Get What You Want By Freeing Your Inner Author with Angela Lauria
Updated: May 27, 2020
“There is something different when you decide you're going to do it instead of wanting it to happen.” -Angela Lauria
Is there something that you want to do but aren’t doing? This is the episode for you! Shirley interviews her very own Book Coach, Angela Lauria! They go deep and discuss just what it takes to finally write that book, or finally do anything that you haven’t been able to for that matter. There are so many juicy observations and maybe even a little booty kicking in this episode! You won’t want to miss it!
02:05 Who Wrote The Book?
06:55 Start From The End
14:04 Nobody Cares About Your “Salad”
20:00 The 3 Types of People
26:18 How To Be Actually Productive- No Theories
31:55 Stop Being Mean To Yourself
36:54 Why People Don’t Finish Their Book
45:49 Get The Results You Want
Books by Angela Lauria
Make ‘Em Beg To Be Your Client: The Nonfiction Authors’Guide To Selling, Serving, and Funding a Movement
Make ‘Em Publish Your Book: How To Reach A Larger Audience & Make A Full-Time Income In The Extremely Overcrowded World Of Personal Development
The Incubated Author: 10 Steps To Start A Movement With Your Message
A Return To Love: Reflections On The Principles Of A Course in Miracles by Marianne Williamson
Do you want to write your own book but can’t seem to do it? Join in as @SfbaldwinOwens and @alauria discuss how to get the results you want!
#getwhatyouwant #innerauthor #bookwriting #yourpeople #timemanagement #trustyourself #productivity
04:10 “There is something different when you decide you're going to do it instead of wanting it to happen.” -Angela Lauria
09:05 “If you've been spinning on a project, it's because you don't know why you want to do it.” -Angela Lauria
10:50 “The answer to getting what you want first, is to keep looking towards that vision. If you look down, if you look up, you're going to change your mind.” -Angela Lauria
28:47 “You do productivity, you don't go buy one.” -Angela Lauria
33:28 “You can trust yourself to do what you said you would do.” -Angela Lauria
47:29 “You don’t have to be mean to yourself to get results.” -Angela Lauria
Connect With angela:
Dr. Angela Lauria is the founder of the Author Incubator and creator of the Difference Process for writing a book that matters. She's been helping people free their inner author since 1994. She has helped over 1000 authors in transformation write, publish, and promote their books. Angela is the author of Make ‘Em Beg To Be Your Client, Make ‘Em Beg To Publish Your Book, The Incubated Author, and The Difference. She has a BA and a Master's in Journalism and Media Affairs from the George Washington University and a Ph.D. in Communications from European Graduate School.
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Shirley Owens: My guest today is Dr. Angela Lauria. Angela is the founder of The Author Incubator and creator of the difference process for writing a book that matters. She has been helping people free their inner author since 1994, she has helped over a thousand authors-in transformation write, publish, and promote their books. Angela is the author of Make 'Em Beg to Be Your Client: The Nonfiction Authors' Guide to Selling, Serving and Funding a Movement, Make 'Em Beg to Publish Your Book: How to Reach a Larger Audience & Make a Full-Time Income in the Extremely Overcrowded World of Personal Development, The Incubated Author: 10 Steps to Start a Movement with Your Message, and The Difference: 10 Steps To Writing A Book That Matters. She has a BA and a Masters in Journalism & Media Affairs from George Washington University, and PhD in Communication from European Graduate School and lives in Washington DC.
Welcome Angela. I know you as way more than that. I feel like I met you to write my book, which was extremely successful, it has been successful so it's led me to do what I'm doing today, and I'm eternally grateful to you, I'm super excited to have you today. We're talking about how we're in quarantine and enjoying that life, so I want to let you introduce yourself, talk a little bit about what you do, and then we're just going to let the world know who you are.
Angela Lauria: Awesome. First of all, thank you so much for having me. It's such a great example, your book, because when people come to me, the thing that they want is to become an author. And for many people, and I don't, we should talk about your story, but for many people before they find me, they've wanted that for some time. Some people tell me, I've known I was going to be an author since I was seven years old. I've been trying to write a book for 20 years. It's like an interesting process because actually writing a book, the act of actually typing the words on the page isn't that hard on the scheme of things. We've done harder things, we've had babies, we've survived grad school, we've done all these hard things, but there's a mental game to writing a book that I think for most people, and if you're listening and you've wanted to write a book, whether it's a kid's book, or a book of poetry, or a nonfiction book, like Shirley's, the thing that's stopping you is probably not the tactic of writing it. All the Mental Gymnastics, which I call becoming the person who wrote the book. You have to first become the person who wrote the book, then you'll type it. That part will be easy.
