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Is writing a book on your bucket list? Do you have a story that you’ve just been itching to share, wisdom you need to put on paper, or a new idea that the world needs to know? A lot of people have had that nudge for years, a twitch for a pen and paper. It is important to follow that nudge for your soul, but there’s a big difference between having that nudge and actually putting your dreams into actions. 

In this episode of the Billionaire Lifestyle, hosted by Emmitt Muckles, Michelle Vandepas confronts this very topic. As the CEO of GracePoint Publishing, Michelle has witnessed countless people turn this nudge into a successful reality. During this interview, she explains just how she has been able to help this process see fruition through book coaching and promotion. Book coaching as a role is different than what some may think but is incredibly valuable to authors. 

She also delves into the ways in which GracePoint Publishing helps support their authors and clients through promotion and advertising, not just the book writing process. Some of the ways that her clients have successfully promoted their books might just surprise you and challenge some of the preconceptions you may have about advertising in our technological world. 

This episode is hosted by Emmitt Muckles, who works as a trainer, public speaker, and business owner. He turned a history of financial stress into personal success and now shares his wisdom and the wisdom of his podcasts guests with the world. You can find more about Emmitt and his business in the links at the end of this blog or on his website. 

Tune into this episode to hear more about book coaching, promotion, and that gentle nudge that rests on our soul to pursue our goals and tear down barriers holding you back. Once you’ve decided to take that next step, remember you can always sign up for a no-obligation coaching call and find countless other resources on the GracePoint Publishing website and social media listed below!

Listen to the podcast here or on your favorite major podcast player. 

Full Transcript

Ladies and gentlemen want to thank you for being continued listeners of the Billionaire Lifestyle Podcast. Many of the episodes that we are currently releasing were pre COVID 19, literally up to the week of, and they were scheduled to be rolled out over time. But with the COVID-19, we had a little lull. So some of these are even a little more, or pre COVID wall. So I would like to say, but I want to thank you make sure that you’re maintaining social distancing and being safe, and be very conscious of yourself. This is the time you’ve been given where you can really just kind of find out who you are. At least that’s how I’m doing it. That was one of the reasons for the slowdown and release of episodes. It’s because I just took a step back. Anyway, you can always find the show at Emmet michaels.com, or any podcast aggregator poor just search for the billionaire lifestyle with Emmet Michaels. Enjoy the show.

Welcome to the billionaire Lifestyle podcast with your host, Emmitt Muckles. Please visit iTunes, Stitcher or Emmittmuckles.com. To listen to all the episodes for free.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Billionaire Lifestyle podcast with your host, Emmitt Muckles. If you like the podcasts, here’s some things that you can do. You can go to your aggregator, which is where you get your podcasts and leave some stars bars or whatever you do rate the podcast, you can always find the podcast on emmittmuckles.com. And that’s e-mm-i-tt muckles, you’ll figure out because there’s not a lot of me out there.

Guess what today was the day that you were given. And tomorrow’s not promised yesterday is over. So live in the now whatever you are going through, it too shall pass. So like always say you’re at the end of your rope. Don’t forget to tie a knot and keep hanging. But let’s move on today. My guest is Michelle Vandepas. And she has a wealth of knowledge. So if you have a book in you, she can help you with that. If you’re an entrepreneur, she can help you with that. If you’re over the age of 55, and you have a 16 year old, she can help you with that. So we have a lot of things that we’re gonna kick it with. How are you, Michelle? Great, thank you so much. You make it sound like I’m an expert in everything. But we’ll see as that goes on here today. You know, once you get to a certain point in your life, you accumulate a level of knowledge that most that you can only see once you can reflect upon it. Yeah, and you can see it lacking in other people because like things that they’ll be stressing about, you’d be just like, why are you stressing about that?

You said it well. And you’re saying we have to live in the now, right? I mean, it’s so important because you know, a lot of times we live, we are guided by the past, because it’s part of our subconscious firmware. And what I mean by a subconscious firmware is that there’s this imprint, that makes us who we are, because the experiences we had. And sometimes we get fearful because of those things. And one of those things is people always say I have a fear of writing, I can’t write. And so they should write their story, regardless of if they can write or not, because there’s things in place, as you are a publisher, and you have written books. And you’ve talked at TED Talks. Why is it important that someone write a book? Yeah, great question. So most people, if they’re called to write a book, it’s sort of a nudge inside, right? It’s on their bucket list. It’s something they’ve always dreamed about doing. They have something they want to share about their experience in life, a trauma or some wisdom or a system they’ve created. And so, you know, with anything, if you have a nudge, if it’s to climb mountains, travel the world or write a book, if you’ve got that nudge and it keeps coming back. It’s important to do it’s important to do for your soul. And for that reason alone, it’s worthwhile to write your book.

