Synchronicity – is the experience of two or more events as meaningfully related, where they are unlikely to be causally related.
Some people believe that synchronicity is one way in which the spirit world will nudge is in a certain direction, or confirm that we are on the right (or wrong) path – or even point us to the right path. It’s what happens when you see numbers, or words, or ideas, popping up with a regularity that defies chance.
Derren Brown may well explain that these levels of coincidence are around us all the time, and that only occasionally, for some reason, we notice it, and then attach significance – we recognise a pattern – even if there isn’t one. Indeed, statistics show that in any scattering of random events, there will be areas of greater concentration. The chances of all events being evenly spread are too high to be considered – so, coincidences are inevitable, we just don’t notice the vast majority of them.
About 6 years ago I wrote the first 30 pages of a novel. I then did nothing for a year. Two people then gave me very similar words of encouragement. Was that a sign? I kept saying I was too busy to get back to it, there was too much to do at home, and too many distractions (I even took up ironing). I call it taking my responsibilities seriously – other people call it procrastination. Then a friend said he had a holiday home in Devon I could use. Alright – I get the message.
I decided to go down for a few days with my lap top to this converted W.I. Hall (previously an infant school), to see if a change of environment really would help. There was no TV, no telephone, no internet connection, no friends to pop round to, no ironing, no excuses.
Inside the front door there was a pile of circulars, junk mail, local newspapers and assorted unsolicited paper deliveries. I sat down with a cup of tea to a have a browse through one of the papers. In amongst the stories of local heroes, villains and successful jumble sales, I stumbled upon a short article about Colonel Sanders, who developed the KFC franchise business in his early 60’s. He’d been selling his chicken before then from his own café, but had the idea that it could be so much bigger, it took a year of making almost 300 cold calls to cafes, diners and restaurants before one of them said they would take his product. He stuck at it and persevered, proving you can start a new career at any age.
“By Golly” I said to myself – or maybe I said it out loud. He was a little over 60. I am a little over 60. Here I am, trying to do something new, something I have never done before, and this tale of a parallel achievement has been put in front of me to read. Of course I can do it.
On my first visit to the hall |I wrote about 5000 words a day. It took several more trips to the hall over the next four years – but eventually I reached those long sought after words THE END.
It then took six edits over the next two years to smooth the rough edges. The same two people who had encouraged me at the start were again there to help. Caroline gave the work two very thorough reads and critiques, whilst I worked very closely with my sister Jenny, cutting, extending, re-writing and re-modelling. By July 2012 we considered the job done, and proceeded to circulate it to one agent after another, whilst I concentrated on producing “The Doob Doo Album”, my first solo album. At the same time, Lynne and I completed the Tudor Lodge album ”Stay”, and we celebrated a double launch of the albums in May of 2013.
By the beginning of 2014 I realised that to get my book ‘out there’, I was probably going to have to publish it myself.
Over the past few years, e-books have established a firm position in the mainstream market; Amazon is selling more electronic editions than paperbacks in the United States*
By the second quarter of 2012, 22% of all book sales were electronic. A huge part of the electronic book market is supplied by authors who are self publishing. Clearly this is the way to go.
Having made that decision, I stumbled upon an advert for “’Publishing E-Books for Dummies’ – by Ali Luke. By Golly – just when I needed it. Well I had to buy it. Such a well written and helpful read. Yes you can do it yourself. Yes you can do it at very little cost. And Yes – there is a huge amount of work involved.
Once again my head was full of thoughts of what I could achieve, but these thoughts were being infiltrated by other thoughts concerning the huge amount of work needed, the technical expertise I would have to master; reformatting, file creation, the list seemed endless.
Then – by chance whist buying a valentines card, I spotted on the book table a little pot boiler of a book by Richard Branson called – “Screw it – Let’s Do It”.
OK – ‘Nuff said. I’ll do it. Just when I needed a prod, there it was, telling me it was all mine for the taking if I just got on with it.
That’s Synchronicity. It every step of the journey, there was a sign to prod my in this direction, or that direction – or simply forward.
On the other hand, perhaps it was just coincidence that when ever I needed a clue, I saw one. And if these coincidences are around us all the time, then all we have to do is look out for them, and our subconscious will tell us how to make good use of them – after all, we all know what we want to do – deep down – so if you need a hand getting there, look for the signs, and ignore them at your peril.
- Taken from Ala Luke’s Publishing E-Books for Dummies.
- Many thanks to Caroline Neuberg and Jenny Stannard for encouragement and editing support.
- My solo musical work and album info at www.johnceestannard.co.uk
- Tudor Lodge at www.tudorlodge.com
- Thanks to Lucy Hall for blog publishing encouragement www.lucyswebdesigns.co.uk
- Both albums can be bought from our label web site; www.castironrecordings.co.uk