Ruby Allure's Books

Ruby Allure's Books
Ruby Allure's Books

Monday, 30 March 2015

The Beauty of Audio Books

There is such talent in a person who can bring a book to life through voice. I had never really considered it before because I create through written word. The words construct according to my mental landscape and fly out onto the page. Sometimes I write at 90 words a minute and find that I am not consciously thinking anymore. That is what I do. Yet lately the world of story has expanded onto audible. Being able to hear the story is wonderful and imagine a book you have written being interpreted by an actor or actress with an engaging voice. That actor or actress 'gets' everything you thought and provides a tone of passion which makes the hairs on your head stand on end. I had never realised it was possible. However, it is such a joy. To be able to listen to a story is something I have always loved since being a child and now my dream is being realised in the form of audio books. I cannot express the feelings of enthusiasm that I feel. This is the equivalent - imagine doing a headstand whilst riding a huge wave on a longboard! Or learning that a mysterious person had paid off your mortgage. I guess that comes close... What I will say is that I am more than grateful that three extremely talented actresses have arrived in my life to take The Money Farm, Labyrinthine and A Short Course in Creative Writing to a whole new level. I hope these audio books to be completed by the end of June because I honestly cannot wait for the world to hear how these women tell stories. Excited???? I am practically leaping around the room. The thing is I had better get back to my film script writing... You might notice there is a hint of bloggin' procrastination going on here.

Incidentally if you have a good book that would work on audible have a look at amazon ACX. They have been amazing so far!

I just need to say:



What Is True Self-esteem?

Self-esteem and true confidence.
Have you ever considered what gives a person true confidence and a sense of self-esteem? I am not talking about the type who have external bravado, where someone appears, instead the type of self-esteem I am referring to is where there is a certain glowing presence emanating from the person.  In fact these people ‘feel’ so present and unshakable. They are like the solid oak trees who feel so rooted in themselves and definite that nothing will phase or sway them.
The reason I have been thinking about the subject was a little while ago I had some very complex work that I had to complete with a mass of formulae and inter-linked calculations. It was so complex that I could barely explain how I had come to the final figures to my colleagues, let alone have anyone check what I had created. This took me into a state of uncertainty because it meant I had reverse everything that I had calculated to see if I returned to the origin. Again there was no one who could provide approval or tell me I had made the right calculation. Now that was it… that was the key word ‘approval’. For some reason I had a sense of doubt about what I had created and was searching for someone externally to approve of my calculations.
On the day when I had to hand in the calculations there was webinar all about confidence. While I reversed my calculations simultaneously and cross-checked I watched/listened intermittently to the webinar. It was quite profound because at one point I was staring at the figures and the woman being interviewed said ‘sometimes we just have to have confidence in what we have created and let it go.’ At times like that you wonder whether you are on a big brother show. Needless to say, I handed in the work but considered what true confidence and self-esteem really were. This took me on a series of tenuous thoughts about approval, where people search for approval and what happens when we don’t receive approval.  In truth, these thoughts haunted me. I observed people and their behaviours in attempt to work out who had self-esteem and who didn’t. I particularly liked bar observation in the ‘mating’ dynamics of who is attracted to whom; who is punching above their weight and what people do to gain attention? Bottoms hanging below skirt lines suggested low self-esteem along with bosoms that were directed to the ceiling. What made it most fascinating were the women who did not need to flaunt, instead carried a self-assured presence. ‘Something about them,’ magnetised people. It was the same with certain chaps, they had a stance and a sense of self-reliability – a definite presence. It was not false or manufactured.
In every case it was not about how they looked, it was about who they were. Think about it – we all have internal and external worlds. I talk about this a lot when I teach creative writing. The internal world is often completely different, almost the polarity of the external world. So many people expend huge amounts of energy appearing to be that which they are not whilst suppressing that which they are or don’t really like. Why don’t they like that part, their shadow? It is because at some point someone did not approve of it.
So with all these thoughts I wondered what a person would be like if they did not need other people to approve of them. How free would they be? Imagine you had a dream and you wanted to really make it happen yet you shared it with someone and they said it was rubbish. What would you do? Would you believe their opinion was right over yours? This is where true self-esteem comes in. You would not care what the other person thought. So that then made me ask the question – how do we arrive at that point? How do we stop being bothered by other people’s opinions or require their approval? Well the answer, in truth, is inside. The person searching for approval externally needs to re-direct their gaze internally and search for the parts in themselves that are not being approved of by them. One can do this by journaling, doing emotional freedom tapping or contact the inner child through meditation. The journey to uniting your fragments involves tracing the parts of you that are not approved of. Once you find them, no matter how ugly they are you must intend to accept and love these parts through your different ages. All the time you reject these parts of self, they will have power over you. Once you accept them you can integrate them and you will stop meeting people who represent these parts of you. Once you start this work you will discover many vaulted memories and possibly experience some extreme emotions. When these feelings do arise, sit with them, feel them and allow them to be processed. Over time, one fragment, by another fragment, the parts of self that have not been approved of are united. In doing this you gain energy and a sense of self-power and love. Over time you will arrive in a state of ‘no need.’ In that state you realise you have become. In a state of being nothing wavers you and that is when you find true self-esteem. This is when everything becomes possible. It is not an easy journey but one worth taking to unite the fragments of self. Alternatively you can keep looking externally, hand over your power to others to have them tell you that you are okay… To me that sounds ridiculous when you can become your ultimate and empowered self. Isn’t life about becoming the best you can be? To me that best does not require permission from others to be your ultimate self.
Oh and my great news: The Money Farm is going to be produced on audible and so is A Short Course In Creative Writing. In celebration of this fact the above Kindle version is on offer for £0.99 on

