Collaborative Book Writing - Blog Series - 1st Interview - Holly Chadwick

This series of blogs are interviews with authors who have contributed to a

collaborative book with multiple authors. It is a perfect way to wet your feet with

the idea of writing a book and share the experience with other first-time authors.

Influence Publishing Inc. has worked on a total of 13 books so far, some with as

many as 15 authors contributing to one book, each writing a chapter.

This first interview is with Holly Chadwick who is now working on her own book

and a new business, because of the first collaborative project she got involved


What collaborative books have you been involved in?

Wild and Wise Women Around the World by Bev Adamo

Why did you get involved and did the experience live up to your expectations?

Following serendipitous connections is the reason I wrote chapter six in Wild and Wise

Women Around the World. I was networking with freelancer support groups through

the Internet and one day I had a message from Susan Rook d’Ettorre. Susan looked

remarkably familiar. I accepted her message and started chatting and found she was

a former CNN anchor and I had watched her Talk Back Live show as a teenager. I told

her how serendipitous events had been happening regarding dragon flies, how I

recently lost my mentor, was seeking new connections, and my interest in creativity

and mental health.  She told me I HAD to meet Bev Adamo. I reached out to Bev that

day and Bev and I talked for a couple of hours into the evening, really hitting it off.

Later, from seeing her Facebook page, I learned that Bev was looking for authors. I

reached out to her again and before I knew it, I had written my chapter.

What was the process like for you?  Which bit did you enjoy the most?

I admit, since my chapter, "From Strait-jacket bound to success", it was very personally revealing to me and I had my doubts before we went to press if I should still participate.

I even consulted my attorney. However, something inside me that was screaming to be

authentic, to be real, to tell my story of overcoming trauma, to tell my story of

overcoming mental illness because other people needed to hear it over-rode my

concerns. I am glad I went to press with my story as the feedback from people who read

my story is phenomenal. I feel like I have been heard and my story as an example of

overcoming has made a difference to people, or who have loved ones in similar

situations. The first indication was networking with a sales and business mentor

because of writing the chapter. We hit it off and we were to do a work exchange. I

helped her with some design and website work, and she helped coach me with sales. I

mentioned to her my chapter and its subject matter. She was turned off and did not

want to work with me. I did not know this at the time, but I insisted she read my book

chapter. I sent her a book, she read it, and long story short she changed her mind about

me and mental illness. She had been turned off because a friend of the family was

going through some mental health problems and she saw it such a negative light. This

helped her re-frame the situation and reach out to the friend's family to be supportive.

The rest of the stories that I heard as feedback from a result of writing my book chapter,

has been just as satisfying.

What would you say to someone considering this as their first-time author


Julie's team really makes it easy. When all the ten authors met as a group on zoom,

Julie encouraged us to tell our story as if we were in an elevator with Oprah. She gave

us the challenge to make Oprah stay in the elevator with you, and be invited to the top

floor, what would you say to her? I knew it had to be juicy and I had the story in me. A

story, as I said, I wasn't sure I was ready to tell, but when fellow book authors contacted

me later saying how they cried when they heard the bravery of my story, I knew I had

something. It only took me a few hours writing quietly on my boat and working with

Julie's editor a couple of more hours before I had a polished chapter.

How did contributing to a book with other authors change your view on writing a


I had always wanted to be an author, but the reality of how easy it was and to just do it

really solidified when I saw our book become a best seller on Amazon. I got the writing

bug and am now writing my memoir, My New Normal: Barefoot, Walking the Desert in

My Pajamas. This book is about living aboard a boat in the Pacific Northwest and snow-

birding to Arizona while training an artificial intelligent mental health virtual assistant

ready to provide support in the traumatic aftermath of COVID-19. Through Julie's

coaching, the writing process has taken me several months as my memoir is

structured by present day events and the adventures of building a business. It has been

a joy. 



How did becoming a best seller change your business/life?

By stepping out on a limb and sharing my story in a collaborative book, I feel like now I

am doing my life's work. As I am writing my memoir, my technology business featuring Rubi the mental health virtual assistant is growing. With, I encourage other people to tell their stories of overcoming trauma,

especially now during the time of the pandemic. With our unique technology, we are

pairing mental health curriculum support to people in this time of need. I am also

actually planning a collaborative book series because of people sharing stories with I am inviting 20 pioneers to invest in StoryGuide by partnering with Julie

and Influence Publishing Inc. to create a unique collaborative book about overcoming

fear during the current pandemic. The minimal investment of $1495 includes coaching

and editing to write a chapter for the first StoryGuide book and receive a personalized

book trailer you can use on your own website and social media. As a thank you for

being one of the first pioneers on this unique mental health platform, many of the team

leaders are offering educational gifts and books. You can find more information and

apply to be one of the first mental health pioneers at

Holly Chadwick

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