Now that Spring will be here …

Today, as I saw blades of grass peak out of piles of snow and slush, I was reminded how change can be welcomed rather than feared.

I was inspired here, while staying in the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts, by the tenacity of New Englanders who bundled up this past winter.  Perseverance, I noticed.  What an awesome character trait to possess.

Writing requires that, too, yes?  I found that so for a recent article post I wrote for The Berkshire Edge, an online newspaper here.  As I plot and plan my current work-in-progress, The Girl Who Became a Millionaire, I was given an opportunity to write about innovation in business by the founder of the paper.

Looking for new ways to plot and plan in my writing is much like finding new ways to plot and plan in business.  Chew on words.  Let new business ideas marinate.  Leverage talent.  Breathe.  Sigh.  Begin again.  Seek new ground.  You can read more about my article on business innovation here.

I would love to hear your thoughts about creativity, business and innovative-thinking.

Make the Leap toward Success

     A month or so ago, I took my nine-year-old son Liam to the cinema to see the movie BIG HERO 6. It is a story about a young robotics hero who forms a superhero team to fight an evil villain. And like any good story, the point where it seemed all hope was lost when fighting the villain — the point of no return — made us both feel anxious and wondering how are these superheroes not going to die?

     As we sat on the edge of our seats, popcorn strewn about, I noticed something right before the main character yelled a new thought to his team.  It was opportunity.

     New thoughts create new pathways toward success.

     Each superhero was caught in the middle of their own trap created by their own self-made devices. They had a goal but did not realize they needed to approach their impending death from another angle in order to achieve victory and live.

     The lead superhero paused … looked at each one of his teammates’ current debacle … his own as well … and yelled, “HEY! LOOK! THINK! We need to approach this from a different angle. Think of another way, an easier way you haven’t thought about doing all of this … from a different angle!”

     This gave each superhero permission to shift into another realm on how to achieve greatness … and, of course, save the day! I loved this part of the movie and am devoted to innovative thinking!

     You have the ability and permission to do the same (really!).

     What is in your author career or in the world that feels as if it is holding you back from achieving victory?

     When you take time out, for example, for a writing retreat to regroup, reassess and plow forward or give yourself pause within today’s moment to see where your blind spots are, you will be able to work through them from a new angle and move on toward success! If you decide you need guidance along the way, I’ve listed one of several ways I can support you below in an upcoming writing retreat I’m leading in the Berkshire Mountains in Western Massachusetts next month.

     It’s like the quote my son told me the other day on the way to school.  Out of nowhere, my son offered, “Mommy, don’t ever give up on yourself.  When you are fighting a battle between good and evil, don’t ever give up on yourself.”

     True, right?

     Rather than wallow in your current circumstances or blame external forces, take a new approach with a few nuggets of wisdom that helped me achieve enormous writing success in my career:

  • Stop following popular thinking.
  • Think before you follow.
  • Keep thinking of possibilities so you don’t give up.
  • Think creatively so you ask the right questions.
  • Remove success killers.

In the throes of the battle you face to achieve the successful author career you envision for yourself, what are your greatest struggles? Have you been able to overcome them or are they still an obstacle?

     Remember: You have a gift.

     And also remember, you are not here to play small. You are here to leverage your talents and gifts that you were given so that you can help other people in the mission you have for your work and life. And it will be my joy and privilege to help you along the way.

It’s Time for the Best “Yes”

In order to do something extraordinarily well so you may create great success in your author career, embrace this simple word:  No.

In fact, “No” is a complete sentence.

Right now there are hundreds of voices in the world clamoring for your attention to follow a wide-range of goal-setting tips and strategies that may … or may not … work for you.  The one tip that often is overlooked is giving yourself permission to say “No” so you can say “Yes” to the best solution for what you want.

This is the time of year when distractions want to siphon your time and energy.  Committing to a new level of success in your work means protecting the goals you establish for 2015.  When faced with a decision, ask yourself:  Is this next activity going to bring me closer or further from what I am trying to achieve?

