3 Steps to Achieving Your Dream

3 STEPS TO ACHIEVING YOUR DREAMWe all have dreams and there is no reason why we can’t work towards making our dreams a reality especially during midlife.  Midlife brings many positives and one in particular is more time to pursue our dreams.

I’d like to introduce you to someone who has achieved her dream of becoming an author.  Toni Pike has just published her first book – The Magus Covenant and in this post she shares with us the steps she took to making her dream a reality.  You can too!


Author Toni Pike

My Dream to be an Author

I’m sizzling towards sixty and retired from the world of work but it seems now that I’m working harder than ever, firmly focused on trying to achieve my dreams. For many years I’ve wanted to write a novel and be considered an author, and my goal has finally been reached.

Setting a Goal

Writing has fascinated me for years. I wrote a couple of first drafts of stories that were best left in a drawer collecting dust. But it was a great learning experience and, just like everything else, practice always leads to improvement. Then, a few months ago, I decided that it was now or never if I was to ever succeed.

To achieve my dream of writing a novel, I knew that I would need to establish that as my goal, make plans and work towards it every day. After doing some research, I became fascinated by the thriller genre and decided to write about a religious conspiracy. I wanted my readers to stay awake at night and keep turning pages to find out what would happen next to my hero.


My next step was to plan the novel. First I did some background research and invented a suitable topic to be the basis of my story. Then I wrote the plot outline and created characters. That was like a task list to keep me on course, so that when I began to write I knew exactly where I was headed.

Working steadily each day

Armed with a clear plan, it was surprisingly easy to work on producing each chapter. It was an enjoyable but time-consuming experience, writing whenever I had the chance and often till late at night.

Slowly, as one chapter after another was finished, I headed towards the dramatic climax. When that was finished, it was time to re-write, edit and re-read the story, and get some other opinions. Some dear friends were kind enough to read it, and then came the moment for me to unleash it on an unsuspecting world.

The Dream Achieved

The final stage was publication. I decided to self-publish on Amazon and other online sites because of the growing challenges faced by traditional publishers: submissions rising exponentially while the market for traditional books is shrinking. That gave me the opportunity to be in control of every step of the process, and publish it in a fraction of the time taken by the traditional method.
The final stage was to see the book go “live” on the online bookstores.

I’ve been thrilled to hear that people have enjoyed reading it and now I’m working on the second book in the Magus series. I would be delighted to answer any questions that you might have.

You can read more about The Magus Covenant on my website: www.tonipike.com

Here’s a brief introduction to the story:

The Magus Covenant

the Magus CovenantThe Reverend Jotham Fletcher is in Rome to give a lecture on his PhD thesis about Simon Magus at the church where he fell to his death beside the Roman Forum. Magus was a cult leader mentioned in the Bible and his libertine sect disappeared by 400 AD. But did it really die out? A robed man is pushed from the belltower of the church at midnight and Jotham becomes the prime suspect.

His lover Antonella, an expert on ancient documents, has a shocking secret. Rumours fly about a papyrus scroll that mentions Magus. A ruthless Catholic Brotherhood will stop at nothing in their hunt for the Simonian Sect. And a reclusive billionaire has the chance of a lifetime to get his revenge.
Jotham is kidnapped, tortured and on the run. He races from Italy to England to Sweden. But the body count continues to rise and so does the heat in this non-stop thriller that will leave you breathless.

It is now available at these online stores:
Amazon: USA UK Aus Canada France Germany


Barnes and Noble


Reviews are a great help to other readers, so if possible please leave a brief review on Amazon.com or other outlets.

You can read more about Toni and her book at www.tonipike.com

Meet Toni

After graduating from the University of Sydney, Toni progressed from being a veterinary surgeon to a high school teacher and then a public servant in Canberra, the capital city of Australia. Her husband Jon was in the Air Force and while raising two beautiful children they had several years living in England and America. Toni’s main passions are family, writing and travel – in that order.

Follow Toni

Website: www.tonipike.com

Follow me on Twitter at



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39 thoughts on “3 Steps to Achieving Your Dream

    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Hi Toni I’m sure your story will inspire others to work towards achieving their dream. Thank you for being a guest author on my website. Happy New Year and I know 2016 will be a fabulous year.

