Interview with Susan Leslie

Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story I remember is Octavious (the Octopus) - I think it may have been my first library book. I must have checked it out a couple dozen times. I had plenty of books at home and my aunts loved to read to me but I just loved going to the library to get a book I didn't have.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Rudyard Kipling's "The Jungle Book", because of all the childhood memories it brings back; Anthony Robbins' "Awaken the Giant Within", a birthday present when I was 25 that changed how I look at the world (I can't count how many times I turned the page and said "Wow"); Don Miguel Ruiz's "The Four Agreements" for how it enlightened me about myself; Rhonda Byrne's "The Secret" for opening my eyes to my own personal power; and Randy Gage's "How To Build A Multi-Level Money Machine" for helping me understand the direct sales industry and how I can optimize it in my life.
What is your writing process?
When I get an inspiration, I sit down at the computer and list all the things I want to cover about the topic. Then I fill it in and rearrange it in a logical order. I never force it. If I'm not inspired, I go do something else!
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Key West, Florida, when it was a tropical island paradise. Everybody knew everybody. My grandfather owned a print shop that printed a Spanish newspaper. I believe I inherited his entrepreneurial spirit. Many famous writers lived in Key West - Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams (I lived 3 blocks from TW). I believe the "free-spirited" way of life, to be your organic self, gave me the courage to finally become a writer many years after I left the island.
When did you first start writing?
I began writing in 2014 at the age of 51. I hope to be an inspiration to people who never thought they would or could be a writer. I had something I wanted to share so I sat down and wrote. I get new inspirations all the time. I believe there is a market for everything you can possibly write about.
How do you approach cover design?
I am simply not an artist at this time. I knew what I wanted and hired someone to put it together. Communication is key. If design isn't your thing, get someone to do it for you - there are great ones out there!
What's the story behind your latest book?
After 18 years of being a successful software consultant (for which I am extremely grateful), I wanted to find something that made me excited to get up in the morning (but I didn't know what that was). By chance, I read "The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne. I watched the video at least 15 times, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends. It had such a profound affect on me that I continued researching the subject of the law of attraction and following its various contributors. I realized after a few years that I had enough information to write a basic but comprehensive book on the subject of thought focus. I was experiencing more and more people seeking out ways to make their lives more joyful and peaceful so I went for it!
What are you working on next?
I'm working on a children's book with characters I created years ago. I put the idea "on the shelf" so to speak but now I'm inspired to continue with it.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
What inspires me now is that I can help others create their life - beyond what they imagined it could be like. The principles I've learned the last 4 years have been known for decades but not were not widely shared. That's changing rapidly! I'm so happy to introduce these Laws of the Universe to whoever is ready to learn about them.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I love being by the ocean, cooking for friends and playing billiards.
What would be your advice to someone who is considering writing a book?
If you are inspired to write about something you know well, do it. Don't keep your knowledge and inspiration from the world. There is tremendous support all around, online and in person, so believe in yourself and just do it. I do recommend having someone edit it for spelling, grammar and flow. Ask your friends and colleagues for help and pay for what you can't do yourself (cover design, editing, etc.) but share your story - everybody has one that will inspire someone. Consider an eBook before the more expensive option of printing and distributing it yourself. Mark Coker at Smashwords has put together very helpful, thorough guides (many of them free!) to create your masterpiece and help you find your readers!
Published 2015-10-18.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Focus All Thoughts (What's In Your Mind?)
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 9,830. Language: English. Published: October 8, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Personal Growth / Success
Focus All Thoughts (What's In Your Mind?) is a basic yet comprehensive guide about using your thoughts to create the life you desire. Mindfulness, positiveness and focus are key to a fulfilling, joyful and peaceful life. Chapters address choosing thoughts and words wisely, understanding core values, controlling stress, manifesting, gratitude, using imagination and more!