Time For a Spring Reset!

Spring often signifies new beginnings in literature and poetry, a rebirth, if you will. All that which lay dormant in winter now slowwwly stretches its limbs, lets out a big yawn and sigh of relief and comes back out to bask in the sun. The trees are budding, the deer are grazing, we now awake to the calming sounds of birds chirping, the sun stays with us well into the evening, it’s finally warm enough for sandals and everyone seems to be in generally better spirits because of those things aforementioned.

spring stretch

The charm and warmth of spring should not only put a pep in your step in your day to day life, but it should also be a time to pep up your writing and marketing efforts!

 

  1. Let spring be a new beginning for you. Make a list of things you’d like to begin with a fresh start. Do you need to begin editing, creating a marketing plan, blogging, etc? Now’s the time to do it!
  2. Use some springtime writing prompts to get the creative juices flowing and to help you “reset” after winter. Write about how the sunshine affects your mood and creativity, write about spring as a symbol of birth/life, write about the your sensuous experience wandering around in the natural world in springtime, etc. etc.
  3. Host an outdoor reading event in your community. Pick a nice sunny afternoon to encourage members of your community to get outside and share their love of the spoken and written word. This is a great way to network, to connect with other writers in your area and to have some fun in the sun!
  4. Start being more active on social media! Take pictures of the beauty around you, toss in a quote from a work of yours or of your favorite author’s and share with your audience! Blog, post about new developments in your publishing process, connect with readers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter! Now that the butterflies are back, why not be a little social butterfly?
  5. Spruce up your website. Who knows more about you than…well, you? Write up a fresh author bio that includes recent accomplishments, publications, life developments and so forth.
  6. Join some forums, join Goodreads! These are both terrific venues for marketing your book and they help you connect more intimately with your audience.
  7. Host a drawing contest for the cover of your next book! The winner gets a free copy of your book and gets featured on your website and social media pages!
  8. Add a “Store” page to your website. This is a great way to increase sales and to have your readers buy directly from you rather than some third party website.
  9. Do some spring cleaning of your writing space and bookshelves. See our last few blogs for tips on how to “declutter” as a writer!
  10. Take advantage of this nice weather! Try writing outside, even if it’s just brainstorming. A little vitamin D and time in nature can go a longgg way!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thank you for reading!  If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or contributions, please use the comment field below or drop us a line at selfpublishingadvice@gmail.com.  And remember to check back each Wednesday for your weekly dose of marketing musings from one indie, hybrid, and self-published author to another. ♠


Kelly

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com

Tuesday Book Review: “Characters on the Green”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

characters on the green j peter hoyer

download

Characters on the Green

by J. Peter Hoyer

ISBN: 9781478756316

Synopsis*:

Witty, sarcastic, and humorously captivating. Real episodes with real golfers, and real funny. We called him “Mr. D,” not his correct name, but one that he liked. Mr. D was rich enough to own all the pineapple fields on Oahu, but he’d rather sneak out and steal a few pineapples instead. “Hank” turns out to be a virulent “Hank-Enstein” in the chapter of the same name. You will discover that the three “Patrick’s” have something more in common than their given names. “Doc,” not an actual doctor, and Nick, who may have been the inspiration behind the cable TV series, The Sopranos, are more of the personalities who are the focus of these chapters. There are numerous books devoted to professional athletes. For the game of golf in particular, readers can find publications about Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tiger Woods, and many other pros. But what about the millions of amateurs who play the game? They are seriously overlooked-until now. “Great Chapters. Enjoyable and relatable for anyone who has spent any time around the game. Pete makes the many characters of the game we can all identify with come alive.” -Andy Weissinger, PGA, 2009 PGA Patriot Award Winner. “Pete’s lifelong love for the game has given experiences that any golf lover would enjoy. Read this and you will see why golf is more than a game. It has Character.” -Nick Zanca, Director of Golf, Kiskiack Golf Club.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Characters on the Green” by J. Peter Hoyer is a humorous look at the people encountered by the author during his decades-long love affair with the game of golf. Hoyer indeed met some real characters – both his regular partners and random people added to his foursome by course starters, on golf courses across the country. These include good golfers and bad. More importantly, it includes many people who wouldn’t be considered normal in settings anywhere other than a golf course.

