How To Write A Book That Malcolm Gladwell Would Be Proud To Have Written

31 Mar
My child is soon to leave home

“The Mirror” – Table of Contents

When I set out to write what will become The Mirror, Book One – Welcome to the Evil Sisterhood, I had certain goals in mind. I wanted to introduce a new gender-based way of interpreting narcissism theory. I wanted to show how this explained literally EVERYTHING about hard core feminism. I wanted to expose the fundamentally biased and malevolent feminist family “justice” system–The Matriarchy–, how it acts to harm children and men, and, more importantly, why it does so. I wanted to expose the scandal that was my divorce case, and the government cover up that ensued. I wanted my experience to be a catalyst for positive change.

I had one major advantage in all of this: I had never written a book before.

My inexperience permitted me to approach the problem of writing to achieve my goals with a fresh and innovative mind. I needed The Mirror to be a gripping read for as many people as possible, so that the book would be commercially successful and thus influence public opinion to a meaningful degree. Since the book would be introducing fascinating new concepts and exploring how these apply to society, I immediately thought of best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell. I thoroughly enjoyed his thought-provoking books.

What I needed to do was write a book that Mr. Gladwell would be proud to have written.

Author Malcolm Gladwell. Photo Credit: Kris Krüg,

Author Malcolm Gladwell. Photo Credit: Kris Krüg,

No small order for a first time author, obviously. To achieve such a lofty aim, I employed test (or beta) readers. Have someone read the manuscript, then consider their comments. I had no ego investment in the book; I just wanted it to be the book that it needed to be. I let the test readers know that there were no expectations, and that negative feedback was at least as helpful as positive feedback, if not more so. I’d consider a reader’s thoughts, make adjustments as necessary to things like tone and controversial statements, and then find another test reader. Repeat.

The Manuscript

The Manuscript

I knew The Mirror was something special when my 1st test reader, an old high school buddy, stayed up reading until 02:45 a.m. to finish it and then emailed me his preliminary thoughts. It’s been highly refined in the numerous iterations of the test reader cycle since then.

Have I written a book that Malcolm Gladwell will admire? Time will tell, I suppose. Here are the test reader comments; what do you think?

* * * * *

Test Reader Feedback [NOTE: Significant majority are women]

“I spent the past weekend with your book. It is excellent: your patient and blow-by-blow recounting of the hell you endured makes for a very gripping reading experience.” Professor of English Janice Fiamengo, Ontario, Canada

Absolutely love Book One. You captured my interest, my support and my heart.” S.F., U.S.A.

“In the beginning I felt as though I was reading “This Boys Life: A Memoir” written by Tobias Wolff, in addition to reading Follett or Le Carré filled with conflict and intrigue. I was on the edge of my futon. I will admit, this is my second reading. I want to buy it when published, you just have to autograph it so the book can sit in my book case along with my hard copy of my favorite authors. Definitely an awesome and honest story. It is terribly hard to believe the circumstances and that there are women out there like that “Mommy Dearest” comes to mind. Thank you for letting me read your story.” J.M., Seattle, WA, U.S.A.

I really, really enjoyed it! It was so real and personal that it actually made me cry at times. Most of the time it was empathy, sometimes sympathy… I truly enjoyed reading this. I feel as if you were talking to me over coffee at times and the read was in person. Although I’ve never met you, I feel like I understand and respect you as if I did. Thank you so much!” J.C., Ontario, Canada

“I have just finished the book….to be quite honest, it’s left me speechless. I have been through a range of emotions, realizations, and was especially challenged by the last few pages regarding the rejection of ‘feminism’ as defined by Michael. What a story…It made me think about my own upbringing and how the qualities of narcissism show up differently within the masculine and feminine paradigms (as Michael suggests). Feminist or not, this book is a page-turner.” J.K., U.S.A.

“The Mirror is eloquent and it’s human. You told your story with passion, with confidence and with conviction. You’ve done brilliantly at keeping it coherent and you’ve paced it out as well as any good work of fiction I’ve ever read. Your writing style is that of a true storyteller, and it was only on very rare occasions as I read that I didn’t feel you were sitting beside me, telling of the joys and the trials, the triumphs and the frustrations. I felt your losses and your significant wins, few and far between as they may have been. You should be very proud of your work… it is awesome.” L.G.H., Ontario, Canada

The Mirror is every parent’s worst nightmare—your children stolen from your life by a vindictive ex and a corrupt, incompetent and unjust system. Sit up and take notice, because this compelling and heartbreaking story will continue to happen to others until an outraged public demands social change.” K.H., Ontario, Canada

“I honestly struggled to keep this short, because I cannot speak highly enough of the book, and how and why it was written–and what reading it instilled in me. It was an intriguing, honest and at times humorous telling of the devastating injustice inflicted on one man. I was drawn intellectually and emotionally into the story of a father whose three children were alienated from him WITH the help of the judicial systems in place in Canada. I felt present with him through each encounter, unable to stop reading. Seeing and feeling not only his pain – but the indisputable truth he conveys with evidence to back up his words – caused me to rethink various aspects of my views on society as a whole. A must read for everyone who wishes for a fairer and better world.” B.B., U.K.

