We're back this week with another episode in the From Author to Authority series, and we're talking all about formatting...and lots of other stuff like more on cover design, listening to God's voice and guidance, consistency and congruence, and more about what's to come!
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Hey, welcome back to the from author to authority series, I'm excited to jump back into solo episodes. And this week, we are talking about formatting. So once we've gotten through these processes of actually mapping the book out, and writing the book, and editing the book and pre readers and editing the book some more and editing the book some more and waiting and editing the book some more, then we get into the getting it ready to actually hit the market stage. And that's very much where we still are. So as we're talking today about formatting, and the process, and the personal growth as required, and the provision that has shown up in said process, we are going to dive a little bit into the weeds of what is this piece, what is formatting. So just to jump back a little bit pop out of that sort of kind of, we're going to talk about where things are at with a cover first, because it actually ties into this formatting side of things with the cover design. Number one, I'm super duper picky, we talked about that on the last solo episode, because the cover has the potential to make or break the book, full stop, it can be an amazing book. And if the cover does not capture the essence of it, if the cover does not reflect what the book is, and the transformation that book can help you achieve. And if it doesn't reflect my personality, because this book is all full of personality, okay, then it's not going to sell, then people are going to get that, oh, I read this great book recommendation, because I know I've done this. And they're going to jump on to Amazon, or Google or audible or wherever, and they're gonna look it up. And they're gonna go, Hmm, that, that doesn't look like it'd be a great book, or That totally looks like it'd be a great book and it fits me. So we have to be developing the visuals. With our target audience in mind, it's a lot like building a business, you need to know who your ideal client is, you need to know who your target audience is. You need to understand who are the people with whom I am trying to create impact with whom I want to support in their own transformation. And then we build things around them. We build content, we build visuals, we pick colors, you do all of those things, all of those marketing pieces based on those people. This is like marketing 101 ideal client avatar, sometimes we call them an ICA. So which is funny because my coach schools ICA anyway, that's totally random. Hello, ADHD. We're having fun today. So back to how does cover design tie into formatting? Well, this visual, this theme of the book, the style of the book, the feel of the book needs to also be reflected in side. So part of the challenge with the formatting moving forward, and the progress has been in the waiting for the cover designed to get nailed. And we are on I think round four or five designs. And last week, sidenote, just jumping more back into the cover piece. Last week, God showed up, okay, so you want to talk about provision. I'm sitting on the floor in my office, I've got my second round of edits back from this new company that I've hired out to, and they're good, okay, like, these are solid cover options. But it's just there's something and I'm a feeler, right, there's something about them, that's just not the right thing. And my people pleaser doesn't want to hurt anybody's feelings. Okay. But it has to be right. So I'm sitting on the floor of my office and I have pulled out all the books. And so if you can picture this got my yoga mat on the floor, because after roll it out in here, and I am surrounded by this semicircle of books, looking at all the covers, I'm legit crying, okay, like God, what is it? This is supposed to look like because I'm so frustrated. This book was supposed to be out already. And I'm targeting middle of July now and I don't want to miss it. And I still don't have something that's right. And I don't know what right is and I don't know how to communicate it. And I'm like, Just legit ugly crying. Okay, this is not a pretty scene. I hear this white and like, okay, okay, and I'm looking at dare to lead because Bernie is my hero. Okay, and there's something crisp about it. Okay, okay, that's a start. Thanks for that white. Okay. And then Putting my kid to bed that night. And I have this urge to Google awesome cover designs one more time. Because I've done this a lot of times trying to get ideas. And I come across this book, it's called breath. And I can't speak for the book, I haven't read the book, but just the visual of it caught me it's a letters are clean. And the background is solid color like is yellow, okay, yellow. But it has this visual on it. That's all these dots that are connected by lines. And it's a kind of abstract set of lungs. But it was just really cool. And I looked at it was like, huh, I have this in my logo, this flower thing that looks like fire, we call it a fire flower. And it represents essentially, like a lotus flower like opening and blooming and growing in the mud, because that's essentially what they do. We talk about mud a lot over here and being stuck in your own mud and needing to zoom out get objective observer status. And it represents fire. Because we are finding our fire, we're living our fired up fulfilled and free lives. And it also represents integration, because there's all these multiple pieces in different parts that help form the hole, which initially for me was how we take all the parts of us. And we integrate them together because there's not a separate s in different spaces of our lives. And as I shift, and as this business or this ministry that I call a business grows and develops, I'm realizing that it's also representative of this integration in terms of the Body of Christ, the hands and feet, the different parts of the body, like, it's just been a really cool evolving, graphical representation of the work. So anyway, I'm thinking about this. And I'm like, Oh, we could have an abstract kind of version of that. And it could be like this flame for fired up fulfilled and free, and there could be