Trailer for our online course on Russian Folklore

In 2015, our program “Increasing Engagement through Storytelling, Scenario-Based Learning and Gamification” was a 2015 STARTALK grant recipient. During our program, we trained teachers of Russian on how to increase engagement in blended and distance learning classrooms through the use of storytelling, scenario-based learning and gamification. As a result of their training, we developed a fully functioning online course on the Russian Folklore based on the materials created by the teachers. Here is the trailer for the course.

 

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Bookphoria Interview at Earbud_U: Entrepreneurship, Conflict Management, Storytelling

EPISODE-9

Anastasia had the honor of being interviewed by Jesan Sorrells of Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT) for his Earbud_U podcast series.  They had a great time taking about the brain, entrepreneurship, conflict management and storytelling.

  • Why do our brains like stories?
  • How does learning happen in the brain?
  • How do you turn a start-up idea into reality?
  • How do you choose your business partners?
  • How do you manage a team of creatives from different parts of the globe?
  • How do you tell your story across multiple media platforms?

Click HERE to listen.

Featured Expert: Nancy Kaye on writing and creativity

Nancy KayeNancy’s acceptance speech for Creative Writing
Instructor of the Year UCSD ext. Award

My dear friend and colleague Nancy Kaye agreed to chat with me about her work of helping experts and writers overcome writer’s block and let their creativity flow.

Nancy’s background includes hosting her own TV and radio shows in Chicago, New York and California. She is an internationally published writer (122 countries), having interviewed many famous people, including H. H. Dalai Lama, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Wayne Dyer and many more. She is an engaging and inspiring keynote speaker.

Founder of The Confident Communicator™ Workshops, she instructs one-to-one personalized and group training re-programming sessions globally in all areas of communication. The intensive curriculum is tailored to the needs of each client. She diagnoses, evaluates, and teaches clients on a needs basis, and fine tunes them offering coaching, on-call client support, and empowerment.

Nancy is the founder of Define Your Destiny™ Intensives. She unveils the secrets to creating permanent change in your personal, professional and spiritual path. This unique self-development intensive with mentoring follow-up gives you the powerful tools you can use and build on throughout your entire life. Finding deep solutions to following your destiny to discover your perfect life plan.

She is the founder of Quantum Leaps Mastermind Group.™  Nancy is the West Coast Bureau office and Contributing Editor for the Integral Yoga Magazine.  With her my multiple life and business experience, service to her clients, along with the support know-how, Nancy can help you get the results that you want. Visit http://www.defineyourdestiny.com/ to learn more.

7 highlights from the New York Social Media Week Panel

SMWUSTeamThis week, I had an opportunity to attend the New York Social Media week sports panel hosted by Blue State Digital “You Won. What’s Next? How to keep your audience engaged after the big moment.”

The panel featured Olympians and NBC Broadcasters Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir;  Joey Maestas, Head of Social Media at the US Olympic Committee; Ashley Ramirez, Senior Account Strategist @ Twitter; and Evan Moody, Senior Media Strategist at Blue State Digital and Mitch Germann of FleishmanHillard.  It addressed the topic of “how you can keep your audience engaged after the big moment – whether it’s your athletes taking the global stage, a major legislative victory, or after a breaking news story hits. Because when the world isn’t watching, how do you stay relevant? ”

The video offers my seven highlights from the social media panel that apply to authors, experts and speakers.  After you have written a book, launched a program or a course, or had your big PR moment, how do you keep the momentum going?

P.S. You are invited to our first Cyber Soiree. Join us and learn how to create your perfect cyber cocktail:
    Mix your favorite brand ingredients;
    Stir by putting your brand message in motion;
    Create buzz 8 seconds at a time.

We’ll demo a few of our favorite things.
March 4th, 8:30pm EST/7:30pm CST/5:30pm PST. Click HERE to register.

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Automate Your Marketing with These 3 Simple Steps

automatization

Did you know that in the 19th century during the entire 100 years there were fewer photographs taken than in 2 minutes today? Our life is speeding up, our information is created and consumed faster than ever. How then can you keep your sanity and the love for your business in this rapid, constantly changing world?