“I sat down intending to read the first twenty or so pages and was became so engrossed in the details that mirrored much of my own experience – I read it right to the end in one sitting. The Mirror reveals exposes a broken system that has punished many for no good reason.” B.C., Ontario, Canada

I am so grateful you wrote this book, on so many levels. You just nailed it all so perfectly. My mother was quite a narcissist. She took me from my father when I was 3, allegedly to protect me. I never could quite figure out, protect me from what? Thanks to your book, I think I get it now. Thank you so much for letting me read your book. It was powerful. I’m quite impressed.” G.G., Seattle WA, U.S.A.

“With respect to the book, if I may say so, it has been very well structured and your dry humor runs throughout. As you had mentioned at the end, it sure is an ordeal to go through it again to put it down, but you have done a very good job of it to have it neatly segregated… I was wondering, ‘how is he going to handle the aftermath of this tornado once it gets published and recognized?’ Feminists all over are going to be so over him. And I got the answer at the last chapter. ‘Damn them,’ you say. I say the same.” K.G., India

“Just finished your book! Your passion for the dire need of the courts to return to the unfeminized Rule of Law is palpable and well-defined.Your personal experience will resonate with millions of men, and not just betrayed fathers, but any man who has been unfairly subjected to any influential female “authority” figure’s misguided decision-making process, whether she be part the judiciary, business community, government, academia, military, organized religion or politics. They will suddenly realize that it was not just bad luck that produced their negative outcomes, but a full-blown concerted conspiracy to denigrate them for being men.” K.Q.D., U.S.A.

I found your book to be extremely interesting and very well written. You’ve also done your research, so it’s very well quoted, which I think is a plus for a book like yours. It is essential to read the experience of a man, so your book needs to be out there, needs to be read. Maybe it will help to make a difference and to help the system change.” V.B., Ontario, Canada

Never have I seen the pain and horror resulting from the gross miscarriages of justice perpetrated against fathers (and men in general) in today’s society so clearly portrayed. ‘The Mirror’ is a rare, inside look at just how impotent the modern-day father is rendered by the current justice systems of North America. It exposes the insidious underbelly of feminism in a raw, unapologetic account of one man’s struggle to save his children, and his refusal to give up, even in the face of seemingly insurmountable opposition.” – A. Taylor, VA, U.S.A.

You weren’t kidding when you said some people couldn’t put it down. I was up until 2:00 am last night reading, and then I started again after the kids went to school this morning. I found myself drawn in by your story, but also by all of the research you included. I am astounded by everything that has happened to you and your children; injustice doesn’t even begin to describe it. If this was 30 years ago, I could see it happening. But in this day and age? I find your story simply appalling. I hope, one day, your children will be able to see through their mother. No child deserves to be without a loving father, and no loving father deserves to be without his children. Looking forward to Book Two.” CA, BC, Canada

“I have just finished reading your book! After 43 years in an unhappy marriage, I feel so lifted up to know that I am not alone. One must always see the problems of others to realize that we do have things to be grateful for. All the best to you, with kudos for your wonderful book.” I.L., Ottawa ON, Canada

107 Responses to “How To Write A Book That Malcolm Gladwell Would Be Proud To Have Written”

  1. LindaGHill March 31, 2014 at 9:27 am #

    Impressive! 🙂

  2. Charles Yallowitz March 31, 2014 at 9:35 am #

    Interesting how inexperience can be an advantage in book writing.

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 9:39 am #

      It is, Charles. Not having a preconceived notion as to how it was supposed to be done, my outsider approach was predicated upon my 30 years of military experience. What I did was essentially adopt a weapons systems development cycle approach to the affair.

      I find the multiple test reader approach to be both effective and enjoyable, in that I’ve met and gotten to know some wonderful people in the process.

      • Charles Yallowitz March 31, 2014 at 9:40 am #

        Beta readers are very useful. Nice to get the feedback. Curious approach too. Sounds like it works for you, which is the important part.

        • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 10:09 am #

          Agreed. It’s the resulting book that ultimately matters.

  3. insanitybytes22 March 31, 2014 at 11:37 am #

    That’s excellent, you’re drawing on the skills you already have. Plus you’re a good story teller with an important story to tell.

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 11:45 am #

      Thank you, ib22. Yes, sometimes when we come at a problem as an outsider, we can draw upon a different experience base and devise new or different or better solutions.

      It is an important story. Too many children are being harmed by the family “justice” system. It won’t change until people rise up against it, and this won’t happen until it is properly and rationally exposed.

      I suppose it’s a navigator’s job to find the way ahead, isn’t it?