sparks flying off of it. So today, as I'm recording, this is the day that I get to see the first round of that, which I'm super excited about. So let's jump back into ties to formatting for maybe the third or fourth time, I don't know, if you've been with me for a while you know that we just bounce around a little bit. And then we get to where we're going. And sometimes we don't know where we're going. But we still get there. So the hold up is that inside the book, the chapter headers, the quotes, the graphical anchors, let's call them need to to match the exterior of the book, the fonts need to fit, there needs to be a consistency and a congruence. So that if people pick up the book, off a bookshelf, and they flip through it, because I don't know about you, but I do that, right, I look at the outside cover. And I'm like, Yeah, that's great. And then I do the fan thing, we like bend the back cover and you do the you know, the flip through and see what the inside looks like. And so it is absolutely mandatory. For me that the outside and the inside match, that there is brand consistency. And I have seen this done so beautifully in a number of books. And it just holds things together and ties us into branding, right? Where we talk about how the more consistent you are across all of your modes of communication, all of your marketing pieces, all of your ways that you present yourself, the more people actually trust you because it's consistent. And because it looks like you take yourself seriously as a business. Okay, this is really important. And I learned that when I was in real estate, there's all of this like, bits and pieces that people throw together and they'll take like I was with REMAX. So they'll take the REMAX brand, and they'll pull it in, and then they have their own brand. And that just like the colors are all different, but that has to be consistent. Now, here's the other pieces as we diverged from cover is that formatting specifically, here's the process, okay, is that it gets put together. So they take your final draft of your edited content, and they actually format it into a certain size of page. So our pages are like 5.25 inches wide by eight tall, which is a pretty standard nonfiction book size. And we're watching for when we get these back from our formatters from the publisher or if you're doing it yourself, there's like templates and stuff but I can't speak to that I'm not doing it myself. But you get them back and you look at things like are the margins even are the spacings between the chapter headers and the chapter sub headers or the section is consistent are the quotes consistent? are inside the book link places where I've actually quoted people and like a full paragraph form? How do I want those to be visually? Do I want them to be italicized and in their own paragraph? Then I need to make sure those things are consistent throughout the whole book. Are the indents consistent? Are the font sizes consistent? Are the fonts consistent? Like what is it that needs to get tweaked and shifted? Now this comes really naturally to me, because I'm a designer, and I have a Enneagram, one wing, okay, because I'm a type two. So I'm a helper, but on the one side of me is what we call the perfectionist or the improver, and I have this really natural ability to look at something and see if everything is aligned, and see if the visual weight is right. So that's the kind of stuff that we're looking at. And actually, it doesn't take that long. At least, if that's something that you're geared for. It doesn't take that long. I found that when I got this document back, I thought this was going to be like a multiple hour process, okay, like editing, or it's like six hours, because I got to read through the whole book, and I'm reading it out loud. And you know, the cover that's gone back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth. And it's going to be a significant investment. No, this was like half an hour, I pulled it up on my PDF editor and I just made notes was like, take out this space out of space here, take out this space out of space here. And they did a good job. Like To their credit, they did a good job because there wasn't, you know, this margin needs to be moved or anything really significant like that it was a lot of little tweaks. So it's ready to go back. As soon as I have the fonts nailed for the cover, which hopefully will be today. Pray for me all because this was taken a long time. But the experience, and this is what we what we have to think about the experience, that the people who are reading this book, who pick up the physical book are going to have as they're going through this thing is going to be solid. And I know when we talked about editing, we talked a bit about that about how you can get really caught on there supposed to be a period there or that sentence doesn't flow or that sentence kind of repeats something that was said earlier in paragraph. And I wonder if they meant to do that. And it gets distracting. So whatever we can do to minimize the distractions, minimize the brains trying to reconcile extraneous information that is not relevant to their transformation experience, or being shaken out of their tree, or feeling something or being able to tune into something in themselves and where we can do that the better. So I'm excited about this piece of the process. Because from what I've seen so far, it's going to be simple. And where I'm going to be really curious in the actual publishing because this will be on Amazon first and go through Amazon KDP for printing is does the formatting when we actually print off the books have good alignment within the actual printed final copy when you open it up and look at the spine because I've seen those books where it's like, the margins in the spine part are just a little too wide. That stuff drives me crazy. Okay, so, you know, good, good luck to my husband, who lives with me deals with all this stuff. But I mean, we've been together for a long time I'm hitting my microphone. Okay, so that's the process. Okay, let's just let's zoom back out because we're all over the place and deep diving into all the weeds. So we're going to come back out of the weeds. And we're going to talk about the personal growth piece of this. And the personal growth piece of this has been so much along the same lines as the rest of this