Why You Should Write a Book

Dear Reader,

Is ‘writing a book’ on your bucket list? Book writing and publishing can be a fun and valuable journey. Why not give it a go? Writing a book can open doors for you that you may never have thought possible. If you love reading books, why not think about transitioning from a reader into an author? 

You have a unique story to tell. You have a book you should write and share with the world. We all do. Perhaps you are wondering why you should write a book.

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There are so many, different reasons:

  • Your book’s goal might be simply entertainment.
  • It might be inspirational and motivational: to influence people, or to share your ideas and messages with a wide audience.
  • It could be your own personal business card and marketing tool. You might want to use your book to boost your personal branding and profile.
  • A book is eternal in the sense that it is something tangible that will exist, even when you’re no longer around. It could also be a special keepsake for your children and grandchildren, to celebrate a milestone or important occasion.
  • It might just be your dream to become a published author.
  • Also to attempt to change the world and use your life to make some sort of difference, to raise awareness of a specific issue or charity.

Or, all of the above. If you can change the life of just one person, or many people worldwide, it is worthwhile to write your book and share your story.

Once you’ve brainstormed ideas, and decided what type of book you’re going to write (and why), the next step is to determine if there is a market for such a book. Are there other similar books already on this subject or theme? Do your research. How will your book differ from what’s already available? Is there a unique, personal spin you can put on the topic? Who is the target audience? Compile an outline of each chapter and section of the book.

Once you’ve organised your answers to the above questions, it’s time to develop a writing schedule. You might decide to write every day if you have the time. Or to set aside a particular day a week to write. Alternatively, you could write for 3 hours a week. There’s no right or wrong way to write a book. Whatever your life circumstances are, you can find the time to write. 

Carry a notebook or elegant journal with you everywhere, or use an app on your smartphone or tablet to write notes in. Write whenever you get a spare moment – in the car at school pick-up, in the doctor’s waiting room, anywhere and anytime. Another option is to use a voice recorder and transcribe it later on - or try using a voice-to-text dictator app. 

Don’t be frightened that what you write will not be of high quality. Remember, at this stage you are just getting something down on paper. The content and structure can be moulded, edited and refined several times. The goal is to complete a first, rough draft. 

“You don’t have to be great to start,

But you have to start to be great.”  – Joe Sabah

Enjoy the journey,

Sash

Passionate about communicating and organising, Sasha Buntman is the founder of Midnight Media. As a Virtual Authors’ Assistant and Virtual Marketing Assistant, she assists authors and entrepreneurs by publishing and marketing their books.

This article was first published in two different publications - Your Child in Whitehorse, and Your Child in Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

This article was first published in two different publications - Your Child in Whitehorse, and Your Child in Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

5 Techniques to Develop Your Personal Brand

Your personal brand matters. Your unique flavour, your story and individual characteristics can all enhance or diminish your success in business and life. 

1.    It’s best not to be a generalist. Focus on one area, and become well known for that niche. What are you passionate about? Be known for something extraordinary. Do you have a network of people who know you, have faith in you, and think highly of what you do? Are you perceived as a valuable and outstanding leader in your specialised field? 

2.    How are you making a difference? Create and deliver your two-minute elevator pitch. Speak clearly, learn and practice until you’re confident and love your elevator pitch. You are seeking an emotional, positive and strong reaction. It should highlight your ‘why’, your mission and purpose in life. Show the world that you were destined to do what you do! Why not turn your pitch into a talk and speak at events? 

3.    Social media such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube are essential when it comes to developing your personal brand. Upload a video of your pitch, interviews or thoughts you’d like to share, blogs, audio, reviews, talks, photos, podcasts etc. Your online persona must be brilliant, you can’t just rely on traditional media. Try to delete anything that is online about yourself that does not resonate with the essence of your personal brand. Google your name. Are you on the first page of results? That is the goal. Develop a following. Share relevant information; help people succeed. Share some of your secrets for free, but not EVERY secret. 

