In this episode, I introduce myself and welcome you the world of You Can, Toucan!
You will learn about:
- My beliefs about writers
- How I got started as a writer
- The origin of You Can, Toucan!
- What’s to come in the podcast
- And more!
Links and things mentioned in this episode:
- Uppbeat.io – where I get my podcast music
- Free Quick Start Guide to Writing More in Less Time
Have a question?
If you have questions about the podcast content, content in any of my freebie resources, blog posts, books, website, etc.
Transcripts are created by Descript. Please forgive any spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors!
Hey, Toucan! Well, Hello, hello and welcome to episode one of the You Can Toucan Podcast. This is a podcast for busy authors, by me, a busy author. I am so excited to finally be kicking this thing off. I’ve only been like thinking about starting a podcast forever. Well, okay, maybe the past year or so.
Let me just tell you how excited I am. I sampled every song on uppbeat.io to finally find the one I liked for the intro. And then I sampled them all again just to make sure. I know, but I had to make sure, because I feel like a podcast intro can make or break a podcast. And I wanted a song that could possibly get stuck in your head.
You know those ear worms and how you think of them and you’re humming along sometime during the day and you’re like, Where is that song from? And they were like, Oh yeah, it’s from the You Can, Toucan! Podcast. My new favorite podcast!
All of my favorite podcasts have songs that get stuck in my head and it makes me think of them.
So it’s sort of like, I don’t know, mental marketing or maybe ear worm marketing. Maybe I’m thinking too hard about this since most people probably skip the intro by hitting the forward by 30 seconds button. But I don’t, probably because I listen to podcasts while I’m driving, and that would just be dangerous.
So, to start off the podcast, I really want to tell you more about myself. I know the intro kind of says it all. I’m an author coach. You might wonder what that means. I’ll dig into that a little bit later on. I’m also a project manager by day. I work a 40 hour per week corporate day job and manage projects for the TechCom/Localization department.
I’m also an independent author. I write and publish my own books. I’m also an amazing wife to an awesome husband and a dog mom or fairy dog mother, if you will, to a beautiful pittie mix named Kira. And I’m also a firm believer that anyone can write with the proper inspiration, motivation, and cheerleading and maybe a little bit of help.
So what does it mean when I say that I’m an author, coach? I strive to help writers of all levels develop a consistent and sustainable writing habit that works for their busy lives so they can create the writing career of their dreams. I know I say that a lot, create the writing career of your dreams, the path to the writing career of your dreams, but that’s really what I’m here for.
I wanna give you tips and tricks and tools and ideas and inspiration and motivation. So you, as a busy author, can find the time in your day to create that consistent writing habit that will get you to finish your book or start your book. If you haven’t even started one yet, or otherwise, work on it. I mean, if you don’t work on your book, you’ll never reach the end, right?
So I truly believe that building a consistent writing habit is the first step in becoming the writer you’ve always dreamed of being. And I can help you cultivate your writing life with tools, tips, and tricks, experience, and make it fun along the way. I also believe that my 10 plus years experience as a project manager gives me the knowledge to train you how to set and smash realistic writing goals and publishing goals.
Also, I believe in you. Do you believe in you? Whether you struggle with self-doubt, imposter syndrome, perfectionism, or any other internal obstacles, I can help cheer you on so you see yourself the way that I do as a winner, as so cheesy. But it’s true. We’re all winners. If we set our minds to what we wanna do. And at the end of the day, all of this stuff means nothing unless you have a repeatable, easy to follow, replicable plan, and that’s what I’m here for, is to help you discover that custom flight path that you can use with your current book.
And all of your future books. Now I know every book is different. I personally learned something different from every book that I write. I’m also a discovery writer or a seat of the pants/pantser. So that’s probably why I, I learned something every time I.
So that’s a little bit about why I’m here starting this podcast, why I wanted to start this podcast, but I also wanna tell you what my actual story is.
Who is Claire L. Fishback? Who is this chick to be preaching at me about setting writing goals in cultivating this like writing lifestyle or whatever.