  1. Kathleen

    Thank you Sue and Toni, that was so very interesting, I felt like keeping on reading and was sad when I came to the end of the post. Good to see Toni’s planning process, working through the book. The book sounds great – it amazes me how you plot and write the story line.
    The Blogger’s Pit Stop wishes you both a productive, creative 2016

    1. Toni Pike

      Many thanks Kathleen – your kinds words were a great encouragement. I’m just starting to plan the outline of the next book in the series. I do hope that you have a very happy, healthy and successful New Year.

    2. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Hi Kathleen, I’m so proud of Toni and what she has achieved. It shows we can achieve our dreams if we commit to them with a plan. I couldn’t put the book down it is a fabulous read.

  2. Jessica

    So awesome. I love seeing people set goals, and put in the work to achieve them. It’s so inspiring, and I am sure that writing a book is no small task! Congratulations!

    1. Toni Pike

      Thank you very much Jessica. I was so pleased to find that most people seem to enjoy reading it. We all have very different dreams, but the steps taken to achieve them are the same. I wish you a very happy and healthy New Year.

        1. Toni Pike

          Thank you so much Sue for giving me the chance to share my story – and for your lovely words. I hope that it’s always possible to achieve your dreams.

        2. Toni Pike

          Thank you so much Sue for giving me the chance to share my story – and for your lovely words. I hope that it helps people to see that it’s always possible to achieve your dreams.

    2. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Hi Jessica! Yes, I’m so proud of my friend Toni for achieving her dream and I just needed to share her story with everyone.

  3. Nikki Frank-Hamilton

    Sue, I love this. I have had the little niggling in the back of my mind that someday I’d like to write a book, this gives me some actionable tips, pinning for the future!!! Congats to Toni Pike for realizing a dream!

  4. Toni Pike

    Thank you so much Nikki – I’m glad my story has helped to inspire you! Don’t forget that you are already working as a writer with your great Blog. Have a very happy New Year.

  5. [email protected]

    It’s fascinating reading about people who are making their retirement into following a dream – not sitting around waiting to die! Good on you Toni for being so proactive and congrats on the first novel 🙂

    1. Toni Pike

      Thank you so much Leanne – it is certainly keeping me busy and I do hope that word will spread. You are certainly a great example of someone pursuing their dreams, with your excellent blog.

    2. Sue Loncaric Post author

      It is great to see so many of us trying to live our dreams. Toni has worked so hard on the book and I’m so proud of her. We weren’t really friends at school but reconnected on the School Reunion FB page. We are firm friends now. Its a great book I was gripped from beginning to end.

    3. [email protected]

      Hi Sue – back from #OTM Number 4 – and I still think she’s an amazing woman (much like ourselves!)

  6. Lori Schumaker

    Sue and Toni,
    This is so wonderful! Not only is the backstory inspirational, the book looks like a fantastic read! Thank you so much for hosting Toni. And Toni, thank you for following your dreams and being an inspiration to many!!
    Blessings and smiles,

    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Lori the books IS A FANTASTIC READ! I couldn’t put it down and Toni has a way of keeping your interest but with an easy writing style. I would definitely recommend it.

  7. Toni Pike

    Thank you Lori for your kind words – I’ve put it on sale today for 99c, so hope that will encourage more people to read it. You’ve all been a great inspiration to me with the hard work you put in to your blogs and the help you give to so many people. Best wishes for a very happy and healthy New Year.

    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Toni has done a fabulous job Charlotte and I’m very proud of her work. The book is a great read and highly recommended.

  8. Toni Pike

    Thank you Charlotte – I’m so glad you enjoyed my story and found it inspiring. I think the secret to life is finding a dream and then working hard to achieve it. Hope that you have a wonderful New Year.

    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Its great to see women in particular following our dreams in midlife Linda. The book is a great read and I’m very proud of my friend Toni.

  9. Kathryn

    I love this list! As an author with a draft in a drawer so to speak, I really appreciate the advice on publishing on Amazon. Best wishes for the success of your book!

    1. Sue Loncaric Post author

      Oh get that draft out of the drawer Kathryn and go for it! Whats the worst that can happen – you can do it!

  10. Toni Pike

    Thanks Linda for your lovely words – it certainly did take a great deal of effort, but was worth it to feel that my dream has been achieved. I hope that you have a wonderful New Year.


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