4.    Productise your services and intellectual property. What specific problem will your product solve? Use your story, experiences, insights and personality to write and publish a wonderful and tangible product – such as a book, report, or series of articles. They should be about your special field of knowledge or niche. What will the message or key idea of your book be? What questions will your book be answering for readers? Create value with multiple service packages intended for high volume and others intended for high value. Differentiate them – sell basic as well as tailored products. Other examples include downloads, tools, online training programs, memberships, webinars, apps, events, kits, workbooks, quizzes etc. The options are endless.

5.    Cross-promote and collaborate with other professionals. Develop a relationship and rapport with them. Work together to enrich each other. Call people and find out if you can both work together. Be helpful and supportive within your networks. If you discover an opportunity that’s well suited to someone in your network, share it with them. Introduce two people who you think would work well together. You could even start your own networking group and mailing list.

These five techniques will improve and polish your personal brand. As a result, various leads and opportunities will start to appear, seemingly out of nowhere. 

Passionate about communicating and organising, Sasha Buntman is the founder of Midnight Media. As a Virtual Marketing Assistant and Virtual Authors’ Assistant – she assists authors and entrepreneurs with publishing, marketing, administration and editing.

This article was published in four different publications - Your Child in Monash, Your Child in Manningham, Your Child in Whitehorse, Your Child in Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

This article was published in four different publications - Your Child in Monash, Your Child in Manningham, Your Child in Whitehorse, Your Child in Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

Success Tips for Mumpreneurs

“Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.” – Farrah Gray

People often ask me about becoming a Mumpreneur. So I thought, why not write about it? From humble beginnings, anyone can become a successful businesswoman. Establish your own personal brand, and go for it! 

Firstly, you need to decide to be a success. Define what mumpreneurship and success actually means to you. Once that decision is made, you need to draw up a plan of action. After that, implement the plan.

What makes you happy? Follow your passion and create a business that you will love to work in - day in and day out. How can you differentiate yourself and your business from all the others? Do you enjoy helping people in some way?

Create a vision board to represent all your goals. Include positive affirmations on the board, which you will recite to yourself daily. Focus on visualising yourself achieving all these goals. Believe in yourself, no matter what.

Prioritise your whole life and make sure you are working towards those important goals. This requires discipline and not wasting time. Work as hard as possible. You always need to keep getting better at what you do – keep trying your best. Teach yourself new skills and practise frequently. Educate yourself always.

This blog was recently published in three different publications - Your Child In Whittlesea, Your Child In Whitehorse, and Your Child In Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

This blog was recently published in three different publications - Your Child In Whittlesea, Your Child In Whitehorse, and Your Child In Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

No matter what you are selling, whether it is a product or a service - you’re actually always selling yourself. You are in charge of your professional image and personal brand. Create the impression you are after. Dress, speak and act successful in your field, and you will be.

I’ll let you in on another success secret: exude confidence in everything you do in your business. Even if you’re not actually confident yet – radiate it and no one will know any different. As a result, you truly will become more confident.

Learn how to communicate with people effectively. Tell anyone and everyone you come across about your business. This is your ‘elevator pitch.’

Of course, it’s not going to be easy. But nothing worth doing ever is. Fear and failure are learning curves and are actually very valuable. Delve into these failures. Take the positives from them and move on. However, there is always a time to end a project or business. If nothing is working as it should, learn from the experience and move on. Follow your intuition. You know when someone or something doesn’t feel right for you or your business.

Remember, you can’t do everything yourself. You’re only one person. Don’t forget that in business, you’re going to need assistance in some areas. Not only to reduce your feeling of overwhelm and stress. It’s essential to develop a team of specialists who you can turn to - your team members for success. This may include your virtual assistant (VA), your mentor or coach, your accountant and lawyer etc. There are so many freelancers out there who would love to assist you to achieve your dreams.

 

Passionate about communicating and organising, Sasha Buntman is a Virtual Authors’ Assistant and the founder of Midnight Media. She assists authors and entrepreneurs with editing, publishing, design, marketing and administrative tasks. Her purpose has always revolved around the art of organising. Organising layouts, books, words, sentences and meaningful messages.