Hoyer is a shrewd observer of people, and able to pick out and describe those quirks and idiosyncrasies which create humorous stories. And, the stories are not by any means limited to golfers. Some of his better stories are of characters he met during his career in the Army and his tenure coaching young golfers.

The author’s sense of humor is not the rip-roaring, slap happy variety. It is much more dry wit and sarcasm. As an example, when given a cigar of the type once smoked by John F. Kennedy, Hoyer wrote:

“Now there were three things that JFK and I had in common: cigar brand, chronically sore, stiff lower back, and experience running an important organization. Mine was a hundred twenty-person Army Transportation Company. Kennedy’s position was a slightly larger organization of around three hundred million people.”

Perhaps the best section of “Characters on the Green” is that describing golf technology and overall golf tips. These are found in golf magazines, golf TV channels, and random tips from other golfers. Every one of them is “guaranteed” to add ten yards to each shot, or improve score by 10%, or provide some other dramatic improvement. Hoyer quipped that if a golfer had enough money to invest in all of the available technology, each with such a guaranty, the golfer would surely improve his score well enough to join the professional golf tour. The flip side of this is equally true, since every bad round of golf can easily be blamed on poor equipment. A golf partner of Hoyer once blamed a poor round of golf on his socks – the socks were simply too heavy!

“Characters on the Green” by J. Peter Hoyer is an easy-to-read journey through the author’s encounters with some interesting people – most of who were met by him on a golf course, but all of them skillfully described with wit and humor.

– reviewed by David K. McDonnell for Reader Views

Other Reviews

This is a fast read for anyone interested in learning about golf etiquette. It deals with the situations that I often wondered about, as a golfer of 28 years. For example, how do you deal with players when pairing up by the ‘starter?’ The author’s “no chit-chat” policy allows one to announce upfront that we are to enjoy this round, and that means we are not to be distracted by small talk. The vivid descriptions of various golf courses and first-hand knowledge of military standard operating procedures were meaningful and amusing to me, having gone “chairborne” for my two-year stint.

The author presented considerations to those who golf with bosses or clients. Playing with superiors has potential consequences when the boss expects without exception playing partners to keep to the weekly routine…short of an unexpected departure from this world! For those who see the golfing experience as an outdoor adventure, this book gives thought to appreciate some of the unexpected background sounds; or people’s peculiar habits; and the need to keep a singular thought at the ‘address,’

I recommend this book as a good mental tune-up for beginners and seasoned golfers alike.

 – reviewed on Amazon by Joe Mancuso

I just finished reading Pete Hoyer’s book, “Characters on the Green” and passed it on to another golfing buddy. I found the book to be very entertaining. I really enjoyed the chapter on golf gimmicks (so true). But my favorite chapter was about Pete’s experiences coaching a high school golf team. Having coached and tutored junior high and high school kids, I could definitely relate to this hilarious chapter.

– reviewed on Amazon by wizardbob2

Author Website

http://www.charactersonthegreen.com/


tuesday book review

Thanks for reading!  Keep up with the latest in the world of indie and self-published books by watching this space!

Self Publishing Advisor

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Self-Publishing News: 7.16.2018 – New Releases!

July

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically new releases written by self-publishing authors and published by independent presses! Today we’ll be featuring brand-new releases in the Outskirts Press Bookstore!

Linda Klein Means knows the world and what it can be like. Born on a farm in Illinois and survivor of a number of family struggles, she spent time in Venezuela, Brazil, and France, sampling the world’s treasures and encountering a number of her own misadventures. This collection of literary essays deals with issues as diverse as grief, uncovering a family legacy of racial policing, tackling unconscious prejudices, growing up alongside a sibling with Down Syndrome, and negotiating one’s own peace with the past and all that comes along with it. Means’ background in news writing—she started in college as a reporter and editor, then moved on to write for The Wilmington (Del) Morning and Evening JournalThe Chicago Tribune, and US News and World Report—lends this collection a pith and appeal for readers of both news reporting and personal memoir.

