Saturday, January 28, 2012

Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts has a Book Trailer, Watch it Here!

There is a story behind this book trailer, and I think it needs to be shared.  It is not about me but about another angel who has appeared in my life.  I talk about angels, I am referring to those people who show up in your life and are there to help you along life's highway.  You can call it fate, or whatever you wish, but I have been fortunate enough to have had many who came out of nowhere to be there for me.  To these people, I will forever be grateful.  Julie Weishaar is one of the people.  I did not want to try to produce my own book trailer for this book. I have no idea why I contacted Julie, but I did.  We discussed the project, and I decided to let her create it. 

Once that decision was made, I felt she should read at least part of the manuscript.  I sent her the document version without the pictures, a few hours later, I received and email from her. This is what it said, " Sylvia – I just read your book! The only word I can think of to say is WOW!"  I was absolutely blown away by her comment, what a compliment to get on something you wrote. 

I will never be able to tell her what a blessing she is to me, and will be to so many others.  I will have to let you read her story on how we met, and why she has created this fantastic video and more.  That is what you will read below:

Julie's story:

"It isn't often in life that we are presented with an opportunity to do something and not only get paid for it, but also be able to get incredible satisfaction and more fulfillment than we ever thought possible. I was fortunate enough to have been given this opportunity just a few days ago. 

A few days ago I received an invitation to connect with a woman named Sylvia Ramsey on LinkedIn who indicated that we worked together at The American Bladder Cancer Society. Now, I know that my memory is not as good as it used to be but I knew I would remember if I had worked there and I didn't :) The email right below that one was the explanation.

 (I really shouldn't read my emails from the top down anymore LOL).

Sylvia wrote a book called "Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts" and was looking for someone to create the video trailer for it. Aha, so now it made sense. I reached out to her and she hired me. This is rather interesting in that my LinkedIn profile does not indicate that I actually do create videos for inspiration and other more personal messaging. Instead it focuses on business videos, however, that did not stop Sylvia from contacting me.

 We both find this interesting and she said she really doesn't know why but she felt compelled to reach out to me. 

Lesson number one here is use LinkeIn. It is a great professional resource/networking site!

I was able to get a sneak preview of her book and read it in total amazement of how a woman, having gone through tragedy and hardship one after the other, over and over again, could not only be as uplifting and positive as she is, but also has dedicated her life to helping others with bladder cancer. I have met a woman who has truly inspired me and feel honored to have been able to create her book video trailer. 

AND, she liked the video so much, she will be sharing my services with her HUGE network of authors who have already talked about needing a video book trailer. How's that for Karma? :)

Below is her video in - that's right - you guessed it - a video email! I encourage you to keep a look out for when the book is published. I will be announcing it as I have donated my time and resources to helping Sylvia get her book and message out to those who REALLY need the support offered by The American Bladder Cancer Society! 

Now, here is the video book trailer that Julie created for Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts:

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Waiting for the Birth of Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts

I anxiously await the publisher to provide the custom interior samples, and the sample cover designs.  One of my faults is to have patience when waiting on others.  I have made contact with the person who is going to create my book trailer.  I am looking at ways to market the book.  I hope other bloggers will give me a chance to be interviewed on their blogs, and bookstores will let me schedule book signings.   However, for the most part I sit and wait, anticipating the results.  This is a nerve racking as my first book. I have bared my soul hoping that it will be of some help to others to know they are not alone, and giving up is not an option.  Living is too important. If anyone knows, it is me.

 Leave me some comments, feedback, remarks or even ask some questions for me to answer to help me pass this time. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Traveling the Road of Getting a Book in Print, and Awaiting its Birth

The Beginning
It has been a busy week.  I have had consultations with the person who is writing the press release, the cover designer and the interior designer.  Right now, I am interacting with a book trailer designer.  Cover designs may be ready for me to look at by the end of the week.  There is so much to do at this point.  Doing this, working my full-time day job and keeping my other blog rolling leaves little time for play at the moment.  However, I am not complaining, what I am feeling is much the same as the excitement of awaiting a newborn child. 

The story has been written, edited, proofed, and now it is in the hands of others to complete its birthing process.  Even then, the verdict will be out on its success and survival.  I keep reminding myself of what Harriet Du Autermont said, "No vision and you perish; No ideal, and you're lost; your heart must ever cherish some faith at any cost. some hope, some dream to cling to, some rainbow in the sky, some melody to sing to, some service that is high."  
 Birth out of Chaos
I have held onto my vision, faith, hopes and dreams all my life.  However, when my road detoured through the battle with bladder cancer, I realized just how strong it was, and how important it was to do something for others who must traverse the same rocky road. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

News on Charlie's Story and My Book's Status

          Today, I was told that one of the instructors at the college where I teach is using “Charlies Story” in her new student success classes to inspire them that no matter what, if they want it, they can succeed.  She said it made an impression on her students, and it also opened the class up for a great discussion. 