Shirley Owens: And what's awesome with you saying is, my whole thing is who we are. Being in any relationship is how we create whatever we want to create, right? And it's the same thing with writing a book. I know for me, it was probably 20 years that I kept saying I wanted to write a book. I'd write a book and I've learned all these ridiculous percentages of how many people actually do write books. So basically, the way I found you was I woke up one morning, decided I was going to write a book, open my email, and there you are. I don't even know how that happened, but it happened and it was--
Angela Lauria: That moment, that decision, it's so sneaky when we want something, because we could say, I want to lose 10 pounds. Or we could say, I want to meet a great guy. Or we could say, I want to write a book. All these things we say we want, sometimes we even do vision boards about them that there is something different when you decide you're going to do it instead of wanting it to happen.
“There is something different when you decide you're going to do it instead of wanting it to happen.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: I fully agree. You could have been there all the time. Like those my emails with you could have been there, or I don't know. But when I wanted it, it was there in front of me. And I agree. I think that when we commit ourselves and open ourselves up to this is it, this I'm going to do, it's all there. And then who gets in our way from that point.
Angela Lauria: Our stupid thoughts, brain with bad ideas. You make this decision. You're like, okay, I'm going all in. And then life starts happening and you're like, do I really need to do it? There's a pandemic. My kids are homeschooling. There will always be a reason. The way I say, they'll always be a pandemic. They'll always be a current, whatever the thing is that's stopping someone from writing. Life is gonna make lifing.
Shirley Owens: Oh, yeah, today, I am going to get an injection in my back because I tore this. But you know, I thought about that. I thought, Oh, Angela never put up with that excuse why I canceled on her that I'm in back pain, whatever. I'm doing it anyway. But two of the reasons that I wanted to have you, I mean, there's a million reasons and we could talk for 25 hours on all the amazing information that you have, but this is my 50th show and I wanted it to be really special. So you got picked as my special. And then also right now, during this pandemic, I think a lot of people, I hear a lot of sad stories, and complaining, and negative thoughts wrapped around staying home. And for me, it's been wonderful, and I've been able to get a lot done. I'm creating an online course, I've been able to catch up on my interviews, and I'm also on my second book writing. I've been thinking about a lot of people out there who really could use you right now. Yeah, this is an excuse to not do something, but it's also an excuse to do something.
Angela Lauria: Yeah.
Shirley Owens: Writing a book right now, it's just an amazing time. And one of the things I want you to speak into is, is it about the book? I thought that I was going to write this book, and I had all the ideas of what I was going to be, and I started writing this book, and Oh, my gosh, everything in my life came up and the book is not what I started writing. So can you speak into that a little bit? Because right now while we're sitting with ourselves in quiet time, all the time trying to figure out how to make these relationships work around us, everything. There's a lot in there. I think some juicy stuff that we could really put into this.
Angela Lauria: Totally. Well, most people, not all, but most people come to work with me and find the book they wrote was different from what they thought they would write. And part of that is because our process is to reverse engineer the outcome of the book that we start with. What do you want the book to do? How do you want your business to be different? How do you want your life to be different? In most cases, writing a book to just put it on the shelf and look at it. You want it to do something, and so this is why I think there are some people, and by the way, I'm no judgment against anyone who during the pandemic just wanted to nap.
Shirley Owens: Oh, done a ton of that too.
Angela Lauria: To do anything. But if you are having stirrings of maybe I won't go back to my job, maybe it's time to make some money. I've always talked about having an online coaching business, but I've never done it, more people are doing online coaching now. Maybe there's more clients, which is definitely true. I've always wanted to have an online course. Maybe now is the time to create one. If you're thinking about that, which a lot of people are. My thing is, let's start with the end in mind. Stephen Covey says: "When climbing the ladder of success, make sure it's leaned against the right building." I love this quote because a lot of times, we see what Shirley is doing. Shirley has a podcast show, she's doing a book show, she's doing an online course, and then we do it because it looks like Shirley has what we want, but we haven't actually slowed down to say, Hey, wait, what do I want?
Shirley Owens: Right.
Angela Lauria: What's the outcome I want? Not just when I look at her, I'm jealous or have feelings and so I'm going to do it myself. And I think a lot of people aren't as strategic as they could be, which would help them get the book done faster or the podcast done faster. If you've been spinning on a project, whether it's cleaning out your garage, or doing a podcast, or writing a book, if you've been spinning on a project, it's because you don't know why you want to do it. You're not clear enough on the outcome. And I don't think we spend enough time there.
