In celebration of World Read Aloud Day, some authors are offering the eBook version of their children’s books for free. You can grab a huge collection of children’s eBooks for FREE on 1/31/23 and 2/1/23 (19 books total) with this ONE-click link. My Silly Willy Apple Cake book is one of 19 FREE books included!
The global effort, created by the non-profit LitWorld and sponsored by Scholastic, is celebrated annually in over 173 countries and is all about bringing people together through the shared connection of reading aloud in all of our communities. With a click of a button, you can add ALL the FREE eBooks to your Amazon shopping cart, to download them and own them FOREVER! Great for gifts, I-pads, e-learning and more!
Hope you can grab all the books, and share them to add to a child, parent and/or educator’s library!
Now that the new year is here, it’s an important time to reflect on what’s behind us and what lies ahead of us. It’s a time to give thanks and gratitude for all the accomplishments in 2022, no matter how big or how small. As I gaze out the window, I think about the last few months of holidays, events and festivals and all the joys of the season. Welcome 2023!
The biggest lesson learned for me over the past year is to not try to cram in as much as possible, but instead, pace myself, organize and prioritize. If you’re trying to scramble and finish up those goals you set for yourself for the last year, slow down and take one step at a time. At least that is what I keep telling myself! Putting your eggs in different baskets is perfectly fine – as long as there are only a few baskets. A wise person recently told me not to try to do (or be) all things for all people. So true.
Warren Buffet said you shouldn’t work on more than 5 things at once. It’s part of the 5/25 Rule. It goes like this:
Write down a list of your 25 career goals (or other types of goals). They can be short-term or long-term goals.
Circle the 5 most important goals.
Cross all the other goals off your original list and forget about them. Yes, cross them off your list!
The third step helps you consciously classify your goals into one or two categories: do or do not. You can use the 5/25 rule to help you focus on the most important goals first and avoid being distracted by less important items. This can effectively free up some mental resources so that you’re not worrying about too many things. You can even apply the 5/25 rule to hobbies, housework, and other types of to do lists. With more time on our hands, we can connect with others, plan fun events, and do more things we enjoy.
I like the idea of the 5/25 rule and I’m going to give it a try. There’s only so much time in a day, week, or month, so let’s give the 5/25 rule a try to reduce the lists in our lives. Will you try the 5/25 Rule?
"Just For a Laugh" Writer's Joke of the Season
Why are writers cold?
Because they are surrounded by so many drafts!
Do you have an idea for a book and you don’t know where to begin? The Author Journey Roadmap Training Bundle is for YOU. This on-demand recorded workshop guides you in all phases of an author’s journey to ensure a successful outcome. It includes a training video, author guests, a Q&A session, marketing tips and strategies, and downloadable resources. It’s based on my book “Author Journey Success: 7 Steps to Your Bestselling Book“. In addition to explaining my 7 proven steps on how to transform an idea into a book, I’m providing my author journey roadmap, my entire author journey workbook, and more!
Learn how I went from a burnt-out corporate executive, spending my days in a tiny cubicle, to an author of over a dozen books, and a course creator, transforming my life, building my business, and doing what I love.
Who is ready to turn your dream of becoming an author into reality?
Does the process of becoming an author excite you or scare you? I’m not going to lie…it takes some elbow grease, but with the right tools and guidance, it can be a wonderful thing…a magical thing.
Imagine the feeling of excitement, joy, and accomplishment you will feel when you hold your first published book in your hand! I’ve experienced this over a dozen times and I can tell you for sure that the feeling is amazing, and can be life-altering in a very positive way.
If you’re not sure what’s involved, I created a free roadmap to help you see all the steps. It’s not a long, boring 20-page read…instead, it’s a colorful 1-page infographic that visually demonstrates the whole process from start to finish.
Life is full of many tiny miracles, and if you start believing in the small ones, it’s easier to believe in the bigger ones.
“It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.” ~ Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
In this post, discover 7 ways that humor can develop your child’s love of reading and literacy skills.
According to the Scholastic Kids & Family Reading Report, over 70% of children ages 6 to 17 look for books that make them laugh.
