The theme of this week on my Facebook page is daring. Before I go and pick some quotes and images I want to share I often choose a theme to hang them all on, sometimes for a full week if it’s a rich seam. It’s not just thrown together around here you know!
And one of my fave choices for this week of daring is:
“You could rattle the stars,” she whispered. “You could do anything, if only you dared. And deep down, you know it, too. That’s what scares you most.” ― Sarah J. Maas, Throne of Glass
Thanks to the vagaries of Facebook, only 38 people have seen it and I think it’s worth sharing again and making it the title of my newsletter today too.
It had been my plan to update you today on the progress I am making with my Creating the Impossible project, following Michael Neill’s book of the same name. It’s a 90-day thing and I started on 1st January (well, 2nd January actually but I back-dated it!) so now I am up in the mid-seventies out of ninety days, coming close to the end.
Michael is suggesting there are two ways to finish. One of them is with a sprint. But when I made a list of all the things I’d achieved, all the work I’d done and what impossibilities I’d created, I felt somewhat overworked and overwhelmed. I want to the use the word exhausted but I tend to over-use that word and so I won’t. Not yet, anyway. I’m saving it for further down this post.
BUT…here’s a list of the things I HAVE done in pursuit of the original challenge I had in mind.
I have agreed with at least 52 guest bloggers that they will write a piece about my book Your Biz Your Way on their own blogs and that I would share it on my own along with a reply, and that I would share that too on Twitter, FB Page and profile, in this newsletter, on Medium and on my podcast. I added those last two in after the original promise, because I could.
So far I have published 37/52 and, I won’t lie, it’s been a lot of work. I’ve got a Trello board, I know who my remaining 15 bloggers are and their deadline is 31st March so technically there are enough days to get it all done, but the newsletters and podcasts will definitely have to go on after the deadline. We are up to 19-21 in here today, we should be up to #24 on the podcast by the time this reaches you on Friday but those bits lag behind the Blogfest itself, which is perfect actually both for the contributors and for me because it means the publicity will run on for a while after deadline.
I don’t know what made me think that would be a lighter workload than it has turned out to be. Easy, no. Worthwhile, yes. Would I do it again? Yes.
I wanted to sell 100 books. I am at 102 today which is about one a day since going live at the beginning of December and if that’s what this book does… sells one copy a day, that would be very gratifying. I must say there are times where it feels like a lot of work to sell one book, but each little sale is heart-warming in the extreme and a potential nugget of freedom if the solopreneur purchaser reads and implements; that’s also a nice thought to warm myself with.
I wanted to collect 100 reviews and so far I am at 18 on Amazon UK and two on Amazon US, thank you to all of you, twenty reviewers. More please if you have read the book and just not got around to it reviewing it on Amazon yet. I cannot tell you what a difference they make to potential sales/Amazon ranking etc., which are very much intertwined.
I turned one question a week into a blog post, a FB Note, a meme, an audio and a video. I am up to week 11 so that’ll keep me going for the whole of 2018 which was the idea. I’m on track there and I really enjoy that although, again, it is not to be undertaken lightly. Q11 took most of yesterday, for example.
I have decided upon the topic for Book 2, about which more later.
I did get this book onto Kindle where it has sold six copies so far. I did update my Amazon Author page, talk to Tom Evans about the potential for audio books, submit articles for publication at TUT (nothing yet) and Medium. And I have promoted the book every day except Sundays but I might occasionally have slipped some promo in on a Sunday too. I have had lots of genius ideas for memes to do that and I’ve got a way to go yet with turning all the reviews into memes, but I LOVE doing that and am becoming a bit of a Canva Queen. Apologies to those of you who are graphic artists, care about fonts, and/or notice I have no idea how to centre things and other crimes which no doubt offend you as much as a misplaced apostrophe does me.
The one thing I haven’t done but for which there will be plenty of time AFTER the Impossible project is over (ironically) is write every day. Sure, I’ve published every day but it has mainly been the content of my guest contributors and to meet my commitments to them in full so that I can get back to my own writing every day is something I realise I am much looking forward to and kinda the whole point, apart (obviously) from sales of Book 1. What’s useful about this? I have clients who are writers and publishers and my learning to juggle book marketing with book writing is vital information for me in how to help them to do both of those things at the same time if they so decide.
New ideas which were born out of the Impossible project:
1. Blogfest (see above). First 90 days of 2018.
2. Reading my newsletters into my lovely little podcast and dreaming up the idea of creating an app which pulls all my written and spoken words into one central place where people can either keep up with all of it or dip in and out. But they won’t have to chase it all over the web to find and enjoy it (blog, podcast, FB Page, newsletter etc.), it will be bundled and corralled for their easy reading/listening pleasure. Not sure if that will get done in 2018, but I hope it will. It sort of foretells the end of 100% free marketing content which has mainly stopped working for me anyway. Not sure why yet.
3. My Fabulous Adventure, the low-carb lifestyle coaching idea which came from nowhere last week. I do wonder if that isn’t the real diamond in the rough here, but only time will tell. It is going to be the topic of not only my new Facebook page, but also Book 2 will be about my beating my own addiction once I came to understand what it was, and I will be able to write about it too in Notes on the new page. I was in two minds about that, now I’m not. And I am enjoying the mission target of One Hundred Women or #100Women; it’s alliterative, can you hear that?
So, back to Michael’s two ways to finish the Impossible thing. The first, as I said, was to sprint. But when you are feeling exhausted, sprinting isn’t really an option. I’m not much of a sprinter. No matter how many carbs I am carrying or not, I am more of a tortoise than a hare. And I had more than flagged, that’s why I made the list so I could see that I had achieved a lot which perhaps I might not have done if I had never contemplated Creating the Impossible. Actually, I will go further and say I would not have achieved most of it, no. I would have promoted the book in a rather limp, lacklustre and uninspired way.
But his second option is rather more attractive to me. He calls it Riding the Wave.
Michael’s description of riding the wave involves staying tuned in and present to the movement of the creative intelligence inside you. And if that’s not rattling the stars I don’t know what is.
I also love swimming but am rubbish on the athletics track. OK, I don’t surf and riding the wave is a surfing metaphor, but we are splitting hairs. The sea is my medium where the stadium is not.The sea is my medium where the stadium is not. Rattling the stars and riding the wave. Click To Tweet
Unlike what I’ve said before, I won’t rush to Create the Impossible on an endless cycle every 90 days because, truth to tell, I have found it exhausting. But riding the wave and staying tuned into my creative intelligence is something I’m always up for and will enjoy in perpetuity, and having permission and a reminder to do that is gorgeous.
I could do anything, if only I dared. And deep down, I know it, too. That’s what scares me the most.
Today it doesn’t scare me. It excites me. But then those two feelings are very easily confused.