1. What Am I Working On? After seven long years of writing Say it Out Loud, I am currently preparing for its release on October 7, 2014. Developing my social media presence is the priority right now. I’m redesigning my website, attempting to gain followers on my Facebook page and making a commitment to posting regularly on my blog. I actually printed a schedule, including topics to write about from June through October. That felt like a great start but now I’m under pressure to actually write those posts! Check back soon to see how I’m doing. I must say I miss the process of planning and writing something longer than a blog post. I have a few ideas swimming around for my next book.
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre? My book is a unique blend of self-help and memoir. The meat of the book contains tangible strategies that anyone attempting to heal from sexual abuse or other traumas can use or adapt to their needs. That’s the “self-help” part. The strategies are supported by my personal experience in years of therapy for a childhood of sexual abuse – “memoir.” Included are over seventy-five excerpts from my journals as well as a very candid discussion on how to navigate life after healing, in the final chapter, The Ongoing Journey.
3. Why do I write what I do? One of my favorite quotes is from author Anne Michaels, Write to save yourself, and someday you will write because you’ve been saved. This is why I write in a nutshell. I filled six journals throughout my years in therapy. They became an integral strategy for healing my scars of abuse. I knew if I could make it on this difficult journey, so could others. I wanted to help and realized that I could do that by breaking my silence, sharing my story and writing about the tools that took me from someone broken to someone whole.
4. How does my writing process work? I’m a Virgo, need I say more? I have to be organized or it just doesn’t happen. The day of the week, or time of day doesn’t matter. What matters is that I have a plan. Most days, when I’m ending a writing session, I make a list of what I need to accomplish next. Once my goal is set I can easily get started whenever the time allows. I just love the feeling of checking things off as they are done. For novice writers this helps with the editing affliction many of us have; write a paragraph, edit it, write a few more sentences, go back and rewrite, wake up the next day and edit and rewrite again. With my plan I only allow myself to edit on the days that I decide to make it my goal. It forces me to keep moving forward.
Kathryn Orzech writes thriller and suspense fiction with a little romance to keep it real—and an undercurrent of supernatural intrigue. Online 15 years with global reach to 36 countries and 44 states, her website, Dreamwatch.com, was the inspiration for her psychic thriller Premonition of Terror when she wondered: What if premonitions from around the world predict the same catastrophe? Her blog features paranormal experiences of ordinary people and posts about writing and her books. Newly released Asylum, a dark suspense saga, follows a granddaughter’s search for her family’s mysterious past. A seasoned world traveler, Kathy admits to being a news junkie with interests in geopolitics, society and culture, history and science. You’ll find her on social sites and at her Dreamwatch Paranormal Blog.
Catherine McCall is a regular blogger for Psychology Today Magazine, writing about topics related to overcoming child abuse. She tells her own story in her memoir, Never Tell: A True Story of Overcoming a Terrifying Childhood, which enjoyed four weeks on the London Sunday Times bestseller list in 2010, and has recently been re-released in the US in both ebook and print. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with 30 years of clinical experience, a Clinical Fellow of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, and a member of the Speakers Bureau for the Rape and Incest National Network (RAINN). Catherine lives in a suburb of Atlanta with her husband. They’ve reared four daughters and now enjoy eight grandchildren. You can follow her on her blog: www.psychologytoday.com/blog/overcoming-child-abuse or visit her website: www.catherinemccall.net
Gwendolyn (Gwen) Plano spent most of her professional life in higher education. She taught and served in colleges in New York, Connecticut, and California. As a college administrator, her life was highly visible and accountable—but as a wife and mother, behind closed doors, she and her family experienced the terror of domestic violence and abuse. Alternately heart-wrenching and joyful, Gwen’s first book, Letting Go into Perfect Love, is a powerful story of triumph over adversity—one woman’s inspiring account of learning how to forgive the unforgivable, recover her sense of self, open her heart, and honor the journey home. Gwen now lives in Branson, Missouri with her husband. Amid the beauty of the Ozark Mountains, she writes and otherwise volunteers in the local area. You can follow Gwen at www.gwenplano.com/blog-reflectionsor www.facebook.com/GwenPlano1.