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Author Interview – Doug Lawrence

July 23, 2019
mandyevebarnett


AuthorInterview

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What inspired your latest novel?

“The Gift of Mentoring” came to fruition largely due to a number of my supporters encouraging me to write a book on Mentoring. They felt as did I that there were books written on the academic perspective of mentoring but not a lot that had been written on the practical application of mentoring concepts. It was they who created the inspiration.

How did you come up with the title?

I have always felt that to give and receive mentoring is truly a gift. It is a gift that can create a life changing experience and an impact on families, communities and organizations and their people. I am a believer in “The Gift of Mentoring”.  

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

I have always said that even if only person attended a presentation that I was doing or one person read my book that there would be something that they would take away. It would be one more person that heard the story and become a believer in the “Gift of Mentoring”. I want to share this message globally and I want people to understand the true power that mentoring can provide.

 How much of the book is realistic?

All of it. The book is based on my person experiences as a mentor and is a true reflection of mentoring from a practical application.

Are your characters based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

The case studies that I have included in the book are actual mentoring situations. They are not fictitious.

Where can readers find you on social media and do you have a blog?

Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/TalentC-People-Services-Inc-119655924757549/

Facebook:          https://www.facebook.com/doug.lawrence.1610

Twitter:                https://twitter.com/TalentCDoug

YouTube:             http://bit.ly/2zb7OY6

LinkedIn:             www.linkedin.com/in/doug-lawrence-1452b28

Blog:                    www.talentc.ca/blog

Do you have plans or ideas for your next book? Is it a sequel or a stand alone?

I have created an outline of what the next book will look like. It will be a sequel to “The Gift of Mentoring”. I have grown as a mentor over the last 5 years and I want to be able to share my experiences in order to provide mentoring thought leadership to others.

Do you favor one type of genre or do you dabble in more than one?

I want to focus my writings on mentoring. There is a need for books that speak to the practical application of mentoring and that is where I see myself as an author.

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Do you plan your stories, or are you a seat of the pants style writer?

My stories are based on actual mentoring sessions so I would say that I am a seat of the pants style writer. The direction the book goes is driven primarily by my experiences.

What is your best marketing tip?

I try to make reference to the book title in a lot of what I write and do. I leverage social media to increase my exposure. I never did a formal launch of my book and didn’t do any books signing events. I have given the book away as a gift for the most part and have found that by giving it has always come full circle for the most part.

Do you find social media a great tool or a hindrance? 

I would say that it is 80% a great tool and 20% a hindrance. To use social media effectively requires more work and the rewards don’t always occur as quickly as perhaps I would like.

OPTIONAL QUESTIONS 

What do you enjoy most about writing?

The impact that it can have on others. I also find that it provides me with a sense of peace. There are times that I feel pressured to get something out but for the most part taking an idea and shaping it into an article or a book is an exhilarating experience.

What genre are you currently reading?

I tend to favour leadership books. There are not many books on the practical application of mentoring so I see that as a gap. I am currently reading a book on marketing and will then move to a book on High Performance Habits which I can link back to the mentoring process. One of my favourite books is “Gung Ho” by Ken Blanchard.

Do you read for pleasure or research or both?

I use to read for pleasure only but find that I am now striking a balance between the two. I research a lot of material on mentoring and then use that to write blog articles, etc.

Who is your best supporter/mentor/encourager?

I have been truly blessed throughout my career with supporters/mentors/encouragers. My Wife, Debra is by far my biggest supporter and a mentor to some extent. I have two or three others that I would call my mentor and encouragers. Some of them are half my age which raises eyebrows when I introduce them to colleagues. Everyone thinks your mentor should be older than you and that is the furthest from the truth.

Where is your favorite writing space?

Typically I have everything spread out on the dining room table until we have people over for dinner. I quickly gather all my material up and place it safely away only to return it to the table the next day.

Do you belong to a writing group? If so which one?

Yes. Canadian Authors Association Community

If you could live anywhere in the world – where would it be?

Interesting question as we have been talking about that recently. I think I would like to live in Portugal.

Do you see writing as a career?

Not at this time. I want to continue to grow my mentoring practice and continue to grow as a thought leader. Perhaps after all of that or in conjunction with that growth add writing to the mix.

What reward do you give yourself for making a deadline?

I take time to reflect and be thankful for what I have done and give thanks for what I am about to receive.

Bio:

Doug Lawrence is the founder of TalentC®.

Doug shows organizations how mentoring will encourage workforce culture to flow in harmony (mentors), improve productivity from employees (mentees), reducing costly employee onboarding improving the bottom line (organizations).

Doug is an International Certified Mentor Practitioner (ICMP), an International Certified Mentor Facilitator (ICMF), and has obtained his Certificate of Achievement – Mentoring and his Certificate of Competence – Mentor from the International Mentoring Community (IMC).