“If you've been spinning on a project, it's because you don't know why you want to do it.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: I agree. I know for me, years ago when all this process started with me, people would come to me and say: "Wait, how can I be like you?" And I'd say: "Oh, hold on, let me go see how someone else is doing it so that I can tell you how to be like me." And I think that we just live in fear of ourselves. What are people going to think about me? I know you and I have talked about this a lot and you speak so much into this, what are people going to think about me if I write this book? And people aren't gonna like me. I know you've definitely had some haters, and I've had some haters, and we're super grateful for those haters. And I think that it's really important. And I think the people that really succeed at this are the people who get to the point where, like you say, they are themselves. They are aligned with who they are and then they're just being them.
Angela Lauria: Yeah. And that's so easier said than done. Just be yourself. Okay, I want to be myself, but I really want clients. I really want to be liked. There's a thing in yoga where you do this in tree pose, probably any of the balance poses, but I think of it in tree pose, where to stay balanced. You have to keep looking forward, then you press down but then you're also lifting up. So your arms are up, your foot, one foot is like grounded down and you're looking straight ahead. I feel like that's the answer to getting what you want, and accomplishing your goals is, first, you have to keep looking towards that vision. If you look down, if you look up, you're going to change your mind. You're going to want to do a podcast instead of a book. You're going to want to get a job, you're going to fill out an application to be a barista, get very confused, so you have to keep looking forward and be super clear in your vision. And then you have to do all of this work to stay grounded and actually do the button chair work. If you want to do a podcast, you're going to have to record some podcasts. You have to sit down, interview people, get the tape. And that to me is just like the earthy human stuff. But even if you do that perfectly, those two steps, if you're not connected to the source, however you think of that, if you're not bringing in that element of your purpose, your greater vision, what happens is you have a podcast but nobody's listening. You have a book but nobody's reading.
“The answer to getting what you want first, is to keep looking towards that vision. If you look down, if you look up, you're going to change your mind.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: Right.
Angela Lauria: So that to me is the reaching up. It's like pulling in from the heavens, from source, from your higher self, however you think about that relationship with something bigger than you and being an expression of more while still just being the girl with the microphone who's recording the podcast. And all of those things at once, it's like when you were learning how to drive for the first time, the foot, and we're looking, but not at the car out there. It seems like too many things at once, and then you have to hold that pose for longer than you think you can.
Shirley Owens: So crazy. This reminds me of. I remember you talking about your salad. And I want to get to that story because I think that a lot of the time, what's holding us back is actually just doing it. Getting in front of the camera. Today, I seriously do not have eyelashes, I'm in quarantine, how can I be on video? But I really wanted this to be video because I think that you come through like, who you are comes through you on video. And I didn't want to just hear your voice, I was just like, you know what? It's fine. It's the salad thing. I got to have her tell that story on here because I think it's important for people to, we worry so much about these stupid little things of, don't put yourself out there. Like for my podcast, it was super hard for me for a long time to actually do video. I only did audio, and I was a nervous wreck doing audio. Then I went on a bunch of other people's shows, and TV, and everything. Every single time, I just petrified. And everytime, it's fine. It turns out fine.
Angela Lauria: Our brains tell us you're going to die, it's going to be horrible.
Shirley Owens: I mean, the worst thing ever. Yeah, and that was another thing that I think I've learned from you is you're not going to die. You're fine, you're fine. So maybe tell that story or apply it to getting what you want. I really think that that was something that sticks with me.
