Mila Johansen is a public speaker, writing and publishing coach, teacher, and writer. She is the best-selling author of five books, including, From Cowgirl to Congress: Journey of a Suffragist on the Front Lines, a first-person account from Jessie Haver Butler, Mila’s grandmother who taught public speaking to Eleanor Roosevelt. She also has several more books in progress and loves to write and produce short screenplays. Mila has developed “The Short Book” concept giving people all over the world permission to write their “short book” first.
When did your journey to publishing begin?
I always wanted to be a writer since a very young age, about 8 years old. I tried writing a book then and only wrote a page and a half because I was only 8. Later, at age 18, my mother tricked me into becoming a writer. She told me to write one sentence a day for a month. Well, you can’t just write one sentence and by the end of the month, I became a writer. I trick my own students in much the same way. I tell them to only write 20 min a day, or that even 5 min a day can add up to a book. Toni Morrison, the novelist, said she wrote her first book in 15 min a day because that was all the time she had between work and raising kids. My students/clients usually write more, but can initially wrap their head around the 5 min a day concept. I began writing and publishing books in my twenties and wrote 22 plays and musicals, 6 books and have many more in process. I am now enjoying helping other people write and publish their books. I am publishing a series of anthologies of collected stories, much like Chicken Soup For the Soul, so that people can easily become published authors without all the stress.
Tell us about the From Pen to Published – 12 week course starting October 4th.
Amazing 12 Week Writing & Publishing Training for Life in writing and publishing. This is the memoir edition. You are never too young or old to write about your own life. We’ll show you how to do everything step by step to write and publish your future books. And it results in a memoir anthology published professionally making you a published author by Christmas to give away or sell yourself. Each story can be from 2,000 to 5,000 words. I always say, write your memoir so your children will know you were young once. Check out all that is offered at the link. https://milajohansen.influencersoft.com/ptp-12week
Please share a few tips that we can find attending The Amazing 12-Week Writing & Publishing Training for Life in writing and publishing.
I will show the class how to do every aspect of writing and publishing. It’s a comprehensive course for life and recordings of each class will be given to each participant. We are bringing in some other experts to share their tricks and tips and knowledge. The class will end in a professionally published anthology book featuring each student’s story that they can give away or even sell. Included will be how to create and write your story, how to make a book a bestseller, how to use all the attributes of KDP-Amazon Publishing, Creating an author page, being on a scheduled Podcast, and so much more.
The holidays are around the corner, why would a memoir be a great gift?
Family and friends will love to read about where the author came from to where they are today. This short memoir can be the outline for the longer book to leave as a legacy for family and community. To hold your own book in your hands is a great experience, and to give it to other people, is even more fulfilling. To be part of an anthology is a wonderful way to get published without all the work and money it would normally cost. Everyone should write their memoir to leave as a record of their life for future generations.
What does it take to be an author?
The best answer to that is, “Just Start”, “Just Write” and the rest will unfold. Most people have the most trouble starting. So get it down on paper or on your computer as fast as you can and fix it later. Everyone has a story to tell or an expertise to share. Everyone can be a published author. Think about writing in short increments, like 20 minutes a day or even 5 minutes a day can add up to a book.
What do you enjoy the most about working with new authors?
I love making it possible. I love facilitating and showing them how to make the entire process easy and accessible. I love their excitement when they realize they are going to become a real live published authors, when they see the cover of the book, hold the book and share the book with friends, family and colleagues. It’s all very exciting and inspiring and not as hard as people think. Everyone has a book or books to write. I love when they say, “Wow. I can do this. I want to start working on my next book.”
Can everyone be a writer?
Yes! We have editors. Everyone has a story to share that the world needs to hear–or maybe their expertise. I encourage everyone to tell their story or share their expertise. Many people are writing their books to build authority to speak, teach and coach from.
Your signature talk is Writing and Publishing Your Short Book is Easy as 1-2-3. Tell us more.
The shortest book you can publish on Amazon, with a spine, is 36 pages. Anyone can write a 36 page book in a day or two, get it edited and self-publish it on Amazon in a week or two. Amazon makes it super easy and offers so many amazing attributes like samples, ISBN numbers, an author page and as many copies at cost that you want–and much, much more.
Share a few stories about people who have written their first short book with your help.
1) Working with Mila was a wonderful experience. She was supportive, professional, and engaging. I wanted information about getting my book traditionally published and although what I learned was straightforward, it was her “JUST DO IT!” encouragement that made her coaching beneficial. Her free form coaching style helped me go beyond the scope of my debut novel: TRUTH BE TOLD. All I had to do was apply some of the content marketing tactics from her workbook,and in less than 8-hours I ended up writing a NEW short form e-book and a blog. WOW! That’s a lot more than I expected. -Franzie JeanLouis
2) Mila shared many helpful tips. A positive, motivating, experienced coach. Highly recommend! -Anonymous 3) Mila provides concise and critical information that helped guide my writing partner and I through the publishing process. We are immensely grateful for her expertise. – Marlene Fabian Stiles
On Oct 22, you will launch THE CINDERELLA MONOLOGUES, Inspiring True Stories of 22 Women. Tell us about what makes this so special.
Many of the contributors have written before, but many haven’t and this will be their first time to be published authors and best selling authors as well. They are amazing stories and some of the women are very brave to share them with us. But also at the same time, telling their stories can be very healing. It’s a variety, some humorous, some very sad, others surprising, but all ending in inspiration.
What did you learn when developing this book?
I learned that women can go through unthinkable challenges and come out the other end whole and productive, ready to help others through the same experiences. Wow! And that everyone wants to write a book and/or be part of one.
Share your projects for the upcoming months.
I am currently working on several books of my own, both fiction and nonfiction. I finished a provocative novel last year during NanoWriMo (we all write a book in a month) and plan to do it again this year with my colleague–we each help each other with accountability of writing at least 2,000 words a day. 2,000 words is not that hard to do. I want to do more anthologies for people to become published authors and learn more about the process. I love this new novel because it starts in the USA and ends up in Italy, one of my favorite places on earth. I have several upmarket women’s novels in the works and I also love to write and produce short screenplays.