Conejo Valley Happening‘s very own Mira Reverente just authored her first book entitled “Suddenly Single Women’s Guide to Finances.” Recently divorced, Reverente is a Conejo Valley journalist with a long-time devotion to everything local and “feel good,” including everyday heroes, non-profit groups, sports and schools.
Her book project just debuted on Kickstarter, a crowd-funding web site, popular among authors, artists, inventors and techies who need that extra boost from the public to get their independent projects off the ground. The campaign is all-or-nothing; project creators can not keep any of the funds raised, unless they reach 100 percent of their funding goals.
We spoke with Reverente to find out how her book came about, why she’s going the Kickstarter route and why you should read it.
Conejo Valley Happening: What inspired you to write this?
Mira Reverente: I don’t know if you would call the events that led to the birth of this book “inspiring!” (laughter) Post-divorce, I was juggling jobs, bills and two children. I couldn’t find good material on tackling debt, savings, investments and the like. I found that the advice that was out there was too broad or not really targeted at women post-relationship break-up. I spoke to a lot of friends who were going through or went through the same ordeal. They were also at a loss and some were getting bad advice. So I made it my “mission” to compile a practical guide for women like me.
CVH: Who are you writing this book with?
MR: I have a co-author, Tracy Marcynzsyn. We used to work together at a local magazine many years ago and then we reconnected last year at a dog park. I found out Tracy went through almost the same things I did, post-relationship break-up. I’ve always respected and admired Tracy’s work as a journalist and as an editor, and she has become a dear friend during this process, I think our meeting at the dog park last fall was fate. When I brought up the book idea with her, she was very excited and totally on board with it.
CVH: Where did you get the material for this book?
MR: Between my experiences, Tracy’s, my friends and hers, we have an unbelievable amount of material for the book. We have tons of real-life experiences, advice and anecdotes. We also interviewed several experts including financial advisers, a family therapist, the director of a non-profit focused on working with single parents and the head of a transition group for women, among others. Tracy and I have also been attending classes and info sessions on financial planning, throughout Ventura and LA counties.
CVH: How are you releasing this book?
MR: We have decided to use the popular Kickstarter platform to raise funds and self-publish. Statistics have it that for every 50 book ideas, only one lands a book deal. So we are getting the word out through Kickstarter, email, social media plus some grassroots marketing hoping we’ll reach our funding goal of $8,888 by Sunday, May 10th, which also happens to be Mother’s Day. It’s very nerve-wracking since Kickstarter is “all-or-nothing.” You either reach your funding goal and use those funds to complete your project, or you don’t make your goal and you don’t see a dime of the funds already raised.
CVH: When is the release date?
MR: If all goes well and we get the funds we need through Kickstarter, we should start printing by June/July. The book should be on bookstands and on Amazon.com by August.
CVH: What do you hope readers will take away from reading your book?
MR: First, I want readers to know that they always have options. It may look like they’re at a dead end but they’re not. They just have to find the right people to help them wiggle their way out of a tight corner.
Second, my cousin actually said this, “Focus on rebuilding not recovering what was lost.” We spoke on the phone after she found out about my divorce. I can still hear her voice, “Stop looking back, keep moving forward.”
Lastly, give yourself time to pick up the pieces. I know it sounds like a cliché, but take one step at a time. You really will have to tackle challenges like bills or debt one at a time. It is so easy to get overwhelmed. I can’t count the number of times I just ended up in tears or really upset after a phone call with a bank. I had to tell myself many times that the issue will eventually get resolved in time. It feels like this really long race sometimes and I’m thankful for years of marathon training. At this point, it feels like mile 23 or 24 for me, and I’m just coasting to the finish line.
For more info or to make a pledge before May 10th, click here.