Today, Norm Goldman Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures.com is pleased to have as our guest, Corrie Woods, author of The Woman’s Field Guide To Exceptional Living.
In addition to being an author, Corrie is a motivational speaker, retreat leader and personal life coach.
Good day Corrie and thanks for participating in our interview.
Do you consider yourself a “way-outside-the-box” thinker? If so, why?
Absolutely. I actually have a hard time staying in-the-box! Life has taught me that often times the solutions that are the best fit for challenges in life come when I am willing to let go of how I think it should be and explore possibilities with the words what if ...
Sometimes the answers are the obvious ones and yet sometimes my willingness to step past the shoulds allows me to find brilliant answers from that place called “outside-the-box.” I’ll add, the variety of hats I’ve worn along the way shine of choosing the road less traveled. I have been a homesteading homeschool mom on one end of the spectrum to a top manager in a multi-million dollar corporation on the other end. Today my role as an author and women’s life coach is the perfect fit.
What motivated you to write The Woman’s Field Guide To Exceptional Living and what makes your book different from other books dealing with the same or similar topic? As a follow up, as there does not seem to be any authoritative standards that exist for books of this nature, how do you check out the authorial competence?
The motivation to write the book was two-fold: I heard the proverbial call from within to write years ago and as I worked with women in coaching relationships I felt compelled to offer something they could take with them to carry the learning forward. That is not to say my book is a coaching book per se, rather that it supports the kinds of women who are looking for more in their lives.
There are countless self-help and inspirational books for women. I have many of them on my shelves and they have served me well. But as I approached writing my book I had a few key things in mind:
Women are incredibly busy so I wanted it to be a short and playful read.
Women are on the go so why not make it small enough to fit in a purse.
I love to underline and jot notes as I read so I offered up places to journal at the end of each chapter.
And at the heart of the message is you can begin living a life you are crazy about now and it begins one little step at a time. Living a life you love isn’t not rocket science and yet we all need to feel supported to take great care of ourselves and reminded that when we do so it impacts all areas of our lives.
Norm, regarding authoritative standards, this is where I show up outside-the-box. If a book of this nature resonates with you, if it provides practical things you can do to improve your life, if it jumps off the shelf and into your hands – it is the authoritative source!
Did you write The Woman’s Field Guide To Exceptional Living from your own experiences and if so, please explain? As a follow up, how did you come up with your ideas that you incorporate into the book?
I share a story in the introduction of the book about my grandfather. His last words to me were, “Corrie, I’ve lived a great life! If I had it to do over again I wouldn’t change a thing!” Imagine being over 90 years old and having no regrets. Those words really made me sit up and take notice. I began asking, “What would it feel like to live a life of no regrets?”His words transformed my life and as I began to make shifts I began coaching women to do the same.
When you look to the chapter titles in the book you can get an idea of what I mean. A BOLD Woman is about doing what your heart calls you to do. Making Mud Pies is about infusing your life with greater creativity. Invite Others Over to Play is about nurturing our relationships ...
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? What do you hope to achieve with your book?
As a brand new author I decided early on to self-publish. I felt that route would give me a starting place and allow me the opportunity to learn all facets of getting a book out of my head and into the market.
I researched copy designers, ISBN’s, illustrators, etc. A bit overwhelming but I plowed through it. My book finally made it to print and was cued up to go to press within days. A moment of pure synchronicity happened when I found myself on the phone with a PR Guru, Rick Frishman and he mentioned a press that he knew would be interested in my book. Long story short, I called the printer and said, “Stop the presses!” and signed with Morgan James publishing out of New York. I never wrote a book proposal or sent a query letter. To my complete amazement, it just happened.
What do I hope to achieve with my book? First and foremost, my hope is that my book makes a difference in the lives of women who read it. My greatest joy is getting emails and calls from women who share stories of ways it has helped them. Beyond that incredible satisfaction is my goal to be very successful with book one in order to open up the market for book two in The Woman’s Field Guide Series. I have lots of ideas, lots of ways to get my message out into the world in mind, so the more success I have with this first book the better.
When you talk about becoming vitally engaged in life, what does this mean?
