Sharing & Book Signing.

I love a good book signing, but even more than that I love to speak about what is in the book and to share my story in a way that gives encouragement to others. Roll the two into one and it is even better.

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So last week, when I had an amazing opportunity to do both and speak at Life Line here in Johannesburg, I was thrilled (and humbled and honoured!). For those of you haven’t heard of Lifeline, they are a nonprofit organisation across the world who provide round-the-clock telephone and scheduled face-to-face counselling sessions, for free, to anyone in need of help. They are and always have been a fabulous group of dedicated people. I have not had much to do with them until now, but I have always known that they were out there one way or another.

IMG_3751It was a huge privilege to be invited to speak to some of their local counsellors about my Book (The Lion and the Peacock) and my own anxiety journey, and the ways that I have conquered it.

But as Thursday rolled on, it turned out to be a cold, very wet and stormy night, on the eve of organised protests across our country, so I was sure that everyone would cancel and stay home. That I would be speaking to an empty room and a handful of organisers.

img_4278Counsellors, however, are a brave lot and I am so thankful to those who came anyway and were such a great audience.

They were super engaging and encouraging and asked so many great questions that the nearly two-hour Q&A session felt like about five minutes.

My lovely husband took tons of photos and videos throughout the evening and promptly lost the whole lot when he synched his phone overnight, so we have had to rely on the handful on snapshots taken by others (thank you Lifeline for sharing them with me!). But we also now need to try and remember some of the great questions so that I can share them with you! … so watch this space.

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Thanks Lifeline for the opportunity, and this great endorsement:

Julie post LifeLine

img_4276To book a talk with me and discuss my schedule you can contact me on JPeaSmith@KingsRoadChronicles.com

Where you can find and follow Jennifer: 

@JPeaSmith
 
“Here she comes, running, out of prison and off the pedestal: chains off, crown off, halo off, just a live woman.”  ― Charlotte Perkins Gilman

 

GIVEAWAY!

Everyone loves a GIVEAWAY right? To celebrate the launch of the paperback version of The Lion and the Peacock, we will be giving away a handful of signed copies. To enter, all you need to do is to Like and Follow my author Facebook Page, click on the pinned post at the top, share it, and in the comments below it, write the country that you live in.
Every two weeks for the next 6 months (March-August), I will pick a country, and then randomly select a winner from that country and send them a free, signed copy of the book. March is USA and South Africa!  (Please read the T&Cs in the very first comment of the post).
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For a second chance to win, sign up here for my no spam newsletter, and get all the updates on what country is coming up and when. I will also publish the winners in the newsletter, so don’t forget to sign up! ( http://ow.ly/C24N309CH0X )

Where Jennifer hangs out: 

@JPeaSmith
 
“Here she comes, running, out of prison and off the pedestal: chains off, crown off, halo off, just a live woman.”  ― Charlotte Perkins Gilman

#WritingTip 1:

Just a short one while I’m thinking of it. I was asked about my number one writing tip and I think it is that I seek honest feedback. I totally appreciate that it can be difficult to give sometimes, but I am most grateful for honesty. Truly.

I don’t ask beta readers, coaches or friends to make me feel good, I ask them how I can improve … and I love the answers. Sometimes they can be “wrong” but they are never unhelpful and usually they are right. 

Sometimes we differ on opinion or advice and sometimes it is different “grammar rules” but for the most part, they each lift my game a little (and sometimes a lot),  and it is a little like having a mirror placed in a blind spot, a light shone in a dark corner, or a lid being lifted on a whole new jar of tricks. I love that they want these things for me!

It sounds so obvious but it isn’t. And I have to say, I’d do the same for you. When I beta read for others I try to be as honest as I can, and I know it’s not easy. No one wants to hurt feelings. But do yourself a favour and #AskForHonesty.

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Where I hang out: Blog | The Mighty | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads | Amazon
@JPeaSmith
“Here she comes, running, out of prison and off the pedestal: chains off, crown off, halo off, just a live woman.”  ― Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Breaking The Two Thousand Barrier

img_1139I had no idea how many books would sell, but twelve days in and we got the results from Kindle yesterday. Over two thousand books have been sold so far and we haven’t even been out 2 weeks yet! Most went on the free days of course, but the idea is to get it out there and help people with anxiety to get some real tools that they can do something with, so that is a massive start. Word is trickling out there and I have already been asked to speak to a group of counselors (I will let you know when that is firmed up).