Every now and again, a person really … needs … a good ol’ fairy tale. But not every fairy tale is created equal, and sometimes what a person needs and wants is an update on the original. Enter Moshe Sonnheim, stage left. Sonnheim’s revelatory collection of fairy tales for parents and children brings in the age-old appeal of dark forests, magic mountains, hidden castles, and talking animals, and adds a modern sensibility. These fairy tales are designed to provide both pleasure in inverting your expectations and in stimulating a child’s imagination. Fairy tales may be vehicles for conversations about morality, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be fun and current in their application! In an added pop of bonus fun, Sonnheim pairs each fairy tale with relevant pictures and bird songs.

“Everyone has neighbors,” writes Becky Condon in her book pitch: “Neighbors are an obvious arrangement in cities or towns. Good or bad, tidy or messy, quiet or noisy, nice or mean; there are all types.” And for those who move from the city, the country often symbolizes space and solitude, peace and healing. What they often forget about is … the neighbors. In her novel, Condon follows a young family who finally realizes their dream of owning land and operating a farm, building a dream house in what they think is paradise. And then … along came the neighbors: neighbors with sticky fingers for things that are not theirs, and with no respect for boundaries or property rights. Using all the means at their disposal, these neighbors from Hell attempt to usurp the family’s rightful place on their hard-earned land in a battle that may cost them everything. “Sometimes,” writes Condon, “you have to stand and fight.” This new release makes a perfect summer read.

Reality is a tricky beast, isn’t it? In this special book of science and philosophy, retired aerospace engineer Allan Arnold brings all of his experience on the Apollo command and service modules as well as USAF satellite and space systems to bear on the subject of reality. His grasp of project management and engineering lays the groundwork for a rigorous inquiry into the basis for the human perception of reality, and enables him to deliver a book that’s both a pleasure to read and structurally compelling. He asks tough questions, such as: Can you trust your senses? What does it mean to live in the world with the bodies and brains that we possess?  What is our place on this planet surrounded by mostly empty space? What does our atomic structure have to do with reality? This book marries big-picture science with the sense-making possibilities of philosophy. How We Perceive Reality is thought-provoking and a delight to read, perfect for readers of Carlo Rovelli and Neil deGrasse Tyson.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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In Your Corner: Growing Your Market by Seizing on “Gift Opportunities”

It’s now high summer, which means it’s time to kick the summer languor and get our various ambitious projects back into gear. And if you’re anything like me, you have … a lot … of projects! Even if your workload is more manageable, the heat saps our energy, and even the little things start piling up as the temperature spikes and the speed of progress slows down. And when it comes to self-publishing, a temporary slowdown is fine but it’s best to keep momentum going, and to keep building towards that final end goal: a healthy, strong, and vibrant marketing strategy which will actually sell books.

I’m here this week to launch a new summer series on growing your market, and most especially growing your market while in the midst of the summer slowdown. And I’m going to start where I always start in the garden: with what comes back each year, whether I plant and cultivate a garden intentionally or not. My neighbor Jules, whose backyard is a magnificent display of carefully pruned herbs and vegetables, calls these volunteer plants and other little treasures “gifts.” And every year, it seems as though I find something new in the mix: several varieties of rose, two kinds of apple tree, lilies, lilacs, daffodils, and tulips. More has come up this year than ever before, since this is the first year our little alpine valley has not been knee-deep in drought.

There are “gifts” when it comes to marketing your self-published book, too, in that you’re never really starting from scratch. There will be volunteer seedlings coming up from before the last winter (metaphorically speaking): the people who’ve been with you along your journey, the social media you’ve already been investing time in, and your book’s genre’s built-in audience. All you have to do is fan them back to life–give them the water they’ve maybe been lacking, put some time and money into mulch and fertilizer, weeding and pruning.

The metaphor starts breaking down here a little bit, of course, as a book and a marketing plan is not a garden in anything other than a superficial metaphorical sense. So how do you go about coaxing your gift opportunities into something more–something substantial, and structured, and that stands on its own two legs?