Angela Lauria: Yeah, so the thing is that, when we create a vision that's like that horizon line, when you're doing tree pose, that's the direction we're heading. And I think I've seen memes of this where it says, success and it'll draw like a line, a straight line, what we think success will look like. And then it's like what success actually looks like, and it's really line. We get this vision, I'm going to write a book, I'm going to do a podcast, whatever that vision is of the thing we want. We get that vision and we think for some dumb reason, everytime that it's going to be this straight line, but on the way, all these other things happen that can stand between us and that goal. And one of the big lessons I had from this was, I had a roomy when I was first out of college, and she had an eating disorder, and we went to lunch one time at this Bistro and I ordered a burger, and she ordered a salad but it was a salad with no croutons and the dressing on the side, and when the salad came, and my burger came, our entire conversation became about what the other people at the Bistro thought about my friend Jessica having a salad with no crouton and no dressing. And she's like, why do you think people are saying about my salad? What do you think they think? Is it weird? Is it weird? Because I didn't get any protein on the salad. Is it weird I didn't get chicken? Do you think they know I didn't have protein? Should I tell people I have Celiac? Do you think they know I don't have my dressing? And it was so obvious not having that particular eating disorder looking around at this Bistro. There was a couple on their first date, there was another couple that had their dog tied up outside and the dog was barking at people walking by. There was another couple that was in some sort of weird fight with you. We looked around at this restaurant, and to me, I saw people who did not have Jessica's salad anywhere in their mind, no one was looking at your salad, Jessica. But in her head, she could see all eyes staring at her and judging her for her salad. But the truth is you should be so fucking lucky if people look at your salad. People don't care that much about you as it turns out. So a lot of times we'll put out a Facebook post, or an email, or we'll tell someone at a meeting like, I'm going to write a book and then we're really nervous about what they're thinking about, and how are people noticing you're not wearing eyelashes right now. But the truth is they're worried about their dog barking outside, and whether the girl on the date likes them, and they're thinking about whether or not to ask their husband for a divorce. No one's looking at your eyelashes or your salad.
Shirley Owens: And if they are, it's their stuff.
Angela Lauria: And it's so obvious when it's someone else, when I tell that story about Jessica, it's like, well, who cares? It's her salad. But let me tell you, if you're anorexic, it's all you think about. In that moment, she cared. You're not sure if that's what they're thinking about. But that's your stuff too. You just can't see it. You can see it when I talk about Jessica, but when I talk about you, you're like, Oh, but in my case, my mom's friends are very opinionated about. And also, it doesn't matter.
Shirley Owens: Yeah. And I think this is a huge lesson because so much of our life is filled with that. What are people going to think? I can't get my message out because what are people going to think? And what I've realized is that people that don't like me or like what I do, it's okay. I have a tribe of people. I have a very large following. I'm in 17 countries on five continents. Like so exciting that there are people out there that are going to get this message and receive it in the way they're going to receive it. And I love that our teapot is so cute. It's the cutest thing. But anyway, when we start to not care about everybody in the masses, and this is what I learned about my book. I was writing to one person in a coffee shop, one person, and the more I got to writing to that one person, the broader my demographic became. And I can't tell you, I've been wanting to tell you this actually, but I've had probably 500 people say: "When I read your book, I felt you were just talking straight to me. Just like we were having a conversation in a coffee shop."
Angela Lauria: It was, do you tell them it was?
Shirley Owens: Yeah. I mean, how beautiful is it to have these little things that just stick, like, Oh, I don't have to cover every single situation. I remember being so worried about women that were being abused. If they listen to me, they're going to be abused more. And I remember you saying you can put a little disclaimer in there about that, but you can't cover everybody. You just pick your one person and write to that one person. I had to keep pulling myself back to that one person, which has really given me so many people.
Angela Lauria: Yeah. I think that's one of the things about creating. I learned this from Amy Pearson. She told me this, and I think it's super helpful. It's not true, but I like the visual. So she says: "The world is divided into three types of people. There are people who no matter what you do, even if it's not that good, they're going to love it. Just whatever you do, you're their person. You could mess it up, you could have typos, you can stutter, they're going to love what you do. Then there's another third of people who no matter what you do, no matter how good it is, no matter how much you study, no matter how hard you work, they're going to hate what you do. Doesn't matter what you do, you are never going to get it right with these people and it's a third of people. And then there's a third of the people that are on the fence that could go either way." What most of us do is we spend 80% of our energy trying to make the people who are never going to like us.
Shirley Owens: So true.
Angela Lauria: In the process, the people are going to like you no matter what, like you no matter what but with less vigor. And the people who are in the middle ended up sliding into the people that don't like you category. If instead we spent all our time talking to the one third of people that love us no matter what we do, they'll love us even more. The people that were in the middle, we'll slide into their column. And the one third of people that weren't gonna like us don't like us anyway.
Shirley Owens: Yeah.
Angela Lauria: Okay. So I just give it to them like they're one third of the people on the planet that aren't going to like what I do. Fine. Now I will give you none of my attention. You seem like the worst people for me to spend my time.
Shirley Owens: Exactly. Yeah.
Angela Lauria: I love that visual. Whatever the numbers are, there's something, it's not an even third, probably 2% of people that like you, and 2% of people love you and everybody else in the middle. But there are these thirds, and if you just remember, only talk to the people that are gonna love you no matter what makes life so much more fun.
