Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, December 7, 2009

Weekend Wrap-Up

My interview and podcast for the National Association of Memoir Writers is up on their website as featured member for the month of December. If you'd like to know more about my journey to publishing the memoir, please visit http://www.namw.org/ and check it out.

I'm writing this on Sunday for posting Monday morning. Yesterday was an amazing day for me. I gave my talk at Blue Eagle Bookstore: Intuition...a practical approach. It was my first attempt at promoting my book through lectures. Only two people attended, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself and hopefully, the two attendees came away with something meaningful and helpful. They said they did. No book sales, however, so I'm not sure of this as a marketing tool for book promotion. I am planning to turn the talk into an article, though.

Several hours later, my trio sang at the retirement center where my mother-in-law lives. I got to sing two songs I've known since childhood I've always wanted to do: "I Cain't Say No" from Oklahoma and "Cheek to Cheek," a song from one of the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers films. I told the audience I'd always wanted to be Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, didn't care which one. This was the closest I'd come. It was a blast. We got asked to sing two encores numbers--a first for us!

In Friday's post, I mentioned my bucket list and that self-trust was being added to the list. I thought I'd share an exercise I mentioned in my talk yesterday that helps me get my priorities clear. It comes from someone named Lakein--unfortunately, I can't remember his first name or the name of the book it came from, but the exercise is to set a timer for 10 minutes and write your lifetime goals, no stopping to think, just keep writing for 10 minutes. When the timer dings, set it for another 10 minutes and write 5-year goals. Then, another 10 minutes to write what you'd do if you knew you only had six months to live. I do it annually around New Year's. It never fails to help me understand where I need to be placing my time, energy, and commitments.

The main things that have been on my bucket list were: reconciliation with my son (done); finding a loving partner (done) losing and maintaining weight (done); getting physically stronger (done); writing and publishing my memoir (done); extended trip to Europe (done). There were other things as well--all done.

Still on my bucket list: several writing projects and more travel. I have reached a point in my life where, if I were to leave this Earth sooner rather than later, I would not have regrets. That is one peaceful place to be, folks.



Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

Congrats on meeting all your bucket list goals! That's awesome!

Marketing your writing is almost as difficult as writing and editing it! Hang in there! Sounds like you are on the right track to promote your book.

Joanne said...

I like the idea of starting that bucket list with life goals, then slowly narrowing the focus to really understand our desires, and abilities. It's a nice way to clarify our thoughts. And great idea to turn your talk into an article and increase the reach of your work. Isn't it wonderful how one opportunity grows into something else, another avenue to go down?

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Sounds like a really successful weekend! I've frequently spoken to just a handful of people and found it made me more confident practicing with a smaller group if I'm giving a new talk. I'm glad it went well and that you ended up getting something really useful from the talk, too. I really like the idea of a bucket list and I like the way he's come up with his.

Elizabeth Mystery Writing is Murder

L. Diane Wolfe said...

That's wonderful the talk went so well! Don't give up on that as a marketing tool - bookstores are just the worst for that sort of thing. Speaking at a library or to a club or organization would net you more attendees and sales!

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

That exercise sounds like one I should try. I think many speakers have started out with small audiences so don't write it off if you enjoyed doing it. It's really great you have done so well with your bucket list.

Helen Ginger said...

Congratulations Karen. It sounds as though you are at a really good place in your life now.

I'm glad you enjoyed your talk. Don't give up on the talks. Word will get out and people will come and sales will follow.

Straight From Hel

Anonymous said...

Fabulous bucket list items! And I've gotta get over to listen to that podcast...

Jody Hedlund said...

That sounds like an awesome way to set New Year's Resolutions! Thanks for sharing the timer method! I'll have to try it. And I'm so impressed that you've been able to accomplish so much of your bucket list!

Anonymous said...

How wonderful you checked off those things on your bucket list.

Thanks for sharing your timer exercise.

Cyndi said...

Amazing. Congratulations on all the things that are "done". I love the idea of this exercise. Thanks for sharing it.

Patricia Stoltey said...

A bucket list is such a good idea. Seems like there should always be things left to do, right up 'til the end. Writing them down reminds us that we're not finished yet.