  4. Winifred M. Reilly March 31, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

    As you know I think you are a talented writer and your story is quite compelling (also heartbreaking and disturbing and… see thesaurus for words that describe tragedy and treachery…) I very much look forward to having a copy in hand.

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 4:31 pm #

      Thank you, Winifred. I am very much looking forward to being able to get that book into your hands.

      And the hands of many others, too.

      Thanks for stopping by.

  5. suzjones March 31, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    You’ve got to be over the moon with reviews like that. 🙂

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

      I am quite pleased, that’s for certain. Don’t know if I would go so far as to use “chuffed,” (not a word used in Canada), but there is a certain sense of satisfaction in seeing that the book appears to have the effect on readers that I hoped it would.

      We’ll just have to see if this translates into sales. Not for the $$$, but so that it can influence public opinion and drive positive change in society.

      • suzjones March 31, 2014 at 4:40 pm #

        Well I certainly hope that your dreams will be realised. 🙂

        • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 4:58 pm #

          Thank you, Sue. It would be nice to have something positive come out of everything that has happened.

          Total World Domination 2014 or bust. };-)>

        • suzjones March 31, 2014 at 5:01 pm #

          At least you’re being realistic with your goals 😉

        • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 5:02 pm #

          You’ve gone and made me laugh, AGAIN. Thank you.

  6. Carol Balawyder March 31, 2014 at 5:01 pm #

    This is fantastic.Makes me want to read the book. How did you get your beta readers?

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 5:13 pm #

      At first, it was friends and work acquaintances whom I thought might be interested. Afterwards, it was through blogging acquaintances that I had met. Sometimes it was after I had established a relationship with them, sometimes it was an icebreaker if I read a comment or their “about” and I thought they’d be interested. Always “no offence taken” if they’d rather nor

      It was always on their own time, no worries if they didn’t like it, no need to proof read (although errors caught were appreciated), high-level comments were thankfully accepted, negative or positive, but only if they felt like it, etc. Zero expectation, and so zero pressure. I wanted prospective test readers to be completely at ease about the whole thing – they were doing me a significant favour by reading the manuscript, and I never lost sight of this.

      As the test reader feedback built, so too did the attractiveness of having a test read. I could honestly tell prospective test readers that others consistently rated the book as a gripping read. Having a professor of English provide positive feedback was a powerful testament, too.

      Anytime you want to fire me an email at, the corrected galley proof is yours for the asking. Same zero obligations / expectations, no-strings-attached situation. No worries if you decide not to, or would rather wait, etc.

      A book can be a bridge to forming and strengthening blogging relationships; it has been, for me.

      • Carol Balawyder March 31, 2014 at 8:22 pm #

        Thanks for your reply. I have a line up of books to read for my blog posts but I do want to read your galley. It might take a bit of time before I respond. Thank you for offering. 🙂

        • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 8:51 pm #

          You’re welcome, Carol. All on your own time, please let me know when you’re ready, and I get it to you.

  7. Susan Lattwein March 31, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

    You must be feeling very encouraged by all these responses.
    I intend to finish your book, I really do. What I’ve read so far has a very readable, conversational tone. Good luck!

    • navigator1965 March 31, 2014 at 10:24 pm #

      Thanks, Susan. That’s pretty much the tone I was aiming for—an intimate and personal story telling.

      Yes, the feedback has been highly encouraging. Still, there’s much work to be done to successfully market the book.

  8. lensgirl53 April 1, 2014 at 5:16 am #

    Who do you want to play the role of you when the movie comes out? Or better yet, who do you have in mind to play the X?

    All of the comments are proof positive of how your experience has touched those of us who have read your manuscript. I really cannot say that I know of another book quite like it. I mean that in a good way, of course. I see second, third, etc…editions. I am glad I am going to have my very own signed copy of a first edition. 🙂 dale

    • navigator1965 April 1, 2014 at 7:53 am #

      Well, this is a compliment that has me blushing, Dale. Thank you. The possibility of this story being made into a movie had occurred to me, but I haven’t had much time to give it thought. I’d have to learn more about rights, fair value, artistic / creative control, script writing, copyright, etc.

      I’m a thinker first, always. Probably the last thing I’d wonder about would be the actors and actresses. I suspect the women in my family would be inclined to suggest actor Nathan Fillion. For the X, I think an actress like Charlize Theron has the skills to portray a narcissistic woman.

      I think we can find a way to make a signed copy possible. We might have to give it a little thought as to which name it will be signed with, though.

      I do hope the book helps individuals come to terms with aspects of their lives when it comes to having been abused by narcissists, and it seems to do this, which is wonderful. Just as importantly, I hope that it helps society to realize that something is badly amiss with our family “justice” system, and that positive change comes as a result.