But you know, I’ve written a book. Oh, good. It’s available on emmittmuckles.com.

Good, excellent. And I had that nudging. As a matter of fact, I had a story, this inspirational story that literally downloaded to me and Like an afternoon, and I had to kind of over the next two weeks, I was doing nothing but typing and working out. But that was actually the easy part. So what most people don’t know about when you write a book there, and I’ve covered this on the show a couple of times, because I think it’s very important that almost every one write a book. And here’s why. Because it’s your his story. Because it’s from your point of view. For instance, my mom did a term paper, and she wrote an autobiography. And I learned things in that after she died that I never knew in life. So it’s important for people to write if it’s not, if it’s only for your immediate family. But if you’re really publishing for the real world, what I learned was, you have to deal with colors, you have to deal with gutters, you have to deal with sentence length, you have to deal with structure, you have to deal with editors, book coaches.

You’re right, you’re right. And the way that I like to talk about it is the first step is just get your first draft out there. We don’t care if it’s any good, doesn’t have to be polished, doesn’t have to be good writing editors for this book coaches are for first draft first step, but then going through the whole publishing process, there are things that really polish it up to make it a really great book. And some of those things are colors on the cover gutters and margins that people don’t think about headers, is the table of contents, so long that people are going to be overwhelmed and not read, it isn’t too detailed, or is the table of contents, a nice representation of what people will find inside the book. All those things are what set apart, professionally published book, even if you’re self publishing, to someone who just wrote their story and stuck it up on Amazon without going through the next steps to really make it from good to great.

Now, a lot of entrepreneurs back in the day would you would hear Hey, go to my website, I published an ebook for you. Or you don’t hear about individuals producing especially on entrepreneurs, producing hardcover books or softcover, books, everything’s digital form. I am a person who loves hard books, because they’re tangible, there is something you interact with. Is there a difference for an entrepreneur? For writing? Ebook versus a traditional book?

Yeah, absolutely. I think an entrepreneur has to have at least a paperback not necessarily a hardback, but a paperback book for credibility, to show them as an expert in their field, whatever that field is, I say you can write a book about tires if you’re a tire expert, right. So whatever your field of expertise is, but that the digital downloads are more for people to opt in, to your content, so you can give away free reports, you can give away tips and PDFs and all kinds of things, right. So people give you their email, they get this free content. But then it should go to a real book, not just a report that’s put together not just 10 or 20, or 30 pages, but a real book that somebody can pick up and hold. It has a spine. Yeah, it’s another term that you’ll learn about when you’re publishing. Because that sets the credibility that you’re an expert in your field, you have something more to say that just 10 pages, like it really thought it through, you’ve gone deep into your subject, you know, the pros and the cons. And that can be on your life story that can be working through a trauma. That can be if you’re an expert in tires, if you’re a business coach, if you’re a podcaster. Right, if you have an inspirational story to share.

Yeah. So what is simply the process? Because there are many people who are who have the book in them? Yep. And they don’t know where to start? Well, we’ve kind of given them where to start, just start writing, we start, right start writing your ideas, and get them going. But after that, so let’s say I have this outline manuscript, whatever you want to call it. What and I’m just Joe Schmo sitting in his house, looking on the Internet, what do I do next? What is the next step? Yeah. So from my perspective, the next step would be to send me your manuscript be brave , just just like hit that send button and send it to me because I’ll give you some free feedback needs to go to an editor I need you to go polish this up. This is is almost ready for publishing. Send it to a university professor, send it to somebody, find a book coach, send us a someone that’s not your best friend, or your partner, who’s going to tell you that’s great. You need to hear some good, honest truth. Everybody needs editing. You know, Celine Dion and Whitney Houston worked with voice coaches. Meryl Streep has a an acting coach, we all need help to get better to polish our craft. And so the next step is you share it, you get brave and you share it, but you share it with someone who you trust is gonna give you really good advice, then you go through the editing process. And if you’re not even at full manuscript, yet, if you’re just at bullet points or thoughts, you can still use an editor or a book coach to help you solidify all those thoughts in your head. All those rabbit holes really discern who is the book for? What is the one point you want people to really grasp after they’ve read your book? What is the purpose of your book? Are you trying to spread a message? Are you being inspirational? Are you looking to build your business? All these things a book coach or a publisher can help you think through.

