I am so excited to have Beyond Likes on Amazon!
It’s been almost 10 months since I decided to write Beyond Likes. After leaving the Digital Nomad Girls retreat in Spain in September 2017, my biggest goal was to travel and publish Beyond Likes. It was paramount to me and critical to my mental and behavioral growth to share with the world what I had learned.
Over the last 10 months I wrote and researched the book in the following countries:
The bulk of the book, the practical theory, and foundations were hammered out over a 2 week period in November 2017 in Nicaragua. Each month I would add another chapter or applied theory that I knew was important.
I wanted to have the book done before the end of the year but didn’t make the time. I was very overwhelmed with all of the research I did in publishing a successful ebook and all of the “things” you needed to do. A website, a blog, a facebook account… etc. For a while, it felt like I had done the hard part, but I felt overwhelmed about the next part. I didn’t know how to build a website, I didn’t understand social media marketing, I didn’t understand branding or marketing! There are so many blogs and schools that try to tell you how to make an ebook successful and read online, and half of them wouldn’t be worth the paper that they would have been printed on.
Over 3 months, I studied and researched how to publish an ebook. Meanwhile, I was also doing a lot of personal homework as well. I read great self-help novels about perfection, love, romance, and communication. I started to get a feel for how a self-help book should read and what I enjoyed reading.
After distancing myself from the book for a month, I sent it out for peer review amongst friends and family. This was a really difficult stepping stone. I wanted to have the opinions of others but was so hesitant to be vulnerable with my thoughts. I remember thinking that I needed to stop treating the book like part of my heart and to objectify it for what it was- a book.
It was critical for me to have comments and feedback from impartial parties before I let the book go wild. The insight was fantastic and people loved the book- however, I was told it was a bit boring. It read like a textbook. I was extremely thankful for the feedback as it inspired me to dump love into the book. Armed with new perspectives and new tools, I decided to add/rewrite the book to double its size. I added quotes, reference points, tons of personal stories. I added even more chapters and reviews of the chapters.
Finally, on a plane ride home from Europe to the US over June 2018, I put the finishing touches on the content of the book and sent it to the editors for the final time.
Writing a book over 10 months seemed to take ages, but I can say that it likely was very short in author years. I would say author years are like the inverse of dog years- every 7 years in author years is a year in normal person-years. In my opinion, anyone that believes that you can sit and hammer out a book in a month hasn’t really tried to write one. (And any politician that writes and releases a book several months after an election likely didn’t write a word, but had a team compiling audio thoughts)
Writing a self-help book is like writing a thesis paper on why what you believe others should believe. You have a lot of self-reflection and personal bias. You want to make sure you don’t sound like a know it all, and at the same time make it compelling to read. You have to be articulate and also intriguing.
Regardless of the book is well read or not, the journey was most important to me:
- The book represents my learning of my biggest human flaw.
- I wrote a book about my failures and shared it with the world.
- I wrote about my triumphs and want to share the skills that I learned with others.
I can only hope that someone will find the book in their time of need and it will prove useful. That would be worth more than my determination and ego combined.