In this post, we review Dr. Angela Lauria’s Book Journeys interview with Jamie Wolf, author of Start Over! Start Now! Ten Keys to Success in Business and Life!
At the start of the interview, Jamie remarked that the book was intended to help people who have experienced a major change in their lives to start over, and the ten keys in the book is intended to provide those people with a framework on how to start over, based on the habits and behaviors that Jamie had seen in some of the successful entrepreneurs she had interacted with. As an entrepreneur who has started up a tech company, Jamie has had occasion to interact with several entrepreneurs, and in her interactions with them, she found patterns of places that the entrepreneurs got stuck in, as well as issues they ran into, and then saw parallels between these and people could use in their own lives, such as recovering from mistakes and self-development.
Angela mentioned in the interview that one of the things that helped Jamie write this book was a layoff and some family problems, which meant that Jamie really had to start over at some time in her life.
Prior to actually writing out the book, Jamie, a self-professed “numbers-and-list person,” calculated that two hundred pages was just the right length for her book, and that twenty-page chapters were doable. The research materials she had gathered were organized in piles, one pile per chapter, in her living room, with each pile consisting of books, articles and photographs, and with the piles helping her spur her thinking. She didn’t follow her initial system of blocking out writing time on a calendar, instead writing out the book in the early mornings or late evenings, and the occasional three-day weekend, when she would clear Friday so she could have such.
Jamie confessed that she lacked confidence when she started writing the book, so much so that it took her a long time to write out the first two sentences. She overcame this by promising herself a reward, but the lack of confidence kept cropping up all throughout the time she was writing. Support from friends and, in particular, her daughter, motivated her to continue with the process.
Jamie intended to self-publish from the start, as she was also admitted to being “a little bit of a control freak” and wanted to have control over her book. She hired a team of various professionals to help with the layout and also dealt with such issues as buying an ISBN number. She then published her book with lightningsource for the paperback version and bookbaby for the digital version, as she knew that different people had different learning styles.
Jamie shared that getting feedback was scary, but that was what helped her book become as solid as it presently was. Her advice to those who want to write a book? “Go for it and start today.”