So what does a book coach do? 

So different book coaches do different things I’ve spent a lot of years as a book coach, I help the author, get the stuff out of their head into bullet point, or an outline. So they can start solidifying their book their writing, right. So we may just get lots of bullet points writing prompts, we may have an outline, we might make it a working table of contents. And then we’ll work with an editor to move things around. A book coach might hold you accountable. Say I want 500 words every day, a book coach may say, I need you to do these writing prompts. And let’s see where that takes you. But Coach may, you know, tell you that your book may be isn’t going to get very many reads or sales. And if you tweak the subject a tiny bit or go in a different direction, it has more market potential.

So is there a difference between a book coach and a book Shepherd? 

A great question. I don’t actually know, I think so. People call themselves all kinds of things these days. And so I think I know some book shepherds who feel like they take the book all the way from the very beginning to the idea all the way through publishing.

Yeah. So with that, you know, there are some other things that we do intellectual property concerns that come up. And with that are your mechanical rights, your publishing rights? And a lot of this is tied to this little thing called an ISBN. Right. And so cool, what is an ISBN for those who are listening? Yeah, so it’s the number that’s inside the book. So anybody can pick up the barcode? Right, right, the beginning on the copyright page, you’ll see ISBN numbers, I don’t know if you can see it. So you can pick up any book and you’ll find them there. That is the number that is assigned for who owns the package of the book. So the author also owns the copyright. Okay, but while it’s in the package with the cover, the editing the Table of Contents, the back cover, it’s assigned an ISBN, and that package goes under that ISBN. So if you change the cover, you need a new ISBN Oh, I didn’t know that. If you change 20% of the book, you need a new ISBN. Wow. So what if?

Does it count does is that a different ISBN? So let’s say I’m going to give it I’m going to package it together. Hey, if you buy my hard, my softcover book, you also get the what is it? Audio, Audio audio book with it? Did those have to have two different ISBN? Or is it a combined ISBN with them as a package?

No ISBN for auto audiobooks, really, at this point, it’s for written material ISBN for written material.

And if you go through Audible, so, things change every day in the online world, right? So I’m gonna say something’s gonna be different three months, but today, I don’t think there’s an easy way to go gift a book through Audible to a client. What you do is you would have your An easier way would be go buy the Audible. And I’ll give you the ebook. Okay. That would be easier to do. You can see I have like green space stuff going on in the background here because of the green screen.

Looks cool. So I mean, you’ve done a lot of this stuff. Now I’m gonna diverge here. So someone can come to you. And you can really answer all these questions and kind of guide them along the process. And how do they find you? 

Yeah, so people find me through podcasts like this. I’m on social media. I’m on Facebook and Instagram and YouTube. What did they look?

What’s that? So what do they look up when they’re looking for you? Gracepoint Publishing Gracepoint Publishing. What about an email addresses as well? Publisher@gracepointpublishing.com. All right. Okay, cool. So a lot of times you can publish a book, produce a book, you have ISBN, you have beautiful artwork, it’s laid out wonderfully. You’ve got coached all the way through. And you say, Yeah, give me 1000 of these. And then they sit in a box.

 Yeah, absolutely. Been there done that my first book.

That’s the challenging part for most self publish offers authors and new authors. So what advice do you have them to get them ready for the process that this really has to be promoted that you have to sell this book?

Yeah. And I do want to say that there, I have published memoirs, with people, like you were talking about earlier, they really just published for their friends and family. And that’s okay. Like, you don’t have to have this outside pressure, that if I don’t sell 10,000 books, I’m a failed author. That’s not true, right. But let’s presume that you do want to sell books, and that you do want to get out there and build your audience. In the publishing world, when we take an author on, we start the launch promotion, and that whole launch plan about three to six months before the books ever published. If we have that amount of time, we start looking for people to help promote. We’re very particular about book descriptions. We tried to get clients on podcasts, we look for blogs that might want to pick it up reviewers, endorsements, all those kinds of things. I have a couple of clients that don’t do anything online, and they take their books to garden shows and farmers markets and all those kinds of things in the summer. Yeah, and sell like crazy. Many different ways. There’s not one right way.

So do you have a program for someone? Or do you guide them in those means in ways to promote their book once it’s produced?

