Patty Lennon – Book Journeys Author Interview Transcript – Oct 22, 2015

Book Journeys Author Interview – Oct. 22, 2015

Dr. Angela Lauria with Patty Lennon, author of The Crowdfunding Book

 

If you’re going to write a book, it has to have a beginning, middle, and end.” ~Patty Lennon

 

Angela:

Well, hey everybody. We are back on Book Journeys Radio. I am so excited to have you guys here. In this week’s episode, we are gonna talk about something I know a lot of you are thinking about, which is crowdfunding. Uhm, and so, as always on Book Journeys, we are – we’re always interested in exploring the journey to becoming an author and I think everybody’s book journey is unique in the way you cross the finish line that first time. It doesn’t always look like what you thought it would look like. So, on this week’ show, we are talking to coach, speaker, crowdfunding expert, Patty Lennon, whose first book is called The Corwdfunding Book. So, hi Patty! Thanks for being with us.

 

Patty:

Hi Angela! I’m happy to be here. Thank you for having me.

 

Angela:

Awesome! So we’re just gonna kick off ’cause I know that a lot of people are very interested in crowdfunding as a concept. So what’s The Crowdfunding Book about and who did you write it for?

 

Patty:

So, The Crowdfunding Book is a how-to book which really just takes the reader from start to finish – everything you need to know to launch a successful rewards-based crowdfunding campaign and it’s peppered with little side-journey conversations that I went through when I was doing my own crowdfunding campaign. So, hopefully, by the end of the book, they also understand the mindset that they will need and understand that they’re not alone when things like fear and anxiety come out in the process.

 

Angela:

And you have a pretty interesting journey there writing this book. You wanna tell people a little bit about your crowdfunding campaign experience that led to this book?

 

Patty:

Sure. Yeah, most definitely. Uhm, so, I became… My journey to crowdfunding was kind of different and I fell into it and when I did the first crowdfunding campaign, I, uhm, it was very early on in the crowdfunding, you know, world, and so I funded my amount very quickly. I got a lot of social media support from Indiegogo which was the platform I had funded on, and because people saw Indiegogo talking to me, they started coming to me for help. One thing led to another and I ended up doing a program, and while the program was going on, you told me I needed a book, and, uhm, I tried – I was in the process of writing my book – my memoir book – and it really felt right, you know, it definitely seemed like everywhere I was going, people wanted this information, and they wanted it quickly and easily and they wanted it in a digestible amount, and so we took the course (with your help) – took the course and turned it into a book and really just boiled everything down to exactly what people needed to know every step of the way.

 

Angela:

I love that! What I want to spend a couple minutes on though, is this isn’t what you thought your book would be. Uhm, and so, how was that – how was that journey for you, ’cause a lot of people have one book in mind, and then not getting that book out often stops them from getting another out. So how was it that this book sort of jumped in – jumped ahead of your first book..?

 

Patty:

That’s such a good question. Right, and I – honestly I think, uhm, and you did not pay me to say this, but I think if you weren’t there pushing me and encouraging me, I probably wouldn’t have gotten this book out. But, uhm, you know… Well the first thing was that – the book that I thought I was going to put out – the book that I was already in the process of writing was a memoir, and, uhm, looking back at it now, I can tell you, I was just too close to the story to write it effectively, whereas this one was something I had written – I had taught over and over again, so the information flowed a lot easier, and then, uhm, what [I] was coming up with was I’d do a conference every year, and until I had put it out there, that I was gonna have my book at the conference. So I think, you know, publicly, putting some boundaries in place really helped a lot.

 

Angela:

Hmmm. Fascinating. And by boundaries, you really mean, you mean deadlines, in this case, right?

 

Patty:

Right, yeah actually putting something in place that could hold you publicly accountable.

 

Angela:

Yeah, I love that. That’s awesome. So, did you envision this book completed before you – before you started it and was that – was that event, or that deadline you were talking about – was that a part of envisioning it?

 

Patty:

I think so. I mean, I want to say it was that clean. I don’t think it was. I mean I can remember it, like I can make the rose-colored version of it, but if I… if I really dig in, I think it was more of like, uhm, having it completed, you’d feel like a relief. Like it got to a point where… those final editing, time, where I just wanted it done and over… So, I don’t know if it was so much, you know, that – where I was in the beginning which was where I could picture it, and the first time I got the cover design it was like the most amazing feeling and I was looking forward to having it in my hand but in the end I just wanted it done.

