Encouraging people to write their books

Encouraging people to write their books

My first meeting with over 30 Swiss female writers gave me a lot of inspiration.

I’ve been writing since I am 12 or 13. I filled up many journals with my thoughts, and I always dreamt of writing a book. But, and this is something which I discovered this very year, I was scared of publishing my thoughts, because people would judge me, and I did not stand this idea of putting myself in a public place and giving others the chance to put me down.

I was writing a lot as a journalist for newspapers and magazines some years ago. But this wasn’t that difficult for me because I was writing about other people’s opinions and I did not have to expose myself too much.

Publishing my first book, a children’s book called «Leonard and Loulou» this spring, gave me such a great pleasure and self-confidence. Of course, I was very skeptical at the beginning because again, I was afraid of other people’s judgment. Getting more and more nice feedbacks to the story about a boy and a cat, touching people’s heart when doing my reading, I started believing more and more in my capacity in writing. And, yes, there will be a follow-up to the first book, a second one with the title «Leonard and Lea» which will be published in 2019.

A wonderful moment and very reassuring had also been when I discussed with the New Yorker publishing house, Morgan James, about how my book will be printed and sold in July 2019 in the States, in England and in Australia. I got so many compliments by the editor board for the story and the book itself. It might sound crazy, but I couldn’t believe that I had created this book when I heard them talking about it. Honestly, I got goose pumps when I read the description of my book written by their marketing department because it sounded so great.

This book is also the starting point of my new business which is to help people to write their books, to give them the confidence they might be lacking of as I did and to get them to this wonderful moment in their lives where they open the first page of their printed book or published e-Book and they feel overwhelmed and have goose pumps.

I want to encourage people to write what they want to share with the world. I want to help women and men not to hold back their stories, their experiences and their knowledge, because it is so amazing what I receive when I dared to share my story: a great assurance of myself that there is a sense in being on this planet, and there is a mission I am asked to fulfill: helping others to write their books. It might sound strange to some of you, but I don’t know how may times I was willing to leave this world because I didn’t see any sense of being here any more. This could be the story of a book for adults I will be writing some day. We will see.

I am very grateful for having met wonderful, inspiring business coaches in the last 12 months, who empowered me to take action, among them are Kane and Alessia Minkus, Kevin Paetz and Michelle Masters. Thank you so much for your guidance and encouragement and thanks as well for this amazing community I met through you.

My first children’s book is born


My first children's book is born

My friends are very supportive. They all are very fond of «Leonard and Loulou». Many thanks!

Publishing a book is like being pregnant and giving birth to a child. “Leonard and Loulou”, my first children’s book, is like a child who is taking me on a journey I never thought it would exist.

I had sent the German manuscript to several publishing houses in Switzerland, and guess, nobody wanted to take it. I was sad at the time I got these answers. Today, I am happy that it worked out for me like that.

End of October 2017, I decided to put the book on the Swiss crowd founding platform called wemakeit to raise some money to print the book in Switzerland. And I was so excited to see how the money came in because 34 of my dear friends decided to support me. Thanks so much again.

“3000 Swiss Francs should do it to print some hundred of copies of my book”, I thought. To find a printing office took me a long time. I asked at least 10 printing offices to get an offer. I always wanted to have a nice hard cover with a solid binding because the book should be resistant to a lot of hands to be touched by and to get handed over to the next generation.  How I love my children’s books, which I looked at as a child and I could look at again with my two boys now!

As a multicultural being, having studied French, English and German, I wanted to start with the book in three languages. Again, my friends are so wonderful. They translated the story into English (Marlyse Treichler) and French (Jacques Roch, the father of my two boys), and another friend (Cornelia Schmidt), who has her own translation office (I can give you her address because she’s got no website), lectured it. Thanks a lot to you all!

The very beautiful layout was made up by my neighbor, Adrian Ochsner and Printed Matter. Thanks, Adrian!  You may ask him for editing your book.  But at the moment, he loves doing some big construction works, he is driving construction machines and will be having time for graphic design again in about one year. That’s what he told me when he was devotedly repairing his newly-bought old tractor the other day.