I started writing about animal pen pals and my numerous pets. We always had a ton of pets growing up. Gerbils, hamsters, Guinea pigs, bunnies, always dogs, or at least one dog and typically one or two cats at a time. And so we always had just pets all over the place. And I adore my pets, so I used to write stories about them. And I would put these stories together with three hole punches and those brass brads that would hold the pages together and I’d even slap in some photos.
So basically as soon as I learned how to, to create words out of letters, I was writing. Originally I was inspired by the Jolly Postman, which is a book about a postman who delivers the mail. Obviously that’s what postmen do. And in this book there were envelopes that you could open up and pull out the letters that the animals were writing to each other.
So that’s where I first started writing about the animal pen pals, and it was Caty Caterpillar and Suzy Squorl, and I still have a copy of that particular story with my mom’s handwriting, correcting my atrocious six year old spelling.
Then in the sixth grade, things took a dark turn. I was 11. I think I was 11, and I was inspired by Alvin Schwartz’s Scary stories to tell in the dark.
I stopped writing about my family pets and cute little critters. And started writing about scary things. The reason for this is because I did not like my sixth grade teacher and I, we had to write in a notebook every day. It was reflections about our day or whatever. I used to write scary stories to try to scare her, but she ended up loving them.
So, you know, all in all, she, her love of my stories, I guess, kept me going. So there’s, there’s that. Then, you know, life got in the way as usual. I did write throughout elementary school and middle school and into high school, and I did take breaks here and there to focus on my studies and my boyfriends.
But then after graduating high school, of course you become an adult and you start working a dreaded day job, and then the writing fell by the wayside. Responsibilities of adulthood. The search for a suitable mate, figuring out what I wanted to do with my life, Lord knows I didn’t wanna grow up. Those things all took priority.
It was a very panicky era of my life, that fraying rope bridge between teenager-ship and becoming an adult, like a true adult, which I don’t know about you, but what actually makes you an adult besides your age? Someone once told me it’s the ability to fold a fitted sheet. Well, I certainly cannot fold a fitted sheet to save my life.
So maybe I’m not even an adult yet. I don’t know. I’m having fun and that’s what matters, right? I ended up going to the Art Institute. Oh, Art Institute is difficult to say. I attended the Art Institute of Seattle to get a degree in animation, art and design, which is another form of storytelling. It was a very fun but very challenging time in my life. But so full of creativity, being surrounded by art students all do, you know, going after different degrees. There was graphic design, there was, you know, um, film students. There were all just all kinds of artists there. It was amazing. But then I took a creative writing class as an elective.
I know electives in art school, right? Aren’t all of them electives? Isn’t every class an elective? It completely rekindled my passion for writing. And because of that, I dropped out of art school, you guys, I dropped out of art school to get back to my true passion: writing.
And so I got back to it. I wrote over a million words between dropping out of art school and… I mean I could look at, look up, which, which actual project got me to the million-word mark.
I’ll come back to you with that actually at the end, cuz I, now I’m curious which one it was. Then in 2017, I attended the Colorado Gold Writer’s Conference in Denver, Colorado.
The keynote speaker. Tess Gerritsen ended her speech with you can, too. And I do recall that that though, those are the only words I remember from that keynote speech. I do remember that it was a phenomenal keynote speech, Colorado Gold Writer’s Conference, which is put on by Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, which is an organization here in Colorado.
They really pick their keynote speakers, like it’s topnotch, topnotch selection of authors that they bring in to, to tell us about their trials and tribulations and how they overcame, and it’s always just so inspiring and motivating. I always leave writing conferences, just feeling overcome with the desire to create and to write and just to to be a writer.
I love it. It’s amazing. Anyway, so Tess Garritsen says you can, too. And I turned to my friend USA Today bestselling author, LS Hawker, my dear friend, and I whispered, which let’s face it, I probably was not whispering because wine had been imbibed, you might say. And so, you know, whispering is duh. But I turned and I whispered to her, You can, TOUCAN.
Five years later I wrote a book and here I am launching this author-helping-authors side to my creative business.
And here’s the thing and the reason why I feel like I can bestow upon you a wealth of knowledge. Is because I used to write–before the, the Covid-19 pandemic–I used to write on my lunch break.