Shirley Owens: And you are fun. I remember when I first met you, I thought, I mean, I cried a few times during that book writing process and I remember thinking, Oh, she is just harsh. And then now I'm kind of like in that category of, so it's okay to just be truthful and tell it like it is and just be authentic. And I've really grown to love you for that person and for who you brought out in me. Because for the longest time I was like, I can't do this because I am not Angela. We are different people and I can't do it because I can't do it the way she, my husband would be like, well, why aren't you doing what Angela does? Because he's for sure if you know, why don't you do it the way she does it. And I'm like, I can't, it just doesn't feel good for me. And I would try, and I would fail. And I think that it's so important to, like you said, because the people that just are all Angela maybe wouldn't be all me. But through me becoming me and being fully in who I am, my authentic self aligned with what I teach is what I teach. And if you don't like it, that's okay. I still love you. But through that I think that you and I became closer. And I respect you a lot more, and I don't fear you like I did in the beginning. I wrote my book and getting through that process was just, I can't even tell you the accomplishment that it feels to get through that. Now I look back to my book, I'm like, wow, that was such a small step for me. When back then, it was the hugest thing I could have ever done. And now I'm like, Oh yeah, I wrote a book, and I have a podcast, and I have an online course, and I'm on my second book, and I'm a speaker, and I'm in the Chicago Tribune, like everywhere. And it all started with this one decision to write a book. Since I did that, I've had a ton of ads. And people are like, come write a book with me, come write a book with me. And something that I want to tell our listeners because we're going to get to how they can get to you. But the thing that I love the most about this process, The Author Incubator process was becoming me writing a book for the person that needed to have that book. And now there's thousands and thousands of people that need that book. And then we went through that process pretty quick, and I know for my process it was, what was it like--
Angela Lauria: Three months to write the book. Nine weeks to write it, and then another eight or nine--
Shirley Owens: A total of four months, right? It was like on Amazon or whatever. Anyway, it was crazy. And one of the things that I've learned from that process was managing time.
Angela Lauria: Oh, yeah.
Shirley Owens: So something I learned from you and I've done for a long time is I schedule everything. So I schedule my time, like on Wednesdays was my day that I spent with my girls. I only do interviews on Tuesdays and Thursdays. And then Wednesdays was the time that I spent with my kids and my grand babies. And I really started doing that and realized that I had so much more time with them even though I was adding so many more things on my plate. But I was managing my time. And I want you to speak to that because I think you're the professional at this. And even at the beginning I was like, you scheduled time with your child. This is ridiculous. But I really get it now, because when you schedule time with your child you can be a hundred percent present in that.
Angela Lauria: Just like on this podcast, you're not also cleaning your kitchen. But then with our kids, we think the time we spend with our kids, we could be cleaning the kitchen and whatever, folding the laundry, which you can. But if you're present, like it's going to be so different if you're present. That's my whole thing. So Betty Friedan, who is a feminist from the 70's wrote in her book, Work Expands to Fill the Time. And she was talking about housework and how at that time housewives were responsible for all the cleaning, and it would take all day. She talked about this concept, and I remember learning about this somewhere in school, but I remember reading that. And when I was a senior in college, I got my first job working on a book. It was around the same time I had studied Betty Friedan and the feminist movement, and my boss said to me, Oh, I only ever spend one week on a chapter. And I was like, Oh, that's interesting. I just thought it was my first job. So I just thought it was how books were done. And then I went to work with other authors and I noticed they were not nearly as productive as David, my first boss. And the difference was he decided at the beginning how long he would take. And the other authors that I worked with, when I was in my early 20's, they would keep writing until they felt like it was done, but there was no one to tell them when it was done. So I always tied it back to that idea of work expanding to fill time. There actually is no authority. There's no governing body that says, when you're done with a chapter. So a chapter of a book could take you 20 years. And for many people, it does. So we set a process where you complete each chapter in two to four hours with the goal of it being crappy the first time. And instead of writing one awesome chapter in two months, or two years, or whatever, you're going to do it like a time test and you're going to get the best chapter you can in two hours. Then you could go back and spend another two hours editing it, and another two hours editing it, you could bring in an editor for two hours because we time all of our editors as well so we can make sure that your chapter is good but without having this open ended sense of time.
