How to create the life you want—in 5 brave steps

It was 2005, and life was bleak. I was 20 (I’m 32 now) and working in a bank as a teller, going to school in the early mornings, at night, and online. My employer was fine, and the job was OK. I justified my dissatisfaction with my work because my employer reimbursed my tuition. On […]

Why I’m moving to Thailand

When I was pregnant with my oldest child, my husband and I took nightly walks. One evening, when I was about six months pregnant, we did a big loop around our north end Boise neighborhood. The streets in that part of town are lined with big trees; the neighborhoods are a mix of diverse structures—new […]

5 mistakes writers make in National Novel / Nonfiction Writing Month

Ah, October. The month when writers all around the country ready their pens and keyboards to write a first draft of their books during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and National Nonfiction Writing Month (NaNonFiWriMo), which takes place from November 1–30 each year. The goal? Write a 50,000-word book in 30 days. Don’t break stride […]

Is adventure calling?

It was 2007. I was a 21-year-old who had done lots of exotic travel—you know, California, Oregon, Mexico, Canada. Far-off, distant lands, right? To be fair, I wanted to travel. I wanted to get out and experience the world . . . or at least take two-week guided tours through parts unknown. My version of […]

Your mountain is waiting

A few nights back, before my husband and I began the nightly ritual of coaxing our children to finally shut their eyes and go to sleep, our family of four snuggled into “mommy’s and daddy’s” big bed to read a book. It was my daughter’s turn to pick, and she disappeared into her room, returning […]

An inside look at my new course for aspiring authors

It’s been a few weeks since I launched my new course, Finish that book!, a book-writing planning and productivity course for aspiring authors. This week, I take you on a short video tour of what the course includes and why it’s so powerful for aspiring authors. This course was created in response to a need. […]

What it’s like to give a TEDx talk—part two: the talk

The morning of TEDx started better than I could have hoped. For the first time in weeks, both of my kids slept through the night (win!). I had a healthy breakfast and then met a dear friend at the trails at 8:30 for a 5-mile hilly run. I’d been sick the week before and hadn’t […]

What it’s like to give a TEDx talk—part one: preparation

I’ve been watching TED talks for years. During the early months of my company, I started every morning by watching a TED talk as I ate breakfast. It’s possible that I see TED a little differently than some, that I’ve developed a reverence not shared by the general population. I know from more than a […]

What to Expect When Hiring a Ghostwriter

When I see a new book by a celebrity or politician, my first thought is always the same: I wonder what professional writer behind the scenes helped make it happen. That’s because I am one of those writers. I’ve written hundreds of articles and several books—almost all for other people. Sometimes I’m credited on a […]

Getting comfortable with being joyfully awkward

Last week, I tried to record my first podcast. I say “tried” because it was a failed attempt (ahem, note to self: be sure to silence cell phone before recording). That’s not the point, though. I hadn’t planned to publish the episode—rather, I was starting to get used to something that’s unfamiliar. I was attempting […]