Teddy Visits the Dentist
It was a year ago this week that I published Teddy Visits the Dentist! When I wrote the date on Monday it really did take me by surprise. Time flies by so quickly… yet at the same time I feel as if I have been a published author for years. I don’t actually remember a time when Teddy Visits the Dentist wasn’t a reality, a time when I didn’t get up early to work on promotions, make connections, and brainstorm about how to reach out to a wider audience.
Teddy really has become an integral part of my life, changing my life for the better and positively inspiring those around me who have taken the plunge and brought the Teddy books into their lives and the lives of their families. There has been such a positive response to Teddy that I just know deep down publishing these stories is the right thing, something that makes the world better and a resource that is improving dental experiences for children. As an educational resource with fun illustrations, written and published by a dental professional, the Teddy Visits the Dentist series is exactly what the field of dentistry and dental hygiene needs for it’s young patients.
The Mahadeo Movement
So what has been keeping me and Teddy so busy this year? Well, I have created an online presence for The Mahadeo Movement and Teddy Visits the Dentist by getting wise with social media. I have been posting a weekly blog, contacting individual school boards, ministries of education, dental offices, libraries, baby stores, book stores and schools across Canada and the USA in an attempt to spread the word about how Teddy is promoting oral health. I have applied for recognition awards, earned an Honorable Mention at the 2012 New York Book Festival, written articles for my national dental hygiene association, the CDHA in their quarterly OH Canada! e-magazine. Oh right, I published the second book in the series, Teddy Gets a Filling in November. Kind of a big deal. Another major advancement was I created worksheets to accompany both Teddy Visits the Dentist and Teddy Gets a Filling. Contact me for fill in the blanks, multiple choice, true and false, and word searches! They are tons of fun for the children plus they reinforce learning in an interesting way. Teachers who have used these worksheets with their students have given me very positive feedback regarding them.
Teddy Visits the Dentist: Teddy Gets a Filling
The internet really has been an integral part of my experience- in fact without it I would be having a totally different and more difficult experience in marketing and promotions. In fact, just yesterday my computer was compromised by a virus, all day the computer was slow and freezing and finally at 5 o’clock it just shut itself off and told me that it could not read one of the drives and there was nothing else I could do about it. I felt so helpless. I needed to get this post ready to go for the following day, but the bigger picture- how would I promote Teddy without a computer and an internet connection? It was as if someone had turned off all my power- you know when the electricity goes out and you no longer hear the hum of all the heaters or air conditioners, or the appliances, and you sit in darkness and feel the quiet. That is how I felt. I knew I could handle a short delay in getting my blog posted but how would I check my email account? How would I maintain my business with no power? When would the computer be back up and running? It really made me realize what an online presence Teddy is. Just so you know how the story ends, I left the computer as it was for four hours, until dinner was eaten, dishes were washed and everyone who should be sleeping soundly was, then picked up the computer with a sigh to figure out what was wrong with it. It woke up with a little whirr and told me it was embarrassed because it had lost the links to the pages I had opened (much earlier that morning), I did not stop to ask any questions. Here we are off and running, with our fingers and toes crossed of course.)
I have been able to meet some fabulous people through Twitter- by far the best social media platform in my opinion. It is a resource playground for professionals and my window to what’s going on in the world. In a little under a year I have over 700 followers and counting, everyday I meet new friends through Twitter and have many new followers. It is such an opportunity to see what people have to offer, it is amazing.
I am connecting with old friends and new on Facebook. I currently have over 1700 Likes and I’m not stopping there- share The Mahadeo Movement with your friends! I went from not even having a personal Facebook account, from being completely unaware of social media, to figuring it all out and getting in the know- and actually liking it!
But the biggest surprise this year has been becoming an experienced blogger. I thrive on getting my blog out each week! Since publishing Teddy Visits the Dentist this time last year, my routine has become something like this- posting a weekly blog on Wednesday mornings that ranges in focus, some dental-related topics, author and publishing topics, motivational ideas, health-wellness balance, guest posts from some fantastic experts plus any other random musings I may have. I am finding my blogging experience incredible, considering I had no idea what a blog even was when I started. Some of my most visited posts have been:
What is so amazing is I have regular followers from around the world! The majority of readers come from the US and Canada, but other countries I see regularly popping up in my stats are India, UK, Pakistan, Australia, Mexico, Chili, Argentina, Spain, Portugal, France, Iraq, Germany, Romania, Serbia, Thailand, China, Russia, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Trinidad, and the list goes on! In 2012 a total of 41 different countries visited emahadeo.wordpress.com! The Mahadeo Movement truly is a global experience.
Well what does the future hold for Teddy? To start, I am excited for World Oral Health Day today, March 20th! Celebrate your Oral Health with the World Dental Federation today! We look forward to Canadian Oral Health Month in April, not to mention Canadian National Dental Hygiene Week April 7-13th… spring is a busy time for oral health promotion! Look out for a free Kindle promotion of Teddy Visits the Dentist and Teddy Gets a Filling later in April, watch emahadeo.wordpress.com for some great articles. Not to mention a BIG surprise The Mahadeo Movement is planning to kick off during Canadian Oral Health Month! In the near future look out for Teddy Talks Prevention, the third book in the series promoting oral health and dental health education, but this one is written for the adults.
What a year it has been! Part of me never imagined it could be so great, and part of me always knew. I just don’t see how we can fail when the message is so pure and so good. The effort behind it is sincere, committed and determined…I have learned and learned this year, and I will keep learning. I love what I do through The Mahadeo Movement for the children, for their families, and for overall health promotion and oral health promotion. I love the potential of what is to come! I want to make a difference in this world and I plan to. Happy Anniversary and thanks Teddy! To many more years together.