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    30 Authors Who Sparked Movements

    Here are some of the best pieces of advice and observations on how to spark a movement through writing a book!

    1. A book that sparks a movement can “transcend the limitations of time, space, and culture.”


    A book is the best vehicle for true change because it allows us to forge intellectual and emotional connections that transcend the limitations of time, space, and culture. A book is the most dynamic source for obtaining knowledge, because it allows the audience the flexibility to connect with the material in unique and meaningful ways suited to their individual experiences. A book is the best prophet for a new idea, because it does not chase you, but, rather, lures you in after it piques your interest.

    -Dr. Talal H. Alsaleem, marriage counselor, researcher, author

    2. “The change we seek is possible.”


    When a book sparks change in one person, that change then ripples out and touches others. I think the books that do this best (and they don’t have to be non-fiction or even self-help books) have several qualities in common: they hold a mirror up to the reader and reflect self-knowledge, they show us that we’re not alone, they increase our capacity for empathy, they challenge us in a way that doesn’t have us turning away, and they provide us with the example that the change we seek is possible.

    -Karen C.L. Anderson, author, life coach, and champion for mothers and daughters who struggle in their relationship with each other

    3. “You MUST fail to succeed.”


    Never Surrender. I never quit. I keep going. There is only one way to get better. You MUST fail to succeed. If you expect perfection out of the box… you’re delusional and setting yourself up for a let-down.

    -John Joseph, lead singer of the Cro-Mags, author, and athlete

    4. “Shake up that ideal and admire quiet courage.”


    Over and over, we see stories and real-life examples of the good-looking, wealthy, ambitious person being the hero. But I want to shake up that ideal and have us admire quiet courage instead. I want us to celebrate the people who are doing acts of kindness every day for strangers, who put their lives on the line for others, and who do it all without seeking attention or expecting anything in return.

    -Dete Meserve, film and television producer, author

    5. “Have a passion for what you do, not a passion to be successful.”


    The writer must have a passion for what they do, not a passion to be successful. It’s like Edison said, genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. It really is the blood sweat and tears.

    -Dr. Steven Gundry, heart surgeon, author, and pioneer in nutrition

    6. Books that spark movements are an “intimate conversation between the author and the reader.”


    Despite having millions of readers, books are a particularly intimate conversation between the author and the reader. I wasn’t writing to millions, I was alone in a room writing to one person. So I shared things that were private, things you only tell the best of friends.

    -Cara Brookins, “the mom who built her own house using YouTube tutorials,” keynote speaker and author

    7. “Never expect success, just do good work.”


    Never expect success. Just do good work that you feel proud of, and give it your all. If your work is embraced by others, that is truly a bonus. However, you don’t really control that part, which is why your success should be your own standard.

    -Dr. Steven Rogelberg, chancellor’s professor at the University of North Carolina Charlotte and author

    8. “Connect with yourself.”


    Connect with yourself until you feel a longing to connect with others you care deeply about.

    -Dawna Markova, inspirational speaker, writer, and researcher

    9. “Expect the unexpected.”


    Expect the unexpected: Our book was not intended to become a movement. We all put the work in to produce a book that we were proud of. We had no idea that it would grow into what it has become.

    -Dr. Amber Robins, family medicine doctor and author

    10. "CONNECT to a movement."


    My book didn’t start a movement. Few books do. But my book CONNECTED to a movement. And that’s what so many authors miss.

    -Seth Godin, author and founder of the altMBA and The Marketing Seminar

    11. "Be susceptible to the universe.”


    Be open. Let your mind wander. It is when we allow ourselves to be susceptible to the universe that our destinies are revealed.

    -Homer H. Hickam, Jr., U.S. Army veteran and author

    12. “Don’t ever let anyone steal your magic.”


    Stay away from negative people. Don’t ever let anyone steal your magic. Spiritually speaking, the very fact that you can perceive it in your mind means that you have the capability to manifest it.

    -April Kirkwood, author, therapist, and public speaker

    13. “Fear need not be the final answer.”


    Moral of the story: Fear need not be the final answer, when a few kind words of encouragement have the final say.

    -Marc Aronoff, licensed mental health counselor and author

    14. Talk (and listen).”


    Talk (and listen) to everyone you meet. You never know where you’re going to find your next story.

    -Maria Aspan, business journalist, editor-at-large for Inc. magazine and author

    15. “Listen to the Divine.”

    When you listen to the Divine, you will be in perfect sync with the idea for whose time has come, and you’ll be at the forefront of the movement.

