Why I burned my own book!

Sep 7, 2018 | Conscious Lab, Entrepreneur, Make It

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The Universe works in mysterious ways sometimes. Or maybe it’s not mysterious at all, but just different than how we think things should be so we come up with a term for it. Anyways, I have been learning a ton of lessons lately and as always, I feel comfort in sharing my thoughts and ideas with you through my writing. Who knows, maybe something I say will resonate with you and bring you some comfort and joy. There’s no other reason why I write these posts. 
If you have been following along with my adventures, you probably know I recently finished writing a book called Make It Happen. It took me FOREVER to finish it, and many times I felt like a broken record on social media because I posted that I was almost done sooooo many times. But now it’s actually done, so I can confidently saw I WROTE A DAMN BOOK!
Writing a book is an emotional rollercoaster, and honestly the process was way harder than I thought it was going to be. The writing itself wasn’t the hard part, it was the editing and the trust I had to put into my publisher that was excruciating. I love to write, and get a lot of joy of quietly sitting in front of my MacBook and letting the ideas flow. I’m naturally pretty introverted, so lighting the candles, brewing the tea, and settling in to write for hours on end is extremely comforting for me. I was also privileged to have been in Bali for a bulk of the process.
A few days ago, after submitting my FINAL manuscript to the printer, I sat down to write a blog post that shared my experience of finishing the book. It was hovering around 1200 words, and I felt pretty good about what I had wrote. But, then when I went to publish and email my post out today, I realized it had been deleted. I have no idea how this happened because I’m usually really on top of saving my work.
Instead of getting frustrated, flustered, and annoyed that my post had magically disappeared, I decided to channel my energy into creating a fresh one. I was very tempted not to share anything at all, but I instead decided to use this as an opportunity to express what it feels like to work on something and then have it vanish into thin air. 
My original post explained how it felt to look over my manuscript one last time, and then sign off on it before it went to the printer. I’ve been working on Make It Happen for almost 2 years now, and when I finally had to make the decision it was DONE it was one of the most surreal sensations I’ve ever experienced. 
There’s something so vulnerable and raw about sharing your thoughts, ideas, and feelings with the world. I’m not an expert or professional, but I knew for a long time I had a good story, and access to a lot of people who’ve been able to create amazing lives for themselves doing what they love. Through running the Make It show for the past 10 years(holy shit!), I’ve had the incredible gift of meeting Makies who are creating their own damn rules and living life on their own terms. It’s so impressively badass!
This has always been my why for Make It. I know the shear thrill of what it feels like to run your own business selling what I make, and I want other people to feel the same. There’s something magnetic, powerful, and transcendent when you see someone who’s able to earn a living doing what they love. My belief is the world needs more of this.
Annnnnyways, this is what my book is about and I supported the idea by interviewing some of my Makie friends, and also diving deep into studying manifestation, goal fulfillment, and achievement. Because I did so much research I was able to change my own thoughts and beliefs about who I am and what I’m capable of.
Because writing this book was such an arduous endeavour, I wanted to have a proper celebration as soon as it was done. I put so much blood, sweat, and tears into my manuscript and had many internal battles about if it was ever going to be “good enough.” Once I pulled the trigger and it went off to the printer, I knew it was time to release it. 
I decided I wanted to set the Make It Happen manuscripts I had been hauling around for the past month on fire. They were filled with a rainbow of sticky note edits, and the sight of them after a while made me feel ill. I knew it would feel cathartic AF to light these babies on fire! 
I’m really lucky to have an incredible boyfriend. His name is Orson, and we met on an internet dating site in January. I used to think it was embarrassing to publically announce how we met, but whatever it’s 2018 and that’s just how things are now. I was 36 and at that point I really wasn’t sure I would meet anyone compatible. But I did – so if you’re worried your person still hasn’t shown up, don’t worry because they will as soon as you let them. 
I told Orson about my burning the book plan, and he agreed it was a fantastic idea. Because he’s so awesome, he had read the manuscript 3 times looking for typos, and was probably also getting sick of seeing the stacks of papers all around our condo. Don’t get me wrong, I’m extremely proud of Make It Happenand think it’s going to help a lot of people, but man is it hard to read your own book over and over and over again!   
We packed up a couple of the most tattered up manuscripts, a bottle of processo, and headed over to my event space in Gastown called Conscious Lab. There’s an accessible rooftop, and Orson found an empty terracotta flowerpot that we decided would be perfect for the burn. I stuffed the pages inside of it and lit a match.
I’m trying to get more comfortable recording video, so I decided to make a little series of Instagram videos of my manuscript going up in flames. If you would like to watch is click here. After a few awkward takes, I decided to put my phone down and really be present as I saw all those thousands of words that came out of my head burn up into the sky. 
Sipping on my processo and reflecting on the journey with Orson, I realized what a special moment it really was. I decided I wanted to write a book years ago, and this was a moment in time that that was now a reality. I made it happen! Seeing the warm fire transcend all those pages into smoke and ash was a moment I’ll never forget. 
Make It Happenwill launch on Amazon and in book stores on November 6. Your can pre-order here. I’ll also have it available at the holiday Make It shows in Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver. Speaking of Make It, we’ll be celebrating our 10- Year Anniversay, Sept 21-22 at the Croatian Cultural Centre in Vancouver. I can’t believe the show has been going strong for so many years. It warms my heart that buying handmade is still a priority for so many people. Our 10-Year Anniversary show will feature over 65 Makies along with an awesome vibe, food trucks, and a bar. Buy your early bird tickets here and save $2!
We’re also hosting lots of exciting events at Conscious Lab this fall. First on the list is Conscious Mornings this Sunday, September 9. I will be hosting along with operations manager Carly. Tickets are only $20and include movement and candid conversation for creative entrepreneurs. 
The fact that you took the time to read my post means a lot and I hope it brought you some value. Writing a book was really hard and really amazing. I’m sure I’ll write about it more in future posts. I’ve been told that publishing a book can feel similar to giving birth. I haven’t birthed any baby humans yet, but when I do I’ll let you know. Until then, I have new respect for mamas because that was tough. 
Keep doing what brings you your greatest joy!

Thank you,

Pssst!I have a new Facebook pageif you would like to keep in touch 🙂

Meet Jenna

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