Yeah. So speaking as a publisher, I’m going to put my publisher hat on Yeah, do that. Yeah, if you if we take on your book, and we publish your book for you, we’re a traditional publisher. So we don’t charge to give us your manuscript or we’re very traditional publisher, we accept certain certain range scripts, then we pay you a royalty, but we have marketing packages, where you can invest with us, and we will go market the heck out of your book, we’re going to market your book anyway. But if you pay us some extra money, we’re going to work harder to to like to pay that money out and get you on places where there’s paid endorsements or paid reviews, or Amazon ads, and Facebook ads and those kinds of things. So we’ll work on your behalf either way, okay. But if you have some money to invest, and we can turn around and invest that money in some paid programs, all right, so let’s say I have 100 page book in me, softcover. What can someone typically think about investing out of pocket to produce works of that nature? Yeah, so if somebody just wants to self publish, I always recommend having a minimum of $3,000. Our programs are at 5,000. Whether you you know, if we coach you through self publishing, we’ll help you do that. Three to five thousand is a good amount, and then you’re gonna need at least that much again, for promotion, say it again. You’re gonna need at least that much again for promotion. So here’s how. I mean I want to say this though.

I have speakers who give away their books who spend 20,000 30,000 40,000 a year on promoting the heck out of their book and give it all away. And that’s not where their money comes back in one book. gets in the right, the right person’s hand. They’ll get booked to go give a speech for 10k. Yeah. So you got to be strategic about why you’re writing the book. And if it’s to build your business, then we want to make sure that that’s how we lay out the breadcrumbs.

So it’s one of those things. And this is one of my mottos that I tell people sometimes when they’re looking for their returns right away, and I say this, you can’t always expect to get your fruit where you plant your seed. And they look at that with the most puzzled look. And when they don’t understand what I’m saying, I say, look at it this way, I give you a seed and you plant it in the ground, they go, okay, yeah. And I say, and you cover it up, and you water it and you keep looking at the ground and you start seeing this little root come out, right, you’re still looking at the ground, a year goes by, and you’re still looking at the ground. It’s this big thing sitting in front of you, and you’re like, where’s my fruit and all of a sudden, something hits you on top of the head. Don’t look to get your fruit where you plant your seed.

Yeah, great analogy. The other thing I like to say is their short term and long term. So when we first do a launch, we expect some book sales, we’re gonna do some hardcore promotion, get some book sales, but then things like podcasts and blogging, and maybe speaking and YouTube and, you know, all kinds of things, press releases, those are foundational pieces that that add up together to give results. A year later, two years later, right. I’ve had people call me from podcasts that I did three or four

 And do you do workshops for people? I do occasional workshops for people I do. I do a lot of online workshops. People can sign up, you know, again, at Gracepoint Publishing. I also speak I’m speaking this weekend in LA. I’m speaking in Denver in a couple of months. So you can come find me around the country. Where are you geographically based? I’m in Colorado Springs. Oh, nice. Is it snowing there? It is. It’s cold. Yeah, it’s cold today. Where are you? I’m near Chicago. Ah, well, that gets cold. Don’t talk to me about cold. It’s, yeah, it’s snowing right now. Yeah. Okay. So what would you say to someone, particularly an entrepreneur, because a lot of entrepreneurs in this space of the internet, need to share the thought. And it’s not always through blogging.

They need some tangible items. They need a blog, they need a YouTube page. They need a book that coalesces all their ideologies into, you know, this little compact form that someone can always reference. Why should they start in their process to get their people to understand this book is coming out? And you have to get it?

 Well, I think I heard something before that. So I’m going to answer the question before that, which is, what is it you really stand for? Yes. What are you willing to stake you’re put your stake in the ground about, right? What is it that you really want to shout from the rooftops about and all your ideas should coalesce around that. And then you can build tangents we all are more than one dimensional beings. But when you have one thing that you stand for, and your YouTube and your book and your blog, and everything stems from that first and then goes out, then people are anxious for your book. They want to read their book, they know exactly where what it’s going to be about. They know who you are. You know, Brene Brown is written with 10 books on vulnerability now. Julia Cameron, who wrote the artists way has written 27 books about finding your inner artist. How do you write 27 books on this one subject? Well, she can go down lots of rabbit holes and tangents, but you know exactly who she is and what she stands for. Right. So that’s where I would tell people to start.

Good. Can you say your full name for me so I can make sure I didn’t get it. Totally wrong.

Yes, Michelle Vandepas fanny pack and totally wrong. Doesn’t matter.

They kind of get it anyway. So do you have any Facebook groups?

