The next step once you have your book or story published is to let people know about it. This is where the challenge lies. Social media are key for promoting your work. Networking with other people who have a similar interest as you and can relate to your story. Writing a blog to keep interest alive and moving forward is also important. Another avenue you should take is to join groups that are aligned with your mission. I have joined several mommy groups, as weird as that sounds, because I write children’s books and they are my main focus. Continually post information about yourself, your product and the benefits that people will receive when they purchase what you have to offer. Give something away for free with a squeeze page to capture email addresses and names. You need to build a list of qualified potential customers for your product. Work with other authors to become an affiliate of theirs to help promote yourself as well. Continue to write, you want to keep adding content for people who like your message. Don’t take anything personally, not everyone will like what you have. That’s alright. Whatever you decide to do, just live out your dreams and don’t let anyone ever say you aren’t good enough or that you will never succeed . A lot of people die with unfulfilled ambitions and dreams, don’t let that happen to you. Get in the game. Until next time. The Wizard
Hello everyone, Thanks for joining me today. I will share some of the trials and tribulations on my journey to becoming a published author. After I wrote The Wizard and the Leafhopper, I started writing a series of stories. all with the common thread of educating the children on what they could do to help save the endangered animals and help the planet. The first story I wrote is titled The Wizard , the Polar Bear and the Penguin. I had it edited professionally , I found a fantastic illustrator through a friend on FB who connected us on Twitter. Social media are great for connections. I believe the cost to edit, illustrate and set up publication for each story is about $1100.00 each. Not for the faint of heart. But if you have a mission that you want to accomplish , then the money is irrelevant. It will come back many times over. To date I have four stories published with another at the illustrators being ready to go. Our mission is to help support Magical Earth Retreats. This is a non-profit foundation my wife and I set up to reconnect children with nature. It is now going into its fourth year. We are growing at a nice pace and making a difference in children’s lives.You can check it out here http://magicalearthretreats.com/ The stories are on Amazon in soft cover and e-book for Kindle and iTunes as well. I have also two stories on audio with the rest to follow and will be putting them on audible.com. Thanks to my good friend Gary Henry who owns Northern Track recording studio. He is helping me out. Thanks Gary. Everything starts with a thought, it is what you do with it that matters. Happy Holidays everyone. Until later. The Wizard
We continued on our way when Al and I heard the sound of birds chirping and a woodpecker drumming on a tree. This noise frightened Al and I asked him why? He told me that he had lost a brother and three of his sisters to the birds and that were constantly trying to hide from the birds because they eat them. I assured him again that I would protect him and he breathed gently. While we walked we talked about the world around us. I commented on the size of the trees and Al said that everything was relative, that the size of the trees to me was the same as the size of the tall grass where he lives is to him. While I pondered his intellect he continued, sometimes when I am in the darkness I have to climb to the very top of the grass to receive the light and that all things need to climb to the top of the highest point in order to receive the light. I told Al that he was very profound and truly wise. Point taken, I said, that’s what this trip is all about for me and the other wizards in training.
Al had many other questions that he wanted answered and I was able to help him clear up some of the mystery. Simple things that I used to take for granted like the babbling brook. Al said that he never seen such moving water. I explained to him how the water was the source of all life. He mentioned sadly that sometimes his friends would die if they drank from the standing water on the side of the path the moving objects go on. I told him it was common because of where he lived that mankind uses heavy concentrations of salt to prevent ice from building up in the months when he is sleeping. It settles in the earth and seeps into the water that kills his friends. It also kills trees and other living things that are in the poison zone. I told him that most of the major water ways in the world were so poisonous that it could not sustain life. He freaked out when he heard this and said if mankind is so unfeeling and stupid as to commit planetary suicide is there to be any hope for survival? I told him that there is hope and that is what the wizards are doing. We are spreading our message and we are constantly expanding the consciousness of others so that we can all work as one to save ourselves from ourselves before it is to late. Al. We have to also spread the word to the children because they are still pure and have not been affected by the ignorance of their elders. They are the future of the planet. We are making great strides to changes Al, so tell your kind that all is not lost.
Al breathed a sigh of relief and we stood in silence for quite some time. As we were meditating a huge wizard walked by and the earth rumbled under his feet. Al commented on the size of the giant and that he was so huge. I told him that his heart was larger than his body and the wizard was one of the chosen that could make your heart sing or cry with his prose. Al smiled and nodded that he understood.
We continued on the journey and I sensed that it would be ending soon. When we came into the view of the meadow where Al and I had met, he became very excited and told how happy he was to have been taken him on the journey with me. I told him that he was a true friend and the pleasure and respect was mutual. He asked one more thing as we joined the other wizards around the circle. He asked that I share the story of our time together and asked if he could be introduced to the wizards in my band. I said most certainly little friend, and as I stood to tell the tale of Al and our journey, I showed him to all my wizard brothers and sisters. They applauded the courage of the little fellow and as I sat him down outside the circle he jumped into the grass and with a laugh told me he loved me very much and he disappeared.