  9. Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 2:09 am #

    Oh I spy with my little eye! Love this post and all the feedback you were given! Including mine 😛

    • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 6:28 am #

      Every test reader’s feedback is a treasure, including yours, and you are one wonderful young lady for having helped me out in this.

      How’s the future real estate baroness doing on the TO driving side of things? I want a ride when you get your first Jaguar or Range Rover.

      • Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 9:29 am #

        😀 thank you! Ah! For now your getting a ride in a 15 year old luxury Honda :). If I have the money one day to buy a better car. Porsche!!! Or BMW… I can settle for that.

        • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 10:00 am #

          As a 48 year dude whose finances were nuked in divorce, I haven’t been able to afford a car since 2008, so a 15 year old Honda is luxury! (Just like the Monty Python skit.)

          Porsche or a Beamer? – We all have to settle for things, sometimes. };-)>


        • Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 10:09 am #

          I can’t do anything with WordPress anymore! Especially in the computer!! It won’t let me like anything anymore!!!!!!
          :(. Trust me, I don’t care what I drive. As long as it gets me to work and back and doesn’t cost me an arm and a leg I’m happy. Sadly, my car is too needy. She needs maintenance like a needy woman. *sigh*

        • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 10:40 am #

          You’ve actually got the right way of looking at a car. They are a huge expense, and really all they do is serve to get us from A to B.

        • Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 10:44 am #

          That’s because I don’t see dollar signs! I see practical and realistic

        • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 10:45 am #

          Some mad biologist is going to make a fortune someday by cloning you for the purpose of arranged marriages. };-)>

        • Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 10:47 am #

          Lmao! Your awesome 🙂 and, surprisingly know what to say to fix my shitty day!

        • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 11:06 am #

          That makes me glad. A super gal should never have not-wonderful days. };-)>

        • Jenna Rambles April 2, 2014 at 11:53 am #

          I wish I was super! And that I had wonderful days

      • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

        Wish granted. }:-p> (I always drool over my evil goatee when I do that.)

  10. navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 9:38 am #

    As a 48 year dude whose finances were nuked in divorce, I haven’t been able to afford a car since 2008, so a 15 year old Honda is luxury! (Just like the Monty Python skit.)

    Porsche or a Beamer? – We all have to settle for things, sometimes. };-)>

  11. LC Aggie Sith April 2, 2014 at 10:17 am #

    I do hope that this book will help to break the chains men endure in this misandrous society cleverly disguised as a champion FOR THE CHILDREN™.

    And yes, it is a top contender for #25 on my list. And you should make a list, too!

    • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 10:39 am #

      Thanks for your gracious words, M’Lady Sith. I hope to break those chains and others, too. Or at least to start the breaking process.

      Being secure, I can accept being behind Katherine Hepburn. };-)>

      I just might do this for a post. It’s a great idea.

  12. M.K. Styllinski April 2, 2014 at 2:50 pm #

    I hope it gets a well deserved wide audience since your insights can be applied to many societal domains. Which is quite scary of course…. Still, knowledge liberates ignorance stagnates.

    • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

      Thank you, M.K. The reaction to the book will be quite interesting. There’s no doubt that it will constitute a serious narcissistic injury to feminists (and Canadian judges!). I can’t help but wonder if a sort of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle won’t come into play.

      By virtue of having theoretically (and publicly) predicted the general nature of the feminist response, will I have then altered it? That their typical response set and tactics would serve to vindicate my insights into the gender narcissistic nature of ideological feminism surely will not be lost on at least some feminists.

      Will there be an explosive response, or will the silence be deafening?

      • M.K. Styllinski April 2, 2014 at 3:05 pm #

        All depends on the marketing my friend : )

        • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 3:12 pm #

          I suspect you are quite right, in this. I have a reasonable blogging base, more from the influence of my blogging amigos than my own blogging brilliance, assuredly, but I am very weak to non-existent in other major social media.

          Ideally, I could do well enough to attract the attention of a major publisher. Otherwise, I’ll have to get much better at social media. I’d rather just concentrate on the work necessary to write the sequel, as this will be a substantial undertaking.

          Unless one consider things like the six volumes of Gibbon’s “Decline and Fall” as an easy read.

  13. M.K. Styllinski April 2, 2014 at 3:09 pm #

    Actually, I suspect it will be a mixture of both. But if you’re talking radical feminism then they’ll love you. After all, what does collective narcissism need to fill that lack but an object of hate!? I hope you have a hard hat…; )

    • navigator1965 April 2, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

      I hope Salman Rushdie is looking for a room mate. Hide out in a small Irish village, perhaps? };-)>

  14. Mich-in-French April 3, 2014 at 9:57 am #

    I do believe that you are also born with an innate talent to write and pen a story – you are one of those special people.

    • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 10:12 am #

      Thank you, Mich. Perhaps things sometimes happen for a reason, even bad things, that we can’t perceive or understand at the time. Maybe I needed to experience what I did, so that I could understand what was really happening and why. Then, armed with a unique understanding, I could tell a unique story.