process. The personal growth has been very much about my people pleasing, and overcoming that. And figuring out where the harmony is between perfection perfectionism, which is not actually what we want, but also having excellence. Doing it really, really well doing this book justice, being able to bring glory to God with this book, honestly, because it's his book. This is a book that I did not write by myself. And like we've talked about before to this book is like way less secular than I expected it to be. It's like we're just going for it because I cannot remove my faith for my journey. My faith has been the foundation of my journey. So the the doing it really, really well requires me and doing with it. Doing it with excellence requires me to make sure I give the time and the attention to I'm looking for all the little details. And the not diving into the perfectionism because in this book will never hit the shelf means that I have to be okay with the fact that there will be something that we've missed. Because we're human, I'm human, the formatters human, that editors, human, the cover designers are human, everybody involved in this process is imperfect. Because perfection and being human are not things that go together. It just doesn't. It's just not a thing. So we get to run that balance, run that line find that harmony between, is it good enough, which is funny to me, because this book is about ditching the whole not enoughness thing. But you know, what is an exercise in, it's done? Enough, it's done well enough, it's done with enough excellence, that I can confidently present it to the world. The people pleasing part has been in timelines, and requesting timelines from people that, you know, I don't like conflict, okay, I don't, I don't. And I don't like the potential for conflict. And as Another side note, number 63. The potential for rejection runs deep not only because of my Enneagram type two, that relationships are everything for but also with, I'm learning the ADHD wiring, there's a hypersensitivity to rejection, or the potential for rejection. So I've avoided a whole lot of conflict in my life, I've got a pretty long rope. And when it's done, like it's done, like roar, mama bear comes out, but the asking for what I need, and the being picky and the holding people accountable. And then on the flip side, giving myself the grace as the client in this process, to say, if it takes me longer, that's okay. Even though I've requested that on the other side, they need timelines that are, you know, totally reasonable. We were all to give you context, we were all sick last week in my house. And I didn't really get it like at a day, but we had the kids home almost everyday last week. And we had one more round of cover design redo than I expected. And both of those things, after I had had a very like clear cut, here's the timelines, here's what I expect you to meet, here's how this was going to flow conversation with the publisher, and they were amazing about it, then I get totally derailed for a week. And that could have either taken me out completely. Or what I chose instead was to say, You know what, I'm going to trust God's timing on this. And I am allowed as the client and it's not my intention to be difficult, okay, like I never ever, ever want to be difficult. I like to be an ideal client. I am like, I was the teacher's pet, kind of student, right? Sit in the front row, be early all the time, get stuff done, like people pleaser, and running that harmony to have what's mine and what's theirs. What's okay for me in this context, what's just reality? And what are my expectations that I am going to still hold people to? That's been an interesting balance. But that's very much where the provision has shown up in this whole process because I have been able to really look to my faith and look to God and say, okay, you know, what, if you are allowing this stuff to happen, if you are allowing those pressures and those challenges to come at me from all sides, then I'm going to root into what you tell me about that, that I'm to consider that a great joy because it's building endurance, and it's building character in me. I am going to root into trusting that timing is his business and not mine, that he's got a plan that he's laying out that he's guiding my steps. And if this stuff is happening, then he's got it covered. So I can spend my whole week freaking out and feeling behind and believe you me, the ego part of me wanted that so bad. It's so committed to that old way of being and proving and pushing through things and over achieving. And I just kept getting this message last week of just slow down. Just take it easy. Just Be with your kids support your husband because like he was six it, and it'll be fine. I got it. And sometimes we have to do that, right? Sometimes we have to say, Okay, this is not going according to how I wanted it to go, this is not my plant. But I know you've got one. So I'm going to choose over and over and over and over and over and over to trust that and to be okay, here to be content here to know that there is something that you're working on in me here. Something that you're building in me here. And that's not always fun. But and we like and around here better than but, and it's obviously necessary. And he obviously knows that I can handle it. Because he also says I will not lay anything ill fitting or heavy on you. It's that whole My yoke is easy, and my burden is light thing. So if it feels heavy, that usually means I'm putting expectations on me. Not that he is. And this is like now we're totally sidebar thing. But I feel like this is important to go into. Mike Todd was listening to one of his I think it was in the heroes holy series, one of his sermons, and he was talking about how God told him, I am taking the hustle out of my house. And that landed with me so so deeply. And it's on the whiteboard in my office because I have this go, go go go go go go. And part of that is overachiever, three wing, part of that is that I need to be helpful type two wiring. Part of that is the ADHD underpinning part of that is cultural, like there's so many ways that it's underpinned, and that I can give it context. But ultimately, what I'm being called to, is to slow down, to be intentional, to allow myself to be built, allow myself to heal, allow myself to step out of that racing, and