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Thought-Provoking Fiction


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excited audience bigI’m delighted to announce a new Mastery Club Facilitator – more about her and her first course next blog! Meanwhile, here’s a snippet: 

Nicky Manning completed The Mastery Club 10-week program with a small group of daughters + friend earlier this year via Skype. She loved it and signed up to facilitate her own programs – and is beginning her first 10-week program tonight in Mt Evelyn with nine women. This lady is a mover and shaker! The plan is for those women to learn some skills and then empower their children. Such a great approach, since we know that family culture is a critical factor in our success and wellbeing.

masked manHave you followed the news story about Canadian PM Justin Trudeau’s apology for blackening his face as part of an Arabian Nights costume some years ago?

He’s been criticised for invoking racist and offensive stereotypes that signal to people of colour that they are second-class citizens.

I have never understood the need for racial slurs. To my mind all people are worthy simply because they are human – and that applies to all life forms: I’d like to see all humans, animals and the Earth itself treated with respect. But something that troubles me about Trudeau’s apology is the increasing weight of political correctness.

If you think you need a cracker up your bum to start taking money more seriously, watch this 3-minute video that features Camilla Mendoza, the passionate creator of Money Mastery For Teens and the instigator of the Quest For Riches novel, in which Swedish students talk about their relationship with money and what they are learning from Money Mastery For Teens and Quest For Riches.

MMFT video image

(NB. If you'd like to recommend Quest For Riches to your school, you can share the book review (below) by Ann Ruckert of the South Australian English Teachers Association (SAETA).)

QFR smaller high resThis is a sJacob egg pichout-out to artist This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for the brilliant cover he illustrated for Quest For Riches. The captivating egg is of one of his other ‘practice illustrations’. He was experimenting with light…

I’d actually first asked Jacob to create a new cover for The Mastery Club,

All booksI often hear people say that they don’t read fiction – it’s too ‘fictional’! They prefer real-life content and books that focus (seriously) on current issues or research rather than ‘made up stuff’. 

But what they don’t realise is that more and more studies are finding that reading fiction develops the brain and awareness in ways that non-fiction doesn’t.

Any reading is good for us, of course – it develops our vocabularies and general knowledge – but reading meaty, character-driven fiction enables us to share the minds and emotions of others and to ‘live many lives’.

I’m absolutely chuffed to announce that Touch Of Spirit Tours is hosting a Creative Writing Tour through North India – with me as the writing facilitator!

QFRLaunch MelaMela Joy, the founder of this company, was one of my sources when I was researching India for Quest For Riches. Right after the book launch she came to me with the idea of a trip that would be interwoven with a creative writing course.

I was particularly delighted because I just love the way that my life echoes my art!

Schools around Australia are celebrating books and writing and authors and the imagination starting tomorrow for the Children's Book Council of Australia's annual BOOK WEEK! 

If you're the parent of a younger child, you've probably been roped into making a costume of one of their favourite book characters. I was very chuffed a few years ago to receive a photo of a girl dressed as Nina from The Mastery Club! A green wig was the key to that costume :-)

This week an article in the Herald Sun declared that 'Aussie kids were scammed out of more than $170,000 last year according to the latest Australian Competition and Consumer Commission scam activity report' – significantly up from previous years. Suncorp behavioural economist, Phil Slade, said 'Kids were particularly susceptible to being ripped off by dodgy operators' and 'One of the best ways to help our kids avoid being scammed is to teach them financial literacy skills at an early age, to help them question things when dealing with money.' 

bookcase booksProbably one of the questions I am asked the most often is, 'How are book sales going?' 

Those who ask are genuinely interested and caring and want the best for me, but when book sales are trickling it's an uncomfortable question to answer.

Sales for the majority of self-published author are usually quite low; I remember my printer of The Mastery Club telling me that it was rare for self-published authors to return for multiple print runs in the quantity and frequency that I was doing. Even more rare are the international bestseller results. These low sales are why the average Australian self-published author earns about $11,000 per annum...

So let me give you the best question you can ask a self-published author. Banish 'How are book sales going?' and instead ask, 'What can I do to help?'

I promised to give the backstory to Quest For Riches, so here it is:

Camilla2Camilla Mendoza had been working with divorcées as a mortgage broker when she realised she had to do something about the number of women telling her that they left all money management and financial decisions to their husbands. Determined to change that dynamic, she created a workshop called ‘Money Mastery For Women’. Before long, those women were asking her to create a similar workshop for their children – and ‘Money Mastery For Teens’ was born.