      It was very sweet of you to write this. If you’d seen all the “red ink” that my diligent Irish proof reader had used–darn those commas!–, I might seem a little more human as a writer. };-)>

      This might be interesting:

      • Mich-in-French April 3, 2014 at 10:25 am #

        So true Nav -you may also help others out there with your story, it could give someone the courage they never had and the insight to make the changes they need to before it gets scary.

        I am sure those commas made you crazy and this – I believe – is what makes you all the more believable …the red ink does not take away from your ability to tell a damn good story.

        • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 10:39 am #

          You’re right, Mich. One does not require perfect grammar and punctuation to spin a good yarn or tell an exciting story. This is what first drafts and manuscripts are for. At some point, though, it is probably best to have a proof reader or editor go through it to ensure all those little errors are hunted down by an independent set of eyes.

          With this book’s controversial aspects, it will certainly receive enormous scrutiny. It will have enemies, and they will look for any reason to criticize it. If the basic grammar and punctuation are wanting, they could use this to imply something like, “Well, he can’t even do punctuation right. If he can’t do something as simple as this, we can hardly have any confidence in his outrageous argument.”

          Thank you. It is a fantastic story,though, isn’t it? Almost hard for me to believe that something like this could actually happen, until I start reading parts of the book again. It’s as if part of me wants to forget it ever happened.

        • Mich-in-French April 3, 2014 at 10:57 am #

          You have a point there Nav – or is it a comma – people get very antsy when commas are misplaced or absent lol

          As for the story – it is must feel surreal that your story, your book is going to be out there on the ‘shelves” and then of course almost reliving so many of the moments that must still bring up so many raw emotions.

          A steep road with many bumps and bends but here you stand…spandex pants and all – rearing to go.

        • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 3:03 pm #

          Okay, THAT made me laugh. Spandex pants, indeed.

          As for feelings about the book and therefore me being “out there” on the shelves, there is a little trepidation. Unless I am mistaken, the book will generate a firestorm of controversy, with me in the middle of it.

          Thankfully, I have no choice but to write under a pseudonym, for legal reasons. A modern day Scarlet Pimpernel.

      • Abhishek Mazumder April 3, 2014 at 3:03 pm #

        Impressive………awesome to know u…come and explore my blog @ looking forward for your reviews..

  15. Middlemay Farm April 3, 2014 at 8:11 pm #

    Wow, I’m impressed. I love how you didn’t invest your ego and just had a mission 🙂 Hard core feminism is such a weird thing–an evil thing really. In my novel (The House on Tenafly Road) I wanted to write a “strong female character” but realized very quickly that I was thinking a modern flawed thought. Feminism robbed women of what used to be considered admirable traits of women and replaced them with second-rate versions of male traits. What did strength mean?

    It’s unrealistic to think most women plan on being expert kick boxers but we see it all the time in movies. The more I read about the average women of the past the more I admired them for being women. This also changed my perspective on men who in many ways have been victimized by the culture–vilifying every masculine tendency. I agree with Camille Paglia that without good, strong men there would be no civilization building. Women getting equal pay for equal work I’m all for, but with modern feminism and the sexual revolution it brought in its wake a lot of unhappy slaves to a system that doesn’t fit.

    Don’t even get me started on divorce courts! When I got divorced I was constantly being pressured to screw over my ex-husband–because I could. I found it disgusting and refused to do it.

    • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 8:29 pm #


      So nice of you to drop by and write such a thoughtful comment; you honour me with your visit, and I applaud your honourable conduct during divorce. I fear too many women these days succumb to the temptation to exploit a fundamentally biased system, although there are men who are certainly not candidates for sainthood in this regard, either.

      You’ve actually made some very insightful observations. My primary thesis is that feminism is actually a gender narcissistic subset of what Christopher Lasch wrote about in his book The Culture of Narcissism. What you correctly identify as the admirable traits of women being replaced by 2nd rate versions of men actually fits my thesis. The nature of the gender narcissism behind the harder core feminists is such that they are unconsciously ashamed of being women and hate being women – it relates to every aspect of their feminine biology, and any natural social order that might arise due to gender differences.

      If a woman hates being a woman (but doesn’t realize this), what’s left for her to be but a caricature of a man?

      I haven’t read any of C. Paglia’s works, but I know of them, and I really respect her. Christina Hoff-Sommers (Who Stole Feminism? and The War Against Boys) is another good thinker.

      I am rather looking forward to future discourse between us. Yes, I’m on a bit of a mission, and it’s a noble one.

      Take care.