Doug is an international speaker and author about all facets of Mentoring. He published “The Gift of Mentoring” in 2014 with his second book set to publish in 2019.

Doug works with organizations to establish mentoring programs, influence mentoring as a culture, and provides one-on-one direct mentoring for individuals of all backgrounds and levels globally.

To contact Doug: https://calendly.com/doug-lawrence

 

Canada Day 1st July 2019

July 2, 2019
mandyevebarnett


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I enjoy celebrating Canada Day as it is my new homeland. We are lucky to have a deck overlooking part of the parade route so can sit in comfort and watch it drive past. Canada is a young country, becoming the Dominion of Canada on July 1, 1867. This is in direct contrast to my former homeland, Britain which was founded a lot earlier.

United Kingdom = England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The Kingdom of England was founded in 927 AD and The Kingdom of Wales was founded in 1283. They joined together in 1536 so Britain was founded in 1536. The Kingdom of Scotland was founded in 843 AD.

I do miss the history and pageantry as well as the ancient sites, historical houses and castles but have been fortunate to have traveled quite a lot of the province’s of Alberta and British Columbia by way of road trips. When I first came to Canada, I had no real sense of the vastness of the continent until someone showed me this view of the whole of Britain easily fitting into Alberta. This is just one province of ten!

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I have seen wildlife and plants I would never have observed, spectacular scenery and many objects purportedly to be the largest! Here are some of them.

I also ‘discovered’ a passion for writing in Canada, which may never have been part of my life elsewhere. It was a happy accident walking into that first sharing meeting of the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County in 2009. Not only do I have something that interests and absorbs me but it has also given me some incredible friendships. I am making up for ‘lost’ time publishing (to date) seven books, with several in the pipeline but it is the process of creating that engages me and having the opportunity to share my stories.

Here’s to many more years discovering this country, writing stories and enjoying family and friends.

 

 

Ask A Question Thursday

April 18, 2019
mandyevebarnett


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Today’s question is: How did you build your author platform? Was it by personal effort or did you have professional help?

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Last week’s discussion answered this question: If you were given the opportunity to form a book club with your favorite authors of all time, which legends or contemporary writers would you want to become a part of the club?

 

J.K.Rowling, Carol Berg, Edgar Allen Poe, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne (but only if he can speak English as my French is terrible), JRR Tolkein, J. Michael Straczynski,. I would be totally tongue-tied, but I would LOVE to just sit and listen to them talk about stuff.

Jenna Butler I can never seem to reply on the blog for some reason! But my dream group would be Lawrence Hill, Joy Harjo, Lee Maracle, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Claudia Rankine, and Lorine Niedecker.

 

 

Ask a Question Thursday

April 11, 2019
mandyevebarnett


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This week’s discussion is a writer fantasy: If you were given the opportunity to form a book club with your favorite authors of all time, which legends or contemporary writers would you want to become a part of the club?

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For my fantasy book club, I would choose Stephen King, Kate Morton, James Long, Felix de Palma, and J.K. Rowling. It is an eclectic group for sure but that’s how I read!

Let’s see who chooses who! Post your selection in the comments.

Last week’s question. Is today’s generation more aware of the literary art or less?How do you think concepts such as Kindle, and e-books have changed the present or future of reading?  Feel free to comment on last weeks question on that post.

I am a “real book” (paper) only reader. As I don’t have an e-reader, I can’t judge the experience; I’m just not interested right now in giving up paper books. There’s something quite personal about lying in bed with a “real” book, not an electronic device. I guess I’m showing my age. Ecco la vita!

I am the same printed books are best 🙂

 

Author Interview – Kathie Sutherland

April 9, 2019
mandyevebarnett


AuthorInterview

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What inspired your latest novel? A few years ago, I worked with a personal growth mentor on a workbook for telling life story as a myth. I gathered the stories I wrote and from them created The Storyteller: Tales of Enchantment which was recently published by Dream Write Publishing. My weary Gypsy traveller is an elder who shares tales of magic and wonder while passing on wisdom in these short, fanciful pieces. I am currently at work on an autobiographical novel.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? Maturity and aging are ripe with gifts. Elder tales are to be respected as much as traditional fairy tales, which focus on the courage to venture out into the world and seek their fortunes. Instead, my Gypsy Storyteller elder tales touch on the archetypes common to all of us as we age. I hope readers will grasp the deeper message of the stories, seeing in them the courage to confront the challenges of growing old. Our culture is youth-oriented and so I want the reader to appreciate that elders are heroes too.

How much of the book is realistic? These tales are symbolic of the lessons I’ve learned in life. In that respect, they are realistic. The themes are my own observations of loss, self-confrontation, masks, transcendence and seeing wonder in the world, all timeless insights learned by growing old.

