This week’s spotlight is on a person who helped, 4-U-Nique Publishing and my book, You Ain’t Hungry Until I’m Starving, transition from being a dream to becoming a reality. Marci Wise is a mother, wife, author, and an adviser whose mission is to help others reach for the stars. Mrs. Wise’s words of wisdom inspired me when I needed them most. I am sure after reading both her interview and her book; you will see why Marci touches so many peoples’ lives.
Vid L. Buggs Jr: What made you want to become an author?
Marci Wise: I don’t think it was a want as much as a need. For years I was kind of haunted by this inner yearning to express myself – but I was blocked. It wasn’t until I went through my “breakdown to breakthrough” moment that I realized that it was my desire to be “perfect” that was the enemy. It made me paralyzed with fear that I might look stupid, so instead I did nothing. But I looked really great during all those stagnant years! Anyway, I eventually realized that perfectionism was holding me back and letting go of that has really freed me. Now my passion is spreading the word and helping other people to break free of the things that are holding them back. Knowledge is power, as they say.
VLB: What motivates you to write?
MW: I hate to see unnecessary struggle. So often people buy into this notion that our worth is tied to our accomplishments, but it takes a long time to reach a goal. What about all those moments in between? Are we not worthy of peace, happiness and contentment along the way? It seems like such a waste – so I decided to say so – and people seem to really respond to this alternate viewpoint, almost as though it has never occurred to them. Giving people permission to shine, right now, just as they are, seems like a powerful way to make the world a better place.
VLB: Describe your writing style.
MW: My style is very conversational. I think I’m a combination storyteller and problem-solver. I like to use metaphors and real-life examples to help people relate to my message on a heartfelt level. And I’ve always had a talent for breaking complicated information down into its simplest elements. With my writing, I try to present a logical sequence of information that not only provides information but also motivation. I want to put the fire and enthusiasm back into people’s lives.
VLB: Tell us about your book(s). How did you come up with the concept?
MW: I would say the concept found me. During the economic depression I was laid off from my job, and losing that part of my identity threw me into a personal crisis of sorts. I was feeling very disillusioned with life. Little did I know that losing that job would end up being the impetus for an amazing, spiritual growth spurt. The book, Pain, Passion & Purpose, is a very personal chronicle of my own journey through that time and the revelations revealed within. At times it’s very raw and real – at other’s it’s almost magical. It began to take the shape of a how-to manual for getting back to the “real you.” It took me four years to write the book because it’s not just words but blood, sweat and tears. I had to live the lessons before they could be transcribed to the page.
VLB: What do you think readers will get out of your book(s)?
MW: I hope that it will offer people the comfort of knowing that they’re not alone in their struggles. We all have those private, vulnerable moments and they’re nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, I think if we would actually allow ourselves to listen to what they’re telling us, instead of chastising ourselves for feeling that way, we would be led to a better life. The book outlines a plan for expressing your whole being, mind, body and spirit, though the use of self-awareness, personal responsibility and Divine inspiration. In the end, it’s about accepting ourselves unconditionally, rediscovering the joyous abandon we had as children, and offering our unique gifts to the world.
VLB: What are your other goals and aspirations? Do you have another book in the works?
MW: Pain, Passion & Purpose was a snapshot in time of my own hardest breakthrough moments. Since that time, I feel like a different person. I’m no longer blocked and afraid to take chances – and I’m excited about life again. I’ve gone back to school and am now working as counselor helping people one-on-one, in addition to my writing. I have a couple of partially written manuscripts on my laptop that I will get around to finishing, but life is a learning process and I’ve spend the last few years studying the theories of some of history’s greatest minds. I know this information will add to the depth and integrity of these new projects. I’m excited to put all that I’ve learned to use.
VLB: Can you tell us about your publishing process?
MW: For Pain, Passion & Purpose I chose to self-publish in order to preserve the genuine nature of the project. This wasn’t a book written to reach a certain market or fit into a specific genre – it was a heartfelt message that was meant to be. I’ve ghostwritten for traditional publication, but this was a different animal and I knew that it was meant to stay that way, so I went with Createspace. Choosing to self-publish allowed me to control every aspect of the process. I won’t say it wasn’t challenging at times, handling the editing, formatting and cover design, but it was infinitely worth it. I’m proud of the book and pleased with the outcome.
VLB: Do you have any upcoming events or promotions?
MW: I am currently finishing up the final semesters of a Master’s program so I’m off the circuit until at least the fall.
VLB: Where are people most likely to see your works at?
MW: Pain, Passion & Purpose is available on Amazon or it can be ordered through Barnes & Noble. Additionally, some libraries stock a copy from time to time.
VLB: Do you have any advice for writers who want to become published authors?
MW: Write as much as you can, in any way that you can. This helps to hone your craft and get the flow going that will be needed to bring that book to reality. Articles, short stories, editorials – whatever you can. Also, allot a daily time in your planner for writing your book. This is staggering but I read somewhere that 97% of writers never finish their book! Just keep plugging away and treat yourself with something special with the completion of each chapter. Even if you’re never a best-seller, just completing your book will put you in the coveted 3%.
VLB: If you could be anything in the world, what would you be?
MW: That’s tough. I suppose I would just say “a light.” Whether that means I’m informative, inspirational or simply pleasant, I believe that world needs more people who are willing, ready, and able to shine.
VLB: What are your best tips for dealing with writer’s block and staying creative?
MW: I think the best advice I ever heard came from writer Anne Lamott who said, “Give yourself permission to write the worst s**t in America.” Getting the words to the page is the hardest part. Once you have that, you can edit and refine it until it shines – but if doubt stops the process then you’ll end up nowhere. To me, creativity means taking chances. Try new things, expose yourself to new experiences. Allowing yourself to feel and experience all the facets of life will add depth and passion to your work.
VLB: What keeps you busy these days? Editing, writing, family, etc?
MW: I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to take on a second career with counseling. Yet to me, I don’t see this as a huge divergence from what I’ve been doing. My clients are seeking answers and a better of life, just like my readers. The only difference is that this time I can actually look them in the eye to see if the message is getting through. I’m also looking forward to doing some traveling in the coming years with my husband. The new me knows that there’s an adventure around every bend – and I want to experience as many of them as I can.
Marci, thank you for your time and advice.
To find Marci’s book, Pain, Passion & Purpose, please click on the link below.
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