      • Middlemay Farm April 4, 2014 at 10:22 am #

        Women hating being women–this is so true. All of the womanly qualities are seen as gross or lacking. I hated being a woman when I was younger because I was never taught that it was something to value. This led to a lot of unhappiness and anger. I felt I had to compete with men in order to be worth something,

        Once I embraced my womanhood I actually gained happiness, strength and a new admiration for men. It all happened when I Civil War re-enacted.for researching my book. As soon as I put on the corset and the hoop skirt I felt like a transformed person–like I was discovering who I really was for the first time–weird but true. 🙂

        • navigator1965 April 4, 2014 at 10:57 am #

          What an astute comment this is. What you came to realize is one of the primary messages I hope that my sequel will effectively convey. The traditional and therefore natural contributions of women to children, men, families, communities, and societies are every bit as valuable and necessary as are those of men.

          With reasonable variances due to individuality, when women reject these, they are, in a sense, rejecting their own femininity and therefore themselves. This can only bring misery.

          My sense is that the individual unhappiness that you used to experience is widespread amongst the women of today. Part of what I hope to accomplish in exposing feminism for what it really is, and thereby getting women in general to reject it, is to help women feel great about themselves simply for being women.

          They should. So should men.

        • Middlemay Farm April 4, 2014 at 4:27 pm #


    • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 8:31 pm #

      I’m going to have to read your book, sometime. So much reading to do, so little time!

      • Middlemay Farm April 3, 2014 at 10:09 pm #

        I know what you mean! I get to read more in the summer when I take my goats out in the field. Right now I’m furiously working through my novels at the computer because soon enough I’ll be really busy outside.

        My second manuscript is about Buck Crenshaw (minor character in the first novel) who goes to West Point in the 1880’s and gets himself into a lot of trouble. Really fun to write about!

        • navigator1965 April 3, 2014 at 10:20 pm #

          Certainly sounds like it. What an interesting writing niche you’ve made for yourself.

          Now I’m curious about the goats, too. Where did this herding aspect to your life come from?

        • Middlemay Farm April 4, 2014 at 10:15 am #

          I was a big fan of the usual girl fiction as a kid–The Little House on the Prairie books etc. I always wanted to live someplace rural and constantly drew pictures of chickens. We lived in the suburbs.

          I worked on a few farms in early adulthood and fell in love with the goats but never imagined my life would take me to upstate NY. My Navy husband took up my forgotten dream. We both fell in love with a piece of land, built a house, got chickens, bees, goats and now ducks 🙂

          As a writer I love being alone out in the field with my animals–it’s like a blank slate for ideas.

          I have a very random blog about the farm stuff–

          Off to clean out the barn now 🙂

          Have a great weekend!

        • navigator1965 April 4, 2014 at 10:22 am #

          You, too. Thanks for the insight.

  16. Holistic Wayfarer April 3, 2014 at 11:33 pm #

    “My inexperience permitted me to approach the problem of writing to achieve my goals with a fresh and innovative mind” Very cool, Nav.

    As to the wave of commendations, I am just so so happy for you. And proud of, I must add.


    • navigator1965 April 4, 2014 at 7:11 am #

      Thank you, Diana. I continue to marvel at the wonderful and mutually supportive relationships that one forms here on WordPress. Your words are heartwarming.

      I use epigraphs to introduce each chapter in the book to the reader. These quotes from authoritative individuals really set the tone for the ensuing material, and they seem to work particularly well with the “journey of discovery / unpleasant road to wisdom” narrative. They foreshadow so nicely, too. The English professor who read the manuscript liked how they enhanced the book, I was pleased to learn. I was saving this one by Gibbon for the sequel, but you’re sufficiently special that I’ll break it out early, as it is apropos to your insightful comment:

      Unprovided with original learning, unformed in the habits of thinking, unskilled in the arts of composition, I resolved to write a book.

      If you ever find yourself with free time (somewhat doubtful for a home schooling mother!), a pre-release .pdf e-book (galley proof) read is yours for the asking. (Hopefully I haven’t already sent you one, which would suggest that my memory is going on me.)

  17. Sherri April 7, 2014 at 5:21 am #

    Only just saw this post for some reason – not sure why I’m not getting some blog email notifications lately, just another gremlin no doubt in the ether. Still, Nav, you must be delighted with these fantastic reviews! So happy for you. You have a hit on your hands my friend, and a very well deserved one at that. Can’t wait to read it.

    This is a two-edged sword (is that the right word, I wonder, ha?!) for me. As you well know, I am writing my first book with the very same strong desire as you to tell a true-life story that others can ‘fall into’. You have given me such great encouragement, I can’t even begin to tell you. I am proud to be a part of this stage of your journey and I look forward to reading your rave reviews after publication. Many, many congratulations on all this, your hard work is about to pay off, I’m certain of it. Going through the pain I can’t say is worth it but you get to tell your story at last, and I understand exactly what that feels like. You are my inspiration.

    • navigator1965 April 7, 2014 at 6:30 am #

      I am quite delighted by the reviews. In fact, I have to temper my expectations about the book’s prospects, as it will take a concerted marketing effort to make it commercially successful, no doubt.

