Breathe. Write. Breathe. - 18 Energizing practices to spark your writing and free your voice by Lisa Tener

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Breathe. Write. Breathe.

18 Energizing Practices to Spark Your Writing & Free Your Voice

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Pitch Your Book to Life Competition: The Public Votes Are In!

Round 1 of the Pitch Your Book to Life contest voting is complete. While our judges are deliberating, I thought you might like to see the top 10 books by public vote. Here they are, in no particular order. I’ve taken the liberty to shorten some of the pitches, although our judges are viewing the entire pitch.

HayWire! How 26 Rescue Horses, 12 Dogs, 10 Cats, 2 Cows, And A Pig Taught Me Humanity by Nancy Raven Smith

A true love story that involves more than one man and one woman. Imagine Marley and Me, not with one dog, but with 26 rescue horses, 12 dogs, 10 cats, 2 cows and a pig, plus 3 suburban teenagers. When a 26 year old computer nerd from the city embarks on a new marriage, he’s unexpectedly propelled on a journey of self discovery as his bride’s crazy farm animals teach him about life and love.

Self Care Yoga: Short Healing Lessons for Body, Mind, & Life! by Kate Forest, RYT

In Self Care Yoga: Short Healing Lessons for Body, Mind, & Life! I share five simple yoga routines and eighteen Self Care Skills designed to fit today’s busy lifestyle and relieve physical, mental, and emotional distress. The unique perspective of this self-paced program also shares personal experiences, compelling student stories, and self-reflective written exercises that inspire readers to live my Five Principles of Mindful Living on the yoga mat and in life, as a way to better support themselves, others, and the world.

There are no pretzel-poses here, just healing postures with clear easy-to-follow instructions, full color photos, and chair variations for those needing or wanting to be even gentler with themselves, whether a beginner or long time yoga student. Included is a CD of my voice with calming music to guide readers, and perhaps a group of their friends, through the featured Self Care Yoga routines. I live these healing skills daily and as an advanced level yoga teacher and mindful living coach of twelve years, have shared these teachings with thousands of students in my classes, workshops, and Self Care retreats, and encourage readers to share these skills with others. (www. kateforest. com)

Survive Your Husband’s Retirement by Nora Hall

We’re not sure where Joe learned his caboose skills, but on his first day of retirement he began following his wife everywhere––even into the bathroom, we’re told. In another household, mild-mannered, but newly retired Don became the family tyrant, going into a frenzy whenever dishes or silverware weren’t placed exactly as he had rearranged them.

And that’s only a few of the strange stories we’ve heard about husbands’ retirement behaviors. Written for wives of the Two Million (plus) baby boomers who will become eligible for retirement this year alone, Survive Your Husband’s Retirement looks at changes in a relationship––and the errant behavior that comes along with it––when a husband retires. Replete with couple’s stories, cartoons, Bliss Bits and Thoughts to Ponder, Survive prompts women to laugh, to cry, to think––and finally––take action to return bliss to the relationship.


pitch your book contest
Photo by David Donohue

Lessons from Paradise by Bridget Skjordahl

What can be learned from a tiny island in the Caribbean about living joyfully in challenging times? Share in my personal adventure, from the painful sacrifice of the life I knew, through the unexpected adversities of life in “paradise,” to living life beyond my dreams. With the island of St. Thomas and its West Indian culture as your guides, fifteen timeless lessons are illustrated with wisdom drawn from hurricanes and sea turtles, or what the game of chicken has to do with wild roosters, car horn conversations, and the passing of Thyme.

Simple exercises inspired by real island experiences will free you from the “happiness” myths that are holding you back from experiencing the ultimate joy you are meant to live. A fresh, often surprising perspective on cultivating wellbeing, LFP promises to awaken you to a world of joy that exists beyond happiness. “You don’t have to live in paradise to have paradise live in you.”

FROM CHAOS TO COMPASSION: a refugee doctor’s herstorical memoir from Old Saigon to Little Saigon, USA by Mai-Phuong Nguyen MD

FROM CHAOS TO COMPASSION: a herstorical odyssey from Old Saigon, Vietnam to Little Saigon, USA in search of identity, home and healing. Dr. Mai-Phuong Nguyen is a survivor of 3 wars:

1) the Vietnam-American War on April 29,1975

2) the LA Riots following Rodney King’s verdict on April 29,1992

3) an ongoing battle against a potentially lethal, chronic mental health condition rooted in the ravages of violence, poverty and racial injustice: PTSD.

FC2C is one brave woman’s immigrant tale that takes us through 4 continents, a few Pacific Islands, only to come full circle and arrive at the heart of the elusive American Dream.


pitch your book contest
Photo by David Donohue

Wildcrafting: How plants Heal Body and Soul by Michele Collins

 Wildcrafting is what herbalists do when we go out to meet plants in their wild, natural home to learn from them and sustainably harvest them to make herbal medicines. As a clinical herbalist learning about and using plant-based medicines has both inspired me and taught me how to be present in my body and to experience joy through touch, taste, smell, physical sensation, as well as emotional and spiritual connection that, as a survivor of incest, I had lost both the ability to connect to and to trust.

In Wildcrafting, I share my firsthand account of nine very special plants and how they helped me in this journey, as well as descriptions of how they are used to heal and support the body, emotions, and spirit. I am sharing my experience to support other women, survivors of sexual trauma, who are learning to experience the joy of being present in their bodies.