Friday, 20 March 2015


So why do we all grow so excited about eclipses when historically they were the instigators of plague and pestilence. In some of the old myths the eclipse was the time of darkness where the Devil had the chance to enter the world and reap havoc. Eclipses are so symbolic in terms of celestial bodies: consider this and the reflection of ourselves - the sun, the masculine symbol and is light is eclipsed by the moon, the feminine and symbolic of illusions. The feminine reveals all that we don't know about ourselves, the hidden or suppressed aspects. If you think about it, it is quite poignant because when the eclipse reaches totality a shadow travels across the earth. That shadow is symbolic of our dark sides, that which we avoid. This eclipse represents the end of an era and a new beginning where we, as individuals, have to face ourselves, our ideals and our illusions. Once illusions shatter we can move into reality and focus on that which is real. Last time I experienced a total eclipse I dreamt the whole story of Labyrinthine, a book about art, eclipses, synchronicity and the divine blueprint. It took me five years to write the book and it is only now that the film script is being drafted and the audible version is being produced. I have been waiting to write the following one and am excited about the prospect of dreaming the next one. I can feel the story is in my unconscious and awaiting release. Let's hope that this eclipse will be the trigger!!!

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Creativity and Completion

Creativity and Completion.

With the solar eclipse about to hit on the 20th of March, just prior to the spring equinox, the heavens are apparently creating a time of resolution and completion for us. As spring comes into bloom, a whole new start and attitude is predicted. Exciting eh? To be honest, I usually find all this celestial stuff a little generic; however, the last few months I have been finalising books and releasing them. The last time this happened I was in Madagascar (when I was a professional photographer) photographing an eclipse and that evening the whole Labyrinthine book turned up in a dream. So there must be something in it.
In truth, in the depth of me, that  inner part that carries the desire for the new is experiencing a whole new energy for creativity. Admittedly the creative urge and the eclipse could be a coincidence, but something in me says it isn’t. Have you ever had a desperate drive to be creative? You know -that feeling when a fresh and inspirational idea hits your system and you feel as though you can simply bounce around? When you go to bed at night an idea after idea explodes in the front of your mind and you have to keep turning on the light and writing the idea down. You then lay back and three more ideas dance around your brain like obese elephants in stilettos! I know… That is what is happening to me at the moment. I can feel the creativity building and the tingling in my system, yet choosing which way to go with new work is tormenting me. I have a back-log of twenty books in editing, yet I feel like it is time for a new writing adventure, one which pushes my boundaries, yet which one? There are too many ideas and not enough hands… So with these creative waves, one has to ride them – paddle, make the leap and create. If you are in the same situation don’t hold back the creativity. Let it flow because creativity is life force flowing through you. It charges every cell and takes into your ‘God space!’ How lucky are we to be creative? Very blooming lucky!!!

Nerves, Anxiety and Pulling Some Decent Dance Shapes!

Could you ever become so nervous that you could not announce your own name? Does that sound insane? Well it happened to a friend of mine. She is a highly educated woman, who is now in her late forties, and in a recent workshop she started crying when she was asked her name. They asked her to write it down but she was shaking so hard that she could not even write. I asked her what had taken her into such a state and she said that as confident as she was with things that she was good at, she had just walked into a class with no idea of what she was going to do. That little voice in her head, the saboteur, told her that she was not good enough and that she needed to get out. A conflict ensued between running away and the fact she had paid a huge amount of money which spiralled into anxiety and absolute nervousness. Her adrenal triggered all her fear responses and overwhelmed her which resulted in her crying. In truth, I was stunned because she is an amazing woman who previously had been a top sales person. Her story really made me think.

So what is it that really makes us nervous? What is it that drives to react like that? There have been times when I have been teaching creating writing and people have become so nervous about reading out their work that their mouths dried up. Luckily I have not had anyone cry yet, or descend into a meltdown.  The situation is more common than we think and in preparation for such an event I realised I wanted to be prepared and have an action that make such a situation easier. Some people say take deep breaths. Others say focus on something outside of yourself whereas I realised that I had my own coping strategy, which had become automatic. When I am in a stressful situation, one that is outside of my comfort zone, I observe the voice in my head, the one that says I can’t do it and listen from an objective perspective. I then ask myself whose voice is it – who taught me to think like that? I then tap into my rebellious nature and say to myself, thank you for trying to protect me from ridicule but I am going to do whatever is making me nervous anyway because I will push my limit. Admittedly I wasn’t always like that. Many times in the past I would run and regret it. It was then that I came to the conclusion that life was too short to hinder myself, criticise myself or sabotage myself. So the technique is simple, listen, observe, reflect and say ‘bollocks!’
As for my friend, we laughed about her situation because we had hindsight and I asked her to spell out her name in YMCA style dancing. I hummed in my most out of tune capacity. If you are nervous there is nothing better than a blooming good laugh to alleviate it! You will be pleased to hear that in the future should she start crying she now has a very elaborate dance to spell out her name!

