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How I learned to stop worrying and ask for endorsements

Thank youOne of the things I learned to do last year was to ask for endorsements. Sounds so simple, doesn't it? In fact, it IS very simple. But it's also very hard if you're terribly, terribly British. 
My instinct when someone says something nice about me is to laugh nervously, flap a hand as though fanning away bothersome incense, and restore the balance of the universe by pointing out a compensating flaw in my character.
What I learned to do last year (thanks to my amazing Mastermind sisters and a rereading of Gay Hendricks's The Big Leap) was not only to accept a compliment graciously, but to ask if the complimenter would be willing to give the compliment publicly and put their name to it.
The first time I did it I fully expected a shocked silence and an awkward excuse: what happened of course was that they said enthusiasticaly, 'Of COURSE!' and sent over a glowing testimonial as soon as we'd put the phone down. Turns out they were delighted to be asked, and to have the opportunity to do something that would be helpful to me. We like doing things that don't cost us anything but help other people. It makes us feel good. 
Today is the last day of the 10-day Busines Book Proposal Challenge. It has been amazing. But unless you did it, you won't know that. And why should you believe me? I would say that, wouldn't I.
And so I asked if the members who were telling me how much they'd enjoyed it would be pepared to write something more formal that I could use with their name attached to let other people know how fab it is. That was a couple of hours ago. Here's what's come back so far:
A brilliant challenge. I signed up for the 10-day Business Book Proposal Challenge (as I do for many things) to complete a personal goal. I frequently fail to complete challenges like this or even get started! However, this challenge was different. Alisonreally inspired and motivated us all to get started and to keep going with the morning email, daily check-ins and personal feedback. The support and community from other members of the challenge made it a truly enjoyable and valuable experience and I now have a completed Book Proposal. - Sandra Garlick
Great structure to dig into the clarity and focus for your book that is both stimulating and challenging. And alongside a lovely community of writers with different and interesting book ideas. Alison is incredibly generous with valuable, professional feedback helping you step it all up a level. I'm inspired, fully prepped and well into my writing flow. Thank you very much. x - Kat Byles
Alison handled the challenge in an excellent way. She was extremely supportive and helpful. I certainly wouldn't complete the challenge if it wasn't for her enthusiasm, respect, and constant feedback. I wish I won the competition so I could work with her! - Evi Prokop
Alison Jones's 10-day Business Book Proposal Challenge is just what you need to get an idea out of your head and onto the page. The course has been designed to take you through all the key elements of a proposal and provide you with a map for writing a book that aligns with your business. Alison demystifies publishing so you get to grips with market, category and competition whilst helping you write and structure your table of contents, author biography and back cover copy. All backed up with excellent emails, videos, a super supportive Facebook group and workbook to get you prepared. - Bec Evans
Alison Jones' Business Book Proposal Challenge has been amazing. I didn't think I needed to do it because I was going to self-publish my book, but a friend encouraged me and I'm sooooo glad I did. Within a couple of days I was so much clearer on what my book was about and who it was aimed at which has had the knock on affect that my business plan is now clearer and more targeted (something I'd been resisting for many many years). The challenge is at times a challenge, but Alison manages it in such a professional yet nurturing way that each day feels doable. The feedback from Alison and the group has been so helpful and encouraging, and the sense of accountability has meant I've achieved far more in these two weeks than I could ever have done on my own. - Thea Jolly
Thank you Alison for a superb program. I have to say it has been a fantastic experience.
I have gone from having an idea and a load of unstructured text to a fully formed out book proposal. That in itself is huge but I can use it to work forwards and create the work in a logical way. Without this 10 days I would have wafted along vagulely for goodness knows how long. As if that isn't quite enough, you have been incredibly generous with your feedback, your knowledge and your encouragement all the way through to me and everyone in the group. I would recommend it to anyone with an idea for a book. The very worst case is that you realise it isn't the right book (or the right market or whatever) and you'll save yourself months of wasted work. (And you can quote me on that!) - Kathy Soulsby
Thank you again for the incredible guidance, support and insight - it has been an amazing experience and an eye-opener, to come from nowhere to a fully-fledged and reasonably credible book proposal in ten days flat. I have enjoyed it immensely. - Howard Walwyn
I'm glad I learned to ask. Have you?
If you like the sound of this, you can sign up for the next proposal challenge, which starts 20 March 2017, here

This entry was posted on 20 January 2017 at 18:51 and is filed under writing | books. You can leave a response here.

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2 responses to 'How I learned to stop worrying and ask for endorsements'

Carrie Eddins says

Alison, I can completely relate to this post, it can be hard, well it was for me too, to ask for endorsements to begin with, although it does get easier doesn't it! :)

Added on 22 January 2017 at 09:17

Alison Jones says

Thanks Carrie - glad to hear I'm not the only one! But yes, absolutely, like anything you do it by doing it, and it gets less awkward every time. Thanks for commenting, Ax

Added on 22 January 2017 at 09:38

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