The best way to start to build something structured is to structure our own behavior, of course. And since structure is what slips first in the summer slowdown, that must be the first thing to come back. Not all at once, and not in such a rigidly enforced way as to leech all the fun and relaxation out of a time which is meant to be as healing and refreshing as it is supposed to be relaxed and laid-back, full of pool parties and backyard barbecues.

Start with integrating the two: relaxation and a reset of your marketing plan. Start with fifteen minutes of social media posts and self-promotion. You can do this from the poolside or the backyard, and in fact snapping some candids while you’re out and about may be just the thing to re-infuse your marketing plan with some life and energy. Once you’ve gotten to fifteen minutes a day, it’s time to start adding a plan, and figuring out how to break that larger plan down into fifteen minute chunks, as well. Can you spend fifteen minutes working on your website design? How about do a series of fifteen-minute blog interviews with other authors? Emerging into the sunlight doesn’t have to happen all at once; it can be gradual and step-by-step. Find those chunks that fit with both your plan and your schedule … and seize on the moments you have available, and that add to your life and joy, and also serve a practical function.

After all, if growing things is anything, it’s practical.

If you’re growing your market and have run into setbacks, our next installment will be one you won’t want to miss. Join me in two weeks!

You are not alone. ♣︎


Elizabeth

ABOUT ELIZABETH JAVOR: With over 20 years of experience in sales and management, Elizabeth Javor works as the Director of Sales and Marketing for Outskirts Press. The Sales and Marketing departments are composed of knowledgeable publishing consultants, customer service reps and book marketing specialists; together, they all focus on educating authors on the self-publishing process to help them publish the book of their dreams. Whether you are a professional looking to take your career to the next level with platform-driven non-fiction or a novelist seeking fame, fortune, and/or personal fulfillment, Elizabeth Javor can put you on the right path.

 

Tuesday Book Review: “She’s My Dad”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

she's my dad by iolanthe woulff

download

She’s My Dad

by Iolanthe Woulff

ISBN: 9781432744052

Synopsis*:

“Don’t hate, Nicholas. Hate destroys everything. Don’t let it destroy you…”

For decades, ultra-liberal Windfield College has been a thorn in the side of Northern Virginia’s hidebound elite. When a teaching position unexpectedly becomes available, the school hires a former male graduate – now a transsexual woman named Nickie Farrell – as an assistant professor of English. Hoping to find peace, Nickie keeps her secret under wraps until ambitious lesbian student reporter Cinda Vanderhart outs her. And Cinda has noticed something else: both Nickie and a young townie waiter named Collie Skinner have a genetic quirk which causes their eyes to be different colors. Convinced that the similarity is no coincidence, Cinda begins an investigation to discover the connection between them.

Meanwhile, in a death-bed confession as she succumbs to years of brutality at the hands of her disgraced cop husband, Collie’s mother Luanne reveals that his birth resulted from an illicit affair she had with a long-vanished Windfield college senior named Nick Farrington. Shattered by his mother’s death, Collie turns for comfort to Robin Thompson, a gentle-hearted Christian co-worker at the upper-crust Foxton Arms restaurant. As Nickie is stalked by a pair of homicidal sociopaths, Robin finds herself entangled not only in Cinda’s investigative machinations but also a murderous plot by former U.S Ambassador and tycoon Eamon Douglass to eradicate the hated college with a suicide detonation of a Cesium 137 dirty bomb. Lives and secrets hang in the balance until everything comes to a head on the morning of Windfield’s annual spring picnic: April Fools Day.

Filled with richly-drawn characters and building to a stunning climax, SHE’S MY DAD is a story about the destructiveness of hate, the power of love, and the redemptive triumph of good over evil.

Like her title character Nickie Farrell, Iolanthe Woulff is a transsexual woman. A fifty-nine-year-old Princeton-educated English major, she lives in Palm Springs, CA, where for several years she wrote a column in a local magazine about the challenges of gender transition. As the eldest child of author Herman Wouk, storytelling has always been dear to Ms. Woulff’s heart. Her hope is that besides providing a suspenseful read, SHE’S MY DAD will help to dispel some of the widespread misconceptions about transsexual people.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

Author Iolanthe Woulff has once again written about issues that impact all of us. She hits every point head on without sugar-coating anything. In this book, “She’s My Dad,” the author addresses hate, specifically blind prejudice and how each of us handles it.

