“The Head Bone’s Connected to the Neck Bone” – Organizing the Book

BBL COVER - VERSION 3A

Greetings and welcome to my Day 10 post in the Authors’ Blogging Challenge. Today’s prompt asks “Describe your process for outlining your book. What do you do to stay organized?”

body_language_gesture I keep a small wooden mannequin, like those that artists use for drawing practice, on my writing-table. This three-dimensional figure provides the structure for outlining and organizing the book.

Dem bones 1The first section describes five broadcast centers of the body in descending order of importance – face, legs & feet, arms, torso , arms & hands. Yes, the parts are discussed separately, but my first lesson learned in writing this book is that each part of the body is connected to all others through body language.

The second section focuses on “special broadcasts” specific to a situation. These include Women’s Business Body Language, Men’s Business Body Language, Virtual Body Language, and Conditions Affecting Body Language. The conclusion has interviews with a range of professionals discussing how they use body language as well as what body language they make sure to observe.

Here is where the organizing becomes more difficult – all the books and many of the articles I’ve researched discuss more than one body feature. The transcript of a TED talk given by Amy Cuddy in 2012, “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are” has multiple references to eyes, arms, legs, torso, feet, handshakes and posture. Additionally she discusses power, dominance, low power, mirroring, risk taking, women’s issues, and how thoughts can change your body language. So how do you classify that??

Library catalog 1

I’ve tried several ways but have not found the “one.” My current process is Folders for each chapter and to put articles in the folders that apply. The beauty is that I am still paperless.

If you have suggestions for organizing reference material, please post in the comments section to help us all. 

Tip of the Day

Even though we examine discrete, individual body language movements, don’t draw a conclusion based on ONE item. Look for verification from at least two other body language indicators.

An example – you see a colleague standing in a group that you are speaking with and his arms are crossed in front of his torso. Is he closed off to what you are saying? You look at his face and he is maintaining eye contact and moving his head up and down in a “yes” motion. What’s going on?  You colleague may be cold and it trying to warm himself up by enveloping himself.

123 fingersSo, remember, to look for One – Two – Three body language actions for validation.

Please support another Author Blog Challenge participant by checking out Simone Fortier’s blog at A Pain-Free Life Now.

Regards, Barbara

The Body Language Pro

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