Thursday, 30 July 2015

Lessons from a 100 days of fairies

The fairies are finished!

So I finished my last fairy for #the100dayproject on 25/07/15 and what a journey I have had! From a camellia fairy to a protection fairy I have spent 100 days pondering fairies and bringing them to life.

I had no idea my fairies would become quite so 'real' and that they would create a book, but it just goes to show the magic that can happen when you dedicate yourself to something for a length of time.

Perhaps you are thinking about starting your own 100 day project? What about 100 days of affirmations, or 100 days of self care? It doesn't have to be something that takes up a huge amount of time, but think about where you want to be and what might help you get there. 

It has been a really amazing experience and I'd like to share with you some of the things that I have discovered along the way.

Immediate deadlines

Having to produce something every day means that you also see results everyday. This is very satisfying and can help push you on. This works really well if you have a tendency to procrastinate because it leaves you less wiggle room and just have to do it!

Momentum is everything 

Once you have got started you will find that the project develops a momentum of its own. You fall into a rhythm with it and your day takes shape around it. This is such a great thing as it starts to flow and you don't need as much energy as the initial effort. Just get started and enjoy the ride!

Be passionate

I think you really have to want to do this!  I was keen to experiment and to develop my style. One of the major 'helps' for me was the discovery of Procreate and the opportunities that opened up for me! I loved trying new combinations, learning about layering and the possibilities of this. If you can find some way to make your project feel fresh, new and exciting, then you are really going to love your 100 days!

Be brave

Part of the process is sharing your results and this can be a little bit intimidating, especially when you are starting and you might not feel like your work is finished or as good as it could be.  On the other hand sharing can give you a major boost and makes it seem a little bit more real! It's just one of those times when you just have to do it! It's a bit like jumping into a pool of cold water, it's a bit of a shock at first, but you soon get used to it!

Don't think about the finish line!

When I started I didn't really think about 100 fairies. If I did I think it might have been too overwhelming and it might have even put me off! I just thought about it day by day! I didn't worry about what it was going to turn out like as I really had no idea! Sometimes I would look on Pinterest for ideas or I would simply take references from my life. Some days I asked Tabitha and of course I had lots of great suggestion from my Facebook followers!

Inspiration and motivation comes! You just need that initial push to get started and a little discipline to carry on!

There is beauty in the journey

Just because it requires commitment and discipline doesn't mean that it's hard! Ultimately the project is for YOU!  Embrace it and when you reach the end you might find that you actually don't want to stop!

I'd love to hear if you are going to start your own project and how you get on!

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Loving goblins and living magically

Life is a constant challenge and when things start getting tough it's good to have a reminder that you are a magical being and that you are making progress!

 I had started getting some negative thoughts and instead of working through them, they were starting to gain momentum. I was feeling overwhelmed.

It's weird how you can feel like you are on top of things in terms of positivity and then you get a couple of days and your head starts bringing up old 'stuff.'

And then a Quartz cluster that I had recently moved to another position, started reaching out to me and so I cleansed it and started to feel better. Then I lit some Palo Santo and watched the smoke twirling upwards. 

In those simple acts I reconnected with a deeper part of myself that felt strong, powerful and ancient. And it felt good!

My negative thoughts simply weren't there anymore and they had been replaced by a sense of deep peace.

It reminded me a bit of a scene in Labyrinth, where the heroine, Sarah, was really close to the castle, but she was told to 'go back' and 'you are going the wrong way' by the goblins.

She didn't give up though. Her passion to save her brother overcame any fears or doubt.

Sometimes you forget the progress you have made and how close you are to really making a breakthrough! If you start paying too much attention to your goblins, then you will never reach your goal.

We are continually evolving and feeling challenged is such an important part of our growth. It might not feel comfortable or easy, but this is a great motivator for pushing forwards and finding ways to navigate the difficulty.

So, my grey thoughts had been bubbling up because I felt like I was getting closer to my goals and this brings up all sorts of emotions that need sorting and sifting through. 
And a lot of it has to do with the notion of 'success'. 

I remember thinking earlier in the year that I defined an artist with a book as successful! 

Here I am, about to publish my own book and so of course the goblins have been chattering away! 

I am realising that the closer you get to one goal, the more you can see past it. It's like reaching the top of a mountain after a long climb and you get to breathe and take in the view. And you can see clearly for miles ahead.

The new improved perspective can be a bit dizzying! It can be a bit overwhelming to see all the potential paths ahead.

But hey! We are magical beings! We can power up! 

I'm recognising more and more the importance of preparing my vibration first and this does mean a fair bit of self work. Going over old thought patterns and introducing new ones. 

I think all of this is a matter of practice too! We live in a very physical, sight orientated world and that we pay a lot of attention to our bodies and physical health. 

Being able to control our energy and emotions is not something that gets talked about very much!

I think that this is why some people suffer with anxiety and depression, they haven't been given any tools to recognise what's going on, or how to deal with it. This is especially true if you are sensitive or empathic (or artistic)!

My crystal reminded me that I have the power to set my intentions. That I have the power, just like any heroine in a book, to keep on believing and trusting. And when I do that, my life is richer. Full of wonder and potential.

I love the opportunities that are coming to me and I'm so excited to be part of this magical world!  If I hear any more goblins I will remember that it's because I must be making progress and I will try to remember to tell them, "you have no power over me"!

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Self publishing

Self publishing!

So, this is what I am embarking on at the moment! My fairies want to fly and spread their magic and so I have popped them in a book with some short stories (and I mean really short!)

I'm excited and nervous at the same time. You know what it's like when you get that voice that says "who are you, to think you are good enough?" To which I kind of say "oh be quiet!" Because, sometimes you have to be brave and just do it!

I feel as though there is a force outside of me that is pushing me forwards and so I am just going with the flow.

Who knows what will happen? At the very least my work will reach more people and that can only be a good thing, right?

I've done a lot of research, watched YouTube videos and subscribed to every self publishing platform out there in order to work out costs and ease of creating a book.

It came down to a battle between CreateSpace and IngramSpark and CreateSpace won! I really nearly went with IngramSpark because they are European which means lower shipping and they also offered a lower price per book. 

CreateSpace are based in the U.S. and annoyingly this means that I will get charged 30% of any sales in tax by the IRS!  However, IngramSpark had all these scary set up fees and charges for any revisions to the book and so that made me really nervous!

CreateSpace has a really easy set up system and you get to flip through your book on screen before committing to it!

It's been great as I have been able to play around with it, tweak it and get it just how I want it.

You wouldn't believe the amount of decisions you have to make! But I am pretty happy with it now and I just have to get the front and back cover sorted now before clicking the PRINT button!

I keep thinking that completing the book, completes the project, but, oh my, there's a whole lot of marketing to do! 

Thankfully I quite enjoy this side of things too!  So now it's time to crack on with press releases, contact booksellers, blogs and book reviewers. And work out how many books to order! 

Wish me luck!