Over 50% of parents want their kids’ books to be funny above all else.
When humor is involved, the whole family enjoys reading more.
Fun and silly books can improve reading comprehension, improved social-emotional skills, and overall well-being.
Funny kids’ books can provide a positive and uplifting interaction that encourages regular reading habits.
Humor triggers our sense of wonder, which is the root of all learning. Funny and silly stories show that it’s okay to make mistakes! Kids can relate to fun characters like Junie B. Jones and Greg Heffley (the Wimpy Kid), who mess things up in hilarious ways.
Laughter increases endorphins released by the brain, which reduces stress and promotes a sense of well-being.
Canva has been my number one go-to tool over the last several years. I have used it to create social media posts, logos, branding graphics, quick reference guides, marketing videos, and the list goes on and on. In addition to writing and self-publishing books over the years, my love for computer technology and developing training to help others led me to another disruptive yet positive change: building my first online course. My Canva course officially launched on February 11, 2022. Then, a week later, something changed. The left menu bar looked different! I contacted Canva to confirm if I was seeing things and to get the full scoop on what had happened. They confirmed that they had just released some new and improved features including a menu change that combined two main features into one for better design management. Since I had just recently released my course, I immediately thought about the content being outdated already. Then I searched online and started reading Canva articles and viewing other Canva training and I remembered that this happens all the time. It even happened to me when I worked in the corporate world. Software changes frequently.
So while the disruptive change of software updates requires me to drop everything and update videos in my online course, there is a silver lining in all of this. My Canva course is a pilot program allowing me to test the waters and perfect the process. It’s also a wake-up call for me to be better prepared for change. A pilot course is like sending a drone out to scope the area before sending in the troops.
Once the testing phase is complete, training courses for my Author Journey Success book series will be on their way. Companion training for the 7 Steps to Your Bestselling Book, the KDP Self-Publishing process, and the all-important Book Marketing Strategies are forthcoming. All this equates to the evolution of more changes on the business end and career front. It wasn’t too long ago that I did something very disruptive in the career arena: leaving the corporate rat race in 2019. Doing so prepared me for the changes yet to come.
How many disruptive changes did you find in this post? You will find the answer further down in this post. In the meantime, let’s review some major disruptive changes which have occurred in the technology industry.
The onset the computers
Apple MACs vs. PCs
The evolution of Windows vs. iOS operating systems
Mobile phones replacing analogue phones
Where would we be without these disruptive technological changes?
QUIZ ANSWER: This article post contains at least 5 disruptive changes:
The launch of Canva by Melanie Perkins and team (approximate launch date was August, 2013)
Leaving the corporate world and moving to freelance (2019)
Writing several book series to help the world, nonfiction for business, and children’s books to foster love in families
Launching online courses in 2022 and the evolution of online learning
Canva releases major feature updates on 2/17/22, one week after the release of my Canva course
What can we do to embrace change?
Be mindful of where you are and your physical surroundings.
Be open to the possibility that some disruptive thinking and disruptive change is for the good.
Remember that not all disruptive changes are good, but they do offer opportunities for us to take a chance and make a change.
Step out of your normal cycle of life and do something different today.
Perhaps you have always had a dream of writing a book and becoming a published author. Whatever your dream may be, whether it is to write a novel, a memoir, a self-help book, a training guide, or a children’s book, I’d like to try to help you get there. All you need is drive, commitment and discipline, along with faith, determination and confidence. With all those things, along with a thirst for learning, anything is possible. My wish is for you to use the information in my book as a springboard to your success.
Reviews are greatly appreciated! When posting a review on Amazon, did you know that you can post a review with or without commentary? If you just want to leave a star rating, you can either click on the number of stars to rate a book when you reach the end of the book on Kindle, or you can go to the “Write a Product Review” page from your Amazon Orders page, and then just click the number of stars to rate the book; you will see a green checkmark confirming the submission and at that point, you can exit from the review page. If you would like to leave a written review, continue filling out the information on the review page including the Headline, Written Review comments and then click Submit.