And during any, during any other pockets of quote-unquote spare time. Now, now that the, that I’m working 100% or Okay, it’s like 98% from home. I tend to skip my lunch break and I write for an hour every morning. It’s still an hour, and sometimes I do write in the evenings, but only if I didn’t reach my goals during that morning hour.
So not only do I write in my spare time though, I also manage all of the tasks required to run my author business. You may recall from previously, from earlier in this episode that I’m also an independent author, which means I have my own little publishing house, and so I have to do all the tasks for that as well, which includes a lot of project management because once you finish a book that’s not the end baby, there’s like a crap ton more work to do after that.
But I do believe that anyone can write if they have a strong enough desire to tell their story, and they have the tools to show up and just get it done.
So that is basically my background and I know that I am not for everyone. I tell weird jokes. I say weird things. I laugh hysterically at myself. I crack myself up all the time.
I’m not socially acceptable at times. I’m an introverted extrovert, so you basically have to drag me outta my house, and once I’m out and free and out in the world, you gotta drag me back in. And then I hibernate for like a week.
If there’s anything about me that doesn’t resonate with you or that you find offensive not on purpose, I promise, or you just don’t like me, that’s fine. I won’t be upset. It, I mean, just don’t listen to the podcast. Don’t check out my website, Don’t check out my free resources. Don’t, you know, don’t engage at all. That’s, that’s my, that’s my ask as we journey into this together, that if I don’t feel like a good fit for you, then by all means, find somebody else.
But if you have, if you do, sorry, like what I, what I’m saying here and you like who I am through the dulcet tones of my voice, and you’ve maybe visited my website. Or read some of my freebees or blog posts or whatever, and you do like what you hear, then hang with me because this is gonna be amazing.
So here’s what you can expect from season one of the You Can, Toucan! podcast.
Okay, so I’ve got you covered for Who I am. This is my introduction to you, and I would love to know more about you as a listener.
In the next episode, I’m gonna talk about the main method that I use to write so prolifically. In the spare scraps of time during my day and at hour in an hour every day. I’m gonna go over some of these findings of a survey that I ran in March, 2022.
We’re gonna talk about the three R’s of creating a habit. We’re gonna talk about shiny new idea syndrome, which is the sister or cousin or whatever to shiny. Syndrome. Is that what it is? Shiny objects? Yes. Shiny new object syndrome. Then I have a two-part little series, I guess, duo of episodes about planning for anything to get in your way, and by that I mean getting in the way of your writing time.
Then we’re gonna talk about the guilt of taking time off. I’m gonna talk a little bit about binding and gagging your inner voice. I’m gonna talk about BDGs, what they are and how to tackle them. We’re gonna wrap up the season with a high-level introduction to the You Can, Toucan! CAN DO Formula, which is the whole structure of my teachings and how I help people.
So I hope hearing this. Hearing more about me getting to know me a little better, hearing what’s in store for this first season of the podcast, anything that you might have heard that that resonated. I truly hope that you will keep following me and you will join me on this journey. I’m super excited to have you here listening to this podcast.
Yeah, I’m just super excited. Okay. A quick note since I said I’d come back and tell you, I hit the 1 million word mark around 2018, and I think it was Ray Bradbury, at least he was one of the people that this little saying was attributed to. But he’s mentioned that your first million words are practice words, so write a million words, scrap ’em all, and now you can get to work.
And also I wanted to mention the million word, word count that I calculated only includes digital files, starting from probably around 2002 when I wrote the very first segment of a book called A Horribly Written Space Adventure for, And I’m super embarrassed to admit this, the L. Ron Hubbard anthology contest.
The reason I’m embarrassed to admit this is because it was so subpar to any of the stories ever published in an L. Ron Hubber. Anthology.
So there you have it, 2018 or probably well before then if you count all my multitudes of handwritten notebooks that are full and stored and a container in my closet.
But yeah, we’ll count 2018 is when I hit a million words. So there you have it. I will be releasing episode two of this podcast in about a week or so. Until then, spread your wings.
Thank you so much for hanging out with me today. I really hope you learned a ton of stuff from this episode. For a quick start guide to writing more and less time, please visit youcantoucan.com/guide.
That’s Y O U C A N T O U C A N.com/guide.
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