Last but not least, also many thanks to my friend Kiril Charov (Swiss-Bulgarian doctor and artist) who found the great Bulgarian illustrator Teodora Dimitrova. She invented the main characters, my boy Léonard and our cat Loulou according to the pictures she got from us. Thanks to her, the book has been published. Before, Kiril had found another illustrator who didn’t fit at all to the story, and I nearly stopped my project to publish the story because I couldn’t imagine the book with other illustrations than they are now.

And the picture shows the wonderful action launched by my friend Dave Hertig (the big Swiss expert for Content Marketing Services) when he interviewed me in Zurich at his event, and half of the participants wanted to have my book.

You can order “Leonard and Loulou” as a hard copy by sending me an e-mail or you can buy it as an eBook at Amazon or iBooks.

My latest and craziest idea is to bring the book into the Chinese market. Chinese people are very fond of Heidi and a lot of Swiss products. And I already see “Leonard and Loulou” in front of my inner eyes in Chinese. I let you know when this idea will be starting to fly.

Confidence

 

I feel so amazed, when I look at my nearly one-year-old cat. This young cat is lying on our sofa without having any fear. The world could go under, but this cat is confident. It feels protected by us humans. Did I ever feel like this in my life? I would say no.

Since years I’ve been looking for confidence, feeling at home and protected.

This small cat has reached what I’ve been looking for years. How possible?

Many people tell that animals teach us a lot of things. This might be true. I didn’t believe it. I might be wrong.

Since years I’m looking for being at home where I am at home.

Since years I’m trying to be confident.

Since years I’m trying to be confident in what I am.

Since year I’m struggling.

And this small cat shows me how easy it is.

Just let you go.

Be confident.

Don’t bother.

All the beings around you will be taking care of you.

Just let you go.

The most difficult thing.

For me.

How about you?

Babies grow fast

blacky-and-loupi_swissmadestory-ch

 

Babies grow fast

It’s obvious: Babies are growing fast. Humans or cats: it’s the same. And there wasn’t enough time to write about each stadium of getting older. I’m so sorry.

I could have told you about these precious moments when they had opened their eyes or when they had started walking around. We had spent so many hours watching them and discovering the four different personalities of these four babies.

They’ll be soon half a year with us. Two of them left us because we couldn’t keep all four. Their mother is now so furious when she get’s across them. She was much too soon fed up with nurturing them.

We kept these two: Blacky and Loupi. The first one is eating all the time, and the second one, a real baby, is still sucking, not its mother but our skin. And this can last for half an hour. It’s very sweet.

Blacky walks around very often while Loupi is staying at home, sleeping or playing around by itself. But when Blacky comes home, Loupi is very happy licking it thoroughly. And then, they’re joking around in the living room, from one end to the other. It’s a real joy to watch.

One brother, the four babies are all male, has already died. A very sad story… It joined a couple that was taking care of it in a very loving manner. But Lou, that was its name, was so curious. It couldn’t wait until the garage door was open… We were very sad. But this is life.

Fortunately, the two babies staying with us are full of life and very affectionate. We wouldn’t miss this year’s miracle: the birth of our four kittens.

Different views

Different views_www.swissmadstory.ch

 

Different views

The other day, we’re talking about travelling to India again. Big Boy was rather excited about the idea, Little Boy wasn’t. So, we started discussing, we three, about the good and bad things about spending our vacation in a totally different country than Switzerland.

Little Boy told us: “I’d be coming under the condition that we won’t sleep again in this cottage hotel with a lot of spiders, cockroaches and worms which were eating the wooden walls at night and disturbing me in my sleep. I want to have the nice hotel room we had when we went to India the first time.” This was a clear statement. Big Boy reacted in a way I wouldn’t have expected: “Oh, no”, he said, “I loved our cottage in this beautiful garden with a lot of nice plants and flowers, and I loved it because it was so simple.”