      How wonderful that I can be an inspiration to you in your writing. I hadn’t considered this possibility when I began my book. I was focussed on exposing a corrupt system and advancing certain fascinating observations and ideas regarding gender and narcissism. While I hoped to achieve a positive social awareness and change, the possibility that I can inspire others to pursue their writing dreams is like icing on the cake.

      If I can achieve such positive outcomes, then it will have all been worth it. Who’s to say? Perhaps there was a reason I went through all that I did. If not, at least I have taken a decidedly negative period of my life and have done something positive with it.

      Thank you.

      • Sherri April 7, 2014 at 4:25 pm #

        Well, the cake is iced and ready to be served! Time to celebrate too, and why not crack open a bottle of bubbly while we are at it? Don’t want to jump the gun, but I do believe that a celebration will be in order, and quite soon…you have certainly done something positive Nav, more than that, and I have every confidence in you that you will be able to find just the right marketing strategy…and then you can tell us how to do it, ha!

        • navigator1965 April 7, 2014 at 5:44 pm #

          Thanks, Sherri. I would be nice to achieve some degree of success. And I am certainly not allergic to bubbly!

          I’ll be certain to capture the chronicles of my successes and less-than-successes. Really, I’m no more experienced than every other aspiring writer. I think it may be my RCAF background: I’ve had 30 years of having unorthodox problems thrown my way and being expected to solve them.

          One sort of learns to be self-reliant and confident, as a result.

        • Sherri April 8, 2014 at 1:23 pm #

          I can see that your RCAF background really helped with this, giving you the life skills needed. Still, I’m confident that soon we’ll be hearing those lovely popping sounds followed by the ‘whoosh’ of success… 😉

        • navigator1965 April 8, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

          If I am not careful, the enthusiasm of the test reader responses will have me hoping for an NY Times #1 non-fiction bestseller. I don’t want to get my hopes up or to have unrealistic expectations.

          Still, it is a challenge not to be at least a little bit encouraged by the feedback to date. Vintage Veuve Clicquot!

        • Sherri April 8, 2014 at 4:03 pm #

          You’re on 🙂

        • navigator1965 April 8, 2014 at 4:36 pm #

          If it proves viable, I’d love to visit the U.K. (again) to do some research for the sequel. What a fun bloggers’ road trip that would be.

        • Sherri April 8, 2014 at 4:43 pm #

          That would be amazing! 🙂

        • navigator1965 April 8, 2014 at 4:52 pm #

          Hmmmm…. Might make for a fun post, come to think of it. Navigator1965’s SECRET World Tour 2015.

          Tell me, Sherri. Have you something called “whisky” in the U.K.?

          }:-)))> *Nav is in his villainous glory!*

        • Sherri April 8, 2014 at 5:06 pm #

          HaHa!! You are wearing your mask and cape again aren’t you Nav??!! Great idea for a blog post – watch this space!!

          As for ‘whisky’ I’ll make no comment. I can’t stand the stuff 😉

        • navigator1965 April 8, 2014 at 5:12 pm #

          I shall make it a personal quest to rid your immediate area of its pestilence, then.

          What else are friends for?

        • Sherri April 8, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

          Haha 😉

  18. sknicholls April 7, 2014 at 1:13 pm #

    This is some excellent feedback. I know you must be delighted. I am not familiar with your writing but certainly am curious about it now. Good luck with your work.

    I wrote a fictionalized true story and marketed as fiction. It certainly had political undertones and much history. It does pretty well. If I had not taken certain liberties with the material, it could have been marketed as non-fiction. Wonder now if it would have made a difference in broadening the audience or shrinking it.

    • navigator1965 April 7, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

      Thank you, S.K. Yes, I certainly am pleased that the manuscript has been so well received by the test readers. Of course, it helps having a doozy of a story to tell.

      Good question regarding the difference in sales had you gone the non-fiction route with the book. (Now you have me curious as to your book!) I might be tempted to ask this of a regular publisher or an experienced agent. Depending upon the nature of the book, there may also be an issue with accusations of libel, should one go non-fiction. This is far less an issue in the U.S. than it is here in Canada. We supposedly have the worst protection for freedom of speech / expression in the Engligh-speaking world.

      I had to actually change real names in my non-fiction story to false ones, on the recommendation of a defamation lawyer. Thus, there are now Madam Justice Gertrude Gavelbanger and Madam Justice Granimiah Everso-Slough and High Lord Justice Izzy Blynde, lawyers Winston Wiffleby and Daphne Dockett and Lisa Loveless-Hartt, and child protection social workers Calliope Klewless and Malyssa B. Kruel and Danika Dunsley in my narrative. Probably was a change for the better, all things considered.

      • sknicholls April 7, 2014 at 1:29 pm #

        That is called a roman a clef. It is what I did. I did state that in my Notes From Author on my Amazon page. Some of my characters had to be creatively imagined also because they were dead before I learned their story.

