One of the more exciting and unusual courses on offer at the upcoming Cape Cod Writers Center Conference is “Writing as a Change Agent” with instructor Nina Amir. We asked Nina to tell us a little more about this class, and after reading her answers, we’re more thrilled than ever that it will be a part of the conference.
CCWC: When you use the phrases “Change Agent” or “Author of Change” to describe a writer, what exactly do you mean?
Nina Amir: A change agent is someone who wants to create change in the world on some level. Possibly they want to help people change their personal lives in some way, such as through better health, relationships or prosperity. Maybe they want to help organizations or communities improve in some manner. Or maybe they want to help heal the earth, such as by informing others about how to recycle, compost or grow their own food.
Such people tend to feel a strong sense of purpose, calling or mission. They may want to start a movement or have taken up a cause they now pursue in some way.
An Author of Change is a writer who would like to fulfill that purpose, calling, mission, movement, or cause via a book.
If you want to to write a how-to book, a prescriptive nonfiction book, an inspirational or spiritual book, or some sort of book that relates to personal development, body-mind-spirit or transformation, you probably are an Author of Change. But that doesn’t mean that someone who writes about business isn’t an Author of Change. There are many areas in which to author change.
CCWC: How does someone know if they are called to this sort of writing?
NA: First, you likely feel that sense of mission, purpose or calling.
Second, you want to write a book that helps others in some way–answers questions, solves problems, eases others’ pain, impacts lives in a meaningful and positive manner. You want to write about the change you want to see in the world–and inspire other to take up that change because they read your book.
Third, you possibly want to be a speaker as well. Or maybe you dream of offering workshops based on your book. In other words, you want to help others or teach others, and you may have a “system” that is embedded in your book that you can take out into the world and share.
CCWC: Can you tell us about one or two Authors of Change you have worked with in the past and about their transformative projects?
NA: Ed Oakley and Doug Krug wrote Enlightened Leadership (Fireside). They changed the idea of how leaders lead organizations. They not only created a successful consulting company for themselves, they sold over 320,000 copies of their book.
Colin Tipping wanted to change people’s lives by teaching them how to forgive. When I met him, he was a real estate agent. He wrote Radical Forgiveness, self-published it and created a thriving workshop business around it (and more). After selling 100,000+ copies, he sold the book to Sounds True.
More recently, Haseena Patel worked with me in my Author of Change Transformational Coaching program. She is a Girls’ Empowerment Coach at Leave No Girl Behind and is working on a book related to this topic.
Additionally, I’ve worked with those who want to inspire people to faith, to organic gardening, to better health, to heal themselves of disease, to feel empowered, and to find the perfect job.
CCWC: What sorts of things will be covered in your class to help people realize their desire to be a Change Agent?
NA: Over the course of the three days we cover three areas:
Author of Change in Your Life: We start with an examination of what it takes to be an Author of Change–Who are you? How comfortable with change are you? What type of change do you want to inspire? What do you need to change to succeed as an author?
Author of Change in the World: Then we examine your ideal readers, the market for which you are writing, and type of community you want to gather around you. Do you know your readers? Do you know the market? How large a community do you have and want? How large a community do you need to succeed as an Author of Change–for your message to take hold and have impact?
Author of a Change-Inspiring Book: Last, we look at how to write this change-inspiring book. What is the best publishing path? What is the best format for your book? What is the best structure? How do you craft a marketable book so your idea actually sells (impacts people).
When done, you should have an action plan that includes steps you need to take to help yourself transform into an a transformational author and to craft a book that inspires the change you want to see in the world. In other words, you’ll have an plan to become an Author of Change.
If you’d like to sign up for Nina’s course, or to learn what else is happening at the conference, click here to read the conference brochure or register online.