Well, two boys, two different views… I tried the financial aspect: “The first time, we had more money and the third time, we tried to keep the budget low. And for the price of one night in the nice hotel room, we could sleep ten nights in the bamboo cottage. What do you thing about this?”

Little Boy answered, surprisingly different than we expected: “I have enough money on my bank account to pay one night or two in the nice hotel or if you want one week.” This was typically Little Boy and very generous.

We kept on discussing a while, but couldn’t find a solution fitting to every one’s needs of us three.

I tried a different approach: “How about the flight”, I asked the two boys. “Cheap flight, long travelling time and at least two stopovers? Or an expensive flight with Emirates, but quick and only one stopover.”

“Emirates….! Definitely”, cried Big and Little Boy. “We want to watch again all the movies like the first time. Not like last time. The service wasn’t nice and the movie program was rather poor.”

Okay, okay… I said: “Our budget is limited. Emirates would cost us more than 1500 Swiss Francs on the top of the cheap flight. Do you want to spend this money for just the movie program”, I asked.

Big and Little Boy started to evaluate what makes more sense: cheap flight, expensive hotel or expensive flight and cheap hotel. And they tried to calculate which solution would be more suitable for my finances.

Little Boy tried to reduce costs by a cheap flight, in order to get rid of the bothering insects. Big Boy tried to convince me of a comfortable and short flight, in order to prevent me from jetlag and exhaustion. That was very sweet by him. But I understood that he didn’t want to renounce to the entertainment program.

At the end of the meal, I was proud of our reasonable conversation with my 10 and 12 years old boys, but I proposed to postpone any decision and get back to it another time.

I’ll let you know how and when we’ll be finding the solution for our next trip to India.

 

 

Fill up energy

Fill up energy

Content Day_swissmadestory.ch

 

I didn’t want to go the Content Production Day by Dave Hertig in Zurich. I was afraid of meeting all the successful Content Managers and feeling very insignificant.

Fortunately, I didn’t listen to my feelings but to my intellect. I got so much energy talking to this group of people, all being on their road to contribute some interesting messages to the Swiss population.

I learnt as well how important it is to continue the way once started even if it doesn’t seem getting “successful”. Sometimes or very often, it takes time. One cannot earn the fruits of his work within weeks or months. Sometimes, it takes years.

And another thing: One has to be oneself, do what he’s best at and find his personal style. Then, people will be fond of him because of his authentic being.

What do I need to become authentic? It’s courage. I need a big portion of courage to pursue the road I took a few months or years ago. Failures – being financially or emotionally – are part of the road.

So, what do I conclude of the last Content Production Day?

Networking, sharing ideas, talking about one’s experiences helps. A lot.

I didn’t feel any more insignificant at the end of the day. I felt strong to follow the road I’ve started. And this is good. Very good, so. Thanks, Dave.


Gerry’s Bar

Gerrysbar_swissmadestory.ch

 

Listening helps

He lives around the corner, and he told my boys how to make pizza on a grey Sunday afternoon two years ago. Gerry, the owner of Gerry’s Bar and the manager of the Italian restaurant, is a real Italian with a real wide-open heart.

I knew I should talk to him. But when I stopped by, he told me that he engaged a young man for his website the night before. I was too late.

But good stories always start at a negative point. Three weeks later, I was the one to re-design his website and to shoot his new front picture.

How come, you may ask?

I was on the right time at the right place and talked to the right person. Because Gerry’s young daughter is the head of the marketing of this restaurant, and she has to deal daily with the website.

The point of this story: Listening, talking and being alert helps a lot.

When I sat with Gerry’s young daughter at that grey afternoon in their restaurant, I didn’t know how I’d manage to convince them to be the person they needed. But I did it. Doing nothing but listening.

 

Why not?

Grandmother_www.swissmadestory.ch

 

Why not?

She’s 87 years old, our remarkable grandmother, living in Geneva in her tiny apartment.

“Do you play Beaver Gang with me”, asked Big Boy.

“Well, I’ve no idea what this is”, said Grandmother. “But, why not!”