        • navigator1965 April 7, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

          I just popped over to Wikipedia–novel “with a key.” Thank you–I hadn’t heard of that term before. Technically, mine might fall just outside of this (or be on the boundary), as my book is openly non-fiction, and I explicitly state that, due to Canada’s inferior respect for freedom of speech, I had to change the names of the perpetrators in my case.

          Your book sounds more interesting by the minute.

        • sknicholls April 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm #

          That fact alone might be an intriguing selling point. I would not change it.

        • navigator1965 April 7, 2014 at 2:14 pm #

          I hope so. The book may actually rank amongst the most controversial to ever come out of Canada. I am publicly alleging the existence of a province-wide feminist system of maliciously interfering in divorces against fathers, under guise of fraudulent child protection to ensure mothers “win” child custody support payments.

          It gets even more controversial than this, and, supposedly, controversy sells.

  19. Travelling Book Junkie April 8, 2014 at 3:56 pm #

    As one of the lucky ones that got a sneaky peek at your novel I have to agree with many of the comments above. You come across as a very skilled writer, may would assume you have been published before, and the story is compelling. I read it with compassion knowing that it was a true story. I feel that people need to remember that behind the references to laws and other cases this is something very close and personal to you and therefore should be treated with respect. I know it is controversial and there will be comments, especially from certain organisations and feminism movements that I am sure will lead to some very interesting debates. Good Luck! Let me know when I can write that review to publish on my site! 🙂

    • navigator1965 April 15, 2014 at 7:53 am #

      TBJ, I certainly will, and thanks for your kind offer to do so. I haven’t forgotten about you! I have to devise a launch marketing strategy for when the book comes out in the May – June time frame. I’m still a bit new at this.

      Also, thanks so much for your kind words on my writing and supportive thoughts. These do mean a lot to me.


      • Travelling Book Junkie April 15, 2014 at 9:25 am #

        Let me know – I am ready when you are. Good luck with it all – I can only imagine the learning curve! 🙂

        • navigator1965 April 15, 2014 at 5:27 pm #

          Thanks, TBJ. Yes, it has been and continues to be a significant amount to hoist aboard. I’m hoping mine is the miracle book that self-markets / goes viral, but I suspect that might be 99.999% pure fantasy.

          I’ve just confirmed my seven search terms to be associated with the book in the retail chain, and have chosen matte over glossy cover, on the recommendation of my account manager. Soon I’ll have to speak to the marketing / sales coach.

          Appreciate the open offer. WILCO!

  20. navigator1965 April 8, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

    TBJ, I certainly will, and thanks for your kind offer to do so. I haven’t forgotten about you! I have to devise a launch marketing strategy for when the book comes out in the May – June time frame. I’m still a bit new at this.

    Also, thanks so much for your kind words on my writing and supportive thoughts. These do mean a lot to me.

  21. KG April 15, 2014 at 2:09 am #

    Thanks for the mention Nav 🙂 and hope things are going pretty well with your book release. I am already looking forward for the next one.
    All the best again. Cheers , KG

    • navigator1965 April 15, 2014 at 7:55 am #

      You’re welcome, KG, and thank you for the kind comment. Nice to see you back–I trust your vacation was a good one.

      Haven’t gotten much work done on the sequel as of late, as life has been busy. Hopefully, in a month or two I will find some time to devote to it. It will be more of a challenge than the current one, that’s for certain.

      While there were a few delays, things are on track for a May or June release for Book One.


      • KG April 15, 2014 at 8:31 am #

        Cool. Awaiting the book release.
        As for my vacation, had lots of fun 🙂

        • navigator1965 April 15, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

          I’ll await your vacation post with anticipation. }:-)>

  22. The Reading Girl April 30, 2014 at 7:50 pm #

    then I know I must be read it as soon as possible :). Great post

    • navigator1965 April 30, 2014 at 8:31 pm #

      Thank you, TRG. I’ve done a moderate amount of professional writing in my life, but nothing like writing a book before. I went from a 10,000 word master’s level thesis (non degree military course) in 1999 to 94,000 words a decade and half later.

      Quite a jump.

      Blogging has also been an excellent way to sharpen the general writing skills. You’re smart to get into blogging early.

      • The Reading Girl May 1, 2014 at 6:33 pm #

        wow :). It is quiet a jump. Yeah, it was a smart move 😉

  23. lasertest October 23, 2015 at 8:43 pm #

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  24. Rebecca November 29, 2015 at 1:53 am #

    I am in fact pleased to glance at this webpage posts which contains lots of useful data, thanks for providing these kinds of data.

    • navigator1965 December 15, 2015 at 11:35 pm #

      Hi Rebecca, Thank you. Afraid this blog is currently inactive due to my workload. Please drop me an email at if you’re interested in a complimentary .pdf e-book copy, no worries if you aren’t. Cheers, Nav.

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