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Archive for the ‘How To’ Category

Imperfect Action

Today was a massive FIRST for me and the My Color Friends Series! I dropped off 8 MCF sample books at a national NZ early childhood education company.

 I watched her face as she opened Graceful Grey, and she seemed pleasantly surprised.  She had slight smile while she was looking at the pictures, trying to quickly read the text.

Still letting it sink in.  It’s an amazing opportunity.

This past month I have been selling a NZ special edition of Graceful Grey to fundraise for a new building for our friends at the Hope and Joy Children’s Home in Nepal. We have had great responses! And we have about $500 USD to give towards their new building project! We will do another fundraiser in Oct and we hope to double our giving amount! Graceful Grey is doing her part and I am doing mine.

All printed book sales through us, the profit will go straight to the Hope and Joy Children’s Home! 

Hope and Joy Children's Home in Nepal

At our first fundraiser, a friend approached me and said she loved the idea of the books, she loved the look of the books and she asked if she could pass it along to her early childhood education boss. Her boss was open to the idea and today I briefly popped in and handed her a bundle of books. I was unprepared when she asked for a flier, but I got her email address and promised her one in the morning.

I have been learning about IMPERFECT ACTION–just do something, take action, move forward. I don’t necessarily need to wait til it’s perfect or “right”. Today was a good example, I took action. I fell my books still have a long way to go before the are ready to be marketed mainstream in NZ or anywhere! But I swallowed and called the boss once, texted twice and charged in when I got a 5 minute meeting.

When I met her, I asked what she knew about the books, and she said, “Oh that a friend had made a book with some travel pictures, is that right?”

I rambled through living in Nepal and then handed her a book. I watched her face as she opened Graceful Grey, and she seemed pleasantly surprised.  She had slight smile while she was looking at the pictures, trying to quickly read the text. Her smile encouraged me, and I continued babbling about something…I left 8 books in her hand, promised a flier tomorrow and got her business card with her email address.

She is going to offer them to her educators and put in an order.

I am blown away by this opportunity!  And I hope and pray that it can make a real difference for our friends in Nepal!  This is also a small (or maybe large!) launch of the MCF books in NZ.  Wow.

I am thankful. 


Our 2 Year Color Anniversary!

Today we met with our Nepali friends and had a birthday party.  Such a great way to start our last week in the place we have called home.    As we are about to embark on our adventure to New Zealand, I am also celebrating the 2 year anniversary of publishing my first kindle kids book, White Went Around the World!  So I get two fun and wonderful celebrations!

Packing up our lifetime of memories in Nepal is a big task.  I remember sitting in our guest room late into the night learning about Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace.  Those hours of searching the web and uploading my ebook again and again (with slow internet mind you) were worth it!

I have grown into this role as author.  And I look forward to the future that lies ahead in NZ–new possibilities, new colors, faster internet : ).  I am also very encouraged because in March 2015, I have officially made the same amount of sales as ALL of 2014!  Considering it’s only March, I feel I have a good thing going this year.

I have learned as a self-published author, momentum takes time.  It also takes effort (and fast internet), so maybe with little more time on my hands once we land in NZ, My Color Friends books can really take off!

Just in case you are wondering: our children’s paperback books best sellers are:

Graceful Grey, Asian Elephants at Work and Play in Chitwan, Nepal

Celebrating Elephants and memories of our home in Nepal!

On Safari in Etosha National Park Namibia, Children's book

Our memorable Safari in Namibia!











Real books, real places, real photos and a really fun adventure make for great learning in the hands of children!

It’s been a blast traveling and taking photos around the world and I am blessed that those photos have made great kids books.  The colors of the world to be celebrated in our house forever, and I hope they are celebrated in your house too!

Thanks for reading friends!


Wrapped Canvas on Zazzle SALE!

I love wrapped canvas art! And soon I will have a home to actually decorate (5 weeks and counting)!  I hope Zazzle runs this special discount again : ).

65% off all Wrapped Canvas on Zazzle with this code: CUSTOMCANVAS!

Create your own Wall Art or select and customize hundreds of designs on Zazzle already!  Here is my Spring Collection : ), also on sale! These gorgeous prints are perfect for Easter celebrations and Mother’s Day coming up fast! But Hurry the offer expires March 13.


Happy Zazzling! 
remember to use the Zazzle Code: CUSTOMCANVAS at checkout!

What are YOUR favorite eBook sites?

Today I discovered three more websites (in the vast ocean of eBook websites!) that Smashwords has distributed the My Color Friends book series. My discoveries:

ScribdOyster and Bilio!

My first thoughts: This is great!

Second thoughts: These websites don’t seem to have many children’s books…and who actually uses these sites? Why have I never heard of these sites?

As an Indie self-publisher, I fall into one category, but as a children’s author I fall into another way out in center field category. I think most eBook websites are for the adult avid reader who devours every indie book that comes along…but those books aren’t often for children.  Nonetheless Smashwords thinks my books are worth passing around the web.

So do YOU use Bilio, Oyster or Scribd?

Do YOU get your children’s ebook from any of these sites?

I’d love to know!




Random Book Sales Makes My Heart Happy

Random Book Sales Makes My Heart Happy

In so many ways.

Recently on Amazon and CreateSpace, random sales on my book, On Safari in Etosha National Park, Namibia: My Color Friends: Book 5 had made me extremely happy!  This is my needle in a haystack that is actually being found. Random, I know.

Life’s too busy to promo, honestly, so all I have on my side is random google and Amazon searches.  I self-published wishing and praying that some one out there in the world wide web would stumble upon me and buy my book.  I think I was only half aware of the size of the haystack at the time, but nonetheless, I trusted in randomness.

Now, the creation of On Safari in Etosha National Park, Namibia…is divinely inspired.  It doesn’t fit the others in the series (whoops!), it is RANDOM.  But I felt I had to write it.  I was compelled and pushed to write and do it quickly…and as it turns out, it more sellable than the others.  I hoped and wished it would be, since it is based on 1 specific location, a quite famous location that actually attracts a bit of interest!  

Etosha National Park is an amazing place!  And we were so blessed to be able to go there when we were kid free  : ).  No crazy amounts of luggage or snacks, just us, the quiet, nature and our camera. (Sometimes I do miss those days, the quiet!). 

Anyway, I don’t stalk my sales, because I haven’t the time (and have mostly given up), but the other day when I popped onto CreateSpace, there was a dollar amount in my homepage.  Blown away I ran to my husband and said something along the lines “Someone from outside my family actually bought the book–more than 1!”  He had to see the proof, but when he did, two hearts were happy.

I hope the randomness continues : )


My Identity as an Author

Today I changed my Twitter profile from “A wife, mom, teacher and self published author…” to this:



It may not be perfected yet, but there was one big change of wording that is bigger than I first thought it was.  That’s right, I wrote “A self-published author” FIRST…my identity…for this Twitter account.  Or is it more than that?

Today did I finally admit to myself that I am writer?  

Did I finally admit that writing 6 children’s books wasn’t just a fling because I was bored with wife/homeschooling-mom duty (a big part of my motivation mind you!)?

Have I finally admitted that a larger part of my identity is as an author?

Changing the wording on my Twitter account does not change the order of my duties, wife and homeschooling-mother are still the biggest part of my day to day, but I think something is changing inside.

This journey of self introspection was begun about 3 weeks ago when a friend visited us–yes, some one flew to Nepal to visit us!!!–and began asking questions along the lines of “what gifts are in you waiting to be released?”  I honestly didn’t see the ease of writing 6 books as a gift, just something that happened the days when I escaped the mundane. 

I have held back from ever calling my self an “real” author.  I haven’t joined all those linkedIn groups I have seen just in case I didn’t fit the bill of “author”.  But I might. I might start putting myself out there more.  Might starting joining groups. Going wild on social media…who knows.

My friend’s questions have lead me to many more questions.  And I am willing to explore and find the answers.  This is the right path to be on to keep digging deeper in that pile of Christmas gifts I was given at birth!

May the reflection continue, and please join my conversation!



Orange You Glad is in a Contest

Orange You Glad is in a Contest

Our first contest here at My Color Friends…And it kinda freaks me out a bit, so I figured I better blog about it!

I obviously like the My Color Friends book series, and I have only received positive feedback from family and friends…but the general public??? Ahh, I have no idea! Is it worth reading to your little one? Will it make the Top Ten List?

Deep breath, I will try not to over think it! It’s another opportunity to share My Color Friends, and I hope Aviva GIttle and her crew enjoy wiggling and giggling with My Friend Orange!

Go Orange! Go Orange! Go Orange!

If you have a children’s ebook to share win yet another platform, please follow the link above. Submissions are free! We can do it–we can put ourselves out there!!!


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