That had a profound effect on me. This was a true story. Peace Don
I left off my last post with an explanation of the story I wrote that put me on my writing path. Here is a part of the story. The rest will be continued at a later posting.
The Wizard and the Leafhopper by Don Jones
Once upon a time, in a meadow in upstate New England a band of 87 apprentice wizards had gathered for indoctrination before starting out on a magical trip through the deep woods.
As I sat gathered in a circle listening with open hearts and minds to the beautiful and enchanting grand wizard Elana, a leafhopper crawled upon my left hand and settled on the finger nail of my left index finger. I looked at the little insect and he began to speak to me. He asked my name. I told him that I was called Ripple on Calm Water. I asked him his name and he replied you can call me Al. This was the beginning of a most amazing and thought provoking friendship.
Al asked what we were doing in the meadow and I told him that we were going on a magical trip through the deep woods. Upon hearing this, he asked if he might join me on this journey as he had never been in the woods before. I told him that he was welcome to join me and that if he was uncomfortable at any time that he could just jump off. Al replied, no I really want to see the forest. Al I asked, how come you chose me? Because I saw that you were a fellow that had an open heart that that could be trusted and that is why I chose you. He also told me that if he had not chosen me that I never would have found him, because he was so perfectly camouflaged. I thanked him for picking me. Elana was just wrapping up her talk and asked everyone to keep silent for the duration of the journey. We gathered our belongings and departed into the woods to study and observe the living things that are all around us. We had just started up the path when Al started to speak. There was a tree that had a metal chained wrapped so deeply around it that it had had lost all its branches and been drilled full of holes and had died. Al asked why this tree not like the others is. I, sadly told him that all humankind were not like the wizards and they can be arrogant and cruel to the other living things that make up our world. He did not seem to get the drift of what I had said. We continued down the path when Al noticed wizard Darlene putting trash into a black garbage bag. He was confused as to her actions and said he had never seen anything being put into those black vessels before but that he had seen humans toss them onto his grass home from moving objects. I explained that Darlene was a great and caring wizard and she was helping mother earth by picking up all the trash that some callous and selfish humans deface our land with. He seemed very pleased with this answer and asked that I tell her he was very grateful for her concern. I told him as soon as our silence was lifted that I would tell her that he was grateful. So much for silence, Al would not stop talking. I figured as long as he was not disturbing the rest of the group that he could talk as much as he pleased.
Not long after, as we stood on the path with Al raised up on my hand so that he could look around, a beautiful cobalt blue fly landed on my little pinky finger said hello but he did not respond and he hopped over to my other fingers until he landed next to Al. I saw Al tense up when the blue fly started getting into his space and Al stood up on his back legs. I saw how upset Al was so I shooed away the fly and Al settled back down and thanked me for protecting him. I told him as long as he traveled with me that I would take care of his security and get him home safely. This made him smile and he relaxed.
It all began about five years ago during a personal development course called the wizard camp. It was during the last exercise of the week called the void. Everyone was sitting around listening to instructions from Leela. She was the head wizard in charge. As she was explaining what was expected of us, which was to walk through the forest in silence for about two and half hours, a leafhopper jumped onto my index finger of my right hand. I looked down in amazement. The little fellow started talking to me. He asked if he might go on the journey with me as he had never left the meadow and wanted to see the forest.
I said that I would keep him safe and this started me on my path to writing children’s stories. The little fellow sat on my finger for the whole trip. When I got home I sat down and wrote The Wizard and the Leafhopper. The words flowed from my fingers. I showed the story to several people and they thought it was very good. This gave me the encouragement to carry on.
My wife had an epiphany also, That day she announced that she was going to start a non-profit foundation to reconnect children with nature. That has come to pass and we have provided many children in the past four years that opportunity. Our foundation is called http://www.magicalearthretreats.com .
Back to where I am today, five years later. I have written a collection of stories for children that teach them what they can do to help save the endangered animals and help the earth recover from the damage that has ensued after many years of neglect and abuse. The stories are available at http://www.amazon.com/The-Adventures-Wizard-his-Friends/dp/1483930432/ref=sr_1_45?ie=UTF8&qid=1370252446&sr=8-45&keywords=The+wizard+and+his+friends. I also have stories available as ebooks on ITunes and soon to be released audio books on audible.com. I do readings at local bookstores, schools and libraries as well. I am having a great time sharing these stories and if you would like to receive a free ebook from me to read to your children please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . I will be posting weekly from now on, so get in on the fun and let’s get interactive with this blog. To see the reviews go to http://www.amazon.com/The-Adventures-Wizard-his-Friends/product-reviews/1483930432/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?showViewpoints=1. Thank you all and I will be in touch next week. The Wizard