    -M. Reese Everson, Esq., lawyer and author

    16. “If you give up, it’ll never happen.”


    It also helps to be patient. Things take time, especially in the book world. But if you give up, it’ll never happen. If you never give up, it can always happen. Someone smiled and said to me recently, “It’s taken you thirty years to become an overnight success.” If that’s what it takes, then that’s what it takes.

    -John Morano, author and professor of journalism at Monmouth University

    17. “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.”


    Feedback is the breakfast of champions. The good, the bad, and the ugly — all of it.

    -BJ Gallagher, workplace expert, author, and speaker

    18. "Authenticity was the key.”


    Authenticity was the key. We wrote the first book from the heart with no expectations of sales, income or distribution. It flowed.

    -Troy Amdahl and Dave Braun (AKA The Oola Guys), renowned experts in a proper work-life balance

    19. WNBA Star Simone Edwards: "Create what you want to be a part of."


    Sometimes you gotta create what you want to be a part of. Use your vision to visualize the movement you want to create.

    -WNBA Star Simone Edwards

    20. "Your vision must be credible, viable, practical, worthwhile, and achievable."


    The process for me consists of first developing a vision for the finished product. The vision must be credible, viable, practical, worthwhile, and achievable. Once I am convinced that the vision is all of the above, I start drawing on a latent obsessive component of my personality that insists on project completion.

    -Dr. Mark C. Scholz, MD., medical director of Prostate Oncology Specialists Inc. in Marina del Rey, CA and executive director of the Prostate Cancer Research Institute

    21. “Where you write matters.”


    Where you write matters. I rented AirBnBs, offices, hotels, etc. to find the best places for inspiration. Where you write and what is around you is so important.

    -Cynthia Johnson, global entrepreneur, marketing professional, author and keynote speaker

    22. "You need to deeply understand the hopes and fears of their audience."


    Writers need to deeply understand the hopes and fears of their audience.

    -Santiago Jaramillo, CEO and Co-Founder of Emplify and author

    23. "Use the book as a real strategic tool to both grow its readership and support [your] business."


    One benefit of self-publishing is I can keep my book fresh. We update Scaling Up every six months. I have control of it. No one else is controlling my destiny. I get to keep control of my IP completely. And I can use the book as a real strategic tool to both grow its readership and support my business.

    -Verne Harnish, founder of the Entrepreneurs Organization (EO) and author

    24. “Patience and rigor are key.”


    There are so many moments of doubt and fear and rejection. But that’s okay. Patience and rigor are key.

    -Fatimah Asghar, poet, screenwriter, educator and performer

    25. “The world is thirsty for true and honest life experiences.”


    The world is desperate for more inspiring and positive writings. There can never be enough because we are surrounded by 24/7 news (which is primarily negative) and social media feeds off of violence, hate and fear. I believe the world is thirsty for true and honest life experiences like mine, ones where we share the power of worthiness in all of us.

    -T.J. Menhennitt, dad, author, spiritual leader, and inspirational speaker

    26. “Have your ear to the ground.”


    Have your ear to the ground. Listening and constantly being aware of what your followers and society is asking for will help you provide it to them before anyone else.

    -Dr. Will Cole, author and functional-medicine expert

    27. “Uncover and listen to the quiet, confident, inner voice deep in your stomach.”


    Uncovering and listening to the quiet, confident, inner voice that lives deep in my stomach, not in my head.

    -Claire Booth, author and founder and CEO of Lux Insights

    28. “Do the work to get what you want.”


    You have to do the work to get what you want. God gives you the talent, but He is not going to put you where you want to be. It is up to you to hustle twice as hard to make it. You get rejected, keep calling, keep showing up, stay in these people’s faces until they can’t deny you. I don’t take no for an answer.

    -Jamilyl & Tracy-Ann Samuels, children’s book authors

    29. “Fail fearlessly.”


    The most important lesson to those seeking to innovate is to learn how to fail fearlessly. Yes — I said — fail fearlessly.

    -Doug Hall, author and owner of Eureka! Ranch, the Innovation Engineering Institute and the Brain Brew craft whiskey distillery

    30. “Progress trumps perfection every time.”


    Discipline! I have to constantly remind myself that progress trumps perfection every time. I make a conscious effort to release the need to get things to a place of perfection and instead focus on progressing so that I can share my work with the world more frequently. Perfection is such an illusion, and if I hadn’t got a handle on this, the book would still not be written now.

    -Michelle Stonhill, wealth and success coach to women in business and author