Big Boy explained the game to her. Very quickly like a fast train. One could hardly follow. They started. She didn’t know what to do, but she kept on, always smiling.

“Now, you have to look at this card and exchange it with this one”, Big Boy tried to help, with a big smile on his face, too. Little Boy followed, amused as well.

She didn’t give up, played until the very end of the game. Big and Little Boy contributed their part to the successful ending.

“What a funny game”, Grandmother concluded, although she didn’t understand all.

The Boys wouldn’t have noticed what Grandmother has told me: It’s worth to say more “why not” instead of “no”.

 


 

Happy kite, happy day

Happy kite_swissmadestory.ch

Happy kite, happy day

 

Why do we think so much? Why do we worry so much?

It’s a bright day, and we are standing on our two legs. We’re smiling. We don’t think about what will be in the future and what has been in the past.

We’re feeling alive. We enjoy being here. Our kite is flying high.

Our jeans have got a hole, but we don’t care.

We’re talking to the crows wishing them a good flight.

Make a wish, and it will come true.

 
 
 

Christmas present for mom

Chrismas present_swissmadestory.ch

 
 

Christmas present for mom

I don’t feel old, but this memory dates from 43 years ago. A long time.

I could hardly wait until my mom opened my Christmas present. I was so proud of it. The thing I made at school. I had been working on it for hours.

When I brought it home after the last school day, I had to hide it until the Christmas Eve. A very long time.
And I hear my mom under the Christmas tree: “Oh, this is wonderful. You made this?” I was so happy for hours.

When little boy came home two days ago, we couldn’t eat until he had wrapped his thing from school and he could hand it out to me.

I unwrapped it very, very slowly looking many times into little boys’ eyes gathering his pride and happiness.

This moment will stay in my memory, too. Forever.

I’m so happy.
 
 

Relationship

Cat harmony_swissmadestory

Relationship

It takes quite a while to get along.
When I think of the two cats, it took four months until I could take this picture just two days ago.
They didn’t like each other very much at the beginning.

Couldn’t it be the same with humans?
It doesn’t have to be something like a firework while coming across a new person – at school, at work, in courses, with new neighbors.
It could take time, a lot of time,
Days, weeks, months, and years.
Do I have this time?
Am I patient enough?
Can I wait until I get the permission to enter the new person’s territory – slowly, but steadily?

The two cats showed me: it works.

 

 


 

Successful performing

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Successful performing

I don’t know why I love the circus, perhaps, because it’s so creative. And I’m so glad my boys do like it, too.

They again spent one week in the circus, again in the circus band as last year. And they had to work hard to play during one hour and a half while their 90 colleagues were performing as clowns, acrobats, mimes and magicians.

Little boy played the electric bass guitar for the first time, and big boy was improvising as a French rapper – with success. I’m proud of them.

I won’t forget this special moment, and maybe, they will always remember later in their lives. I wish it for them, because being creative creates self-confidence – an important factor to be happy.

 

 

 

 

 


 

Grounded

Grounded with bare foot_www.esthersviewpoint.com

Grounded

I didn’t like being barefoot when I was a child. I had my woolen socks, knitted by my grandmother, and they definitely were my protection against too much life and summer action.

I loved spending my free afternoons on my bed reading stories about a courageous woman in Lhasa or an intelligent French lady having an unhappy love affair.

It was in India that I dared walking nearly barefoot during five weeks. I only had my flip-flops.

The first time in my life, I felt grounded by my bare feet.

Certain feelings take a long time to grow.

Deep relaxation

Let you go cat yoga_esthersviewpoint.com

Deep relaxation

Looking at my baby cat that is sleeping most of the time when I’m writing I understand what my yoga teacher always wants to tell me.

Breathing and letting go…

Relax.

Most of the time, my thoughts are walking around during the yoga class like my curious baby cat when it’s chasing butterflies, dragonflies, grasshoppers or even a toad.

My dear cat, can we change lives – just for one day? I’d like to sleep beside your computer while you’re writing my stories and get the sensation of deep relaxation.

