At the beginning of this blog post, I must confess that I am a big fan of Ashdin Doctor and a regular audience of his famous podcast The Habit Coach. I have previously joined one of his Instagram live sessions and loved his insightful talks. I was privileged to have the chance to ask him my questions and he generously answered all my queries. I was on cloud nine when he responded to me and praised my social handle name scarsandglory.
So, when I saw the authors who are going to share their knowledge and experiences with us as a part of the BlogchatterWritFest Season 7, I was overjoyed to see my favorite Habit Coach there! Secretly, I kept counting the days to attend his session.
Finally, the day came and today I joined the session where Sonia Dogra was the moderator of the open-to-view panel discussion, themed on Storytelling in Non-fiction books, with Reema Ahmad and Ashdin Doctor. It was an insightful live session where I learned a lot from each writer. Not only I learned about the craft of writing a non-fiction book, but also, I came to know how to use the mind as a tool for the writing process.
The session started with an introduction to our guests. Sonia introduced us to Reema Ahmad and Ashdin Doctor, and both the authors shared a snippet of their books (Change Your Habits, Change Your Life : Your Guide to an Awesome Life by Ashdin Doctor and Unparenting: Sharing Awkward Truths with Curious Kids by Reema Ahmad) where they beautifully summed up the essence of the books and how they stand out different from the other non-fiction books in the same genre.
I liked how they presented their vision and mission firmly and their thought process behind the process of writing these books gave me a chance to explore my creative spirit while writing my next non-fiction book.
The session continued as Reema Ahmad and Ashdin Doctor shared their experiences from their creative journey so far. It was great to know their personal stories because they were relatable to me as a content creator, writer, and aspiring Life Coach.
During this Q&A part, Ashdin Doctor shared two vital learnings from his journey as an author. Here are the two important teachings from him:
- Write and set a goal of words every day and don’t wait for inspiration to strike and you will sit for writing.
- Never edit while you are writing because the writing mind and the editing mind are different.
So, this was an interesting turn of the session when The Habit Coach shared the two habits that he chose to follow and found them useful for every writer when aiming for writing a book.
Next, Reema Ahmad shared her experience as an NLP coach and how her thought process was transformed after learning NLP. She wonderfully explained how having a certain frame of mind plays a crucial role in our mindset and how NLP could help the person to overcome a challenging phase and know themselves better. She beautifully described what it means to be a coach and how being a coach could be a learning experience itself because you get to know more about the working process of the mind.
As a Positive Psychology Enthusiast and a Wellbeing Researcher, I could relate to her words and found some answers to my questions that helped me have a new vision for my work.
Next, Ashdin Doctor explained to us how it is important for creators to get a variety of streams of information and experiences into their life.
He gave us a valuable suggestion. According to Ashdin Doctor, “If you have no idea what your next step is, if you are having a creative block, it means you are not learning enough. So, go back to learn because when you will have enough information you can take the next step.”
In the next Q&A part, the authors took participants’ questions and aptly answered them. During this, they shared their tips on how they take care of the privacy of the people whose personal stories they share in their books, how it’s important to incorporate a bit of fiction in every non-fiction writing and the vice versa.
My question to the authors was, “How to conduct research work for writing a non-fiction book?”
Reema Ahmad wonderfully answered that when it comes to writing a non-fiction book, especially when it is a self-help book or a book based on mental health, it is a good practice to share your personal experiences. So, make sure you have had sufficient life experiences to speak about something. Also, since it is a non-fiction book so it can’t be all about yourself. Therefore, you must share other information as well. In addition, she added, the process of researching varies from person to person so do your research in your own style.
Ashdin Doctor also shared his tips in response to my question. He shared three steps of research for writing a non-fiction book that includes: research endlessly but put a deadline when you stop your research and start writing, gather all important information in your mind during the research process to structure your book, and don’t read your competing literature before you finish writing the manuscript of your book.
We concluded the session with the writing mantras from both authors. Thus, we had a fabulous panel discussion with these renowned writers and it was great to know their insights. Even their candid talks gave me a scope for learning.
Much gratitude to Reema Ma’am and Ashdin Sir for being a part of the BlogchatterWritFest. Thanks to Blogchatter for conducting this insightful panel discussion and thanks to Sonia Dogra for making the interactions engaging and fun till the end.
My heartiest wishes to both authors for their future endeavors.
Know the Authors:
Ashdin Doctor is a Mumbai-based popular habit coach who has been transforming the lives of many who feel stuck by creating habits that can be easily incorporated into daily life. He is the founder of Awesome 180, a habit coaching programme. He also hosts a popular podcast, The Habit Coach.
Reema Ahmad is an NLP life coach, trauma and relationship counsellor. She started her career as a sexuality educator and child sexual abuse prevention advocate. In 2017, she co-founded Candidly, a platform to explore issues of gender, abuse, sexuality, media and how to them manifest through culture. She is a two-time TEDx and Josh Talks speaker. Reema is also a poet, editor and author.
(Quoted from the Blogchatter website.)
(This post is about my learnings from the panel discussion that was a part of BlogchatterWritFest Season 7. All quotes by the authors are collected from the session recording.)
One response to “My learnings from the fabulous BlogchatterWritFest session with Reema Ahmad and Ashdin Doctor”
Very beautifully put. Yes the session was really powerpacked. I loved every inch you have mentioned. They appealed me most during the session. Reading you made me to be back in the session.