After 20 years of devoted writing, the final stages of this book are here. I want to give praise to some of my helpers. I finished the book in 2011, but had no idea how to go about publishing it. Thus I needed these helpers, books, advice and benevolence to have reached this stage of “about to publish.”
Nothing I write here would be of any value without the careful guidance from within. I call that my “guru” as it is a benevolent inner being who has spurred on this endeavor, sent books and information my way when I needed them, and even given me the title of the book. When I asked inside for advice about a certain sentence, phrase or attitude in my writing, always there was a clear answer to be honest, not to blame, to be fair and realize that this work had to reflect the truth always. How to thank this source, whether it is my higher self or the person that lived as Bade Baba, I am not sure because the boundaries are blurred; but nothing could have been done without that urge, impulse, loving guidance and gentle spur. Thank you.
My first venture into getting self published was with Carla King’s book “Self Publishing Boot Camp: Guide for Authors” at Stanford; this helped me learn the sequence of events and steps to get a book published. From software to government agencies, she provides concise and clear instructions for creating a Print on Demand book, an Ebook, using Vanity Presses or not, getting a mission statement, creating a web site and logo, working on a business plan, establishing a platform, using social media, design, marketing and promotion. Her tips and suggestions are insider information that, for a newbie into this market, are invaluable.
Next I attended a one day event in San Francisco for the San Francisco Writers in October 2012 and met some of the people whose job it is to help writers get published. Joel Friedlander (thebookdesigner.com) gave me some good advice during a short interview and has sent me his PDF book on how to self publish. Nina Amir (Nina Amir of firstname.lastname@example.org ) has sent me endless letters with valuable suggestions, advice and tips as well as giving me connections to people who helped me get to where I am today. One of those is Pat Rasch, (http://bookandcoverdesign.com) who has produced a beautiful copy for printing and ebook with great respect, accuracy and she has still left my budget intact. At the conference I heard Mark Coker talking about his wonderful idea of “Smashwords” which has taken the publishing industry by storm. Clearly there is a huge demand for people to see their work in print. I got to hear Dan Millman in person, and Paul Hawken our local hero. I was so impressed that I used some of Paul’s essays in my English classes, exposing my students to a world of social goodwill. Michael Larsen and David Carr also were generous in offering their advice. I also met other writers and saw their joy and excitement which spurred me on to keep working on my book.
After the San Francisco Writer’s Conference, I began to gather more permissions for my extensive bibliography and research various printing and publishing options. There is so much available now. Meanwhile I continued to read and thanks to my daughter, I rediscovered the work of Carlos Castaneda. It seems that I had been waiting to find this as the Toltec understanding of non-linear, shamanic states paralleled my own experiences and explained so much. Nothing I had researched or read up til then had come close. Psychology seems to ignore the issue of “entities” and non-visible beings influencing us. Yet these are very real to a person in the throes of Kundalini awakening. The words of don Juan perfectly explained many of my experiences as nothing else could. Finally I knew that the book was really completed. I had finally got the satisfactory answers I was seeking when I started the book in 1993.
The workshop with Anne Hill in September 2013 was invaluable for providing web sites, helpers, resources and support for writers like me just getting started. I highly recommend her workshop. Find Anne at <serpentinemusic.com>, <http://CreativeContentCoaching.com> or email at email@example.com. Anne knows many resources for writers as her field is writer education. Her workshops are one day packed with valuable tips, lists, names and resources for a very reasonable price.
Next month I will go to the next San Francisco Writers Conference again, and that is just before the publication Launch of The Guru’s Gift on October 15th. Stay tuned…