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Are your characters based on someone you know, or events in your own life? Each story is a fanciful description of values and strengths I’ve come to accept in myself, and a way to reflect using active imagination and reflection.

Where can readers find you on social media and do you have a blog? I have an author page and a story page on Facebook, and a website with a blog at www.kathiesutherland.com. My blogs are few and far between lately as other writing projects have taken up space in my mind.

Do you have plans or ideas for your next book? Is it a sequel or a stand alone? Most of my writing is “life writing” in one form or another. My work is Self-centered, soulful and focused on wholeness although some think it is self-centered and ego driven.

Of the characters you have created or envisioned, which is your favorite & why? I believe each of us has a story in which we are the protagonist. My Gypsy Storyteller has created these tales to affirm my favorite voices. The Blind Gardener, The Good Wife, Grandmother Spider are all wise characters from my inner world.

Do you favor one type of genre or do you dabble in more than one? I’ve tried many writing genres, all of them focused on life story. Even as a child, my favourite books were fables, songs, fairy tales and classic stories, such as Heidi and Little Women. As an adult, I’ve embraced journaling for personal growth, become a certified journaling facilitator, written poetry and published it in chapbooks and bound books, gathered personal essays into a memoir collection, submitted articles to magazines, had my short stories published in anthologies; all of these works based on life events and family history. I’m currently working on an autobiographic narrative and two novels. I have recently been assisting elders and others at the end of life to identify the values of a lifetime and leave these insightful stories as a “Letter of the Heart” legacy for family and friends.

Do you plan your stories, or are you a seat of the pants style writer? Definitely seat of the pants but the stories are usually based on true events. Having a structure into which the story falls helps me plan.

What is your best marketing tip? This is not a question I feel comfortable with because I quickly lose interest after completing books and hurry off into new projects without marketing the published ones. Its the writing I love. I could use the help of a marketing assistant!

Do you find social media a great tool or a hindrance? I like social media as a way to reach out to others but I have to limit my time with it. My favourite self-expression methods are stories and poems in book form. I love using the computer to write and edit.

OPTIONAL QUESTIONS

What do you enjoy most about writing? Writing is “the way to me.” Every time I write, I learn something about my values, beliefs and strengths. This lifelong learning is very important to me.

What age did you start writing stories/poems? My mother brought our faraway relatives to life with family stories. As a child, I took on the role of correspondent and wrote letters to friends and family. I surprised myself when I wrote a good short story in 10th grade and later, found poetry could express my feelings as an adult in my early 30s. I became serious about life story writing in 2000 after attending a seminar focused on the lives of girls and women. Once I realized I had a story to tell, I embraced life writing.

What genre are you currently reading? Memoir and autobiography mostly. I love a good novel and love to encourage other writers in their efforts to create with words and enjoy acting as first reader for them.

Do you read for pleasure or research or both? Both. I love to learn more about my current interests, and this strength serves me well in my research. For example, I am reading books about building on my innate strengths, accepting my dark side, aging with wisdom and dying with dignity.

Who is your best supporter/mentor/encourager? Other writers and writing groups. My mother is my biggest fan and has read all my books. I have worked with personal coaches and other “balcony” people, including my psychologist.

Where is your favorite writing space? In my office/sanctuary. One of my favourite activities is taking a writers’ retreat whether with others or alone. Solitary time is essential to my writing.

Do you belong to a writing group? If so which one? Two, one in Sherwood Park and one in Fort Saskatchewan. I like to feel I belong, and writers groups are definitely the place I find community.

If you could meet one favorite author, who would it be and why? I am in awe of all writing efforts, because as I said earlier, we all have a story of some sort within us and I’m interested in how we express them.

Do you see writing as a career? I believe my life purpose is to grow into myself. Writing is a way to give my life meaning. Success in a career is simply loving what I do.

Do you nibble as you write? If so what’s your favorite snack food? When I write, my tea gets cold, and the ice in my drink melts. I’m not a snacker at any time!

What reward do you give yourself for making a deadline? I am working on giving myself credit for completing projects and enjoying the fruits of my labour because I don’t do that often enough. I’m usually off on the next bit of writing. My greatest reward is hearing someone say, “I can relate to this character and your writing.”

Other books by Kathie:

 

Bio:

Kathie Sutherland has recently published a collection of Elder Tales “The Storyteller: True Tales of Enchantment.” She is also the author of Things We Keep: A Memoir, and poetry books balancing Act; Shadow Girls in the Spotlight; Wind in the Trees; and Seeking Asylum. She has several large writing projects in the works including three novels.

Kathie is a well-travelled and observant student of life with 30 years of writing experience. In the past, she has facilitated journal writing workshops and is active in her local writing group. Currently, she encourages others as a story listener and writing companion to elders and those at the end of life as they articulate their values stories to share as a legacy in “Letters of the Heart.”

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