In a small town in Virginia, a wealthy man disowns his son because of his sexuality, but this one surviving son is his sole heir. The son chooses to use his inheritance to build a university where all individuals are accepted without judgment or prejudice, however many of the local people are not happy with the ideals of the university.

In 1979, Nicholas Farrington had an affair with a married woman, and unbeknownst to him, they have a son Nicholas “Collie” Skinner. No one has heard from Farrington since he suddenly disappeared.

Now 25 years later a new engaging and dynamic professor Nickie Farrel, has been hired at a local liberal college. Nickie is hiding a huge secret–she is a transsexual woman. There are individuals threatening to expose Nickie’s secret and cause trouble for the school. Cinda Vanderhalt, an aggressive journalism student, will do anything to get that “big” story that will make her famous.  Eamon Douglas, a former Ambassador, is determined to get rid of that “fag” loving college and all the gay students and faculty.

The author provides powerful insight into the destructiveness of hate, the love of an abused mother, and learning that we all have basic needs and desires. We fear what we don’t understand. Many will not take the time to become more knowledgeable about these fears, but prefer to keep hatred and prejudices inside until they lose control and do harm to others.

Woulff’s characters provide amazing insight into the turmoil that we as individuals and society experience when others do not fit into our “accepted” roles. She provides very controversial topics, and subplots that will have readers re-thinking their stance on their values and beliefs.

Readers will come away from this read with new knowledge and hopefully more understanding and a better person. I highly recommend “She’s My Dad” by Iolanthe Woulff to everyone; you will remember this book long after you finish reading.

– reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views

Other Reviews

I picked this book up to read on a recent trip. I was intrigued by chapter 3 and had trouble putting it down by chapter 7. The story line is multi-dimensional and complex in its presentation. This book did a really great job of helping me to understand some of the complex social issues facing our nation and world today, and I am a better human being for having read it. My heart is more open to people of different social upbringing and sexual orientation after the author’s magnificent presentation of a side of an issue to which I had no previous exposure.

Most of us don’t spend much time thinking what it would be like to have been born the opposite gender, or born with the feeling of being assigned one physical gender with the inner feeling of belonging to the opposite gender. Today’s society has little room for the small minority of people with gender identity issues. Because they are in the minority does not make them insignificant and unimportant.

What the author accomplishes by telling her story allows her to demonstrate the universal truths that bind us together as a human race – despite our differences in beliefs, ethics, politics, etc. we all have the same basic needs and desires, and our differences pale in comparison to our similarities despite how things may seem at first glance. We fear what we do not understand. I now understand things I did not prior to reading this book. I will probably be forever changed, in a good way, for having read and understood this book and the point of view it portrays.

 – reviewed on Amazon by Sidney D. Lehr

I just finished “She’s My Dad” and I thought it was excellent. It got me very wrapped up in the characters early on and kept me that way right through the whole book. Well, as it was, not through the WHOLE book! Seems I didn’t really know what “Epilogue” meant and ended the book before I read that part. Being so wrapped up as I was and anxious to see how things ended, bad over evil I hoped, where I ended caused me so much anger that I threw the book on the floor! God, it couldn’t end this way!! It just couldn’t! It was 11pm, I turned off the light and rolled over trying to sleep. The next day I read the Epilogue! It’s probably not recommended that one read She’s My Dad that way but looking back it set me up for a wonderful high! I loved it all through the book and highly recommend it. Definitely not too long for the story that was told.

– reviewed on Amazon by InfoSeeker

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Self Publishing Advisor

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Self-Publishing News: 7.9.2018 – The Interviews!

July

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically interviews with or articles written by self-publishing authors and experts!