 

Angela:

I think a lot of writers can relate to that, That is definitely the – one of the – it’s one of the parts of the journey that I think is hard to imagine because it seems like that would be the part when all the writing is done, but not necessarily.

 

Patty:

Well, the reason I mentioned that too, is that, uhm, it, you know, I think it is hard to understand ’cause if you get far enough along, and you’re just making it smoother and nicer, it seems like, yey, but, uhm, yeah, it doesn’t always feel like that, and that there’s a lot of spiritual growth that happens from that process around patience and honoring value and honoring the reader and you can get to that point, you’re truly truly in service, like there’s no part of your creative soul that’s [not] being fed. And so while you’re in that process, you really just gotta keep saying, “Who is my reader? How can I be of service to them? Is it truly fair to put it out like this, or is there something more I can give it that will make it better for them?

 

Angela:

Mmm. That’s totally true. Was there any part of you that was afraid of how people might see you, or any part of you that you think was scared about how the book would be received?

 

Patty:

Uhm. There was – probably not in a way that, you know, a more personal book would have been. But for me – I was afraid of being pigeonholed as a crowd – only a crowdfunding expert. And, uhm, that was my first book out of the gate I felt that defined me, or I guess my fear of it was defining me and I don’t think I was ready for that limited of a definition… I don’t think I have the fear of someone holding by book and judging me for it, because I did have the… the gift of it being my first book is that it was a how-to book and I knew how the book quality was in… like I knew that the process has been tested so many times and I knew how good it was and I read some old books, like on some more topics that I knew I didn’t give as much as I did. So from that perspective, if someone had criticized me, I think I would have been okay with it.

 

Angela:

And did that – like how did that either get in your way or how did you work through the fear of being pigeonholed ’cause I think that’s a pretty common one.

 

Patty:

Uhm, well that’s good to hear. You know, I think uhm, the way that I worked through it was… well, the first thing was there would be a lot of people that was, uhm, pinning me in my den, and that really kinda happened before for the other stuff that I did around business coaching ’cause I think there’s a lot of people – we do business coaching but when you get really specific and you narrow down on who your reader is and you’re really unique in that area, uhm, you know, I just start to talk about that topic, a lot of people will contact you and that was happening, and so, one thing was, when these people would contact me, be able to say, “Go to Amazon and get the book,” that really kept me motivated, because I knew I could be of service to them without having to get on the phone with every single one of them, knowing most of them wasn’t turning to private clients.

 

Angela:

Right.

 

Patty:

Uhm, the second, you know, the second place was I’m a speaker, and, I was getting booked for a lot of… and speaking gigs, but I knew if I had a book that was – I’d be able to raise my wage, I’d be able to get different types of gigs, uhm, so that was a real motivator, and uhm, you know, when I just… and you usually helped me do this. When I got into that place, and just taking a step back and seeing, you know, what’s the business plan was or what’s the service plan, like, who are you trying – what are you trying to do and doesn’t deserve it? And the answer always comes back to yes, yes yes. And so from that standpoint, I could always come back and go, “Okay, I notice it’s my ego messing with me right now.”

 

Angela:

Mmm hmm. So true. That is so true, and I think if you don’t have – if you don’t have that sounding board – if you really get yourself wrapped around the axle, uhm, you know, just trying to figure out what – feel like, uhm, you know, almost like business riddles, and sometimes, there’s somebody who’s… you know, playing a prank on me – just how do I get out of this one?

 

Patty:

Yeah, yeah. You’ve gotta have that. Yeah.

 

Angela:

What about the actual writing process. You had, uhm, you had a program, so you’d already taught a lot of this stuff.

 

Patty:

Yeah.

 

Angela:

How… How did you, uhm, how did you get through the writing process?