One of the hardest things about writing is wondering whether people will ever want to listen (read) what you have to say, and the feedback so far is something that I could only ever have wished for before now. I had been asked to speak about my techniques before but felt nervous and embarrassed and needed to get the words onto paper first. So I would always turn down the opportunities. But now that the book is out and receiving such rave reviews I am starting to feel a little braver. So it is time to put on my big girl pants and start saying yes! I need to get the practice and I need to get my nerves out on the smaller groups before I get to the bigger ones.

It feels so much safer to stick to my friendly wonderful following and keep my neck inside my tortoise shell where I won’t get knocked around so much, but I know that if I want to get the next book out there and this one to more people to help them, then I have no option but to stick my neck out! So thank you all for giving me the encouragement and strength to do so!

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Newsletter: To be on included on my no spam email newsletter list to get updates and specials first (and often exclusively), just sign up HERE for free 🙂

SO Close (and yet so far!)

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Out of more than seventy thousand books that are free on any one day on Amazon Kindle, making the top 100 is a huge deal. For no other reason than that the algorythms change and Kindle push you forward. But you need to make that list. Yesterday I got to 108, how close is that! Out of all those tens of thosuands of books I came within eight of making the good list. Today is the last day of the free giveaway and we are starting to slip, so if you are any position to spread the word and a bunch of people grab it while it is free, we still could do it. But it is today or bust!

I am so blown away by your support so far and the amount of people who have taken a chance on an unknown author. 108 is pretty good! So I’d love to launch into the next phase of “just sitting there for sale” …..with a bang and a “best seller” tag 🙂

We are number one in stress managment and number one in short reads (under 90 minutes)…

You can share it on Twitter, Facebook, or simply email it to anyone.

The full link to the book itself is here, or look it up on Amazon in your region by seraching for Jennifer Peacock-Smith, or The Lion and the Peacock”

link: https://www.amazon.com/Lion-Peacock-How-Conquered-Anxiety-ebook/dp/B01N5N0121/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8

 

Anxiety Champions Part 3:

screen-shot-2017-01-06-at-1-13-19-pmPart three in my series on Anxiety Champions is also someone from Survivor Season 33 in my beloved Fiji Islands. Hannah Shapiro is hilarious, but there is also a really serious side to her, and she is very openly and visibly someone who suffers from anxiety. But more than that, during the show she has a full blown panic attack and many people have remarked about or remembered her infamous lines, “I can’t feel my hands!” and “don’t let me die!”.

For me, this is such an incredibly vulnerable moment, where she totally forgets the cameras, she is utterly and completely consumed by her panic attack, and simply from the words she cries out, this is clearly extremely scary for her. This is the first time that I have witnessed a panic attack from the outside, and it was fascinating for me to watch. Having experienced hundreds of these myself, I have only seen them from the inside and I was shocked by how “normal” it looks from for an onlooker.

Hannah I think is one of those people who not so much embraces her anxiety but she is learning to live with it and does not let it hold her back. She is clearly funny, articulate and very bright, so she is in no way defined by her anxiety, but she is a wonderful ambassador for what living with anxiety looks and feels like. Thank you, Hannah!

 

 

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Free for a Few (days):

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I am so blown away by the public response to my book! I have no idea what I expected: we all (well me anyway) have a dream, a hope, a best-case-scenario that goes around in our heads, as well as a total disaster worst-case-scenario which we dread. I sometimes feel as though I am a goldfish, going around and around in circles, regularly coming to exactly the same space I was a few hours ago and having exactly the same reaction “this is going to be fine…” and then “What on earth was I thinking, putting my heart and soul out there, they are all going to laugh at me!” And then “this is going to be fine (again).

So in terms of what I thought would happen, well, I had absolutely no idea what to expect or what was realistic. And I still think that all the people who will ever like it have now said so and now it will flop completely…

Total strangers have bought my book and so far every single review has been 5 stars. Now THAT is something that I did not even hope for in my best-case-scenario dream! But I am also realistic and maybe this is where the good part of the dream ends?

The book will be FREE for a few days from right now through Saturday, so please feel free to download it, read it and let me know what you think. And to let anyone else know who may be interesting.

I am also learning that reviews are everything. I saw a picture on Twitter today with the headline “Authors can’t sell books without reviews!” and if I had a dollar for every time that I have heard that in the last year then I wouldn’t need to write books; I’d be rich! I know that as a reader I never understood the value other than ego, of writing a review, but now I do! The algorithms and stats are there for a reason so that people can’t sell or use robots for “fake” reviews, but it does mean that there is a load of importance placed on real ones, and these are used for Amazon to decide who they promote and who they don’t. And so now I am slowly chipping away at writing a review for every book that I have ever read!

So if you have a few moments of time and have not read the book yet, then I would love you to read it for free here, and an honest review would mean the world to me! 🙂 You can leave one at Goodreads as well as on the Amazon book itself: