Making an Unsplash

I have just started to contribute to Unsplash! If you have no idea what that is, and you’re a blogger or someone who uses images a lot, you need to check it out.

Unsplash.com is where you can get fabulous, high-resolution images, completely free, no licenses to pay, no fees, no royalties and you don’t even need to credit the photographer. It’s perfect for finding images for quote photos, blogs and websites.

I’ve got back into photography in the last year, and I have so many images, many of which I will never do anything with, so I have decided to start uploading them to Unsplash and offering them for use for free.

At least then, they will have a purpose! It also feels like a way of giving back, as I have used Unsplash images and it feels good to do an exchange! (Though that’s not necessary, you can use the images as you wish without any exchange needed)

You can see (and like and download) my images on my profile on Unsplash. Comment below if you use it, or will be using it now you know about it!

Here’s an unsplash image by Dustin Lee:

 

Book Titles – 5 Things to Consider

A new blog post on theamethystangel.com, my experiences with creating book titles! It is at the forefront of my mind as I try to come up with a title for the latest book I am writing in a new trilogy.

The Amethyst Angel

I’m not even going to tell you how long it took me to come up with a title for this blog post. Which is about my experiences with creating book titles. Ironic, no?

As the author of ten books, coming up with a decent title for each story is something that I have wrestled with a lot. The title is usually the first thing that people know about your book, and so is the first thing to be judged. (If the title is okay, then the next judgement will be the cover art, then the blurb, then the first page or two, and then the price.)

Some stories come with a clear title, and it would be crazy to consider anything else. I know when I wroteThe Elphite, I really didn’t even consider calling it anything else. But using a made-up word as a book title has its drawbacks…

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By Michelle Gordon Posted in Other

Beginner’s Luck

As a follow-up to my previous post on self-development seminars reminding me of casinos, I wanted to look at the idea from a slightly different perspective.

My first post looked mainly at the angle that perhaps the organisers and hosts of some of the events, did not have the best of intentions when it came to the participants. That they were unscrupulously making money from people who were in a vulnerable stage in their lives, looking for their purpose.

In this post, I want to look at the intentions and point of view of the participants, and perhaps how they may be searching for the magic ‘key’ and how that may not be very realistic. After all, the seminars and workshops wouldn’t exist if there weren’t scores of people looking for the magic formula to make their lives amazing.

I feel that quite often, beginner’s luck comes into play, when someone goes to a seminar for the first time ever (or indeed buys a lotto ticket or visits a casino for the first time) and they go through a transformation that changes their life for the better. Suddenly, they’re telling everyone they know, and they start attending more and more seminars, hoping to improve their lives even further. But then things plateau out. The changes become less dramatic, and the person then starts spending more, upgrading to the more advanced packages and seeks out the next big win desperately, unaware that they are gambling away more than they can afford.

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Image from Shutterstock

The thing is, that first bit of luck may have happened in order to encourage the person to improve their lives, but as with anything, no one can expect to make big changes and improvements without actually doing some hard work.

Yes, that’s right – the magic key really is just hard work. As well as passion, perseverance and determination. Of course there will still be the jackpot winners who appear to magically manifest all they desire with very little effort, but I bet if you were to delve deeper you would find that they too, struggled before that win.

As they say, all over-night successes have been ten years in the making. So if you find yourself voraciously attending seminars and workshops, and yet your life is not working out the way you would like, please do ask yourself why you are doing it, what you are looking for. You may find you already have all the information you need, all the support you need, and really all there is left to do, is put in the hard work.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this, please do comment if anything I’ve said has struck a chord with you.

A Self-Development Gamble

I love self-development. I love the idea of people caring enough about themselves and their lives to read books, watch DVDs and attend seminars with the idea of finding their true purpose in this lifetime and becoming the best version of themselves that they can be.

What I’m not so keen on, is people who have realised that this upward trend could make them a lot of money. I haven’t attended lots of seminars, but I have been to a few, and it’s easy to tell which ones are hosted by people who genuinely wish to help you, and which ones are simply trying to make money out of you.

It occurred to me the other day, that there is a similarity between the latter types of workshops and seminars, and casinos. People go to casinos hoping to improve their lives by winning lots of money. They go in with a certain amount they want to spend, but then they get seduced by the promises of a bigger and bigger bounty, and so they start to spend more than they planned, thinking that the rewards will be bigger still. But despite the few jackpot winners – the success stories whose testimonials sold the course to the rest of the punters in the first place – most will leave either in the same place they were when they went in, or much, much worse off.

The worst part of it all, I feel, with a lot of seminars, is that they actually use NLP and hypnosis techniques and tricks to not only get you to part with more money than you planned to, but to also make you feel amazing for having ‘invested’ so much in yourself, whereas the ones who don’t ‘invest’ are made to feel like worthless losers who don’t care enough about themselves and loved ones.

Sound harsh? Maybe, but I have been to seminars where this is their exact wording. There are even apparently some workshops that take it a step further and put their participants into a trance in order to plant the suggestions that they need to upgrade to the next package. Much like the way that the bright lights, scantily clad women and clever advertising in casinos hypnotises the players to keep spending, and keep upping their stakes.

playing cards

Image from Shutterstock

Ultimately, the casino owners and the ones who hold the seminars and workshops – are the only ones who are guaranteed to make money. For those participating, it is literally a gamble, and it may well pay off, or you may find that you will have to return to the job that you hate and are desperate to leave, in order to pay off the debts created by promises of something better.

My advice? Go to the seminars, but be wary of being ‘upsold’ to. Leave your credit cards at home, and don’t make quick decisions about thousands of pounds, that will take months to repay. There may well be things you need to learn and hear from the hosts or organisers, but if they are pitching ‘special offers’ that run out at the end of the course, think before you commit – they are just trying to create a feeling of scarcity, to make you think that you will miss out if you don’t act quickly.

But ask yourself this – do you want to take a course from, or learn from, or work with, someone who operates from a place of scarcity? Of not enough? I know I don’t. I want to work with people who believe there is an abundance of everything for everyone. And who can help me to believe that too.

What are your thoughts?

 

Success is…

After holding a google hangout to share my process on defining success, and having some lovely feedback, because the hangout recording wasn’t great (and very long!) I decided to put together a very short simple video describing the process. It is now on youtube, and if you try it out and enjoy it, please do let me know!

[youtube https://youtu.be/ovSzXCUZwjg]

I have also created a new page here on my blog, which contains links to all of my videos or videos I have been featured in. You can access the page from the menu or by clicking here. You could use the same process for creating definitions for other things, such as love and relationships, or money and abundance. I hope you have fun with it, there are no rules so make it your own!

Choose Your Own Reality

I suddenly realised today that I didn’t make any announcement on here about what happened to my mini non-fiction book -Choose Your Own Reality. I decided that rather than having it as a separate book, I would add it to the end of The Doorway to PAM. So when you buy the print or kindle version, you get Choose Your Own Reality as a bonus at the back.

Hope you are choosing to experience a beautiful reality today 🙂

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And The Winner is…

Congratulations everyone!

I'm Here Book Tour

Now that the Visionary Collection has arrived in paperback, it is time to draw the winners! All of the beautiful, amazing people who have been busy distributing book tour cards and telling the world about I’m Here, have been entered into the prize draw. Without further ado, the winners are as follows!!

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The 1st prize of the Visionary Collection in paperback goes to:

Chip Jenkins!

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The 2nd prize of the Elphite bracelet goes to:

Tiffany Hawthorn!

Pen not included :)

The 3rd prize of the Elphite Diary goes to:

Liz Lockwood!

A large black PAM's Bar t-shirt, which was made for the launch of The Doorway to PAM in 2011

The 4th prize of a PAM’s Bar t-shirt goes to:

Richard Grey!

PAM'S Tearooms

The 5th prize of a PAM’s Tearooms t-shirt goes to:

Rowenna Macormac!

I have three small crystal angels that make rainbows in the sunshine :)

And finally, the three beautiful angels go to:

Helen Gordon

Lori Lesko

Annette Ecuyere

Congratulations to everyone who has won a prize! I would like to say a huge thank you to all of the amazing souls who have…

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By Michelle Gordon Posted in Other

The Doward Deer Troupe is a Youtube hit!

Going viral!

Sacred Tree Spirit

A couple of weeks back, I happened to notice some deer in the garden while making dinner. I went upstairs to see if I could get any decent photos out of the window, as I had taken some great ones before. I was happily snapping away when the deer started to get playful, so I decided to start filming. I knew immediately that I needed to find some music to put on the video and post it on youtube. Until Monday, the video had received 125 hits, mostly through sharing it with friends on facebook. Then suddenly, Monday night, it started going viral. As of this post, the video has had 10,346 views, and the number is increasing constantly!

It seems that the Doward Deer Troupe are destined to be world-famous, I just hope that I manage to catch them on camera again in the future! In case you missed it…

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By Michelle Gordon Posted in Other

I’m Here at The Healing Weekend – Part 2!

More magical moments and memories 🙂

I'm Here Book Tour

Just wanted to post some more photos from the Healing Weekend at the Secret World Wildlife Rescue Centre. We really did have a great time! One of the highlights was listening to Touch the Earth playing music around the campfire, then watching the fire dancing!

I bought one of their CDs and have very much enjoyed listening to it since we got back, check them out! Here is one of their songs:

I'm Here with Debbi Walker of the Suara Sound Academy I’m Here with Debbi Walker of the Suara Sound Academy

Too many 'forking' jokes! Too many ‘forking’ jokes!

I'm Here with Manjula of Chiray I’m Here with Manjula of Chiray

Met the beautiful Manjula around the campfire on Saturday night, after Jon had overheard her saying she wanted to learn how to crochet, and so began the Crochet Adventure (coming soon!) Spent some time with her on Sunday, truly a beautiful soul! (And an incarnated Faerie I reckon!) She will be adding free book tour cards to all…

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By Michelle Gordon Posted in Other