 

Patty:

So, uhm. So the first part was just… I think it was just to write and just honor the fact that you weren’t – I wasn’t – writing the end product. That was really important and I had to keep reminding myself that I was just getting it all down, just getting it all down, uhm, you know, I had a pretty clear outline because it’s a how-to book and it is a very… although you may spin a little inside the process, it is a linear process. There’s a step one, a step two, all the way to the end. So I knew that it, you know, had the outline that way, and then, uhm, once I had the stuff, it was just digging in and figuring out, okay, what’s helpful and what is my ego wanting to offer here? Because there’s a lot of little anecdotes that I would have loved to put in and I realize that… checked in, those were just to make me look better, they weren’t necessarily making the content stronger, and so, uhm, you know, I think it was just having that witness consciousness when I would go want something included. Well, coming back I think it was just, fix the outline… okay, and what supports it; what makes it easier. What makes it easier to read? Uhm, you know, where can I be vulnerable, even in a how-to process, so that, if I saw someone reading it, they’d not feel alone in the process, ’cause that’s, for me, that was my big concern, it’s that, you know, crowdfunding can be a very vulnerable process, ’cause you’re asking people for help and that’s one of the things that our culture does not support publicly, and I just wanted to make sure that I kept reconnecting to that as I wrote.

 

Angela:

Hm. Okay. So, for you, uhm, as you went through the process, was there ever a part of you with this book that held… for not finishing? Like, did you think this book might not finish?

 

Patty:

Well, yeah, and let me just go back… yes, there was. And, so, when you… you and I started working on it, the other piece was, you, you, like, gave me instructions. So, you said, like, okay, so you take whatever you had and like turn it into an outline. Now that was done, but you partnered me with an editor, so I kinda had some help there. So, by the time I got to like the middle of the book, there was a financial investment in the book already, so that was helpful. Uhm but, yeah, there was a part of me that was like, “Screw this, it’s just too much work,” like, I think it was like, probably 60% of the way done. And, uhm (sighs), I wanna believe that I eventually got over that part of me that’s suspend it. That… that… place, but I don’t think think it was until I actually had the book in my hand that… that I.. that was finally silenced.

 

Angela:

Mmm. Interesting. So how do you think about through that? Was… was the investment a part of how you got through that even though it was uncomfortable?

 

Patty:

The investment was part of it, yeah. Uhm, and I think the, uhm… just like we talked about before… is remembering why I was putting the book out there. I mean, every time I got a link in, I’d say, asking help for a crowd campaign, it was like, “Okay God, I hear you. I’m gonna write this freaking thing today,” and I would sit back down, and then, having a writing schedule, you know, so that, even if I didn’t finish it, I commit it to just, in that… showing up for the amounts of time I allotted to it.

 

Angela:

Right. I love that. So, what do you think… You’ve started a memoir and know that’s still on your radar to finish at some point. What do you think is different about this book? What do you think got you to the finish line with this book? You said something before, you wanted to get into like, the book wasn’t ready, or you weren’t ready for the other book. How can people identify that? What do you mean by that?

 

Patty:

Uhm.

 

Angela:

Or, you said, “I was too close to it.” That was…

 

Patty:

Yeah. Yeah, and uhm, I think what it is… You know, if you’re too close to the story and it’s still kind of smushed up inside of you, uhm, everything feels important, like it’s really hard to say that you can’t include something in the book. And so, it becomes this big jumble of stories, and if you’re going to write a book, it has to have a beginning, middle, and end. And, if you haven’t… If you’re not able to articulate that to yourself, it’s possible you haven’t gotten to the end yet, like, it’s possible you haven’t experienced the end of the story.

 

Angela:

Right. Right.

 

Patty:

Whereas with The Crowdfunding Book, I had experienced the end of the story. I’d done my own campaign, I’d taught a lot of people to do theirs, I’d worked with people on theirs. I knew what the ends looked like. I had 100% confidence in every single person who had a dream, that they could pick up the book and if they did what it said, that they would succeed. And so the end of the story was already written.

 

Angela:

I love that, and it’s such great advice. Uhm, was it hard to put your other book on hold? Did you feel like you were cheating on your book or were betraying it in some way?

 

Patty:

I did, and I also, at one point, wondered if I was completely abandoning it. That means I had only one book in me and that, you know, just from an efforting standpoint, I only had one book in me and towards the end when it was just going through those round of final edits, wondering what I… I’d even be willing to do this again, and uhm…

 

Angela:

Mmm hmmm.

 

Patty:

I think the place I got to was that The Crowdfunding Book was the book that came out of me – out of me to be of service. And the memoir, although I want to be of service, was just a story I need to tell. Even if – The Crowdfunding Book, I want to want people to read it. With the memoir, I think even if only ten people read it, that’ll be okay because I just need to feel the release of having told the story. And so, when, I could connect to that and remember that The Crowdfunding Book was a business decision, the memoir, as much as it came from a place of… the memoir is really just a life mission. It’s part of this particular journey on the planet that’s… and it will be written because I can feel that it exists already in the future and so… I just haven’t caught up with it yet and I can be at peace with that.

 

Angela:

Gee, I love that! That’s so true. It’s so true and the things that I love about this is the power of getting firm on why you’re writing the book, and without judgement, like there are not right or wrong reasons to write books, but when you’re trying to do it either for every reason or no reason, you just will run into obstacles that will make it a difficult finish, and that’s cool. It’s still trying to get your attention. So, let’s talk about some of the outcomes from The Crowdfunding Book. Uhm, I know when you wrote the book, you had a product. Uhm, so what are some of the things that have happened as a result of having the book. Have you sold that product? Have you had to… had a business benefit in some other way?

 

Patty:

Absolutely. So, yes. So there’s… More products have been sold. Uhm, and then, what’s more fascinating I think is, there’s a lot more products that I became aware were needed. So, the product I had out there was really comprehensive, and now that I have so many people digesting the information, their feedback is helping me understand they don’t need a fifteen hundred dollar product, because some of the parts they get, just from the but there’s one place they really do need something, and so now I’m developing other products because of the feedback of the readers. Uhm…

 

Angela:

Oh, I love that! Do you wanna tell it? Is that a secret? Or do you wanna tell us more about what you’ve created?  

 

Patty:

Yes, absolutely! Certainly. So, uhm, you know, the first chapter of the book, which you can get for free, like, so maybe why I get the most questions about it, is how to take a crowdfunding platform and like what are the first steps that you should take? And so I get tons of questions that you can’t help but… the chapter really does describe well what to do. People just… What’s really happening is that people are just questioning, “Do I deserve to do this?” or “Do I belong here?” Like that’s what I’m really feeling.

 

Angela:

Wow!

 

Patty:

And so, you know, when they’re asking me the questions, they’re really not confused of how to pick a crowdfunding platform, I mean, I lay it out. Surely. It is really a place to go and spend some more time around the thought process of starting our campaign. And so, just really taking those pieces and just spreading them out a little bit further, guiding it a little bit more to some of the mindset stuff, and then really getting out the question, “But how do I know.. (and this seems to be the question) How do I know this is the right time?” And so that’s one. That’s one product. Uhm, the other big one is formatting rewards. So people really think they’re struggling with that, and so I’m working on an experiment to the question in the book. Really, there is only so much I can do in a chapter of a book because rewards, you know, there’s the basic idea of forming rewards, but rewards, in and of themselves, is a marketing technique, and if you really don’t understand marketing, then you probably will need more learning in that context.

 

Angela:

I love that! And so how does that feedback come to you? Is it mostly… uhm… is it mostly from email? How do you kind of figure out where the gap, uhm, first serve their…

 

Patty:

A lot of them come from email and then also from LinkedIn.

 

Angela:

Oh! That’s fun. Did you know that LinkedIn was gonna be a platform that you would get feedback out of?

 

Patty:

No, no, and honestly I don’t even have a book trailer up on LinkedIn. It’s fascinating! I mean, I could not be working harder to not use LinkedIn than I already am and that LinkedIn just keeps giving me the… and I think it’s that because people usually find me, you know, I have a link to my book in my, uhm, in my bio, uhm, but I think because people find the book initially that way, and then, you know, they get it on Kindle, so it’s kinda all there on their mobile, or whatever,  and there – ’cause that’s where they’re playing, so then they send me the message…

 

Angela:

Ha! Amazing! You know, I need to send people so that If you are thinking about a crowdfunding campaign, Patty Lennon’s book is called The Crowdfunding Book, and it’s Patty Lennon, uhm, you can find that on Amazon. You can also check out Patty’s… more of Patty at pattylennon.com… that link in the show notes so you can check that out for sure. Uhm, and apparently you can track her down on LinkedIn and connect with her there. Uhm, Patty, are you currently helping people with crowdfunding campaigns, or are there ways people can work with you right now?

 

Patty:

Uhm, so the way people can work with me right now is really through the product. There’s gonna be a lower-priced product, uhm, that’s gonna be released in a month or two, and, uhm, I’m working on select campaigns, but generally speaking, if you need one-on-one help, I have some certified consultants, uhm, that I can match you with.

 

Angela:

Love that! And you’ve also spoken, uhm, to groups about this topic. Uhm, what kinds of groups have you spoken to about… about crowdfunding or that have found you through your book?

 

Patty:

Uhm, so, yeah. So, once again, which is really fascinating, a lot of women’s groups, uhm, women in business groups, because crowdfunding is a more effective tool for most women than the traditional fundraising method. Uhm, I’ve spoken at, uhm, banking consortiums, uhm, spoke at Harvard, I’ve spoken at, like in academic settings. My background is in banking so I think I feel drawn to that. I still have my old contacts there bringing me in, uhm, major conferences have been booking me. Ones that I just didn’t even… I’m surprised or… even interested in crowdfunding, are booking me.

 

Angela:

Wow.

 

Patty:

So, it was a gamut. Definitely not the places where I was already playing.

 

Angela:

Mmm, absolutely. And have you found the reaction to having you as a speaker or inviting you as a coach, do you – have you found it to be different after you’ve had a book?

 

Patty:

I do, and… and… There’s two ways. The first is, there’s always gonna be… If it’s not your people, like people who’ve been following you in the audience, and they don’t really know you, there’s a trust that they get, just by that fact that they have a book, and I see that because I was speaking before the book was out but on more, you know, generalized women business development issues, and I can see the minute you have a book, there’s this energy in the room, “Okay, she’s an expert.” The other side of it is, uhm, where I used to get off a stage and where people might come and speak to me, now tons of people will come and buy my book, and I think it’s a way to just connect with that person you made that connection with on stage, whereas if you don’t have something to offer them, it’s almost like the connection has ended. There might be a few that will follow you on your website, or if you have a free offer sign up for your free offer, but when you have a book, they’re actually walking away with a piece of you, and I think… for the relationship.

 

Angela:

Wow. I love that. Alright, last question, uhm, before we wrap up for the day. What advice would you give to somebody who wants to write a book but they haven’t been able to finish it?

 

Patty:

Okay, I’m gonna answer that question, but I do just wanna mention something else that I forgot to say.

 

Angela:

Yeah. Sure.

 

Patty:

Uhm, one of the biggest benefits, both in the media – requests. So, I used to pitch… Yeah I used to pitch to media all the time, and, you know got pretty good responses, but it was a lot of work. I get requests for quotes all the time. And uhm, what’s fascinating is I get tons of requests from like France and China and Australia – places that I’d just didn’t even even think to reach out to. So I just went there and made sure I said that. And then…

 

Angela:

Yeah, you’re definitely not pitching to French media. [chuckles]

 

Patty:

Yeah. Uhm, my biggest piece of advice is, get a book coach and if you can’t, uhm, find, you know, that, if it’s something that you’re deciding you don’t want a budget for, then at least find someone that’s gonna hold you accountable. Uhm, because without that sounding board, I really don’t think I ever would’ve finished the book.

 

Angela:

Um, yeah, and I love… I love that there are lots of ways that you can hold yourself accountable, but the thing is, about a, like a buddy, is how are they gonna enforce it? So, think of some ways that would make you actually take action, like they’re gonna make you rake their lawn if you don’t turn in your pages. Like…

 

Patty:

Yeah, yeah.

 

Angela:

What are you gonna do actually hold yourself accountable?

 

Patty:

I’m pretty out there. Make a commitment to the public that you’re actually gonna finish it.

 

Angela:

Love that. So, Patty Lennon is the author of The Crowdfunding Book. She is a business coach and a crowdfunding expert and an experienced speaker, uhm, and we’re so glad to have you as our guest today, Patty. Thanks for everything.

 

Patty:

Thank you so much!

 

Angela:

And you could check out Patty at pattylennon.com or find The Crowdfunding Book on Amazon. And, as always, I hope that from Patty’s story, we’re able to take some lessons to apply to your book journey. Everyone’s book journey is unique, but I hope you could see some ideas in there that Patty used to help her cross the finish line, that you can apply to your book journey, and if you did, uhm, if you did, uhm, find something in here that’s helped you, go ahead and check out theauthorincubator.com/blog. You will find the show notes and you can add a comment when the show notes go live. You can add a comment and let us know, uhm, what part of Patty’s journey or Patty’s story helped you. We will be back, uhm, next week on Book Journeys, changing the world one book at a time.

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