What's the book about?

Q: Tell us about your book, My Lessons With Kumi.

A: It's a self-help, life-performance training book written in story form to make the material easy to absorb. It's about Nick, a computer programmer who has just lost his job, his marriage and his confidence. On the advice of a friend he makes several trips from New York to Montana to work with a quirky, wise, humorful and spiritual little man of Eskimo origin named Kumi. Nick's adventure unfolds, chapter by chapter, and at the end of each one he comments on what he's learned. His notes are like a blueprint that readers use to do the exercises, which come from neuro-linguistics, mime, Grotowski physical training and self-hypnosis - that's the manual.

Nick is a skeptic, so he often challenges Kumi on his ideas, which makes him a kind of proxy for readers who might have questions or concerns about this learning process. This split-level chapter format gives readers two perspectives on each episode - first, to observe Nick go through the experience, then to do the exercises like Nick, if they choose. It's a new form of self-help book - a lively story combined with a concise handbook.

Q: Who's the book for?

Performance-minded people, like managers, entrepreneurs, performing artists, athletes, students, politicians, interviewers, public speakers, mediators - anyone who performs a skill under pressure, pushed by a deadline and observed by others. Or anyone who wants to learn how to perform at his or her best, "on stage" or off. Actually, most people need these skills in a large or small part of their lives.

* Comment on KUMI from readers

* Excerpt: Chapter 1: See Your Nose on a Mountaintop - A free toy to play with

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