Over the past several months, I have been on a bit of a hiatus with social media, working hard on my new book series. Proofs have arrived and they are finally ready. Today I will begin the 10 day countdown, as I prepare for the blastoff!
Why do I write? I just didn’t wake up one morning and decide to write. I’ve always loved to write ever since I was a little girl, but I also loved to do a lot of other things too – I always loved to draw, create things, fix things, tell jokes, listen to music, cook and dance. Sometimes it’s hard to know exactly what you should do in your life. So, while I was trying to figure out what to do in life, I saved things. I saved stories I wrote and pictures I drew as a child. I saved all the watercolors and acrylic paintings I created in high school. I wrote in a journal for years and then discarded things I wrote for fear or shame that no one would care what I wrote let alone that I wrote it. When I was a young girl, I watched reruns of the series called “The Walton’s” and envied the oldest child named John-Boy, played by actor Richard Thomas. John-Boy wrote secretly and hid the pages of his book under his mattress. I did the same thing.
When I was in college, I was told I had to pick a major course of study. I had no idea what I wanted to specialize in. At first I picked something that I was least interested in: Accounting. However, there was a silver lining. Majoring in Accounting meant you had to be in the school of business, and one required class was Fortran programming. I learned programming and flowcharting and became fascinated with computers. So, I decided that computers would be my career. I always loved computers, and I still do, but the writing thing was always there. Flash forward 20 years – as an Instructional Designer and eLearning Developer, I wrote educational content and designed and developed online learning over the years, but the author in me was always there. So I decided to take a leap of faith and begin my author journey. Over 10 years ago, in my spare time, I started writing online articles, and then short stories. In 2014, I had 2 short stories published in a real book and then I was hooked. I knew then that it was time to move further along my journey doing what I loved.
What do we do when we discover we enjoy something? We all have things we love to do, and sometimes we find ways to incorporate it into daily life. Maybe you love to cook and secretly wish you could have your own cooking show with a bestselling cookbook, but instead life got in the way, so you cook for your family and stop there. Maybe you love science fiction or mystery suspense, and you have pages and pages of short mysteries you have written and you secretly wish you can write a mystery or science-fiction series; but instead you read thrillers and mystery books and watch detective shows on TV and keep saying “I could have written that!”. Maybe you doodle all the time and absolutely love to draw – and every time you go to a bookstore, you imagine a children’s picture book that you wrote and illustrated.
It’s ok to dream, and it’s ok to imagine. It’s also more than ok to chase your dreams and achieve them. Isn’t that the point of life?
What is your dream? If you’re not living your dream, write it down right now on a piece of paper or index card and look at it everyday. Believe. Learn how to make it happen. Take the first step. Climb all the steps you need to climb to make your dream a reality!
Happy New Year and Happy New You! 2020 was certainly a year for the history books! Let’s take a deep breath and exhale. 2021 is a year of new journeys, new beginnings, and new ideas. It is a time to experiment with better ways to work, exercise, eat, and learn. It’s ok to feel like a fish out of water sometimes. New situations, odd and awkward as they may be, bring new opportunities to learn.
“When you learn to let go of things, a greater generosity, openness, and breath comes into your life.”
~ John Donohue
I’m looking forward to a happier, healthier year. It’s time to write down some goals. For starters, I’m trying to get organized this month for a busy year. I’m trying to exercise a lot more at home, move to a healthier, plant-based diet and practice mindfulness and deep breathing. It’s so important to practice self-care these days more than ever. In 2020, many of us were on our computers, smartphones and smart TV’s a lot more. I don’t know about you, but I found social media overwhelming. When I looked at my iPhone for one thing, I found myself checking feeds and posts…and then an hour would quickly go by. It’s easy to get swept away in technology. If you are on the computer a large part of the day, remember to stand up and stretch every hour. Did you know when you stare at your computer or smartphone you blink less? Every hour, make a point to look away from the screen and blink 10-20 times. This will help to lubricate your eyes. I recently bought a pair of blue-light-blocking glasses and now I wear them every day on the computer.
What are your plans for 2021? Here’s what’s coming in 2021: