June 26, 2013

Interview with Carla Woody

Posted in Interviews tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 7:00 am by Christine Rice

Carla WoodyCarla Woody has been mentoring people toward conscious living for more than twenty years. In 1999 she established Kenosis LLC to serve human potential and support the vision: “One tribe, one world.” In 2007, she founded Kenosis Spirit Keepers, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, to help preserve indigenous wisdom ways. Carla is the author of Portals to the Vision Serpent, Standing Stark: The Willingness to Engage and Calling Our Spirits Home: Gateways to Full Consciousness. She also writes articles related to personal growth, natural healing and advocacy of Native traditions, and is a fine artist. She makes her home near Prescott, Arizona.

Christine: How long have you been a writer?

Carla: I’ve been writing off and on since childhood. The first story I can remember writing was called The Empty-Treed Forest. Looking back, this was an environmental piece somewhat strange for a seven-year-old to produce. As a teenager I wrote bad protest poetry, and then set creative writing aside for a long time in favor of the academic reports and theses necessary to acquire degrees. In the early 1990s I picked up the pen again to start writing articles and books in earnest.

Christine: What types of writing do you do?

Carla: The themes have to do with spiritual evolution, natural healing, indigenous cultures, and advocacy related to Native wisdom traditions in danger of decimation. I cover these subjects in journal and magazine articles, as well as narrative nonfiction and fiction books.

Christine: Are you solely a writer or do you have multiple occupations?

Carla: I view my books and articles as vehicles for my lifework, a way folks can be introduced or as an adjunct to my programs. For more than twenty years I’ve been mentoring people toward conscious living. In 1999 I founded Kenosis LLC to support human potential through travel journeys working with Native spiritual leaders and healers in Peru, Mexico, Guatemala and the USA, and mentoring programs integrating Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and sacred world traditions. Then in 2007 I established Kenosis Spirit Keepers, its 501(c)3 nonprofit extension, to help preserve indigenous lifeways through various projects.

Christine: What is your writing experience?

Carla: I have a passion for expression. That’s why I find it so important to, as much as possible, integrate some form of it into my everyday life and live through deeply held values. There were too many years I didn’t do that and felt cut off, which—of course—is how I came to do the work I do with others. In particular, writing and artwork are how I work things out internally and keep the creative juices flowing.

Christine: What have you published recently?

Portals to the Vision SerpentCarla: Portals to the Vision Serpent was just released on June 17, 2013. It’s a coming-of-age novel—a Hero’s Journey—that takes the reader into the realms of shamanism and the Maya world as a young man searches for his lineage and missing father. Interwoven are the struggles of indigenous peoples to preserve their way of life and tragedies that often come from misunderstandings. It’s basically a book about spiritual healing. Readers are likely to see themselves in various ways, the same as reported to me from readers of my nonfiction books Standing Stark: The Willingness to Engage (2004) and Calling Our Spirits Home: Gateways to Full Consciousness (2000).

My article The Last Spirit Keeper was published in Sacred Fire Magazine in November 2012, Issue 16, about the last Lacandón Maya elder in the rainforest of Chiapas, Mexico still maintaining his traditions against great pressure. My article Acts of Creation was just accepted by Stone Voices, a spiritually oriented, literary arts journal, no date on publication yet.

Christine: What is a typical day like for you as a writer?

Carla: I’m definitely a morning person and have a ritual that sets my day. I usually get up before dawn, feed the cats, have a cup of coffee, and meditate for 20-30 minutes. I’ve been doing it, in that order, for nearly thirty years. Then I start writing if I have a project, or other work. Several years ago I put Joseph Campbell’s writing practice in place: at least three hours a day. It became automatic, and often the time extends itself without me noticing.

Christine: What interests you about writing fiction?

Carla: I’m most interested in teaching stories. The reader learns or resolves something themselves through identifying with different characters, in the course of being entertained. As the writer, the same is true for me. The process is magical to me. It’s like a movie unfolds in front of me, and I just write it down. It’s particularly surprising when a new character appears to take me somewhere I hadn’t imagined.

Christine: How do you come up with an idea for a new novel?

Carla: The ideas present themselves. It may be something I want to explore myself, or a point I want to get across. Right now I’ve got two different ideas vying for my attention, both well developed. I’m not yet sure which one will win out to focus on first. It would be great to be able to split myself in two!

Christine: Are you traditionally published or self-published? Why did you choose that path?

Carla: I’ve published articles through professional journals and magazines since the early 1990s. When it came to my books, I specifically chose to self-publish through Kenosis Press, my own small press, for these important reasons: 1) they never go out of print; 2) the publishing process is truncated; 3) I have control over the content. Since my books are vehicles for my work, I continue to feel this is important.

Christine: Where can we find your books and websites?

Carla: Find Portals to the Vision Serpent, Standing Stark, and Calling Our Spirits Home on Amazon, or order through local bookstores.

Please note that I donate 10% of profits from book sales to Kenosis Spirit Keepers, the 501(c)3 nonprofit I founded to help us with our projects to preserve Native traditions.

You’re invited to visit Kenosis and Kenosis Spirit Keepers to learn more about offerings and sign up for free material and the Kenosis Inspirations ezine. Follow my blog The Lifepath Dialogues.

Christine: Thanks so much for joining us today, Carla. Your work and your books sound so interesting. Best of luck with your articles and books.

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January 7, 2013

Books Update

Posted in Books, Editing, Personal, Publishing, Reading, Self-Publishing, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:20 pm by Christine Rice

Hello everyone,

You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been posting mostly reviews and interviews for the past couple of months. And you are right. Since mid-October I haven’t posted about my books, namely my works-in-progress. Back in early September, I pretty much stopped writing in my works-in-progress due to publishing one of them (Freelance Writing Guide) and having a blog tour. I have no regrets, of course, because I was ecstatic about publishing a book I had been working on for eight months, and the blog tour was an absolutely great experience.

During the blog tour, I got my first client project in which I edited and formatted a novel. In case you didn’t know, I wear a few different hats in the publishing industry, including freelance writing, editing, and formatting in addition to being an author. A part of my freelance writing business is writing book reviews, which I post here for you all. Additionally, many of the books I review are free kindle books, so I hope I have helped you choose some great reads for cheap.

Shortly after my first client, I got another client, and many more, and I’ve been doing client projects ever since. My time is spent on client projects, reading and reviewing, blogging, networking, and also my health. In addition to being a writer, I am a health-conscious person, because I know without my health, I am nothing. So I work on being healthy, and becoming healthier, each day, in addition to my career.

I haven’t resumed working on my works-in-progress, besides updating Freedom from Fat with posts from my health blog, but I am 100% interested in finishing my works-in-progress and plan to do so in the future. I just cannot promise when that will be. Right now my interests lie in my health and growing my freelance business, and since I move through life naturally based on how it flows, I go with the flow.

I am certain that someday I will return to my works-in-progress, because I love writing and publishing books. It makes me so happy to get my thoughts and experiences in a permanent state that can be enjoyed for years to come. For now, I will go with the flow, and I will resume working on my works-in-progress once the flow returns to that part of my life.

I just wanted to reassure you all that I will be publishing the books I was working on, and I will keep posting on this blog.

Thanks for your kindness and support,

Christine

March 28, 2012

Back to reading and writing

Posted in Books, Reading, Writing tagged , , , , , , , at 9:36 pm by Christine Rice

It’s been almost a week since I did any reading or writing in my books. I got involved in other life activities and put my work on the back burner. I feel refreshed and ready to dive back in, and I have some catching up to do.

So, last night I dipped my toes in the water. I read about 25 pages in Infinite Exposure. I’m down to the last 70 pages and it’s really exciting. I can’t wait to finish and write the review.

Last night I also wrote nearly 1,000 words in Chronicles of a Troubled Girl. Rereading my journal entries for this book is an eye-opening experience, especially since I didn’t have an easy life emotionally. Adolescence was difficult, I have to say, but things are pretty smooth right now. However, I’m always working on something in order to try to better my life experience.

I’m looking forward to a change of pace next week because I’ll be reading some poetry. I just hope my energy and motivation to work continues.