It’s about 6:45pm on a Thursday night. Last Thursday night in fact. I’ve got polenta baking in the oven and a pan full of tomatoes, mushrooms, kale, onion and garlic simmering away. The Nashville playlist is making me smile and dance around the kitchen while I attempt to sing (it’s our current favourite Netflix hit) and my partner Dave and I have just finished a conversation about how rude it is that people call around dinner time and that it’s always some kind of telemarketer (he just had a missed call). “Wouldn’t that be an awful job?!” I say.
My phone rings. Private number. “Seriously?” Instead of letting it go to voicemail like I normally would, I almost jumped out of my skin to answer it and scurried away from all the noise in to the bedroom, getting my “Sorry I’m not interested” spiel ready in case it’s a sales call.
“Hi Amanda, it’s Leon.” I don’t say anything. Slight pause and he continues, “From Hay House. You won the writer’s competition.”
I can’t remember if the screaming was just in my head or if it came out of my mouth. He mentions that they pitched my proposal to the international territories during a meeting in LA last week too and they all loved it.
“Welcome to the Hay House family,” he says.
I thank him profusely and hang up. I run out to the lounge to tell Dave. He responds with, “Bullshit!!” Ha! Just as excited as me, God love him.
Friday morning comes and I’m not sure if I dreamt it. I was asked to keep it to myself until Monday when they announce it so I just floated through my weekend. By Monday morning I was convinced that I had made it up!
That is until I started to see the announcements on Instagram and Facebook.
OH MY GOD IT’S REAL!
Since then I’ve been overwhelmed with the kindness and support that I’ve received from all over the place – friends and family of course, current Hay House authors who I look up to, friends and acquaintances who also submitted book proposals, the beautiful online communities that I’m a part of thanks to the courses I’ve enrolled in over the years (the B-School for Aussies group of thousands of women were all so lovely, as were my class mates from the Beautiful You Coaching Academy). It reminded me of how wonderful women are and how powerful these communities can be, especially when we band together and lift each other up (rather than tear each other down). As one of my friends said, “when one of us succeeds or achieves a milestone in their life, it’s a beautiful and encouraging reminder of what’s possible for all of us.”
And from above I feel my beautiful friend Jess Ainscough smiling down on me as I follow in her footsteps (and suspect she might have had a hand in orchestrating the whole thing!). Jess, who passed away almost a year ago to the day, won this exact competition back in 2012, which led to the release of her popular and life-changing book, Make Peace On Your Plate.
I feel a deep sense of responsibility now to do this well.
So, what is this book about anyway?
My book proposal was titled, ‘Shine From Within: a teen girl’s guide to life.’ It will bring together content from the courses, workshops and private coaching I’ve been running for teen girls for the last few years. I cannot wait to release this book in to the world and be able to reach many more girls with information and inspiration to truly shine from within. It’s something I’m very passionate about.
According to an Annual Youth Survey by Mission Australia in 2014, body image is one of the top three personal concerns for teens aged 15-19 and coping with stress is the number one personal concern for young people in Australia.
Isn’t that awful?! Teens are struggling like never before. As they try to find themselves and carve out their unique place in the world they are faced with more scrutinising and “comparison-itis” than ever before. In the holiday programs, fortnightly sisterhood evenings and school-based programs I’ve been running, I can see the difference that fostering a space to discuss topics like self-care, bullying and body image can have on a girl’s confidence and wellbeing. We often have families from interstate or even overseas bring their daughters to the Sunshine Coast for our courses so I’m jumping out of my skin to be able to share this content with more girls.
WANT TO WRITE YOUR OWN BOOK?
I’ll be sharing with you the bones of my book proposal in a future post, just in case you are looking at writing your own book proposal. I found that doing the research, following the guidance that Hay House provided during their workshop and checking out blog posts from other’s who had been before me and won proposals themselves really helped me to craft it in the right way. After all, a great idea is only the beginning!
I also want to make special mention of B-School, as it is now open for enrolments and I doubt that I would have this book deal if it’s wasn’t for the start I got with B-School. If you have seen my last two posts about this you will know that this online business was integral for me to actually get started in business. Enrolments close on 2nd of March so don’t dilly-daddle! Go and check out what’s included in this revolutionary program now.
As a reminder, if you do enrol in B-School through the links that I’m providing on this page then I will provide additional support throughout the 8-week program + give you 3 months of one-on-one coaching with me after B-School finishes + give you free access to my upcoming Shine From Within Youth Engagement Training to learn how to work with teens (optional if this is the area you wish to explore).
And just in case you are unsure….when I first looked in to B-School I hesitated and I decided not to enrol. Then a year went by and I realised I was in exactly the same position as I was 12 months earlier – struggling and not truly committing to the vision I had in my heart. I had no idea where I would find the money but I chose the payment plan option and paid the first deposit. Somehow I found the next instalments just when I needed them. It really was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, which is why I’m so proud to share it with you. If you have any questions about B-School, feel free to get in touch with me – firstname.lastname@example.org
Here’s to an exciting adventure ahead!