There is a chapter in the book, Come to your Senses, that describes the gifts of living life more fully through your body and senses. When I talk about being vitally engaged that is a part of it. You can glance at a sunset or pause to really soak it in. You can inhale your meal or savor the quality and texture in each bite. Life becomes delicious when we live through our senses.
On another front, becoming vitally engaged is about being courageous enough to show up in the world in all your glory, holding nothing back. From that place we have so much more to give and we are much better equipped to receive.
What do you believe are the essential ingredients of enjoying a rewarding lifestyle?
Ah, the essential ingredients? Self-love and self-care comes first because when we have that we have so much more to give the world and our loved ones. Nurturing loving relationships with people who believe in us. Doing everything we can to maintain physical and emotional health. Being engaged in work that reflects our deepest joys and values. Contributing to the welfare of others. Playing more and stressing less!
You notice I don’t mention the pay check. Yes, being in financial integrity is important, and being in financial abundance is even better but all the others are must-haves to enjoy a rewarding lifestyle.
Whom do you believe will benefit from your book and why?
I am getting responses from women of all ages. A seventy-something women let me know after she read the chapter on being BOLD that she determined she wasn’t getting any younger and so she called up a gentleman to ask him out on a date. She had a wonderful time I might add.
Another woman who contacted me shared that she is the head of a multi-million dollar corporation and loved the book so much that she bought over 50 copies to give to all the female employees.
A young woman in her early twenties emailed me and said she had underlined nearly the entire book and the book was changing her attitude and her life!
Basically I think it is for women of all ages who are looking for support and inspiration and tips to create a more joyful life.
What did you enjoy most about writing your book? And was there anything you didn’t particularly like?
I loved every minute of writing the book. I did it as I felt inspired and in a mode of flow and that was 24/7 for the four short months that the bulk of it came together. Once the manuscript was complete, I have to say I was less excited about the nuts and bolts of publishing details and the PR facets.
What has been your experience with the Internet in boosting your careers as a life coach, retreat leader and finally as an author?
The Internet is the core facet I am focusing on to get my book, my message, and my services out into the world. My website www.womansfieldguide.com is a site featuring the book and also a place to learn more about the retreats I lead, to watch inspiration videos, to send free ecards and so much more.
A favorite section of mine is Spotlight on Exceptional Women. In this section, I feature women whose work I admire and who I believe readers of my book would love to learn more about. I share what they are working on, their favorite quotes, and links to all they offer.As a collaborative project, they in turn, provide a comment on my book, an interview, and they are all coming up with very creative ways to share news of my work with their communities. It is fun and completely win-win.
Are you working on any books/projects that you would like to share with us? (We would love to hear all about them!)
Great question and thank you for asking! Lots of projects brewing: books two and three in The Woman’s Field Guide Series, and a book entitled From Solopreneur to Partnerpreneur™ all about designing collaborative partnerships for greater success and greater fun.
Beyond books, what I am most excited about is the launch of a new website this fall. At the heart of all my work is the focus on women’s self-care. In the fall of 08 I will launch www.theselfcarecafe.com with the goal of it becoming the premier site on the web for women’s self-care and empowerment. Incredible folks are on board to contribute expertise and wisdom and given the power of the message, I know it will be a huge success. Stay tuned! Of course, that is just a peek at the projects I am working on.
How can our readers find out more about you?
I am easy to find! Simply go to www.womansfieldguide.com. Readers can learn more about me, be inspired by my Life of No Regrets video, email me from that site,and subscribe to my monthly ezine, Tips for Living a Life You Love!
Is there anything else you wish to add that we have not covered?
One very important piece I would like to add comes back to collaboration. I knew that I wanted a book that was visually inspiring and that meant I needed great illustrations. As I was just giving shape and form to my book I partnered up with an amazing woman and illustrator, Caren Frost Olmsted. I would draft a chapter and she would draft a few images that might serve as chapter illustrations. She always captured the essence and spirit of my words and her illustrations are a big part of the magic of the book. She is a fabulous women, very professional, and a blast to work with. Readers can find her at www.cfodesign.com
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