Ludwina redSuccessful entrepreneur Ludwina Dautovic was one of the guest speakers at the launch of Quest For Riches. I wanted to share with you more of her comments as they are so pertinent for anyone who wants to teach their kids the value of money. Ludwina kindly gave me her entire talk to publish here. Enjoy! If you'd like to share, please give credit. Ludwina Dautovic:

My adult children are 27 and 24. As a young mother I didn’t have a good example of how to teach our children about money. There was a continual message in my childhood home that we couldn’t afford things. My parents were generous with what they had, but they struggled financially and expressed that often.

QFR launchSunday’s launch was a blast! We had a packed room, a great vibe, some compelling speakers and yummy food. Thank you to all who came to support, whether you were helping set up, or speaking, or buying books – or whether you were a supporter in the research phase! I am very grateful. 

We began the event with a few sobering statistics: 

The four teenagers in Quest For Riches head to India on a school trip. I haven’t yet had the opportunity to do the same – although if my Mastery Club/Hidden Order/Greek Islands experience is any indication, it won’t be long! – so I sought out Indians and people who have spent sustained time in India to guide me.

You’ll have an opportunity to meet some of those generous people at the launch on 30th June, but meanwhile I want to give them a big shout-out here: 

Details in the 'Read More' but meanwhile the names of these generous people are:

Himanshi Munshaw-Luhar of Beacon Holidays and Foodie Trails
Mela Joy, Founder of Touch of Spirit Tours
Rose Witherow
Carmel Scaringi
Surya/Guy Coape-Smith
Shyam Burman, Director of Primary Toys

and I'd like to thank Shyama Sasidharan for a great interview on Malayalam TV! 

Way back in the 90s when I was home educating my children I met a powerhouse of a home-schooling mum whose sharp mind and impressive achievements absolutely caught my attention. While the other families were primarily focused on their children, this woman was also juggling a business, learning to sing and renovating a house. 
 
Ludwina Dautovic and I hit it off. Our shared family, education, personal growth and business values synched. She read The Mastery Club and loved it, and I attended (and spoke at) her Red Tent Women’s Networking events. We’ve moved in and out of each other’s lives ever since. 
 
But there’s one conversation I’ll never forget and it’s the reason I’ve asked her to be featured guest speaker at my Quest For Riches book launch on 30th June.
 
Ludwina was telling me about her parenting values and they were so full of practical wisdom that I took some notes. In particular, I was fascinated by her strategy for her children’s financial education, which included giving the kids cash and the shopping list and having them take over at the supermarket. It also included sitting them down to a very clear understanding of the family income and all expenses. This transparency stemmed from Ludwina's primary parenting belief that we’re ‘raising adults, not children’.
 
I modelled on her: I gave my kids cash and the shopping list and noticed how their eyes shone as they shouldered the responsibility. And I incorporated her example of a mother revealing 'private' family income and expenses to educate her daughters in the novel that Ludwina is going to help launch.
 
I hope you’ll come along on 30th June to our St Kilda launch (details below) to benefit from Ludwina’s ideas, wisdom and energy. She has been a successful entrepreneur for 24 years, having started her journey in 1995 producing and presenting television for cable TV. She also produced innovative and creative video content for businesses in the retail and service industries, and was commissioned to produce media training for schools across Australia.
 
As the digital era arose, she was all in. Always on the cusp of innovation, Ludwina was one of the first B2B podcasters and interviewed the CEOs of major corporations worldwide. She wrote and self-published her first book, It’s That Easy – Online Marketing 3.0, and then combined her technological expertise and business experience to provide advisory services to businesses developing their brand online. 
 
Recently I was invited to the launch of her newest venture – at which time I also discovered that she is a very accomplished self-taught portrait artist! The new venture is compelling: it is a social enterprise that connects empty, spare bedrooms with people who need access to affordable and accessible housing. Called 'The Room Xchange’, it’s a win-win housing solution that’s changing the way people live.
 
In her role as Founder and CEO of The Room Xchange, Ludwina has successfully completed her first capital raise and is now embarking on her second with the aim of leading the company toward a global market. 
 
Ludwina is not only a keen investor in emerging and innovative technologies but she is passionate about disruptive market leadership. Come along on 30th June and get ready to be disrupted!
 
We're celebrating
at 1/118 Carlisle Street East St Kilda (upstairs, above Vegelicious)
from 2.30 to 4.30 pm
Delicious (Indian-themed) refreshments will be supplied.
RSVP essential for catering purposes (by 23rd June):This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 0407 901 008 or via  Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/book-launch-novel-about-financial-literacy-for-teens-tickets-62029745639
 
You can connect with Ludwina on Linkedin:
<< https://www.linkedin.com/in/ludwinadautovic/>>
Learn about www.theroomxchange.com


I hope to see you and your family, friends, children, students... on Sunday 30th June for a warm and stimulating afternoon.