Every now and again, we all need a really good overcoming-adversity story, don’t we? Each of us goes through our various lives with such different tools and attitudes, but at the end of the day, struggle is universal and when we stumble across other peoples’ stories of struggle and survival in the midst of dark times, those stories themselves become another tool. Basically, what I’m saying is this: Reading stories like Geordie Stewart’s helps both put things in perspective and encourages us all to not give up. Stewart, whose new self-published book In Search of Sisu just came out this year, ran a kickstarter campaign to raise the funds necessary to get his book out there in the world. And the world is what Stewart is all about! His book chronicles his adventures in summiting Everest and other high-altitude peaks throughout the world, one of the most dangerous adventure sports in the world. (“Sports” doesn’t even seem remotely like the right word to describe the grueling rigors of such an activity.) His book received blurbs from figures which loom large over the outdoor adventuring community, including Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Bear Grylis. But his attitude is all modesty, and this interview with Craig Smith of The Courier may be just the emotional boost you need to start your week off right.

Diversity matters, and the concept of seeing oneself and one’s struggles fully represented in children’s literature is one that is unattainable for many marginalized groups, for a variety of reasons. Well, children’s author Nury Castillo Crawford is setting out to change that reality for bilingual children and the children of immigrants who may never have seen themselves in a picture book before–and she utilized self-publishing to get there! Crawford, whose bilingual book 3,585 Miles to Be an American Girl came out in February, is a passionate advocate for representation and literacy. As Jordan Meaker writes in this Red & Black interview, that number–3,585–has personal significance for Crawford, who now works as a director of community engagement for Gwinnett County Public Schools in Georgia. “The entire story is inspired by my personal journey,” says Crawford. When she first moved to the United States, decades ago, there were no ESL classes to ease new immigrants into a monolingual English-speaking world. Her book, and other bilingual books, serve as a bridge between those two world for immigrant children who may be looking to learn English but struggling with figuring out how.

Crawford isn’t just a defender of the child and the immigrant; she’s also a defender of self-publishing! “Once you have a contract with a traditional publishing company, you don’t own the book anymore,” she says. “I wasn’t happy about that, I didn’t want anyone to change anything. I decided I was going to have to work and get my own publishing company.” The rest of her interview is just as fascinating. Give it a look!

Speaking of women self-publishing books to assist kids learning how to read and speak, I give you Ashley Imlay’s interview with Amelia Murdock on the Deseret News. Murdock, author and illustrator of the Dash Into Reading series of phonics books for young kids, got started because she wanted something constructive and positive to complement her hours and work as a mother. She used her own background in the arts to write and illustrate the ten-book series, which she self-published in April. She field-tested some of the art and pages on Instagram, and after receiving a massively positive response there, decided to push forward with self-publishing despite rejections from the major traditional publishing houses as a result of phonics books being such a “niche” item. Her journey to self-publishing may not have been her first choice, but now she recognizes that it is a good fit with the material. All of her sales have been made through word-of-mouth recommendations, she says, and through her presence on Instagram. If that’s not a good reason to try out the social media platform, we don’t know what is!


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Tuesday Book Review: “Help! I Have a Brain Injury”

Book reviews are a great way for self-publishing authors to gain exposure. After all, how can someone buy your book if he or she doesn’t know it exists? Paired with other elements of your book promotion strategy, requesting reviews is a great way to get people talking about what you’ve written.
When we read good reviews, we definitely like to share them. It gives the author a few (permanent) moments of fame and allows us to let the community know about a great book. Here’s this week’s book review:

Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I've Dropped Out of the Sky" by Kay Pratt

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Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky

by Kay Pratt

ISBN: 9781478718079

Synopsis*:

WHAT do you know about brain injury? How does it happen? How does it affect one’s life? What does it feel like? How long does it take to recover from a Traumatic Brain Injury? Will a survivor ever be the same again?

WHAT are your beliefs about the future of someone who’s sustained a Traumatic Brain Injury? The answers to these questions are as broad and unique as the individual’s who have sustained brain injuries. “In my own experience as a TBI survivor, I have come to understand that the degree to which we recover can be measured not only by our physical reality, but, by our personal and caregiver’s belief systems; after all, if, we are cognitively and physically able, what we believe, shapes our every outcome!” Kay Pratt.