 

 

Crazy life

Being a mother in Switzerland means doing all, and all means all: working 100 percent, looking after my two boys, taking care of the household, and above all trying to have a relationship with a man.

But let’s not talk about the fourth thing! This is another story. Let’s talk about the three other things which are in total already much too much.

I’m not complaining, not at all, because I wanted it this way. I certainly wanted to be a workingwoman and wanted to have kids. But nobody asked me whether I wanted to clean floors, change beds, wash cloths, fix lights, heating, shower nozzles, toilet boxes and so on and on.

I’d rather sit and write than arguing with youngsters about their consummation of computers and smartphones games or telling them twenty times to feed their pets, etc. But I’m not complaining, because I wanted to be divorced and educate my kids according to my style.

So, what’s the point, you may be asking? The point is that I cannot fill well all these roles because it would be a 300 percent job. And it’s pretty hard to confess that I’m not a perfect workingwoman, nor a good mother and at least a busy housewife. I’m constantly facing insufficiency.

And in order not to drive mad, I have to eliminate certain roles at certain times. Some days, I laugh at my kitchen disorder. Some days, I let the boys go on a long leash. Some days, I feel like writing and not working for money. And some days, I don’t know what should come first…

Can you follow me?

 

Taking care of his baby

Little boy with cat_www.esthersviewpoint.com

Little boy is a very sweet mother to his baby cat. But like mothers do, he’s often complaining that his Loulou is doing nasty things like jumping on the table or licking plates in the kitchen with unhealthy things for a little cat.

More and more, little boy is getting tired as well of being disturbed in his sleep at night by his little baby. The other day, he was even crying because he didn’t want to share his bed with it any more. “I need a good rest tonight”, he told me. And he asked me to take care of it that night.

Little boy was also very worried when Loulou played with a wasp and was probably stung by it. “It’s always licking with its tongue and it seems having tears in its eyes”, he reported me.

Together with his big brother, he gave it SOS pills – some homeopathic pills I used to give him when he was small child. And little boy was very proud: “Loulou swallowed one pill, I am sure.”

Taking care of his baby cat keeps little boy busier than he imagined before.

 

No chance with educating

Big boy and mother_www.esthersviewpoint.com

 

As I knew it will be hard to get back to mother’s rules.

The two boys are back from their vacation with their father and back from playing games and watching films, and it’s been a hard week.

And still, it is. After spending a Saturday with big boy while little boy is with his father I’m giving up – at eight o’clock in the evening.

Big boy wasn’t able to do something creative during the day. His drawing is still waiting to be finished. There are two eyes on the paper. That’s all.

He was restless, and I wasn’t capable to catch him with interesting ideas.

Okay, we went shopping and got a pump for our garden, and there is now the element water running as Feng Shui tells to do in order to calm down.

No chance, I wasn’t very successful with my big boy.

He’s now watching the film “Penguins in Madagascar” while I’m writing this.

I admit: Educating kids isn’t a picnic.

 

 

Alive

 

Boy jumping_www.esthersviewpoint.com

 

 

My boys are teaching me – among a lot of things – one important thing: being open.

Being open for new experiences, new people, new places, new tastes, new colors, new feelings.

For example, I’ve never dreamt of going fishing, cleaning fishes and cooking them. And when you open our fridge right now, you find living mealworms. Thanks, Big Boy.

Or I didn’t have any experience in my childhood with playing with legos. But it feels satisfying lying on the floor of the living-room and putting together a VW bus of at least 10’000 pieces.

Or I wasn’t the typical game player when I was younger. But now I’m spending hours by playing Uno or Rummikub with Little Boy.

Being open isn’t an easy thing to do. But it gives me much more in return. And there will be more experiences in the future I’ve never dreamt of. I’m sure and open.

 

 

Calling mom: Scene 2

Boys in vacation_www.esthersviewpoint.com

5.45 p.m. in a restaurant in Venice with their father

 
Big boy:         “Hi mom, how are you?”