And I noticed when I applied this to my authors, they all finished their books. So then I started applying it everywhere in my life. What if I decide in advance how long something will take? So there are lots of productivity classes out there. David Allen's Getting Things Done, there's Todd Herman's 90 Day Year, but at the end of the day, those productivity programs are teaching you productivity in theory. I think one of the most powerful things we do at the author incubator is you do a productivity or you go buy one. You actually write the book and learn any productivity system. We call it finding your author mojo, so that is how you get things done. There was somebody last night, I think I was answering a message, I don't know midnight, and this woman posted her manuscript is due in five days, and she posted, I'm so behind them, so behind on my book but I'm going to get it done. She was like, I believe in myself but I'm so behind. And I wrote back to her and I'm like, you can't possibly be behind because no time machines exist. Like bang on behind indicates there's some way we can go back in time and there isn't. You are where you are, the deadline is what it is. You're just here and now you need a plan from here. If you're going to hit the deadline, you're either going to decide I'm not going to hit the deadline, or you're going to decide I am going to hit the deadline and then you need a plan to hit it, which is not that hard. As it turns out, five days is plenty of time to write a book. She's done all the pre-work, she's ready to write it. So I'm like, you're fine. This is how your brain does the work. Your brain thinks about it for a few weeks, then it gets close to the deadline, and your brain is like, we should really focus right now.
“You do productivity, you don't go buy one.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: Right. And one of the things that you do is allow that, some people write 15 minutes a day. So I had a two week writer's block and I was like, nothing is coming to me. I can't get anything from here to pay for it. And I remember that same type of conversation with us where you're like, that's fine. Everyone has writer's block, that's fine. Just do what you do. And I think taking that pressure off of yourself, and yeah, we have like all this, this idea of what it's supposed to be and what it should look like, so when you can take that off of yourself, then all of a sudden it's like, Oh, wait, I'm writing again. Oh, here it comes. And yeah, some days you write for eight hours because you're in the mood. And then some days, I didn't write at all. But having that constant reminder of you're okay right where you're at, you're perfect of where you're at, everything is fine, you're fine. Like you say, here's this, here's the deadline. And that's how it was like when you say you pull it all the way into life, it's the same thing. It's like 10 to two, every Wednesday I spent with my girls. Okay, so we know what time we have. All we have to do is decide what we're going to do with it. Are we going to get our nails done? Are we going to go to lunch? We go shopping. We're going to just hang out. We're going to talk about. And some days we might, guess what? I'm the boss of my own schedule. So some days I might go till four and nothing is ruined. Everything's perfect. And it's been really freeing, and I think for our listeners, this is a really freeing concept. You are the writer of your own productivity.
Angela Lauria: I think we think it comes from the outside. There's the people, Martha Stewart for sure has it figured out. However she does it as the right way to do it.
Shirley Owens: Yeah. Everybody is the right way, right?
Angela Lauria: What if it was in you when people who are saying about food talk about this? Talk about your body's wisdom to know what it needs to be nourished. So if you stop saying mean things to yourself, if you actually provided the opportunity to eat foods that fueled your body and learn how to listen to your body, your body would not want to eat healthy foods 100% of the time, but you would have a natural craving for sweet things, which might be the equivalent of spending an extra two hours with the kids, a normal healthy amount of time. When you trust yourself and you have a relationship with your body, and you trust your body is going to give you that information, you're going to eat healthy most of the time to eat healthy, and when you don't, it won't matter. You think someone outside of you has the list of things you should eat, then you try and eat what Jenny Craig tells you to eat. All you're really doing is, even if it works temporarily, it can't work long term because you're telling yourself I don't trust you, you don't have the answers.
Shirley Owens: Right.
Angela Lauria: And it's the same thing with productivity. If you set a goal, and you set a deadline, and you give yourself a schedule when you're going to do it, then you can relax however it shows up. If you have writer's block, you don't write, you reschedule those hours but you can relax into it. It's really about building that relationship with yourself that you can trust yourself to do what you said you would do.
“You can trust yourself to do what you said you would do.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: Yeah, I love it. I mean, it all goes back to just aligning with who we are. And I think, sometimes our life looks outside to what is the perfect person, what is the perfect way to live life, and we're all here wondering the same thing. We all have our purpose, whatever that is. And we're all here wondering the same thing and how are we going to be someone else. But yeah, who we are is the most important, most social thing. I know that I met a ton of authors that have written with you and it's really fun to see them. I saw myself just come into their own being and who they are. And just be so okay with whatever it is that they feel their purposes and to be able to just put it down on paper, and I dunno, there's a process that's just beautiful there. This is not just writing a book, this is life coaching at its finest. I mean, I don't even like the word life coach half the time because I think it's just attached with so many things. But you are a book coach, but you also help people, writing a book becomes something so much bigger.