In this Book, TBI survivors share the answers to these questions and more through the voice of their experience. It is with sincere hope that by doing so, your understanding and beliefs about brain-injured individuals will be broadened and your perspectives enlightened.

 * courtesy of Amazon.com

Featured Review

“Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky” by Kay Pratt is one of the most amazing, informative and well written books I have read on this topic. Having had multiple mini-strokes in August of this year, I wish I had this book in hand afterwards.

The author shares her experience in her ten year recovery from her brain injury as well as the stories of others. Little did I realize all the anger, depression and loss I would feel when I lost the ability to write, walk and do small, everyday tasks. I am sure many going through this feel the same way.

Pratt and others talk about the pain, fear, anger and depression and the long road of physical, occupational, and sometimes emotional therapy to learn to walk and talk once again. What impressed me was in each story or discussion, Pratt includes a section on Important Takeaways – how one deals with the loss, anger and changes in our lives. Believe me, recovery will not happen overnight, and you will come to rely on many professionals, as well as family and friends to help in this process.

As a Psychologist, I found the information in this book to be very helpful, full of supportive tips and resources. It is very well researched, and provides information I hadn’t even considered. The examples Pratt provides on the impact of domestic violence and brain injury caught me off guard. Her statistics, lack of treatment and diagnosis was shocking, although it shouldn’t be. The undiagnosed impact of brain injury may be a reason why some women choose not to leave an abusive relationship; brain injury makes it difficult to get a job and be self-supportive. She also relates that according to some sources pushing a diagnosis may have unintended consequences such as being used against the women in custody battles.

What many people do not realize is that children who are abused may suffer from mild to severe TBIs (traumatic brain injuries). It is imperative to assess children for dizziness, change in personality, and change in behavior, and determine if they should be returned to a violent home. That means that caregivers, family or friends need to be observant and say something.

Part 5 of Pratt’s book, entitled Brain 101! includes vital information about what TBIs are, statistics, parts of the brain impacted and what that means. She goes on to discuss coping with challenges, length of time for recovery and provides numerous resources.

Since I am still early in my recovery, I showed this book to my Occupational Therapist, and she now has it in her hands to share with others. “Help! I Have a Brain Injury: And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky” by Kay Pratt is a must read for all professionals, family members, friends and those who have diagnosed TBI, or not.

– reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views

Another Review

If you or a loved one has experienced a brain injury you most likely feel as if you are suddenly hurtling down a never ending road of pain, confusion, hard questions and a roller coaster ride of emotions, as you try and decipher the clinical terminology from well-meaning experts, as well as face the reality of what is. Given how brain injuries impact one’s life and those around them, it is hard not to be overwhelmed with fear and doubts at the long road ahead, let alone the day to day journey.

HELP! I Have a Brain Injury And It Feels Like I’ve Dropped Out of the Sky! by Kay Pratt is the result of all that she has learned throughout her 10 year journey and recovery from the time of her own brain injury to the present day. This is her third book in her HELP series on dealing with brain injuries and it answers quite possibly any and every question you might have on the topic. The book is extensively researched and thorough in it’s discussion of all aspects of brain injuries, from the first steps to take following the occurrence and diagnosis, the physical and emotional health concerns following the injury, understanding brain trauma, the importance of advocating for one’s self and tips on coping with daily challenges as you move forward in your recovery journey. Yet you never feel like you are reading about a medical issue nor do you ever feel inundated with medical terms. Ms. Pratt breaks everything down into a conversation between ordinary people. The book is about you, whether you are the patient, a family member or friend. It is always about you and your own personal journey.

Ms Pratt recounts as well moments of her own journey, the obstacles she faced and how she dealt with them. Also included are the personal stories of other brain injury survivors. On page after page Ms. Pratt’s inner grace, strength of spirit, wisdom and compassion infuse the book and her words with hope and give one the courage to go on, even when confronting what seem unsurmountable odds. I cannot say enough about how invaluable this book is for anyone suddenly finding themselves facing the unexpected reality following a brain injury.

 – reviewed on Amazon by reluctantmuse

 


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