pushing and proving. And it's been this continual journey, but we're still on it. And that's how growth works. So he has shown up in just showing up, the provision has been like, God's been so present. And also in that he has sent me people. Now, in the last couple of weeks with this whole formatting piece of things in this timeline, the people have not been like new people. It's not like he's just like dropping new people into my life everywhere, although sometimes that happens. But it's been those few people, those encouragers those people who have context on the process, fellow authors, people who are on the author journey with me, and just generally encouragers people who see me and see what I'm capable of, and see what God's put in me. They say, keep going, keep going, you got this, you got this, and he's got you. So just just keep going and show up where you need to show up. Keep your priorities straight, and it'll be fine. So as we wrap up the formatting episode, we're gonna give you a sense of what else is coming. We have another guest episode from the from author to authority series that is coming. I believe next week. And then we are going to continue on with his whole like publishing and launching and just walking you through, like what's happening, how does this work? How is this going? And we're going to wrap up the series when we launch the book, and we're going to have a big ol celebration, and it's going to be fun. And then I'm going to take a break because something has got to give so fingers crossed. Okay, I need y'all to pray with me because fingers crossed this book will be launched by the end of July. Please Jesus like I just mm hmm okay. But that is the plan. That is my hope that is my prayer I am I'm gonna just claim it okay, like just yeah, let's just go all the way out okay on this on this episode be like be too much or reclaiming the beat too much. Okay. And the name of Jesus book will be out by the end of July. Anyway, August, I really want to take off and then we will be back I think in September, and we are going to be leaning into something a little different because the This, this series has been a little different actually, of walking you through the background of all the things that are going on in this process, because I really hope that some of you will take your own stories, and that you will turn them into books because people need them. Or that you will take this process in this journey, and you'll apply it to something else that you've been called to the can't wait any longer. There are some of you who are listening. And I really believe this and I feel this in my soul, like Spirit lead, feel this, somebody listening to this needs to take action now, like it's time to move now on that thing that you have clarity about, and that you have been told that you need to go do. So let this be your confirmation that it's time to move. And let this be your confirmation that you are not alone and that you are supported in the process. And that I am praying for you to have all of the provision, and all of the support, and all of the capacity and all of the protection that you need to go get it done. In the fall, see if we're all over, we're just embracing the I don't know, the whatever this is, in the follow, we're gonna dive into building you content, equipping you content, helping you heal helping you get out of your own way, like book level content, okay, and we're gonna bring in some guests, but we're gonna do less of them, because we need to start talking more about fear. And we need to start talking more about your ego. And we need to start talking more about how the enemy weaponize it. And we need to start talking more about identity and purpose and calling and living that out. We are in an epidemic of mental health issues. We are in an epidemic of people living purposeless lives, that have a purpose that they're supposed to be living. But they feel stuck, and they feel chained. And they feel like it's not possible to shift. And it's not possible to change, but it is. So we're going to go there and focus on creating the content and the conversations that really support you in that growth. Also, stay tuned for a course that I am building that I am hoping to launch by September that will also follow a lot of the book content and really guide you through this process that I guide clients through in the one on one, because it takes support. And it takes intentionality and it takes accountability. And I would love to say that reading the book is going to be enough and for some people it will. But for other people it's not. Because I've seen this over and over and over again. And there is a this is a god project. Okay, there is a need for people, more people than I can reach and support in a one on one context. So we take 12 clients at a time. There's a need for more people to be able to do this work and to understand who and whose they are. So if that lands with you, drop me a DM or shoot me an email or something because we don't have a presale list set up yet for that. But I will keep you posted. If you're not on the book presale list yet, make sure that you pop onto that. There is a super easy link. Just go to Juli wenger.com. And we will do our best to get it in the show notes. But I make no promises because there's been a lot in this episode. So Laura, if you catch this Laura's are amazing. Behind the scenes, DOER of all the podcast things and I love her to pieces. And what else? I don't know, man, I think we're done. So thanks for sticking with me for this, like, way longer than the other solo Episodes Episode. And I hope that it's blessed you or that it's challenged you or that it's giving you some context on the thing. And I hope that you'll continue to join me for the rest of the episodes. If you haven't ranked our podcast or left us a review yet. Can you drop me five stars I would really really really love that. And follow us on Instagram, and Tiktok apparently we're doing Tik Tok and YouTube. I don't know God's like blowing my mind with all the social media tweets and things that are happening. So we'll just leave that. I'm hitting my microphone again. We'll just leave that there. There's random bangs. I really don't feel like editing. This isn't the real and raw and authentic and Julie flails lot and hits her microphone. Okay. Oh my love in Virtual hugs.