Many of you know I have written four books, my last one, I co-authored with the late Mayor of New York City, Edward Koch, called Buzz:  How to Create It and Win With It.  What many of you do not know is that when I was writing that book it came at one of the most challenging times of my life — when my son was turning two and I became a single mother all on my own.  The outside distractions during that time nipped at my focus to write a great book for a great man who loved his beloved city.  I put my blinders on and chose what was best, hunkering down in our home to finish the manuscript within several months’ time for the publisher.  Ed was very supportive of me and pleased with the result, writing in the acknowledgments section that writing the book with me was a dream come true.

Distractions will always surface.  It is as if your unseen external environment knows you’re about to break out to another level of awesomeness.  Protecting your time is up to you and the strength you have within to say “No” without feeling guilty.

One of my new clients is a long-time journalist and soon-to-be published author.  When we first began working together on setting goals, recognizing opportunities and shifting her limiting beliefs, she knew she had to make changes and trust the process.  She recognized her need for accountability and support to achieve her goal of finishing her novel.

As she stepped out of her comfort zone and through her uncertainty, she fought the fear that held her back for the last three years.  Within 30 days of working together, she has perfected half of her manuscript.  She even began running and knitting again.  Her momentum for her passion and purpose ignited unconscious dreams to better her health and resurrect a hobby she loves and is gentle to her life.

For 2015, she is going after bigger goals she once only dreamed of and now she knows are possible for her.  She did this because she learned how to say “No.”

Is it time for you to draw a line in the sand?

From this moment on, you can commit to achieve writing success.  You can make more money.  You can sell more books.  You can improve your craft.  And, yes, you can own your signature Author Talk and delight your audiences with ease and grace.

What are the small actions you can take today to commit reaching your goals for the month of January?  Make a list of 20 small actions you can do this month that will bring you closer to achieving your goals.  And then … take action by saying “Yes” to them and following through.

Shared thinking is faster, more innovative and brings more maturity than solo thinking.  If you need a trusted guide and mentor, I will be here to help you.  Simply email me directly at christyheady@gmail.com so we can set up a time to talk.

Wishing you joy and great writing success!

 

 

What is the best opportunity for you?

Have you heard this or perhaps said this yourself?

“Oh … I already know that.”

When it comes to transforming your writing and publishing endeavors to another level of success, you can have the knowledge to make yourself a success yet still not realize your dreams.

You can do everything in your power to make your dreams happen but find nothing is really happening.  In fact, you might just find you are experiencing opposite results.

You ask yourself, “What am I doing wrong?

You’re not doing anything “wrong”.  And I want you to notice and be mindful of your “should’s.”

Knowledge is power if and only if you use it.  That was a motto I told myself quite often when I was writing my first three books.  As a financial journalist, I wanted my readers to be as informed as possible about the world of investing and personal finance.

There is another secret weapon you need to truly create the author entrepreneur and writing life you want.  You need to take action from a place of belief and surround yourself with the people who will speak wisely into your life.  Among other things, that is what enabled me to experience author success.

And that is different from just having knowledge.  You may know it, but are you living it?

Let’s say you are frustrated with the lackluster results you are getting in securing an agent or not receiving the higher levels of book sales on your quarterly sales reports.  You wonder, why?  I’m doing everything I can do.

Question for you:  How do you feel about the actions you are taking?

I have a client who is a successful author and gifted writer of several popular books.  Like many authors, this client is wildly creative and wants to pursue many opportunities.  The opportunities support my client’s goals, yet not all of them are the best “yes” to reach the dreams my client wants.

My client was doing everything possible before we began working together, but in this case, each choice was not wise.  A limiting belief to say “yes” to every single opportunity creates havoc.  It is similar to the metaphor of throwing spaghetti against a wall and seeing which strand will stick.  That method does not work well for anyone in the long run.

Desperate energy gets desperate results.  Success comes from planting seeds, watering them, and reaping harvest over time.  But you have to believe in the harvest and take action from the abundance first.

Not all opportunities in front of you are the best opportunities.  It takes wisdom and a few select and successful people to point out the blind spots with grace, some tough love and encouragement.

