger side window, we could see a very dark, rolling shelf-cloud, with 7 (albeit tiny) little “tails” dropping down. Having grown up in Oklahoma, I knew very well that any of that 7 tiny whispers-of-a-tail could immediately turn into one grand tornado.

Again . . . we are in the IOWA plains, so there’s not too many places to hide from a potential tornado.

Rather than pull over, we decided to pick up speed and continue southward as I kept my eye on the rolling clouds. We essentially out-ran the scariest of the clouds and as the rain dissipated the sun began to peek out, casting rainbows all around us. The thrill of not getting caught in a tornado, along with the thrill of seeing a full-arch, double-rainbow along the driver’s side of the car was only surpassed by noticing the rainbow in the back-splash of the big truck in front of us. We were literally driving through a rainbow!

So, wherever your travels may lead, may your personal road trips of life always bring you rainbows!

 . . . and when you are ready to find your voice, tell your story and
write that book you’ve been thinking about, we can help.

Our clients hire us to use the power of publishing
to build their brand, grow their business, and make
a difference in the lives of the people they reach.

Congratulations to Author, Michael Montague!

The Science of Music and the Music of Science: How Music Reveals Our Brain, Our Humanity, and the Cosmos

Science and music—scientists and musicians—are inseparable and symbiotic. For over 2,500 years, music has inspired scientific investigation and progress. In return, science has provided musicians with untold numbers of valuable insights into their art and craft, as well as many powerful technologies.

The last 25 years have witnessed an even more intimate connection. Neuroscience now possesses new tools to image living human brains in real time as our brains engage in specific tasks. In using these powerful tools, neuroscientists have discovered that nothing demands more of human cognitive abilities than music-making and consequently, neuroscience now relies frequently upon music as an amazingly effective research probe.
During this same period of time, physicists and mathematicians have investigated the fundamental nature of reality, discovering the musical nature of the Cosmos itself. Quite remarkably, the equations and concepts of music theory are similar to the concepts used for our best ideas about Nature.

This book describes these scientific advances accessibly and without jargon, but entertainingly and accurately. It provides the reader with an easy and graceful insight into basic music theory, the biology of the brain, the use of music as brain therapy, the psychology of music, the tools of the composer, the importance of music education for our children, and finally the story of our search for the fundamental nature of reality itself–leading ultimately to a better understanding of our humanity. It is written for anyone interested in music, science, the well-being of our children, and the best aspects of our humanity as we live in this magnificent Cosmos.

You can buy the book HERE.

What On Earth Are You Doing?

 

We’re all on this planet for a reason. No matter our faith, philosophy, or fears . . .
we are here on this Earth-ship and it is up to each of us to make a “go” of it.

SO-O-O . . . What do you STAND FOR? What will you NOT STAND FOR?

How will you spend the rest of your time on this planet?

Do you walk the path of FEAR in order to just survive?

Do you walk the path of LOVE and eagerly learn to thrive?

 

What I know for sure . . .

No matter where you are on your journey, you have gifts to share.

You have wisdom learned from a life well-lived, and wisdom to share.

Wisdom not shared with others is wisdom lost forever.

It’s time to share your wisdom.

 

Are you ready to write that book you’ve been thinking about?

Reach out . . . give us a call . . . we’ve gotcha covered. We can make that happen.

 

“I hardly know where to start thanking you
for pulling me out of that stressful situation with Amazon . . .
it’s like a new day has dawned!” — Another Happy Author

Talking Heads . . . No Barking Allowed

I see a lot of what I call “Talking Heads” throughout social media. The video messages on Facebook and LinkedIn are EVERYWHERE . . . each claiming to have the PERFECT solution to what THEY perceive as my immediate need.

It reminds me a lot of the “Carnival Barkers” I encountered as a child at State Fairs. It was the job of the Carnival Barker to convince you to come play THEIR game and win THE prize of a lifetime. They too, made it sound like they were the ONLY solution to make my day better.

The Dangling Carrot . . . or was that a Giant Blue Teddy Bear?

Unfortunately, as a 10-12 year old child, these were the games where I ended up spending all of my allowance just for the CHANCE to win the 4-foot-tall, giant blue teddy bear. I had a spot all picked out for it in my bedroom. I never won that blue teddy bear . . . and eventually stopped believing I could. I suppose I never really NEEDED that blue teddy bear, but it would have been really cool to have bragging rights for a few days . . . or weeks.

The same discretionary deflection skills I could have used when I was 10-12 years old on the Carnival walkway are the same skills I need today when navigating my way through the great American bi-ways of social media. You think you are simply out for a calm, relaxing, Sunday afternoon stroll through social media, only to find yourself being bombarded with . . .

“Step right up!” . . .  “Put your money here!” . . .

“Everyone’s a winner!” . . . “Your life will suck if you don’t buy now!”

Yep . . . guilty.

  • Guilty of buying into the notion that if I don’t buy into “this” or “that” program that my life/business/future will be doomed for eternity.
  • Guilty of thinking I had to do the exact same thing . . . “bark” out my UVP (Unique Value Platform) to any willing listener.
  • Guilty of hoping my barking would resonate with at least a few who might call me.


NOPE. NADA. NOT GOING THERE NO MO . . .

I LOVE dogs, but I’m not a barker. It’s actually quite the contrary. You see, my personal mission in life is to “create positive ripples.” This is the foundation for our business. As your Author Brand Connection, we help you Find Your Voice, Tell Your Story, and Make a Difference . . . which ultimately helps you GROW YOUR BUSINESS.

It’s really that simple.

“I never knew there were so many steps and details.
I can’t believe how easy your team makes the entire process . . .
I couldn’t have done it without you!”

So, if you’re ready to grow your business AND make a difference . . . give us a call.

We are ready to help.

Right now, I’m going to go let the dog in . . . he’s barking.