 

I saw it’s kind of a trick question. I’m not real active in them right now. I’m so if you find me on Facebook, I’ve got a readers group. So when I have a book coming out, I give some advance has copies to people. Okay, I have a couple of specialty groups for some healing and whatnot. I don’t have a writers group right now, I have a membership site where people can get all kinds of writers tips and courses and publishing courses and all that kind of stuff. And if they go to Gracepoint publishing, they’ll get they’ll get the link, they just sign up for my email, they’ll get it. All right. All right. All the things, you know, Facebook groups, take some time. Yeah, they do. And, you know, as I would tell, you know, I guess we all have to follow the advice we give. And I always, I always tell my authors to choose where they put their time wisely. And this is way more fun for me to be honest in a Facebook group. So so the last thing that I’m going to ask you in regards to all the things that you do. Ted Talks. Yeah, so someone like me, who should be on a TED talk? How do you get into that? realm?

Yeah, cool. And I’m a TEDx coach now. So I coach speakers, so maybe I can give you some insight. The first thing is know what you stand for, or know what your idea is that it’s a little bit different than everybody else’s. So do you know what that is? You speak about humanity. And see me and I’m going to explain it to you this way. I know who I am. I know my capabilities. And I know many people’s capabilities, but they don’t see theirs. Which means I’m not afraid to fail. And so looking at that show, many people have a hang up, because they’re looking at the failure before they’ve begun the journey. And with that, you’ve already lost. So I’m an African American man who’s running a podcast, I’m teaching solar, I’m doing so many things. And I’ve become proficient at it because I tried. And I knew I was suck at the beginning. But I had to keep trying. The second thing is, you have to learn to tame the ego. And that ego is goes back to that thing that has you looking at yesterday. And it has you looking in the mirror not believing the beauty that’s within it. And it’s also saying not, it’s also saying not, instead of saying, You know what? I’m not going to believe you. I’m gonna go try and fail.

That’s a good TED talk title. try and fail. Yes. Tried to fail. That’s a good title. I know that there’s all kinds of TED Talks within a couple hours of Chicago.

Yeah, I think there’s one here and in. I think there’s one in Valparaiso, which is near me.

Yeah. And so the first thing you do is you reach out to the organizer. Just go to the website and find out if they’re holding auditions, if you can submit a video, each TED talk is independently curated. So you may get turned down and one in Chicago and accepted for one in Dallas. Yeah. Right. And so some TED talks only take local people send some TED Talks have a theme for the year or theme for their six months. And so you want to find out first how you apply to that specific TED Talk. And then you’re going to want to submit a one to three minute video to the curator.

Well, that’s not a problem here. Yeah.

And, and be open. Most TED talks now have some kind of coaching. That’s fine. Yeah. And so for everybody listening, be a little bit open to some coaching and it’s just like writing a book, they may tweak your content a little bit to polish it up.

Well, I want to thank you so much, Michelle, for being on the billionaire Lifestyle Podcast.

I love the name. I was I was telling my daughter, my my son. Yeah, I’m happy to say I’m 61 with a 16 year old daughter. And I was telling her today I’m on a billionaire podcast. I just like to say no, you’re not a billionaire yet. I bet like that word yet.

I’m gonna prove that you are. As we in the show, ladies and gentlemen, you know where we go from here. Today you woke up like I said, and yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is not here. So what are you going to do you’re going to deal with right now. What ever you are doing right now. You won’t be thinking about next year. Figure that out. You won’t be thinking about it in five or 10 years. But I need you to understand, as I was trying to convey to the show that we are all billionaires, and I haven’t said this in a while, but I’m gonna go back to it. What I need you to do is just look at your hand, take your hand, look at it flipping back and forth and look at the front and the back. That is your hand. Correct? Correct, Michelle? Correct. Since that is your hand, you control it, if you think it does what you want, and in that hand from where the wrist meets the hand up to the longest finger, that is made of cells, where it says where we get the word cells. And in those cells, just in your hand alone, there are a billion cells. So you are comprised of trillions and trillions upon cells which makes the cell if you think about it, before you got to the planet, before you stepped onto the planet, you were still in a biological spaceship. Because what happened was some information from one entity got with information from another entity, a chain reaction from the cosmos happen to to the power of 30 equals over a billion and that was the beginning of the cell. So you are a billionaire. If you don’t believe so. When next time you get out the shower Uzziah move up to the to the mirror, and what you will see is your eye and I want you to get close and look at your iris because your iris in your eye looks like a nebulae in the sky. Because everything is fractal. We are all connected made from the same stuff. So why are you tripping on other things? Live for yourself, live for now. Everything that is connected to you in love is you incarnate. Till next time. Love you all peace.

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