Angela Lauria: People that are most successful with us. It's not like everything in their life was in place and they just added a book and then the book was successful. It's like the book is the leading indicator, people move., I've had people who end up moving near the ocean, like from Ohio to Florida because they realized they really want to be near the ocean. People fall in love. People get into relationships, people leave relationships. A lot of our authors have been in abusive relationships, but tolerably abusive, and they've kept themselves small as a way of trying to stay safe in their relationship. And once they're like, Woohoo, I'm an author, all of a sudden that relationship just doesn't serve a purpose. Those kind of semi abusive narcissistic relationships. You're in a relationship with someone who's not fully letting you shine and your complicit in that.
Shirley Owens: Yes.
Angela Lauria: Those relationships, when your book is out there, there suddenly no place for them. I've seen people lose weight, I've seen people quit their jobs. So many other things happen because the person who wrote the book is different from the person who wanted to write a book.
Shirley Owens: Yeah. Oh, my gosh. I agree with that so much, and I've seen it too with so many of my friends that I made during that process. And yeah, I definitely see that. And it's an accomplishment, but it's not like you just won an award or something. It's just there's something like you took something that you've been wanting to do for your whole life and then you took it from beginning to end. And there's something about that point, like you can be in the middle of writing a book for a long time, but the day you sat on a stage holding your book, there is something you said that just transforms you. And for me, it was definitely like a launchpad for everything that I've done since then. And my relationships are better, my everything, everything is just better.
Angela Lauria: No, yeah, it brings up your stuff. I think people, you were talking about the numbers before. 91% of people say they want to write a book, 3% of people get it done. Not because writing a book is hard. It's not that it's easy, but that's not why people don't finish. People don't finish because thinking about writing a book or being in the middle of writing a book helps you stay right where you are. Actually getting it, that book in the world, it's almost like you're killing your former self and turning into a new person. Just like when you have a baby, meaning you have a baby, you will never be the same person again as before the baby. So that's what happens when you have a book, there's no way to ever go back. So people stay pregnant with a book for years or decades because they're afraid of meeting the author inside of them. That's why I said in my bio that you read, it says Angela has been helping people free. They're our authors since 1994. The very first book I worked on was in 1994. To me, the book is a byproduct. My part is being the doula to the author, turning someone from a regular human into an author, which is a form of superhero to me.
Shirley Owens: You really are. I mean, it really is. And there's so much about you that just can't come out on this you live in a castle which was always my dream, which was one of the things that, weirdly in the beginning was like, Oh, if I'm going to write with somebody, that's going to be someone that lives in a castle for sure. And now you have The Author Incubator, The Author Academy, which is in downtown Washington, DC.
Angela Lauria: Yup. It's in, it's halfway between [inaudible] University and George Washington University, which is where I went to school.
Shirley Owens: Yeah. And we love DC. My husband went to school there too, that's such a cool thing. And the people that you have brought in to help you, help more authors at a time, I know it was just you at the beginning, and you're just day in, day out, 24 hours a day trying to keep all of us a flow, and now you've brought in some amazing people. I want you to talk about the Academy, maybe a little bit about the process and what people would need to do to write a book with you. And I promise that writing a book with you is so much more than writing a book. So me, having that personal experience, I mean, your sister is one of my bestest friends in life. I've had clients because of you. Your mom is dear to me.
Angela Lauria: My nephews.
Shirley Owens: Yes, even your nephews, and I just love them. They're like my own, and I've even gone to visit your mom and sister, and your sisters come here. I've developed so many friendships and family, and so there's this personal aspect of it where we all become really close. I keep in touch with a lot of the authors that went through the process with me, and this is just really special to my heart. So I want to take that time in the show today to have you talk about what to do. We've talked a lot about it, but there's more than you can probably say. But just tell me about how people can get in touch with you. I know that you're very, I wouldn't say limited, but I know that you definitely there's an application process and you don't let anyone write with you. So I feel very special that I was chosen for that. Just tell us about the process. Tell us about you, whatever you want to talk about. And then if you could leave one thing that someone could do today to start in the process of getting what they want, hopefully through writing a book, that'd be awesome.