If you would like to talk about which opportunities you need support on, please email me so we can set up a time to talk.

Are You Ready For Writing Success?

When I quit my job at a brokerage firm years ago to focus on my writing career, a few people told me it could not be done.

“How are you going to do that? How are you going to survive? I think you are making a mistake,” were the words the stepmother of a good friend of mine said.

I also received a very terse letter from an editor of a major metropolitan newspaper. He told me I would never make it in business journalism.

One financial article at a time and one book at a time, I proved myself right. It was my passion to write about the world of money to help others. The blinders and beliefs I had enabled me to reach my dreams.

You see … my success was not about proving someone else wrong. That type of thinking focuses on the negative. Instead, I believed in my desire and took action.

I did not hold myself back.

But it was not always that way for me.

After my first two books were published, I had several extremely visible speaking and media opportunities under my belt, including appearing on CNBC’s “Power Lunch with Bill Griffith”. Was I scared? You bet! I did it anyway … deer in the headlights look and all!

After the third book, though, I began to disbelieve things could remain a success. I began to “hide out” and avoid media opportunities that would have catapulted me to another level in my career, including appearing on MSNBC. I began to coast on the easy opportunities that did not allow me to grow. Boredom set in.

I was afraid. So … I get you!

Growing to a new level in your writing career means facing the unknown. It means riding the waves of new success while it feels like the fangs of a shark nip at your heels to pull you under and devour you for lunch.

I am here to tell you it does not have to be nor is it really that way. And it all begins in your mind, what you believe and what action you take.

If books weren’t so hot right now and people didn’t need to hear from YOU, the industry would not have so many opportunities in front of you to do well, right?

Because … they are there.

Many of us – including me! – come up with “reasons” to avoid doing something that keep us from the very thing we want. Does this sound like you?

  • if I follow through on taking this action, people will find out I am a fraud
  • if I commit to a new level of success, then that means people are going to want more from me
  • I don’t deserve to be a best-selling author because I have made a lot of mistakes
  • if I stop blaming others who will I have to blame
  • it’s not possible to be a successful author like her or him; they have had more luck than me
  • I can’t afford it … or … I’m too tired
  • I’m not good enough
  • I’m too busy … I have no time … who is going to watch the kids
  • what if I change and no one likes me

And the list goes on.

Nothing is so embarrassing as watching someone do the very thing that you said could not be done, right?

What if that someone was you? What if, instead of dreaming about appearing on NPR, holding sold-out book signings in another country or speaking to an audience of 250 people, it really came true?

What if taking the next step brings you closer to the bigger WHY of your career and life — to serve the greater good with your message?

I want you to make a list of all the reasons you are not going after the next level of success in your writing career. Then, I want you to call me at the number below so we can talk about what is going on.

When you take inspired action, you will get the results you are looking for.

And I will be here to help you every step of the way.  Fill out the Contact Form below with your name and what you’re working on, and I will email you back with some dates and times available for us to talk.

 

 

 

How Successful Writers Think

What is it about writing and your life that you absolutely love?

I have been to many writing workshops and held my own, too, yet there are some key ingredients to mentally ingest in order to experience writing success in addition to learning good storytelling and improving your writing craft!

First, successful writers love what they do and hold deep gratitude for their lives.  When I began writing my first book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Making Money on Wall Street, I absolutely loved the topic.  In fact, I loved it so much it helped me embrace the fact I lived in a tiny apartment with no air-conditioning and washed my hair in the kitchen sink since I did not have a shower and had only a pint-sized tub.  I had a dream and a purpose and my love for that kept my focused and on toward financial success.

Second, successful writers recognize opportunities and gracefully act upon them.  I was at the library last week and sat down next to an end table.  When I glanced at the book that rested upon it, I noticed my second book lying next to me.  Unbelievable!  I had no idea who put it there and it did not belong to the library either.  However, I had been considering speaking to the local writing community and to me I was put on notice to take action.  And I did.  I will be discussing writing and some points from my next book, The Girl Who Became a Millionaire:  Life Lessons on the Way to Seven Figures, in November to the writing community in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.  What are the opportunities in front of you?