 Automation is the key!

Continue reading Automate Your Marketing with These 3 Simple Steps

One Simple Solution to Stop “Exchanging Money for Time” Madness

friends

…There’s only one of you…And, like you’ve probably realized, there’s only so many hours in a day. And that means that no matter what, your income (and your impact) will always be limited.

When there’s no more room in the day for any more billable hours, how do you grow? And even more importantly– how do you stay sane?

Continue reading One Simple Solution to Stop “Exchanging Money for Time” Madness

25 Goodie Bag Ideas for Your Book Launches, Readings, Signings and Other Promotions

book bag
Image credit: Hammer & Thread

Goodie bags are not just for birthday parties anymore. Just like companies give goodie bags filled with small presents to promote their products, authors can fill goodie bags with little literary treasures to excite and delight the hearts and minds of book lovers. You can use them as gift bags for your VIP clients and strategic partners, as well as prizes in giveaways and contests.

Everybody wants to feel special, and with a little imagination, you can put together your own signature goodie bag to make your readers and clients happy. Here are 25 bookish goodie bag ideas for your book launches, readings, signings and other promotions:

  1. Your book autographed by you (Duh!);
  2. Bookmarks: check out some cute DIY felt ones on our Bookphoria Pinterest board or turn your photo collage into a bookmark with an added quote ;
  3. Reading lights;
  4. Fabric book covers;
  5. Pens custom-branded for you;
  6. Calendars with illustrations or quotes from your book;
  7. A set of cards featuring illustrations and quotes from your book;
  8. Stationary, such as notepads, cards and envelopes, custom-branded for you;
  9. Magnets with quotes from your book;
  10. A set of printed library cards that can be used as gift tags, invitations, records of book exchanges, or little notepads (see examples here);
  11. Gummy worm candies for bookworms;
  12. Book-themed mugs;
  13. Feeling crafty? Make some DIY Tile Photo Coasters or pick from the existing styles, colors and shapes, add your words, and then personalize your coasters with your own photo or art.
  14. Favor containers personalized with your quotes;
  15. Recipe cards if your book contains any recipes;
  16. Fortune cookies with your book quotes inside;
  17. A pack of custom heart candies with your clever sayings;
  18. A spice jar filled with your favorite spices and a label with your quote;
  19. A whimsy literary charm to mark a drink glass, like this set of 6 double-sided Fairytale Wine Glass Charms that include Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Snow White, Red Riding Hood, Romeo and Juliet and Cinderella;
  20. Copied book pages to wrap small items;
  21. Bookish socks, like Curl Up With a Good Bookworm Socks or Typewriters: “Your feet will want to tap, tap, tap the day away in our fun Typewriter women’s crew socks!”
  22. Origami made out of paper with your printed press releases, book reviews and other marketing materials that look impressive but not salesy in a cute origami form;
  23. A flash drive with audio files of your interviews, book readings, etc.;
  24. A DVD of your public appearances, talks or presentations;
  25. A custom designed library tote bag to hold your creative goodies.

What bookish gifts have you enjoyed giving or receiving? Share in the comments below.

P.S. Want our opinion on how you can multiply your impact and income?
Click here to join other experts invited to our free rapid fire mentorship session.

3 Surprising Patterns of Reading Online:

eye2While writing content for online environments you must think of the following paradox: reading is the PRIMARY action performed on the web. AND people try to read as LITTLE as possible (online) 20%!

So the goal for any visitor of your site is to scan as efficiently as they can to understand whether they like what they see or not (in which case they will click away).

Continue reading 3 Surprising Patterns of Reading Online:

52 blogging ideas for authors and experts, based on their book content

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Many authors choose to publish a blog as a way to stay connected with their readers, promote books, build their brand, share ideas, grow and engage their readership. A blog helps you stay visible and relevant to your audience. Publishers look for authors with active, buzzing and growing communities of readers and a robust social media presence.

