Welcome to It's Raining Books-- What part of the writing process do you dread?
Without question—proof reading. I hate details. My heaven is a place where I can develop new ideas, put a team together, and manage the team in bringing those ideas to fruition. I would leave the details to others, while managing the team and moving on to new ideas. Unfortunately (I guess), that is not the world I have placed myself in. My consulting practice requires an enormous amount of detail work, from research to (yes) proofing reports, promotional materials, and coaching others through writing assignments. The details involved in authoring Realizing You seemed, at times, overwhelming. At the outset, I thought I would be able to delegate proofing responsibilities to others. While I did, and the proof readers did good jobs, I discovered that the prime author must bear the ultimate responsibility for ensuring that the final manuscript is as error-free as possible. After all that detailed work, I must confess: I now hate proof reading even more. You might suggest: “Move on.” I am, but this question allowed me one last venting opportunity, in public.
What is your favorite joke?
I don’t really tell or recall good jokes, so I’m going to stretch my response a little. It’s not really a joke, but a funny question that we have all heard too many times: “Why did the chicken cross the road?” “To get to the other side.” Why is this my favorite funny question? Because the humor in it contains a very important life lesson. That lesson is: be consciously aware of where you want your actions to take you. Think and act purposely. A few people that I have run across seem to drift through life, without a long-term and fulfilling life objective. A lot of us are leading our lives on automatic pilot, based on setting our personal destination on out-dated and/or ill-conceived information. We are crossing the road (of live) without clearly defining what success looks like (safety and happiness). So, now might be a good time to think what you and that chicken have in common. I cross the road with that chicken every day of my life.
Where do you get your best ideas?
From everywhere. From just taking in and reaching out for new experiences and knowledge. My idea for a new genre book seemed to come of the blue.The idea for my next book came from observing the way my favorite bartender treats his customers. He is vigilantly aware and respectful of his customers’ space. Not being intrusive, but readily responsive. Being aware when a customer is intruding on another’s space, and acting subtlety to help. Most of all, my best ideas come when I am least expecting them. I get a lot of good ideas during my brisk daily walks, when I soaking up the atmosphere, while experiencing a relaxing “high.” All of sudden, a significant new insight pops into my head on a topic I may have been wrestling with for some time. For me, new ideas come from free-form thinking, not from a disciplined idea-generation process.
What do you do to relax?
Jogging is my favorite means of relaxing. I’ve been doing it regularly for decades. I take it slow and easy, but still attain a jogger’s high. No ear buds for me. No thinking of what I can’t wait to do when my jog is over. In my semi-meditative state of mind, I am not fully aware of my surroundings. I’ve have occasions when I don’t get my three-times-a-week jog in. I feel physically frustrated and lethargic. And, I’m often cranky—not much fun to be around. After a relaxing jog, I feel refreshed and energized.
Do you write about what turns you on?
Since most of my writing is business non-fiction, what turns me on is the process of creating something new—something that never existed before in the same form or mode. The human aspect of what turns me on about writing is the goal of helping people down the pathway to greater happiness. Like most people, I want to leave the world in a better place than when I entered it. Helping people and companies to more productive and fulfilling lives is what I get to do five days a week in my business. And, that’s what turned me on to conceiving and authoring Realizing You. I believe the book will help people to permanently improve themselves though better behavior habits. That’s what turned me on in developing this book and in other creative endeavors.
About the Authors: RON DOADES is president of Ronald Doades & Company, a consulting firm that, since 1977, has helped the people of large and mid-size energy companies improve their individual and corporate performance results by learning from the best-practice experiences of others. A popular speaker on the topic of managing change for optimal results, he holds an MBA from Columbia University and an MS in Psychology from The New School in New York City. Visit him at www.realizingyoubook.com
SUSAN SLOATE is the author of twenty published books, including STEALING FIRE, a #2 Amazon bestseller and Quarter-Finalist in the 2012 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest, and FORWARD TO CAMELOT (authored with Kevin Finn), which in its first edition was a #6 Amazon bestseller, took honors in 3 literary competitions and was optioned for film by a Hollywood production company. She lives in Mount Pleasant, SC. Visit her online at http://susansloate.com.