Today we welcome Lisa Heidrich, author of Speaking Confidence. For a chance to win an ebook copy of her motivational book, comment below.
Hi Lisa! Tell me a bit about where you’re from.
Angie, I was born in Manhattan, NYC and lived there for a short time, just two young years, so I don’t remember what it’s like to live in the “Big Apple.”
I grew up in south Florida—call it home—lived there, went to school there, and had my children there. Moved to North Carolina about fourteen years ago. I remember we moved in the fall of 1999, and I would drive up and down I-77, to see the pink, plum, red, orange, and yellow leaves. I never knew anything but Palm Trees! I love the four seasons this state offers but miss the ocean near my home town.
I can relate to a love for the ocean and autumn. My hometown, Rockland, Maine has both. So you’ve journeyed to very different place in the United States. Now tell me a bit about your journey to salvation.
I grew up thinking I was a Christian. I thought I knew all about God. I had learned all the dogma and had obligation down pat. Nearly two decades ago I experienced grief, loss, and real life trauma. I was maxed out and at the end of my rope. I had lost all hope for this life. Someone invited me to a small group Bible study. I thought I was going to a coffee social. That’s where I found Jesus, and truly understood what it was to be given grace and have a one-on-one relationship with the Lord of this universe who loved me with a lavish love. I finally found my Hope. Jesus. My life verse is, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33). I learned that religion never saves us from ourselves, but relationship does. That’s my official salvation quote. I love sharing my testimony and take every opportunity to share it, and have across eight states for the past six years seeing women give their lives to Christ. It’s been a blessing and truly a journey with Jesus.
What an incredible testimony! Tell me three things about yourself that would surprise your readers.
I am an introvert. I hate shredded coconut. I am Mommy to a Harlequin Macaw named Matilda and Great Dane named Mercy. [giggle]
Well, I know your favorite animal. What’s your favorite book? Why?
The Bible, I love non-fiction. Truly the only REAL READ that leads to life change. Every time I read the Bible I learn something new no matter how many times I read it. For example, just recently I read Isaiah 14:14, in short, “God doesn’t need our advice”. That’s powerful. I love being moved by what I read.
So, I *think* I already know the answer, but…what is your favorite genre to read? Write?
READ & WRITE: Non-Fiction. I love true stories, autobiographies, biographies, stories about authentic people, and learning new things.
I wish I had the desire to read more nonfiction. I’m a fan of speculative fiction, especially fantasy and dystopian. Who does your intended audience include? Believers and nonbelievers? In what ways do you believe your story reaches each?
Believers and nonbelievers. At heart I consider myself an “evangelista,” a female version of an evangelist! [smile] My book reaches both audiences because glossophobia is the #1 FEAR in our universe. The dreaded FEAR of PUBLIC speaking. My conviction is: there are bigger topics and scenarios to be afraid of, like dying without knowing Jesus. I am also passionate about connecting people with their public voices and sharing their story with confidence. My favorite story is from Jeremiah chapter 1, where Jeremiah makes all kinds of excuses about speaking, how he’s just a child, he doesn’t have the words, and he is terrified. Similar to excuses one might argue when they have to speak in public. My advice—my word, God’s word to them is stand up and say your piece—HE will give the words and anoint your lips. It’s our nature as people to speak, there is no point letting it hold anyone back from their potential. In many cases, I am finding it is a generational strong hold, a fear passed down from generation to generation.
How long did it take you to write this book?
My book, Speaking Confidence was birthed in three AMAZING months. This is a miracle story and was a Divine appointment for me. I originally thought I was going to write a devotional/gift-type book, so I attended a writing conference and booked an appointment with a publisher who wrote in RED pen all over my manuscript and asked me seemingly difficult questions. I left the appointment dejected, READY to go home. I would have IF I didn’t have a roommate who came all the way from Cincinnati, and I was her RIDE back to the airport in three days. She arrived at our room to find me in bed at 3:00 PM, crying. She agreed “so & so was a REAL JERK” because she had talked to him too. Girlfriends know how to cheer us up. The next day I ate an orange for breakfast in our room and had quiet time, prayed and cried out to God. I left the room around noon and walked toward the cafeteria for lunch. In my peripheral vision I could see two women coming up on my right. Inside I shuddered and secretly hoped they wouldn’t “talk” to me. Thankfully they did and I met my publisher (and her sister) at that lunch date. I pitched a verbal idea about Speaking Confidence and she said, “Send me the first chapter.” I was too terrified to pitch the devotion/gift book again! That was May, my book was written, edited and published late fall. It was a God thing and I give Him the glory for the book.
Lisa, thank you so much for venturing to other worlds with. I truly hope your writing endeavors glorify God.
Thank you, Angie, for allowing me to share with you! May I give a “shout-out” for the Queen City Writers Conference in Charlotte, NC on October 16th-18th?
Lisa Bongiorno-Heidrich, RN,CCM,CHP, asserts writing unsurprisingly exists hand-in-hand with speaking. An International speaker, Ministry Director, Global Conversationalist, and author of Speaking Confidence, Lisa enjoys helping others find their niche through their unique voice, message, and mission. Contributor for monthly web-based articles, along with blogs at www.LisaHeidrich.com. A real social butterfly, you’ll catch daily on Facebook and Twitter @LisaCHeidrich. With twenty years experience teaching, speaking, and coaching, she offers a compilation of vital information for speaking and writing trepidation. She grew up in Florida, now resides in North Carolina, and holds degrees in nursing and vocational education. She is currently the Publicity Director and Faculty Member of Queen City Writers Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina.