Today, Norm Goldman Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com is pleased to have as our guests, Bob and Melinda Blanchard authors of Changing Your Course: The 5-Step Guide to Getting the Life You Want.
Good day Bob and Melinda and thanks for participating in our interview.
I understand that you are experts who teach people to successfully navigate life transitions such as graduation, divorce, career change, starting a business or simply pursuing your dreams. How did you become experts in the field of life strategies? What did you do before you were life strategists?
Bob and Melinda:
We began our careers as social workers, intending to live a life dedicated to making the world a better place. The first time we changed our course was right out of college. We were frustrated and discouraged with our jobs and the amount of red tape required to work for state operated social service agencies. We also hated going our separate ways each morning. After careful consideration, we decided that the solution to both problems was to work for ourselves and we opened a store selling kitchen supplies. That allowed us to do something we were passionate about and, at the same time, spend more time together.
Through a journey of 9 other entrepreneurial adventures, none of which could ever have been planned or predicted, we’ve come full circle.Although we’re no longer social workers in the traditional sense, we’ve started the Live What You Love movement in response to the thousands of people who have asked us for advice on how they can follow dreams of their own.
Please tell our readers a little about your book Changing Your Course: The 5-Step Guide to Getting the Life You Want and what motivated you to write the book?
Bob and Melinda:
Everyone, at one time or another wants to change some part of their life. Some simply want to find more time for their family and others want a complete life makeover. Changing Your Course is our response to the people who have asked us how we’ve managed to make so many life changes. We see this book as an opportunity to use our experiences to help others live a more passionate and fulfilling life. It’s filled with proven tools and techniques that will help anyone make a change, big or small.
Did you work from an outline when writing your book? How did you decide you were ready to write the book? How did you know when your book was finished?
Bob and Melinda:
We did, in fact, use an outline but it was not on a computer or a pad of paper. Instead, we used a giant bulletin board covered with notes describing everything we wanted to say. We’d rearrange those notes on a daily basis to make sure everything appeared in just the right place within the book. For us, knowing when a book is finished is more intuitive than anything else. We have no rules or guidelines that tell us when it’s done.
It is said that writers should write what they know. Were there any elements of Changing Your Course: The 5-Step Guide to Getting the Life You Want that forced you to step out of your comfort zone, and if so, how did you approach this part of the writing?
Bob and Melinda:
The difference between Changing Your Course and other self-help books is that we’re not speaking theoretically or philosophically. We know that our 5 steps work from our own 35 years of experience. We’re not quoting statistics or passing along information that just sounds like a good plan. We understand what it means to live what you love in the very deepest part of our soul. We’ve lived it, breathed it, and believed it for 35 years. The only area that took some more research and was initially out of our comfort zone was determining how our steps worked when applied to changes that we hadn’t personally experienced, such as divorce. It became clear along the way, however, that our system absolutely does work when applied to any kind of change.
There have been dozens of books in different flavors written about the same topic as yours, what makes your book different and what do you want readers to take away from it? Why do you think this is an important book at this time?
Bob and Melinda:
Our 5 D.R.E.A.M. steps are the foundation for the book and each letter in the acronym D.R.E.A.M. stands for one of those steps. First, you must Decide to do something. Nothing else will matter if you don’t make that decision. Then you have to Research your options about whatever it is you’re trying to accomplish. Once you’ve identified your options, you can Evaluate which one is the most feasible to pursue. Then, of course, you Act to make it happen. Once you’ve succeeded, you’ll need to Maintain your dream to make sure it lasts. Whether it’s changing careers, running a marathon, or building a team at work, the five steps are the same.
With the economy being what it is, this book is more important than ever before. The desire to change course is often the result of some kind of wake-up call. Losing a job or struggling to make mortgage payments is a critical time to think about shifting in a direction that makes life more fulfilling, financially and emotionally. Don't be afraid of making less money. It's a serious mistake to sacrifice passion for a larger pay check, even if that means sacrificing some of the things you enjoy.
Can you tell us how you found representation for your book?Did you pitch it to an agent, or query publishers who would most likely publish this type of book? Any rejections? Did you self-publish?
Bob and Melinda:
We did not use an agent for Changing Your Course, although we’ve had representation for some of our other books in the past. We were lucky to have found a publisher who believes in this book as much as we do.
I noticed you are the owner of a restaurant, Anguilla. How did you get into the restaurant business and could you tell us more about your restaurant and is there some connection between being a restaurant owner and a life strategist?
Bob and Melinda:
On the surface, being a restaurateur and life strategist may seem like an unusual combination, but for us, the two experiences are as relevant as can be. One of our most pivotal changes came while on vacation in Barbados with our son, Jesse. The three of us were walking on the beach in search of lunch and came across a man sitting under an umbrella with his feet up on a cooler and a lunch menu written on a blackboard sign.We ordered three burgers and drinks. He handed us the drinks, three raw hamburgers, and a pair of tongs, pointing to an oil drum that had been turned into a charcoal grill.That’s when it dawned on us that we’d spent forty-two dollars for food that couldn’t have cost our vendor more than five. And we had to cook it ourselves!
We might have been annoyed had we not admired him so much. What did we admire him? This man’s ability to look at life a bit differently and create his own model for how to earn a living was inspirational. He introduced us to a freedom that we’d never imagined possible. Years later, inspired by that lunch on the beach, we moved to Anguilla to open Blanchards Restaurant.
It was that major life change that started the steady flow of questions from people looking for advice: “How can I improve my life too? What should I do if I want to change careers? I want to be happier without changing jobs. Can you help? How can I work for myself? How do I get past the fear? How do I tell my friends and family that I want to do something different? ” Those questions all have one thing in common: change. And the steps to making any kind of change are the same. Decide, Research, Evaluate, Act and Maintain. It works every time.
Are you working on any books/projects that you would like to share with us? (We would love to hear all about them!)
Bob and Melinda
We currently have 3 more books coming out in the Live What You Love series. Adopting a Live What You Love philosophy helps in all areas of your life. The next book is called Working for Yourself and will be followed by Building a Team and Making a Difference. Each book is written for people who want to weave a Live What You Love attitude into more specific aspects of their life. Our goal is to help people live with more passion and enthusias
Where can our readers find out more about you and Changing Your Course: The 5-Step Guide to Getting the Life You Want?
Bob and Melinda:
We’d love to have your readers visit us at www.livewhatyoulove.com. It’s a great pace to share stories, ask questions, take a quiz, participate in our blog and learn even more about what it takes to make a change and live what you love. We’re also creating an online class which will be available in the near future.
Thanks for your great questions Norm! Please keep in touch.
Thanks once again and good luck with all of your future endeavors.
Meet Charles Jacobs Author of The Writer Within You: A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing and Publishing In Your Retirement Years
Click Here To Purchase From Amazon The Writer Within You: A Step-By-Step Guide To Writing And Publishing In Your Retirement Years Today, Norm Goldman, Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com is excited to have as our guest, Charles Jacobs author of The Writer Within You: A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing and Publishing In Your Retirement Years.Charles is an award winning journalist who has been honored with numerous awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, Working Press...
The Beginner’s Guide to Acrylics: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Techniques and Materials
Click Here To Purchase From Amazon The Beginner’s Guide to Acrylics: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Techniques and Materials Author: Angela GairPublishers: New Holland Publishers and distributed by Sterling PublishingISBN: 1 85368 3191Although painting with quick-drying acrylic paints may at first seem to be a relatively simple process, one glance through Angela Gair’s “Beginner’s Guide to Acrylics” makes the reader realize the myriad of unique possibilities found within this versatile...
The Beginner’s Guide Pastels: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Techniques and Materials
Click Here To Purchase From Amazon The Beginner’s Guide Pastels: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Techniques and Materials Author: Angela GairISBN: 1 85368 604 2Publishers: New Holland Publishers and distributed by Sterling PublishingThe subtitle to “Beginner’s Guide Pastels” isn’t exaggerating when it utilizes the phrase “complete step-by-step guide.” Angela Gair’s elegant but straightforward prose gives as many details as a beginning pastel artist could wish for, making the beautiful...
The Writer Within You: A Step-By-Step Guide To Writing And Publishing In Your Retirement Years
Click Here To Purchase From Amazon The Writer Within You: A Step-By-Step Guide To Writing And Publishing In Your Retirement Years Author: Charles JacobsISBN: 10, 13: 0-9793636-0-8: 978-0-9793636-0-3 How often do retirees hear “your stories are great; you should write them down and publish them?” The most likely reply is I wouldn’t know where to begin or it just seems too difficult to wade through the endless steps to take before my masterpiece is published. Fret no longer, award-winning...
Mastering Derivatives Markets (3rd Edition): A Step-By-Step Guide to the Products, Applications and Risks
Click Here To Puchase From Amazon Mastering Derivatives Markets (3rd Edition): A Step-By-Step Guide to the Products, Applications and Risks Author: Francesca TaylorPublisher: Financial Times/Prentice Hall/Pearson Education (Harlow, England)ISBN-0-273-70978-XMastering Derivatives Markets is a nineteen chapter, softbound 426 page book. Content is preceded by author and publisher acknowledgements, a foreword and contributor’s acknowledgements, and followed by a glossary and index.As a Certified...
Leading Six Sigma: A Step-by-Step Guide Based on Experience with GE and Other Six Sigma Companies
Authors: RONALD D. SNEE and ROGER W. HOERL ISBN: 0-13-008457-3 Leading Six Sigma is a hardbound book, comprised of 8 chapters, a question and answer section addressing planning deployment issues, and a supplemental appendix, providing a deployment plan example. It is two-hundred and seventy-nine pages in length. As the title suggests, this book is designed to initiate the reader, likely to be corporate executives, to the Six Sigma planning process, plan refinement, likely...
Meet Robin Reynolds author of Life to the Max: Maxims for a Great Life by a Dog named Max
Today, Norm Goldman Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com is excited to have as our guest, Robin Reynolds author of Life to the Max: Maxims for a Great Life by a Dog named Max.Robin has been a professional writer for the past twenty-five years and her credentials include award-winning advertising copywriting for broadcast, print and Web media; writing a series of stories for a line of stuffed animals she created and writing comedy monologues for Yakov Smirnoff.Robin has a deep...
The Writer's Quotebook: 500 Authors on Creativity, Craft and the Writing Life
Compiled, arranged and edited by Jim FisherISBN-13: 978-0-8135-3882-2Rutgers University PressDepending on your proximity to the writing life, what section of the bookyou're reading and what percentage of your daily writing quota you'vecompleted, "The Writer's Quotebook" will either fill you with hilarity,dread or inspiration.Quoting 500 different authors - everyone from Margaret Atwood to Emile Zola- on subjects as diverse as the talent, dialogue and Hollywood, "TheWriter's...
THE POCKET PAPER ENGINEER: How to Make Pop-Ups Step-by-Step; Volune 1: Basic Forms
Author: Carol BartonPublisher: Popular Kinetics PressISBN: 0-9627752-0-7The following review was contributed by: Jennifer Brown : Click Here To View Jennifer Brown's ReviewsImagine having the ability to make one of those beautiful, intricate pop-up books or cards that make young and old alike ooh and ahh over your handiwork. Think you couldn’t do it? Well, with Carol Barton’s help you just might.Barton’s book, THE POCKET PAPER ENGINEER, is a hands-on guide to making pop-ups. This volume...