This post marks another installment of my “7 Questions With an Author…” series, where I ask published authors an unchanging set of questions and share their responses here.
Today’s featured author is Josh Hinds.
Josh is an entrepreneur, author, trainer and motivational speaker.
Diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome at the age of eight years old, Josh has been facing and overcoming adversity and challenges his entire life. He’s a firm believer that no matter what circumstance life or business reveals, there is always a work-around which can lead to success.
Here are 7 Questions With an Author: Josh Hinds regarding his latest book It’s Your Life: Live Big!
1. Tell us about your book?
The title of the book, It’s Your Life, LIVE BIG! came about because it is a motto I used to repeat to myself. Then when I was approached by my book publisher, Sound Wisdom, to do the book, it just kind of naturally fit. I’m a BIG believer in the idea that the words we speak, especially to ourselves, make a difference. I have certainly seen that to the be the case in my “Live BIG” motto. The book itself includes 17 lessons, that I’ve used in my own life, and have seen countless others use throughout their own. These lessons include: defining success, goal-setting, visualization, the power of persistence, and other lessons that can make a real positive, impact in the lives of people, both personally and professionally.
2. What led you to write it?
As I mentioned above, I had seen how the ideas in the book had made such a positive impact not only in my own life, but in the lives of others through the different work I do, whether while speaking to audiences, or where I share my writing in other formats, so it just kind of made sense to build on and expand much of what I was already sharing. As far as published authors go, I guess I’m a little different in that I was actually approached directly by a publishing company. I didn’t really pitch them to write the book. In a nutshell, my original contact with the company connected with me via LinkedIn, and let me know he had followed my work for a while, and wanted to explore the possibility of me writing a book with their company.
3. Who is a writer that inspires you and why?
There are so many that I could have included here, but since you asked for just one, I guess I better start with the first person who encouraged me. The first “motivational” book I ever read was written by Zig Ziglar. He has a great number of books I like, but that first one I read of his was titled, Over The Top. In addition to being a wonderful author, Zig is also an incredibly inspiring speaker. Like me, he’s also originally from Alabama. He has a gift for breaking down the complex and making it simple. That’s something I strive to do as well. If I only had one word to describe him, it’d be “amazing.”
4. What was the biggest challenge you faced writing this book?
I have to acknowledge first off, this was an incredibly smooth process for the most part. Largely because I have a great publishing company which took care of and guided me through most of the confusing parts and challenges that can pop-up along the way. After conversations with other author friends of mine, I’d say I was a bit spoiled in that respect I should also say, I have self-published other products so I have seen firsthand the different challenges that can come up during the process.
While I was fortunate to have my book publisher helping with many of the “heavy lifting” parts of the process, for me, one of the challenges was coming up with the particular outline and sections that would be included in the book. That’s primarily due to the fact that my business has several moving parts, which include different web sites, live speaking and training, as well as writing – I couldn’t just stop everything to “hammer out the book.”
5. What advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
Without a doubt, focus on building your platform. When I say “platform” I’m referring to your audience or reach. Now, it’s true you may not have your book written, but it’s still incredibly important – keep in mind that my book publisher found and approached me about writing a book.
That didn’t happen because my name was pulled out of thin air. It was because I had developed an audience (via my writing, blog and various sites I manage) long before I ever thought a book was in my future. Don’t just take my word for it, do a Google search yourself for something such as “bloggers who got book deals” and you will see a lot of similar examples. Another important reason to have your platform built before the fact, is that once you have your book out there, you want to have an audience you can reach out to who is likely to have an interest in it. Trust me, just being in a bookstore isn’t a guarantee of success.
6. Where do you get your ideas?
The ideas which I write and teach on come from my day-to-day life, or that are brought up during the work I do with others. One area of my business is consulting, so as I’m helping my clients brainstorm through ideas and business challenges, I’ll often have the opportunity to expand on solutions that show up during those brainstorming sessions. In the writing I do, fortunately, ideas abound.
7. Anything that you’d like readers to know that I haven’t asked?
If you have an idea in you that you believe is worth sharing, then it is. There’s an audience out there for what you have to share. Also, remember to celebrate the success of your book. Remember that the key is for you to always be sharing your book. Consider the ideal audience, or audiences for your book, and reach out on an ongoing basis to share about it, whether via an interview, or doing a presentation, whatever. The point is, it’s a crowded world, but you put yourself in a much better place to be heard, just by speaking up and sharing what you have to share a bit. So few do, that if you will be intentional about making sure you do, it will go a long way towards getting the word out about your book.