Yesterday, I spent around 40 minutes talking to a stranger online. It changed my attitude. It changed my life.
I had what Gabriela Blandy calls ‘an Extraordinary Conversation’ with her, online.
Gabriela is a writer’s coach, among many other things. The experience was good right from the start. This is a woman who understands how to listen, how to create the best questions to discover what is causing barriers to an individual’s progress and success.
My own problem lay with an almost pathological aversion to marketing and promoting my work. As an author, that’s quite a disadvantage. I explained what had caused this attitude in me, but I won’t bore you with details here, except to say I had some very unpleasant experiences involved with working in sales.
Gabriela asked me questions aimed at identifying what I really wanted from my writing. She’s skilled in this and has a gentle but firm manner that prevents diversionary attempts. She managed to keep me to the point, which is no easy task.
Having identified the nature of my barrier, and helped me understand how it is self-sabotaging, she asked me other questions aimed at making me face my realities. Again, she was gently firm in her probing, refusing to allow me to wriggle from the nub of the matter. In the process, she found a way to make me see there are other ways to view the aspect of writing I most dislike. Ways acceptable to me. Ways I can embrace and even enjoy.
She helped me set specific and practical aims, aiding me to formulate the potential outcomes of activity around the marketing and promoting of my books.
I was suddenly clear about how I could do this work and ignore those aspects that most formed my personal barriers. It was a true moment of epiphany and her delight in this result was clearly as great as mine, though I’m sure she wasn’t as surprised as me; she understands how to solve such problems and has clearly had many other successful outcomes.
I’ve now produced a poster for myself, detailing the why, when and how of my new approach. I’m not expecting instant results. But I will now be working toward an aim of getting many more readers for my writing. After all, readers have told me my work is well worth reading.
The gate I’d placed across the road to success is now open, the key to unlock it provided by Gabriela. And that’s why I’m posting this piece. She’s undoubtedly helped me, and at no cost to myself. She asked for nothing in return, but real gratitude makes me want to let others know of this brilliant, caring, helpful coach, so they may also benefit from her advice.
I came across Gabriela Blandy through LinkedIn, where I have a good number of contacts. She offered a one-to-one chat; an ‘Extraordinary Conversation’. Like most of us these days, I was cynical. What would she try to sell me? How much would this ‘free’ interview cost? Even here in the UK, we’re now infected by the USA’s attitude of ‘buyer beware’ because rampant, unregulated capitalism has soured our relationship with those who offer goods and services.
As you can see by my experience, Gabriela is a genuine coach working in the position so she can help writers. Of course, she offers other services, for which a reasonable charge is made. But the initial interview is, as advertised, free. Any writer struggling with an aspect of their work will gain from talking to Gabriela about it. Have a go.