This blog was recently published in three different publications - Your Child In Whittlesea, Your Child In Whitehorse, and Your Child In Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

This blog was recently published in three different publications - Your Child In Whittlesea, Your Child In Whitehorse, and Your Child In Banyule and Nillumbik magazines. Please visit the Your Child Magazines website for more information.

Client wins Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership

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Congratulations to one of Midnight Media's clients, Margaret Hepworth, of The Gandhi Experiment, who won the 2016 Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership. A splendid award ceremony was held at the Monash Gallery of Art on Wednesday 11th May with hilarious and charming MC Brian Nankervis as well as Mayor Geoff Lake and other Monash councillors. Sasha Buntman of Midnight Media submitted the nomination and application.  Here is an excerpt from the submission:

"Margaret Hepworth, of The Gandhi Experiment, is a peace educator. After nearly 30 years of secondary teaching, Margaret moved into social justice through education. The Gandhi Experiment’s vision is world peace through education. Not about Gandhi, but about the essence of his messages - “Change begins with me”. Always choosing non-violence, developing your truth force and taking positive action. Teaching non-violence as a choice, teaching teenagers to better understand themselves to make better choices and teaching teenagers how to move from apathy to action.

Reaching over 1000 teachers and 1000’s of students, Margaret’s highly successful student conference: Global Participation – it starts with us, allows secondary students to consider their role and relationship with global and community issues. Developing ourselves as global citizens, conflict resolution, forgiveness and reconciliation, anger management, “Almost Impossible Thoughts” (students step forward as the key players in their own design for change) etc. This conference has been held at numerous schools across Melbourne, India, Pakistan and Fiji.

Ms Hepworth was invited to speak at the launch of the Afghan Australia Initiative (April 2015). President Mr Nazer Nazir, himself a Hazara, Afghani refugee, has a remarkable drive to build a harmonious community here in Melbourne. They sought a grant from the local Dandenong City Council to hold a student forum, with the aim of including Afghani youth. This was held in Dandenong (March 2016). Over 60 students from 7 different schools participated – their engagement level was remarkable. Mostly local students and a class of Scotch College students. The aim is to get young people mixing, sharing their thoughts and beliefs, in circles they aren’t usually involved in. This is the incidental trust building that occurs. Partly sponsored, it came to fruition through hours of voluntary time.

Margaret Hepworth The Gandhi Experiment Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership
Margaret Hepworth The Gandhi Experiment Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership

Margaret became connected to schools and teachers in Pakistan, running 5 workshops in various schools. Meeting dedicated Pakistani educators, to discuss critical thinking, gender studies, and peace education - her talk was on “Peace Education in the rigorous academic curriculum”.

A member of Initiatives of Change, a voluntary organisation seeking to make a positive difference through a grass roots approach, Margaret embraces their inclusive approach to all cultures and belief systems. Also a member of Creators of Peace, bringing together women from all facets of life. It helps women understand their role as peace builders within their own communities. Women are invited to share their powerful stories. For some, this is the first time they have ever been given ‘a voice’. Margaret worked with a team of Australians, a New Zealander and Fijians, to facilitate Peace Circles with Fijian women (October 2015).

Presenting The Gandhi Experiment as a seminar to the Melbourne Muslim community organisation, Benevolence, headed by Saara Sabbagh (September 2015), Margaret shared ideas and thoughts for building bridges of trust. Margaret was invited to speak to the teachers at the Minaret College School - facilitating an interactive workshop for 175 teachers.

Designing numerous educational activities teaching students to think more laterally, Margaret launched "Collaborative debating" at Scotch College in August 2015, which re-frames traditional adversarial debating from a frame of “I win, you lose” to “When I win, you win too”. The ‘win’ is finding a solution to the problem.

Margaret’s book The Gandhi Experiment: teaching our teenagers how to become global citizens will be published this year. The Dinner Party to Save the World, The Best Forgiveness Role Play Ever and Collaborative Debating are a few of the highlights in the book. This book aims to reach millions globally, to help others actively teach non-violence, conflict resolution and ‘almost impossible thoughts’ for a better future."

Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership
Sir John Monash Award for Inspirational Women's Leadership