Third, successful writers are creative in how they approach their marketing and choose opportunities that best serve them.  Successful writers do not hide out behind social media pages longer than necessary.  They value their time, recognize their natural talents, and in spite of possible fears of being visible they slowly step out into new ways of doing things to earn success.  Where might you be holding yourself back — in thoughts or actions — to make yourself more visible?

Fourth, successful writers help other people out of a genuine sense of giving.  One of the things I love about the majority of writers-turned-published-authors who do well is watching the encouragement and support to those who want to achieve their writing dreams, too.  What you give others you strengthen within yourself, right?

Fifth, successful writers focus on what is possible so that possibilities and opportunities grow.  What you focus on, grows.  Are you focusing on the possible solutions rather than the obstacles in front of you?

When you take inspired action, you will get the results you are looking for.  Let’s talk on how I can help you!

Wishing you incredible writing success!

 

Christy Heady

The Art of the Book Proposal

After my private clients went on to secure contracts with major publishing houses, I realized many more writers and bloggers want training from someone who has already experienced great success and has the results to prove it.

My training program, “The Art of the Book Proposal,” is for writers who are seriously committed to becoming published authors by learning how to exactly create a winning industry standard proposal, grow in their craft and mentally prepare for the coming success they desire.

“The Art of the Book Proposal” is based on the very step-by-step, page-by-page work I did to create the best-selling author success I’ve had over the last 20 years.

When you work with me, I will guide you, step by step, section by section, to write your own book proposal that is accepted within the publishing industry.  You will also receive from me one-on-one coaching so you can prepare your mindset for coming success as a published author.

If you want the help you deserve to become published, please contact me directly at christyheady@gmail.com or fill out the contact query form below so I may help you get unstuck and on your way.

To your writing success!

 

Christy

 

What Happens When You Change Your Mindset

I was giggling when I learned how quickly one of my clients got her book published after we had just met.

During a full-day Author VIP retreat with me, Jean and I spent one-on-one time together tackling her challenges and shifting her outlook toward what was really possible for her and her life’s work.  She discovered how she was getting in her own way as we celebrated her and her beautiful day by the ocean at the Omphoy Ocean Resort & Spa in Palm Beach, Florida.

I will always remember her hair blowing in the wind as she sat underneath an umbrella writing down answers to questions I gave her in her journal.  One thing she learned was that her definition of what a writer looked like to her was … downright ugly inside and out.  The image she conjured up in her mind did not match her at all nor her vision for her success.  In fact, it was quite the opposite!

By the time our coaching session ended, she walked away with more than a plan.  It was such a joy and privilege to help guide her to what she wanted for herself and her three (yes, three!) manuscripts!  I love guiding and watching my clients blossom right in front of my eyes!

Here’s what Jean had to say about our time together:

“A day with Christy Heady is like an oasis in the desert for anyone lost in writer’s insecurity. I was not really experiencing writer’s block. I was writing but only for myself – journaling. I was without a plan, a goal or direction. I was stagnant from indecision. Then someone referred me to Christy Heady, a writing coach. I made the trip to the Palm Beaches and spent a delightful afternoon with this encouraging, gentle lady. Christy helped me reorient myself. She was instrumental in helping me find my most lucrative direction. I still have miles to go, but feel I am on the right road.  Detours are part of everyday life but I know there is a beautiful view over the next hill. After my special afternoon with Christy, I am ready to take the course she helped me set for myself.”

—–Jean Riise Lefler, author of three books including Spirituality at Sunrise

 

When you commit to wanting the very best for yourself,

your writing and dreams will happen.

 

Email me at christyheady@gmail.com so I can help you invest in what it is your truly want for yourself and get you where you’ve been dreaming to go.

To your writing success!

 

 

Christy

How do you handle your writing demons?

If you are a writer, chances are you have a passion for seemingly impossible things.

That is why receiving a lot of rejection might hurt. But like anyone will tell you, it is not how many times you fall down, it is whether you get back up again. I would like to add this:  It is also how you feel about yourself and your work as you move forward while coping with the writing demons who want to travel with you.