                     What a fantastic compliment!

Update on the book. 

My book is at the publisher’s, and I am waiting to hear from them.  I have a couple of consultation calls that I am waiting to receive.  I wonder what the cover design will turn out to be.  I am working on putting together marketing ideas, and creating a plan.  I have decided that I would like to have a book trailer for the book.  I am not sure that I want to tackle that task.  I wonder if I can afford someone to create it for me.
It is a time of waiting, planning and contemplation.  I am working on getting my other blog (Thoughtful Reflections Blogspot) up-to-date on scheduled interviews.  There is a press release in the works.  I love to write, but I really am not crazy about the phase of the process.  I am a doer, and waiting is not one of my virtues. However, the success of this book is important because I really believe it can help others in many ways.  Regardless, I feel as if I am caught up in a time warp that has me suspended in time. In a way, I rather feel like this poem I wrote once when I had writer’s block: 

The Silent Muse

Silence surrounds the muse
like the murky veil
            on a smoke-stained rose
            that enfolds a city’s dawn
            as the elegant words
            of pomp and circumstance
            are as voiceless
            as the cry of a city’s neon lights.

In agony, he craves respite
            from the tyranny
            of a need
            that makes him a wanton, helpless pawn
            that lures him tauntingly
            like a siren lures a ship
            toward the hidden craggy rocks
            on cold, rainy, foggy, nights.

Thus, taunts this siren
            tricking the mind
            with ghostly strains
            of lilting rhyme
            to entice the muse,
            causing the need to be stirred
            when the mind’s curtain is drawn
            to suffer silent, voiceless nights.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Another Rock in the Road Conquered

To strive with difficulties, and to conquer them, is the highest human felicity. ~ Samuel Johnson

Some of my Art: Survival
           Yesterday, I worked all day on the final draft of the book.  Early this morning, I uploaded it to the publisher.  However, it wasn't that simple.  For about an hour, I was in a panic because I could not find the file.  I am still trying to get used to the new operating system on my computer, and the updated software.  Finally, I did a search and discovered that I had somehow saved the file in one of my backup storage devices.  I was so relieved. 

            When I uploaded the file, I felt just like a mother with a new baby.  I was not sure I wanted to share.  As anyone know who has written a book, there is so much work put into it, and a lot of yourself as well.  Now, I will begin the other tasks that go along with having a book published.  The work is not over, but it has just begun.  I will be working on a publicity packet, a book trailer, all the other things that go with this adventure.  Hopefully, I will be able to get some reviews, press releases, interview and some chances for interview on other people's blogs.

            My main goal is that it will be of value to others, and inspire them to never give up even when the road gets really rough.  Will it sell, who knows?  I can only hope it does so I can transfer all the proceeds earned from the sales can be given to the American Bladder Cancer Society. 

"The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible." ~ Anonymous

You can learn more about me and my quest on the following websites:


Amazon Author's Page

My other blog, Thoughtful Reflections features interview of others in the field of publishing and its link is:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Rocky Road Levels Out for a Moment in Time

"Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky".  ~ Rabindranath Tagore

It is back to work on my blogs, my book and my writing.  My computer has arrived, programs installed, and now all I have to do is to acclimate myself to a new operating system and new word processing program.  The only complaint I have about the new word processing program is that they do not just add new features, but they move the commands for the familiar ones.  It becomes a games of hide and seek,  and a challenge to overcome. 

The final editing is almost complete, and the only thing left to do before it is off to the publisher is to indicate where the pictures are to be placed.  Sometimes it is tempting to go back and add more to the book, but you have to stop somewhere.  My editor said that it will required a revised edition in the future, and I suppose that will be the rest of the story. 

The writing of this book has been difficult at times because it has brought back memories I would rather forget.  But, I decided that if recording my experiences would help someone else to let them know they are not alone, and that with perseverance they can survive, the discomfort of my reflections are worth it.

One of the poems from my book:  Pulse Points of a Woman's World
Reflections of My Mind
I have grown weary
of the reflections of my mind.
As it mirrors images
of life‘s ups and downs.

It holds memories
both harsh and kind,
Rushing into view
by leaps and bounds. 

The mirror of my mind is
marred with clutter and dust,
Demanding to be cleaned
by a cloth with a ruthless hand.
Banishing the blurred images
from view is a must.

So, with arduous determination,
a clean mirror, I demand.
Soon my mental mirror
is bare as a tack,

But then, I analyze it
from my mind‘s door,
And, I know no peace
until it is back,
The reflection cluttered
as before.
"We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they're called memories. Some take us forward, they're called dreams". ~  Jeremy Irons

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Overcoming the Rocks in the Road

“Opposition is a natural part of life. Just as we develop our physical muscles through overcoming opposition - such as lifting weights - we develop our character muscles by overcoming challenges and adversity.” ~ Stephen R. Covey

 My new computer is scheduled to arrive tomorrow.  I can then begin the final polish on my book.  I have an angel who is proofing it.  I must thank Dr. Aman Kay who is an Internationally published author who has encouraged me along the way to completing this work.  He has been a mentor, an encourager, and now has volunteered to serve as an editor to make sure the book is ready to be published.   