Have You Seen Me? by Gael Johnson

Have You Seen Me? is about the relationship of a beautiful Bengal Cat named Jack and the love and devotion he shared with his human mother (Me, Gayle) and the search for him when he disappeared. It expresses the experience of our connection and the kindness that surmounted during the time he was missing.  The love and support from perfect strangers overwhelmed me and helped me through this exhausting and life changing ordeal.  I kept a journal the entire time (7 months plus) he was missing – noting the calls and my continuous efforts of searching…I saved every email sent about possible sightings and those sent simply with comfort and prayer.

It will include reflections and musings on such topics of faith and hope, and the experiences that surfaced for me during this enormous and life changing search.

I Have Loved You 4000 Years – One Soul’s Journey through Past Life Regression by Karen Kubicko

photo by david donohue
Photo by David Donohue

My soul survived a dark energy blast in Atlantis, entrapment in the Scottish Highlands, hanging for witchcraft in Virginia, drowning in the Johnstown flood, gunfire from a New York mobster and burning alive during a World War II bombing in Eastern Europe – yet, I am still here again. I Have Loved You 4000 Years , is an account of  sixteen past lives and the emotional, spiritual and physical healing that has positively influenced my present lifetime. I wrote this non-fiction book for the Mind/Body/Spirit genre, to share the true account of my soul’s journey through life, death and going into the light and how it has healed me on multiple levels in the hopes that I will inspire and excite others to fearlessly go on their own soul’s healing journey.

You will learn that: birthmarks can be linked to a traumatic death, phobias are related to a past life situation, relationships repeat again and again, talents can be re-awakened, health issues can be related to a death experience, love or abhorrence of a certain time period or a geographic location can be explained, anyone can experience what it feels like to die and see the light and that Heaven is so close to you after you experience a past life death.

The Sacred Art of Caregiving by Lucy Andrews

 Are you overwhelmed caring for a loved one, are you exhausted by helping your aging parent while trying to managing your own life? The Sacred Art of Caregiving can help you find the miracles in the mundane, the sacred in the everyday and your way along the path as you care for your parent, partner or loved one by following these steps to sanity and success as a family caregiver. Turn tasks into joy and make memories that will last your entire life as you get and give the greatest gift by being a caregiver for someone you love.

Finding Your Own Fairytale- Secrets of a Happy Marriage and Discovering the Diva You are Meant to Be by Amy Holley

Wife, mother, volunteer (for everything), working woman- do those words describe you? Do any of these sound familiar: screaming kids, to-do list too long, unfulfilling job, muffin top, mouthy teenagers, financial stress, struggling marriage, no “me” time or “isn’t there more to life”?

This book will share the secrets to staying sane through raising children, keeping happiness in your marriage when divorce would be easier and having the courage to chase your dreams. Focusing on your family is priority, including making your marriage work, but never give up on having the life or career of your dreams. What do you want to be when you grow up- even if that means intertwining it with your family life or waiting until you’re 40 and your children are practically raised?

Don’t take the easy way out with a divorce and don’t just settle for a “normal” life. Discover what an awesome diva you are meant to be while keeping these 3 things in mind: happiness is a choice, love is a decision and life is on purpose.

Come back to the blog tomorrow to discover our WINNER!

Lisa Tener

Lisa Tener is an award-winning book writing coach who assists writers in all aspects of the writing process—from writing a book proposal and getting published to finding one’s creative voice. Her clients have appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, CBS Early Show, The Montel Williams Show, CNN, Fox News, New Morning and much more. They blog on sites like The Huffington Post, Psychology Today and WebMD.

Reader Interactions


  1. Kate Forest says

    WoooHooooo! It is so exciting to see my book pitch for Self Care Yoga in this top ten Lisa. Can’t wait to share this news with my friends. Thanks again for this fabulous contest. You’ve been working very hard and I so appreciate it;) Now, if you’d like, join me in a long slow breath or two and relax your tight shoulders….yes now…. Very warmly, Kate

  2. Gael Johnson says

    I’m a WOO HOO too! This is awesome knowing I have the support of my friends and that there is an audience for my book. Thank you Lisa and your Team for this wonderful contest.

  3. Bridget Skjordahl says

    WOW! I welled up with tears of joy and gratitude for the love and encouragement I’ve received from my friends and supporters. Thank you, Lisa, for creating this opportunity….it has already brought my ‘book to life,’ and I learned so much in the process. Joyfully, Bridget

  4. Bridget Skjordahl says

    WOW! I welled up with tears of joy and gratitude for the love and encouragement I’ve received from my friends and supporters. Thank you, Lisa, for creating this opportunity….it has already brought my ‘book to life,’ and I learned so much in the process. Joyfully, Bridget

  5. Michele Collins says


    Thank you so much for the opportunity to share my idea. How wonderful to make it to the top 10! I didn’t get your feedback on my pitch for Wildcrafting – I submitted it on Sunday night so it came in a little late. I would love to hear your insights and comments if possible. Many thanks,

    • Lisa Tener says

      Michele, I was quite excited about your book and I know one of the judges had it in the top 4. It’s a very specific niche, which is good. There are lots of herb books out there, but this one seems very specific, which I like. I thought it sounded quite fascinating.

      • Michele Collins says


        Thanks so much for your feedback. That is so helpful to know. It feels very liberating to have put this out into the world more fully. It is giving me good inspiration to put a book proposal together.


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