Remember, in order to get published, it takes just one publisher who really loves you and your work. Just one big YES. And the naysayers – whether internal or external – have a beauty of a time holding you back.

Mary Higgins Clark, Stephen King, Ernest Hemingway and George Orwell all have received rejection letters only to persevere onto bestselling author status. According to Mental Floss, an online magazine, Ayn Rand sent in her manuscript The Fountainhead and received a curt reply that it was unsaleable and unpublishable. Random House picked up her work, reassuring Rand she would not be censored, and to date she has sold over seven million copies in the United States.

My own first rejection letter came in 1993 from one of the senior business editors at The Chicago Tribune. In a terse reply to my request to write full-time for the paper, he told me my writing clips revealed I did not have what it takes to write about business.

Ouch.

A year and a half later, I celebrated the publication of my first book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Making Money on Wall Street that, along with the other four books I have published, have sold almost 500,000 copies to date. I am grateful to the magazine, newspaper and book publishing editors and executives along the way who helped me achieve this first dream: John Wasik, Hugo Ottolenghi, Tom Seidell, Dennis Fertig, Bill Barnhart, Barry Pruett and my father, the late Robert K. Heady.

As writers, you were created for adventure, pursuit and pioneering.  Pitfalls, rejection letters and tears might accompany you.  Writing is a lifelong quest of discovery and growth. Kinda like a relationship when you know it’s good and healthy but the potholes hurt. Unfortunately, writing demons surface and keep a bigger dream wound tight in a button jar. Like a runner who trips over her own feet while training for her first marathon, dusting off the pebbles embedded in her legs, you get up again (I had to out of sheer embarrassment because my friends saw me, but I did set a personal record).

If you know where you are going, you will get to the finish line. So, if your ultimate life as a published author is waiting to be lived, what steps are you taking to bridge the gap to pretty much squash the uglies?

Do you disable your dream by believing the writing demons who lie to you and give you the very thing you fear (which usually is the very thing you create)? Or do you pack up your tent and shake off the “I’ll settle for what they tell me” mentality, knowing that something greater is writing your story as your write your book?

I have done both.

In their book, The One-Minute Millionaire , Mark Victor Hansen and Robert Allen offer a suggestion in a novel-like story set inside this financial tome on how to deal with unhealthy thoughts that bar you from success:

Imagine that demon as a person, a tiny person, in the palm of your hand. And then purse your lips and blow them away.

It’s amazing what you will see on your literary landscape when each one of your critics are reduced to dust.

If you want to be published and believe you were meant to share your message with others, make it official.  Find a place where you can be alone and write about it. Not the project you are working on – but about your writing. Claim it. And then remind yourself often about this resolution of yours until it becomes such a part of you that nothing ever tears it away.

When you believe in the vision, the story of you and your book will find its happy ending.

Authors – Your Time for Publishing Success is Now!

People are writing books now more than ever before and with good reason.  There has never been an easier time to achieve a lifelong dream of becoming a published author!

Christy Heady has been a published author for more than 20 years.  Since starting on her path as a published author and writing coach, Christy has written four books, is currently writing her fifth book, and collectively has sold more than 500,000 books during her career.  All her clients have gone on to publication or representation, and their work featured in radio, TV, print and online nationwide.

When you sign up for Christy’s Author Strategies Coaching Session, you will receive personalized attention directly from Christy.  For a two-hour coaching session, the fee is $350* (special Groupon Promo begins April 7th, 2014!).

During the past five years, Christy has worked with many people on how to excel at their craft and establish their author platform so they can shift from their places of doubt and fear about their work and move into becoming recognized in their areas of expertise.  So whether you are a business owner, stay at home mom, professional working woman or longtime novelist, when you work with Christy you will learn the strategies and important craft techniques to bring you and your project into your desired sphere of excellence.

To begin your Discovery Q&A Process with Christy, which is the first step in signing up for an Author Strategy Coaching Session, please complete the Contact Form below.