He keeps telling me that my story is one that must be read by all.  He says that is tells an honest story of survival , faith and perseverance that will inspire others to hold on to hope and to not give up.  I hope he is right because I have been honest in the telling even though it is simple and a "literary" work of art.   

Cynthia Kinsella who is the President of the American Bladder Cancer Society has contributed a message recalling our first meeting, and the importance of the messages within the book.  I have added this message as the epilogue to the book.   

If  my story can be helpful or inspiring to others, that is all I can ask.  I am a firm believer in what Edward Everett Hale said, "I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do".

Monday, January 9, 2012

A Lesson on Being Prepared, and on Love and Faith

I had a few more small rocks tossed on my path yesterday.  I was working on my blogs, and on my book, when my computer crashed.  Thank goodness, I had my document files backed up, except for the ones I was working on at the time.  My son worked the rest of the day trying to get it to boot enough to retrieve any necessary, and as usual there was an angel to save me.  He had the guts to do whatever it took, and the perserverance to not give up.   Finally, after several hours of trial and error working it, he was able to get it to boot up, and even though all the programs were gone, my document files were in place.  I backed them up on my exterior storage, and just for extra safety, I emailed my book files to myself. 
My dear husband, Tom, ordered a new one for me this morning while I was at work.  It will be a few days before it arrives, and will be this weekend before I can get it up and running.  Sometimes, the love of someone else, and maintaining faith will pull you through some rough spots. 
“Faith consists in believing when it is beyond the power of reason to believe.” ~ Voltaire

Saturday, January 7, 2012

More about Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts

I have been busy working with the publisher to get it ready for press.  There is so much to do, such as collaborating to get the cover just right.  The book has pictures, and making sure they are in the correct place in the script.  This is the part that I dislike, but it is necessary.  As soon as I know the release date, I will be relieved. 

I shared one of the stories in the book that happened my first two years of teaching in a high school, and that was 20+ years ago.  This is the one I posted on the blog with the title, Charlie's Story.  There is an update to that story.  Charlie called me a few days ago to check on me, and to let me know he is doing well.  I am not sure how much little things like touching base with a former teacher means.  Knowing that you touched someone, and somehow it made a positive difference is what teaching is all about. 

Because I directed the theatre program, coached the Speech and Debate team, taught art and speeches classes, I had contact with many students over the years that I taught high school.  The picture I am sharing was one of the musicals that included students in grades two through twelve.  The students built the sets, students made the costumes and it was their production. This picture was opening night, and they had a corsage for me, and gave me a trophy...which really belonged to them for all their efforts. It wasn't my play, I just helped them get was theirs, and they made it a success.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

An Update and Reflection, Traveling a Rocky Road with Love, Faith and Guts

I have been busy working on the final edit of my book, and posting interviews on my other blog.  The time is getting close to sending the book to the publisher.  As I read over what I have written, it seems strange and as if, it happened to another person rather than to me.  I find it amazing that I survived all those rocks that were traversed along the way.  
I am sure I owe that survival ability to my father.  He taught me so many lessons by being a very good role model.  One of the memories I have of him was when I was about ten-years-old.  He had just bought a new mattress set for his bed.  He had just put it on the bed, but he had not disposed of the old set.  A couple of days after he had but the new set on the bed, I came home to find him taking it off and putting the old set back on the bed.  I asked him why he was doing that.  He said that a neighbor’s house had burned, and he was giving the new set to them.  I ask him why he was giving the new mattress set instead of the old one.  He said that when you give, you give the best you have to give. 
Another time, I had a small fender bender.  I came home and handed him the car keys because I figured I was not going to be driving anymore.  He asked me if anyone was hurt, and I said no.  He asked me to tell him what happened, and I described what had happened.  He chuckled, and then said, “Was that all?”  Then, he told me about the time he was backing into a parking space with the big truck.  He had not seen the fire hydrant, and backed right over it snapping it off causing a geyser.  I laughed as I tried to imagine the scene.  Then he said, “Sugar, we all make mistakes.  The important thing is to recognize them, admit them and then try very hard to not make them again.” 
He was active in the community helping anyone who needed it. He took people to town to shop on Saturday’s that did not have a way to go to get groceries and staples.  He served on the school board.  He was always doing something for someone who needed help.  I never heard him complain, and when the going got rough, he kept on going.  I grew up wanting to be like him.
My greatest wish is that anyone who reads it will be inspired to keep the faith, and never give up.  I hope they have learned to laugh at themselves, to cry with others when they are down, and give of themselves to help make this a better world.