Friday, November 29, 2013

Grateful Thanks!

This is a time of year to give thanks and I want to say how very grateful I am for all of you. Those of us who are full-time authors and speakers rely on you to help spread the word about our books and events. If our books do not sell, if we do not get booked to share our knowledge and experience at events, then mortgages and electric bills cannot be paid, and food cannot be put on the table. That’s why I am truly thankful to everyone who has purchased a book, come to an event, or told a friend about me. I have been writing and speaking full time for more than ten years and it is only because of you that I can continue to do this. Thank you!!!!

People often ask how they can help me, or other authors and speakers, and there really are a lot of ways:

1. Like us on Facebook. I have two Facebook pages: for people I know (or at least have met), and, where horseman Sam Powell and I give tips about horses and life. The way this business works is the more Facebook followers or Twitter followers an author/speaker has, the more likely he or she is to get booked. Also, the author’s agent or representative has an easier time in structuring good book and sponsorship deals.

2. Follow us on Twitter. Same principle, the more the better! I am on Twitter @lisawysocky. I cannot stress how important having a lot of social media followers is to people like me. Other sites you can follow someone on are: Linkedin and Google+, and there are a host of opportunities at Just search for your favorite people, they should pop up.

3. Like, share, and comment on our posts. When a prospective agent or publisher looks over our social media pages, they like to see an active and engaged audience. Same goes for anyone who books us for an event. It only takes a second to share a post or tweet, and less than a minute to personally tell a friend about us, but it means a lot. Writing is a time consuming task and authors do not always have the time we need to attend to all of our social media. If we are posting or tweeting, then we are not working on our manuscript’s word count for the day, or revising our next speech.

4. If we are in a city near you, please come see us––and bring lots of friends and neighbors. If you can’t make it, encourage others to attend. Just like every other author or speaker out there, I understand how difficult it is to break away from your daily routine of work and family. That’s why I am thrilled to see you walk in the door to an event. Besides, you might even have a fabulous time, and who knows what other cool people you will meet!

5. Book us for an event, and there are many forms of this: 

    • Host an author for an afternoon tea in your home or church––and invite all of your friends (if nearby, most authors will come free if they can also sell books)

    • Gather your class or book club for a phone or Skype chat with an author. Again, there is usually no cost involved in this.

    • Most authors also speak on topics that relate to their books, so think creatively to figure out how your favorite author can impact your annual meeting, regional or national conference, training day, quarterly sales meeting, or other event. Find author and speaker contacts through their website to determine the correct person to ask about content, fees, and scheduling. (Fine mine at help people with horses learn more about themselves and their horse, and I also help non-horse people at corporations and associations learn amazing leadership lessons from the horse herd. I love doing this and know other authors have incredible information to share as well.

6. Buy a book, or three or ten. A great book can become a treasured item. Books also make great gifts. Libraries are always looking for donations of new books, and this includes school and private libraries, as well as your local public library. When it comes to people who don’t read, a wise librarian once told me that the non-readers had not yet discovered a book with information on a subject they were passionate about. You could be the person to open the door to a brand new world, and all it takes is handing someone the right book.

7. Write an online review on the book’s page on one of the major book seller sites. Quality reader reviews help other readers find books they will enjoy. Plus, an honest, helpful review shows publishers and event planners that the author has an engaged audience, and that there is interest in his or her work.

When it comes down to it, for publishers, it is all about the bottom line, and rightly so. Publishers have to make a living, too. If books do not sell, authors are not invited to write additional books. The ultimate result is that many wise and creative people can no longer make a living doing something they love and are very good at doing. That’s why good sales numbers are so very, very important. That’s also why I am so thankful for you, for all the support you have shown me throughout the years. Truly, I would not be here without you. Kudos to you all.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Black Hole

Many of you have heard of the black hole that is my basement. It started as a storage place for my inventory of books and merchandise, trade show booth, and household items such as Christmas ornaments, but over the years developed into a bottomless pit of “stuff.” Need a table top ironing board? How about a music stand? I have several of those. A tricycle? Yep. Old tire? Check. Cardboard shield, dagger, and tiara, complete with sequins? Of course. Macramé plant holder, cloth calendar from 1974, rotary dial phone, various lengths of 2” metal pipe, three bridles broken beyond repair, a roll of black burlap, fourteen hammers . . . the list goes on, and on.
This year I am taking the idea of “spring cleaning” to another level. In addition to opening the windows, letting in the fresh air and shaking out the rugs (something I actually do not have any of) I am tackling the black hole. The only things that get to stay are those that are useful, decorative, or have sentimental value. I know it will be a process, but focusing just fifteen minutes a day has already made a huge improvement. I sort into four piles: give to friends, Goodwill, trash, and keep.

While hopefully not as large, most people have their own version of a black hole. It might be the back of a closet, the corner of a tack room, or an entire storage shed, but you’ve been putting off tackling the mess for months––or even years. I know that if I can get through my black hole, you can, too. So go ahead, budget fifteen minutes and see how far you get,. In addition, be prepared to be amazed at the things you find and how much you can accomplish.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


My new memoir, Horseback, is now out in paperback and kindle versions. The book details my early years with horses, roughly the years when I was thirteen to twenty-three (or so). Over the years I had told many of the stories that are now in the book and with much hesitation finally decided to group them together in writing. Horseback is the result.

My hesitation came from the fact that my early years with horses were filled with stupid mistakes on my part. In many cases it was like the blind leading the blind as neither the horse or I knew what we were supposed to do. I was afraid that readers would not take my openness about my lack of ability in the positive way I wanted––for I very much hoped that readers would learn as much from my errors as I did. And, maybe enjoy a laugh or two along the way.

That's the thing about risk. It is always a gamble, if a calculated one. If I did the book, readers could possibly look at me and rightly think "Does she even have a brain?" Or, they might think "You know, I thought about trying that once . . .  glad I didn't." 

Hmmm. What to do? With the idea of nothing ventured nothing gained, I wrote the book. To my delight, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. And the thing readers are most positive about? The fact that I was willing to share my mistakes with them. Horseback forced me to step outside of my comfort zone and you know what? It's not a bad place to be. I hope that you, too, will add a little risk to your life in the coming months and do something (safe) that pushes your boundaries a bit. Then, I hope you will let me know how it goes.

Until next time,