Saturday, 7 March 2015

To confront or not to confront...

Imagine you have paid a sizable sum for a ticket to a concert that you have wanted to see for ages. You sit in your seat listening to the music and really enjoying the spectacle and then it happens...  An older couple come in late and disrupt everyone as they take the seats directly behind you. First of all they do not even look like they have arrived at the right concert. Once they have settled they then proceed to moan. What's more, they talk so loudly that everyone in the area is aggravated by them. What do you do?

This happened to me and my friend last night. For a little while I fought myself. I am always the one who says what needs to be said. I understood this pair were unaware of how loudly they were talking; however, I really didn't care that the old woman really liked Julie and that they needed to pick up some cabbage for coleslaw. In truth the lack of awareness and consideration made me bristle. I glanced around to see how the rest of the nearby audience were reacting. You know what? They were aggravated but said nothing. The mental argument went something like this 'right I am aggravated now...'
‘Leave it, they are unaware and you don’t want to get into an argument. Plus someone else should say something.’

This mental argument went on and on and their chatting grew louder. Finally I turned around and asked them to make an effort to talk quietly. I was polite and firm. Their response amazed me as they attempted to justify talking through a concert. Admittedly they did quieten down; however, the husband wanted to take it further and said ‘what is wrong with me talking to my wife?.’

Answer: we have not paid money to hear about cabbage and how nice Julie is. (There were sniggers around the area) You have plenty of chance to talk to your wife elsewhere. Now I suggest you show some respect and allow everyone here to enjoy the concert or leave. There were a few here here’s from the surrounding group. The thing is I could feel the man’s anger. When it came to the interval he stood up in an attempt to intimidate me. Which is ridiculous since I am close to six foot and compete at rowing. So I stood up and was half a foot taller. I realised in that moment there was a divine comedy taking place. I was a woman confronting an older man in a public place in a polite and feminine way. Yet the man had to become aggressive. In addition, the music playing was all about conformity and rebellion. So this is it… and it made me think about people and characteristics. Is confrontation down to confidence? Why do so many people avoid confrontation? I feel that it was well within my rights to ask the couple to be quiet. Yet why couldn’t he accept that he was ruining other people’s experience? This made me think about unawareness and how unaware some people are of themselves and others. In some ways it fascinated me because the couple were classical stereotypes and their behaviour could be anticipated. In terms of writing and character – how the character confronts or avoids confrontation reveals a lot about them. So with that in mind…  Would you have confronted or accepted the situation? What would have been the best way to resolve the situation?


Monday, 2 March 2015

Deals do work...

Well it seems that everyone is searching for a bargain. No one really wants to pay the full price do they? So what do you do when you find a deal? Are you one of those who develop a certain kind of smug grin - like the fat kid that ate the last cake? The thing is, we as writers, are on the other side of the deal. To be found and to get known we have to discount our years of work or even put it out there for free in hope that word of mouth will generate sales in the future.

Well, as much as I much as I was reluctant, and after reading numerous marketing books, I gave in and put my books in the count-down deal category of Amazon. I even tested the water in the free section. With regards to promotions, I am glad that I waited because I have nine books that can be promoted in cycles. So this is what I did - I made a consecutive series of count-down deals for each book and as one finished another began. What was the result - so far one hundred and five downloads in three days. That is not bad considering I did not expect there to be much of a response...

What have I learned? If you are new to the world of Indie writing - get your book out there and discount or make it free to get known! Oh and guess which one sold the most? Well actually there were two, the same two: Labyrinthine - the one that is being turned into an audio book and The Ocean Callings - the one that has a script in progress. Following a close third was Davina and the Goyles - this book had interest from a top agent ten years ago. The deal fell through and my heady illusions shattered... I am a better person for it, I try and convince myself of that:)

So with deals and free samples - let's see how the whole cycle of promotions works out:) What I do find strange is that Love Hunt - Dating - has not sold as many, yet has 10 5star reviews. Last year a television producer approached me to turn this one into a television series. It fell through when she decided that she was depressed and wanted to spend time in India practising yoga. She then meditated and changed her life direction. Even the stories about stories are bizarre!

CONCLUSION: From what I am seeing in my sales trending - it seems people go for cheap versus recommendation in this instance. Although the cycle of promotions has not reached either of the LOVE HUNTS. We will see whether there is a spike in sales when they enter into the promotional world.

I hope this helps those who are also on this Indie author journey.