As I was finishing How Coffee Saved My Life in 2009, I knew it wouldn’t sell millions of copies. That was never the vision. My intended audience was rather specific, and I reached that intended audience. They appreciated the book, which was so rewarding. I still get a few notes a year from readers who recently returned home from living abroad, who happened upon a copy. They tell me the similarities and differences of their stories and thank me for helping them feel less isolated in the transition back home. I love when the book finds its way into the hands of people who really resonate with the story.
I’m grateful to Chalice Press for taking a chance on a young writer and publishing the book. For press houses, it so often is purely and necessarily about the business. Is this book going to make a profit? Is it going to sell? With ebooks and online material gaining popularity, press houses have to be very careful about which projects to fund.
In this shifting world of books, I love the option of crowdfunding. It puts the power into the hands of the readers. They can pay for the book early, in essence giving the writer an advance, and then often receive the book for free at the end as a reward. The readers get to help press houses choose which books should come into existence. I ran a successful Start Some Good campaign to get me to Kenya to write my upcoming book Slowly by Slowly. It was surprisingly powerful to get on a plane to Kibera with all my backers in mind, knowing I had their support, financial and otherwise, to move forward with the book project.
Michele Rae is a brilliant woman, teacher, coach and writer. She has incredible things to say about curating a life and healthy worldview, training brain chemistry toward calm, and seeking light in your daily life personally, interpersonally and cosmically. She asks questions like, “What are the issues in our changing world that you are the most passionate about? How do you contribute to creating vital and sustaining paradigms in yourself? Your relationships? Your family? Your community? Your workplace? Our human family at large? What excites you and makes your heart sing? How will the new systems emerging impact your life?”