Me:                 “Fine. Thanks. How about you?”

Big boy:         “Fine. Mom, can you give me the permission for some apps. I want to play some games on my iPod?”

Me:                 “Hmmm… you want to play…”

Big boy:         “You know: I need to download these games.”

Me:                 “Hmmm… where are you at the moment?”

Big boy:         “In a restaurant. Do you give me the permission?”

Me:                 “Hmmm… How is the hotel in Venice?”

Big boy:         “It’s okay. Mom, will you do it now?”

Me:                 “Hmmm…”

Big boy:         “If you do it now, I’ll call you again tonight.”

Me:                 “Hmmm… Can I talk to your brother?”

Big boy:         “Okay…”

Little boy:     “Hi mom. How are you?”

Me:                 “Fine and you?”

Little boy:     “Okay. Mom, you have to give the permission to B.”

Me:                 “Hmmm… and if I don’t want?”

Little boy:     “I pass you again B.”

Big boy:         “Yes or no?”

Me:                 “No.”

Big boy:         “You are so mean, mom! I’ll hang up…”

 

P.S. Thanks to the father for the picture.

Life is a firework

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Life is like an explosion. It starts like a normal Monday. But it wasn’t a normal day.

I am sure you had your normal Monday coming back to work from the weekend, a bit lazy and still dreaming of doing nothing.

Me instead, for the first time in my life since I finished my studies, I started my Monday without being engaged by a company.

For the first time, I am free, working for the people I like to.

You might say: Okay, so what….

You’re right. But after nearly 20 years, it’s very special to me.

Life is like a firework. Don’t you know these kinds of passages in your life?

If not, remember me: suddenly, there will be an unexpected explosion you never dreamt of and your life will change.

Don’t ask me what will come after the explosion. I don’t know either at the moment.
 

 

Traveling at home

 

Zurich_esthersviewpoint.com

 

Everybody is gone: my boys on a cruise with their father, some friends in the States, in Greece, France, Italy and so on and on.

I am traveling in my mind.

I was again a student, hanging around at the river in Zurich discussing with my friends about Heidegger or Derrida, smoking my own made cigarettes and drinking red wine.

Or I met there a man I was very fond of and him as well of me, but he didn’t want to leave his girlfriend. She didn’t mind him seeing me from time to time. I couldn’t agree with this setting.

Or I remember how I was sunbathing there at the riverside on Sunday afternoons, reading heavy books and searching hard for an intelligently looking young man to talk to.

I spent many summers there, trying out different relationships. But my summer feeling kept always to be the same, and it came back when I visited this place a few days ago.

 

 

 

At the moment being

Featured image

 
Drinking my morning tea, I’m thinking how I’ll manage the new website at work and to whom I’ll have to write my first email.

Riding my bike to work, I’m thinking that I forgot to tell my little boy that his violin lesson will be starting earlier than usual.

Logging into my computer at work, I’m thinking that I’ll need to buy a birthday present for my big boy’s friend.

Writing my first email, I’m thinking that I forgot to log out my computer at home and my kids will probably take profit after school surfing until I’ll be coming home tonight.

Eating my lunch, I’m thinking that I’ll have to organize the two weeks of summer vacation with the boys, call my parents and fix the day visiting the zoo.

Writing my 42nd email, I’m thinking that I should read the newspaper to get the latest news about Greece.

Riding my bike home, I’m thinking that I didn’t prepare well for the editor meeting the next day.

Finding my boys at my computer, I’m thinking I should organize my life with less stress.

Thinking that I wasn’t conscious of all these moments during the day thinking at other things, I’m thinking that it’s pretty hard not thinking all the time and feeling the moment being.
 
 

Careless

Featured image

 

It has been a lake, an evening and a warm summer night.

My boys and me enjoyed this moment.

We three felt secure, fearless and careless.

There were just a few birds talking before going to sleep.

And us three looking at the twilight sky.

The picture records the moment and my feelings.

Fortunately, we’ve got pictures to remember what we easily forget.