My book:This Part Of The Sky

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“This Part Of The Sky” is now available at http://www.wendymaraghtaylor.com/ or http://www.amazon.com/  YEAH!

At just over 150 pages, it’s a quick read and hopefully one that you will enjoy. Perhaps you have family, friends or colleagues who might appreciate it as well. Bless someone with it as a gift or just feel free to pass the link along. You can help make this an Amazon bestseller today! Yes, I like to think big. Remember, a percentage of the proceeds will go to the next phase of the Liberia Project – plans to build a separate school and playground.

Here’s what some people are saying:

“This Part Of The Sky is proof positive of Margaret Mead’s adage, ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.’ The simplicity of the message defined by Maragh Taylor will provide the roadmap to fulfilling your personal legacy.” —Kathleen Durham, Executive Director, The Eleanor Roosevelt Leadership Center at Val-Kill

“We are honored. It is too fine. The whole town will read this book.” — Dennis Tarbo, Elder in Zorzor, Liberia

“Wendy Maragh Taylor with her husband, Joseph, traveled to Liberia, West Africa with the plan of building a church and school. This story is both a cultural journey into an area rarely seen by western eyes and an affirmation that despite our differences, we have much in common. And by climbing out of her comfort zone, Wendy, with her charming descriptions of her misadventures, learns a lot about herself. With an ending like no other, Wendy makes a call to action that is hard to ignore. May we all be inspired by This Part Of The Sky.” — MJ Hanley-Goff, writer, editor, Hudson Valley Parent | Hudson Valley Life; and author of the upcoming How Writing Can Get You Through Hard Times and Joyous Ones

With sincere gratitude, be well ~ WMT.

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Hard work…Great fun!

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I prided myself on not ever doing an all-nighter in college. I have always been an early-to-bed gal, and I also understand the importance of a good night’s sleep to keep us alert for the next day’s tasks. Now, nearly two decades later, I have had more than a few late nights and…yes, some all-nighters too. Toiling over my book has been really hard work. Editing and making revisions has been time-consuming and sometimes even tedious. Deciding on specific elements of the book has been overwhelming.

And yet, the self-publishing process has also been great fun. I’ve been working with a publishing consultant, Andrea, who is organizing and managing the process.  I’ve been brainstorming with Nick, a graphic artist, to come up with book cover concepts.  All my editing has been with Donna. And, in all those areas, I’m making the final decisions.  There would be no possibility of this much autonomy over all the details of a book if I had gone the traditional publishing route.  When I had an essay and a short story published through traditional means, I had no say in how it was shared with the public.  I even had to sign away the rights to my work, for a time.

This is absolutely the best means through which to get this story out into the world. The Liberia Project, the subject of the book, came out of community support.  Now, this book is coming into existence because of a community of backers.  And so, it has been fitting to include those people in the process as well.  Yes, I chose the book cover, decided on the layout, and finally selected a subtitle.  However, that was all with assistance – giving feedback on choices I put out to them and voting on various possibilities – from the book’s backers.   As I get closer to completing this process and getting the book out there, I continue to be grateful for this opportunity.  I am working hard, and loving it.   It’s certainly a labor of love.

Life Works Lesson #12: Hard work can be fun too…when you are on the path to reaching your goal.

Be well, WMT

We Did It!

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Congratulations! Your project has been successfully funded! Nicely done! This project successfully raised its funding goal.

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I’m so excited, and very thankful to those of you who supported my project.  Look out for “This Part of the Sky” – coming to you soon.

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Life Works Lesson #8: Don’t give up.

Be well, WMT

The Power of Community

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What a roller-coaster ride my Kickstarter Book Project, http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/657505113/this-part-of-the-sky, has been – thrilling and nerve-racking at the same time.  I found out about Kickstarter while reading an alumni magazine.  I immediately investigated it, put together a project proposal and was soon after approved to launch it.  My project’s “backers” are individuals, and groups of family members, friends and co-workers who pooled their funds. So far, the pledge levels range from $5 to $600.  In the first week, I was excited to constantly receive emails about a new backer, messages from viewers about the cool rewards and even the countdown from Kickstarter about the time remaining to meet the project goal.  However, after the first week, things were at a standstill; then, there were little increase here and there; and, huge increases overnight; now, back to a standstill again.  I stopped looking at my email today because I couldn’t handle knowing how close or far I am from the goal.

So all-consuming has been the process that I added a chapter to the book about the power of community.  I continue to be taken aback by how everyday individuals can come together to do extraordinary things. It is how my husband and I funded the Liberia project, http://www.liberiaproject.com. My journal reflections about the experience building a church and school in Zorzor, Liberia is the subject of the book. Back then, I was stunned by how much we raised.  Now, I continue to be amazed by the support of family, friends, colleagues and a few random strangers to get the book about that experience published. I am extremely grateful for their involvement and support.

With just a couple of days left, I’m not sure what will happen in that time. I’m so close to the goal, I can see it.  However, I’m not quite there.  So, last night, I resigned myself to sitting back and waiting for the email from Kickstarter, which will soon read: “Your project _____.” I have been afraid to admit that it may say, “failed.” Actually, I’ve continued to say, “Failure is not an option.” However, the fact is, our plans do fail sometimes. Though, disappointing, that doesn’t have to leave us without hope. Failure is something to learn from, and, can certainly make us even more determined to accomplish a goal.

Nonetheless, I’m not ready to give in just yet. And so, I’ve changed my mind – I can’t possibly just sit back and wait to see what happens in the next couple days. I’m going to continue to send emails, make phone calls and talk to people about this project right to the very end. I’m sure it will make a difference: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/657505113/this-part-of-the-sky.

If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do, by all means keep moving forward.” Martin Luther King Jr.

Life Works Lesson #7: Take the time to invest in and develop a community; there is a great deal of power therein.

Be well, WMT