Angela Lauria: So first of all, this is a personal thing for me. I think there are a lot of ways to write a book, programs out there, free paid. I'm sure you can type in how to write a book and there'll be a million things on YouTube, or Google, or wherever. There's probably a $7 class on you to me. We're a premium product, it's not cheap, but the difference I think is, I'm gonna know your name, I'm gonna know your partner's name, I'm going to know your kid's name. We are very selective. So we get about 2000 applications a month and we take about 20 people. So it's definitely selective to get in, but that's because you're going to come to my house, I'm going to go to your house. You might sleep at my mom's. And I think there are a lot of coaches out there that are focused on, and I don't have a problem with this, but they're focused on how many people I can reach. You picked your Tony Robbins in a room with, I dunno, 10,000 people or however big that the stadiums are. I don't have a problem with that, I'll go to the stadium. That's not my thing. I like to be heart to heart, belly to belly, actually know people as people. And so it's a very intimate process. And then in terms of the team, there are other editors and other coaches that helped me, but I'm involved with all of our clients. And now I don't know if you know this, I don't know if we've talked about one of our head coaches right now is Marianne Williamson.
Shirley Owens: Yes, I didn't.
Angela Lauria: New York Times bestselling author of many books, 14 books, but one of which is A Return to Love, which is one of the top selling personal development books of all time. She works with our authors, she does blessings, and meditations, and really helps with the inner game. And she always says that we're an amazing team because I do all the outer wizard stuff. How to get your book done? And had to get a course done? And then she does all the inner wizardry, how to create miracles and spread love and become the person who has what you want. So I think that's one of my keys for how to get what you want, the inner game is about 80%. You gotta go take some external actions. If you want to meet someone, you're probably gonna set up an online dating profile. But if you do that first, the outer work first, it doesn't work without the inner game. So that's really fun. So we work with people. When we go through our applications, what we're looking for is not the best writers. We're not looking for people who have a big following. We're looking for people who want to go deep with their work. So that means they have something we call a servant's heart. They don't just want to make money, but they actually want to bring hope, healing transformation to the planet. They want to make the world a better place for real, and to make money in the process but coming from that place of how can I serve my favorite prayers, the Prayer of St Francis, which is making an instrument of peace. So dear Lord, where would you have me go? What would you have me do? Who would you have me serve? Show me the way. And a lot of our authors will say on their applications, there was something I said that they knew we were meant to work together. They've been praying for this. They've been meditating on this. They've been asking for this, for somebody to come in and incubate them, show them every single aspect of this process, not just take their money and edit a book. This is about you as an author. So yeah, so that's basically how it works, we call it The Author Incubator.
Obviously our website is the authorincubator.com, and there's an application there, but I also have like a mini training. If you go to the authorincubator.com/microwebinar. That's like a 29 minute class that takes you through what we do and who it's for, so that can be super helpful. Also, if you look around at my website, you'll see your book and all the other books we've published. There's over 1200 of them now, so you can check that out. And my books are up there, and you can get them for free if you want to get a sense of what I teach or if you're not in a place to invest, but you want to get a sense of what you're talking about, what all the teaching is. All the books are free up there because I want to make sure people that are called to make a difference have the tools to make the difference they know they're born to make.
Shirley Owens: I love it. And you for sure have those, I can attest to that. Well, one thing I asked all of my guests is, is there anything that you regret or would do differently, looking back.
Angela Lauria: I was really mean to myself for a long time, which was very unproductive. Not to mention that it felt horrible, but you get, there's no upside to me into yourself. If there was, I would have found it. But I feel like I always was called to books. I wrote my first book, I was 13 years old. And from that time that I was 13, possibly even younger, until I was probably 39, I used all my extra energy to tell myself mean things about myself. And I know that there's someone listening who does this too. The second they see someone else walk by a mirror, read something they wrote, hear their voice on tape, all they think is, why does my voice sound like that? Why does my face look like that? How come I have these weird bumps or lumps? How come I can't write a beautiful sentence like my Angelou? And that's what I did. I spent all my energy from 13 to 39 thinking of ways I was terrible. And the minute I stopped doing that, I had time to build a multi-million dollar business that helps thousands of people who helped thousands of people. So there's just literally no upside to kicking your own ass. So I'm not saying it's easy to stop, but there is help out there, and your help will look different than someone else's. Don't stop looking for the answer because you don't have to be mean to yourself to get results.
“You don’t have to be mean to yourself to get results.” -Angela Lauria
Shirley Owens: That's beautiful. I know you as a savant, beautiful, I mean, so confident. And when you talk about your passenger stories, it gives a lot of hope. And I think that if you're out there and you want to write a book, and you want to get some self confidence, this is a program for that too because definitely everything comes from that. So thank you so much. I'm really honored that you got to spend this time with me today. I love you, and I'm so grateful for you to be here, and just thank you.
Angela Lauria: I love you right back. Thanks for having me.