If you have just written a book, you may feel like you have exhausted your creative potential and squeezed every original thought out of your head. What else could you possibly write about in a blog? Don’t despair! Get your blog publishing calendar out and start filling it with these 52 blogging ideas. If you publish once a week, they will give you the whole year worth of material!

  1. Things that didn’t make into the book, such as background stories of the characters, descriptions of people and places, or details of the events;
  2. Your personal elaborations on the characters and the plot;
  3. Your motivation for writing the book;
  4. Your mission, goals and inspirations as an author;
  5. A brief video introducing you and your book to your audience;
  6. Alternative plot developments that could have happened;
  7. Questions that you struggled with as you were writing the book;
  8. Your answers to the readers’ questions;
  9. Your responses to the readers’ reviews and comments;
  10. The summary of benefits your readers can expect when they study and implement your ideas;
  11. The summary of pain points that your book addresses;
  12. Lessons, case studies and examples of application of the ideas in your book;
  13. Your personal favorite or least favorite parts of the book and why you chose them;
  14. Anchors, such as catchy phrases, memorable metaphors or anecdotes that can improve the recall of your book content;
  15. Tests and assessments that allow readers to evaluate their knowledge and skills;
  16. Your questions to your readership;
  17. Photos of any physical artifacts that became a part of your book or helped you in the writing process, with your commentary;
  18. Recipes of any food or drinks mentioned in the book;
  19. Sharing of how you implement your own ideas – live your truth – your personal successes and failures along the way;
  20. Your habits as a writer and your creative process;
  21. Guide questions and activities for book clubs that want to discuss your book;
  22. Your own interviews about the book;
  23. Interviews of other people who have read and used your book;
  24. Stories, scenarios, problems that build on your material and encourage readers to apply the strategies in your book;
  25. Additional activities and exercises to help your readers implement your ideas;
  26. Daily observations and spin offs that relate to your book content;
  27. Giving voice to different characters in your book by writing a post from their perspective on a situation or interviewing them;
  28. A collection of quotes from your book that can be easily shared on social media;
  29. A collection of quotes from book reviews;
  30. Endorsements of your book by other distinguished writers and experts;
  31. Press releases about your book signings and other public appearances;
  32. Unfolding a passage of your book with additional thoughts, illustrations, etc.;
  33. Making your characters and places come alive through drawings, cartoons, maps, photos, etc.;
  34. Creating and sharing an infographic or visual illustration of your book content;
  35. Commentary of the news and current events that can be related to your book content;
  36. Guest posts from your readers or other writers;
  37. Reader contests where you ask your readers to submit some content, such as their stories, reviews, designs, for a chance to win a prize;
  38. Participating in a blog tour where other bloggers get to interview you about your book;
  39. Clips from newspapers, magazines and other publications about you and your book;
  40. How-to lists based on your book content;
  41. Before and after photos that illustrate the implementation of your system or strategies;
  42. Reader “makeover” challenges where you follow and write about some readers who are using your book to improve their lives;
  43. DIY projects based on your book content;
  44. Crossword puzzles based on your book content;
  45. Reviews of other books with complementary topics;
  46. Product and service suggestions based on your book content;
  47. Recap of your social media activity with most popular tweets, Facebook updates, LinkedIn discussions, readers’ comments, etc.
  48. Brief audio or video tips based on your book content;
  49. Teasers of your upcoming books;
  50. Brainstorming future book ideas with your readers;
  51. Asking readers’ opinions on your titles, book covers, etc.;
  52. Sharing your work process and progress if you are writing another book.

What do you write about in your blog? Share in the comments below.

Get Rid of The Fear of Public Speaking Once and For All!

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As a professional you will find yourself in a situation where you need to speak in public.

Do you feel nervous when you have to present in front of a large audience?  Does your heart start beating faster? Do you get butterflies in your stomach? Does your throat get dry or palms – sweaty? The trick to overcoming the fear of public speaking is not to fight your anxiety but to transform it into energy that can propel you to perform better. 

Continue reading Get Rid of The Fear of Public Speaking Once and For All!