Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Life Outside the Box Second Edition by Marilyn R. Wilson (Book Spotlight & Giveaway)

I'm so pleased to be spotlighting Marilyn R. Wilson's second edition of her first book which I reviewed in the past. (You can read my review here.) This second edition offers new content added to each and every chapter - personal author reflections from behind the scenes. I also had the opportunity to interview Marilyn. Check out her answer to what is the most fascinating interview she's done. Be sure to also enter the giveaway to win a copy of this book!

Book Details:

Book Title: Life Outside the Box: The Extraordinary Journeys of 10 Unique Individuals, Second Edition
Author: Marilyn R. Wilson
Category: Adult non-fiction, 236 pages
Genre: Inspiration / biography / fashion
Publisher: Real People Real Lives Press
Release date: Oct 27, 2016
Tour dates: Dec 5 to 23, 2016
Content Rating: G

Book Description:

This second edition offers new content added to each and every chapter - personal author reflections from behind the scenes.

Get inspired to step out of your box and embrace your potential. From the corporate world, to the arts, to working with the disenfranchised, the message is clear: there is no such thing as a normal way to live your life and no one right solution to any problem. Selected from over a hundred interviews, the stories shared here open a window on the journeys of seven women and three men who have charted their own paths, including Ruthie Davis--top US luxury shoe designer and the winner of the 2014 AAFA Footwear Designer of the Year award; and Geir Ness whose perfume is a staple in Nordstrom, Disney World, and on Disney Cruise Lines. Enjoy a glimpse behind the scenes into the unique ways these individuals have chosen to deal with life's challenges and how they define success in their careers.

Buy the Book: Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble

My Interview with Marilyn R. Wilson

LCR: Welcome back to Library of Clean Reads, Marilyn! I enjoyed reading the first edition of Life Outside the Box. Can you tell me why you decided to publish a second edition?

MRW: Opportunity! In response to the difficulty authors are having making a profit in today's crazy market, my publisher decided to take a step back and move all clients to their own imprint. We each now publish under own name and own all rights to distribution. To accomplish this, our books had to be re-released under a new ISBN number and company name. A side benefit was the ability to add new content before the book file was uploaded to the printer. An iRead Book Tour reviewer had mentioned they would have loved me to share some personal insights on my experiences with each person, so I used this opportunity to add author reflections at the end of every chapter - each unique.

LCR: Are you writing another book in the Real People Real Lives series?

MRW: YES! I am in the process of writing book two in my Life Outside the Box series which is tentatively scheduled for a spring 2017 release date. In this time of division, I feel strongly that this series celebrating the diversity in how we all live is important and hope it will inspire readers to embrace their own unique path. It is humanity's very diversity that is it's greatest strength. In addition to this series, there are other several other books I plan to write that will take a bit different in direction. Want to know more? Sign up for my email updates at I'll be making announcements early in the new year and they will go out to my email subscribers first!

LCR: What creative projects are you involved in when you are not writing or interviewing?

MRW: Writing is my main creative outlet and takes up most of my time. But I do love movement. Dance and yoga are my favourites. I also have an antique upright grand piano. While my skills are now pretty limited, I still love occasionally tinkling the ivories. I'm also trying to bring sewing back into my life. I sewed dance costumes professionally for 5 years before the pressure led to burn out. Enough time has passed that I feel I can let go of the past and embrace the joy of creation. There is something very tactile about manipulating fabric and having an idea in your mind become a 3D reality is definitely a rush. Last but not least, I love taking classes that stretch me in new ways. The most recent was a beginning Calligraphy session taught by one of the top artists in North America! WOW! I'm now hoping to work in a beginner watercolour class in the new year.

LCR: What is the most fascinating interview you’ve done?

MRW: It's really way too hard to pick. Each interview has offered me something unique. However, I do have one that had a huge impact on my life. That was my interview with William Orlowski. I cannot say how much I admired William's courage and generosity. He was an amazing Canadian tap icon who ran the first professional tap company in Canada. It toured internationally. He faced terrible physical challenges in recent years that severely limited his ability to dance, but continued to live life to the fullest. Every day began with a list of things to accomplish that he couldn't possibly finish in several life times. Every moment was purposeful. I asked him his definition of success. I asked him advice for others. Both questions received the same response, "There is no secret, just do and be brave." I repeat this every time I feel overwhelmed. It was devastating to hear he passed in October as I was working on this second edition. He will be sorely missed.

LCR: Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?

MRW: A good question that I have actually been pondering over the last few months. I have five books on the drawing board, but I'm not sure after that. While I will always be writing in some form, will life lead me in a new direction? I have considered eventually moving my Life Outside The Box series to a submission format where people write their own stories in their own words. I would then edit those selected for publication, package and release as a new title. I also see myself embracing more speaking engagements. It's a privilege to be able to pass on all the wisdom others have shared with me over my decade of interviewing.

LCR: If you could travel back in time, where would you go? Who would you meet?

MRW: So many choices here. Do I choose a time or do I choose a person? I decided on a time. I was a "tween" when the summer of love first began. It was a time incredible change where young people began looking at social expectations and the world in a different way. Many walked away from the life they knew. By the time I was old enough to think about participating, the bloom had faded and the reality had become something very different. I would love to be in San Francisco right at the beginning when this movement held so much promise, collecting stories from whomever I met - Who are you? What did you leave behind? What is the future you hoping for? What an amazing experience that would be!

LCR: Any advice for writers?

  • Begin. It's as simple as that. 
  • Write every day. I remember the day my friend talked me into starting a blog - something I always looked down on. During my dark days it became my best friend. There was a time in my the journey as a writer that was very hard. Doors had slammed shut and I was filled with self-doubt. I just wasn't sure if it was all worth it. I challenged myself to write something in my blog every single day for six weeks. No specific topic. My posts didn't have to be fabulous or earth shattering - just something. By the end of six weeks it became very clear that writing was important to me. I had to find a way to continue.
  • Surround yourself with a few friends who believe you can. It takes time to be become a good writer. It is a craft you need to work hard on. So you need patience and you need support that comes without judgement.
  • Get critical feedback as well. From my first article, I have always given the person I interviewed the chance to review what I had written. Their feedback was sometimes harsh, but over time I began to learn where I was missing the mark. I grew. Working with an editor on Life Outside the Box was also a challenge. An editor is not there to pat you on the back and tell you you're absolutely wonderful, they are there to put your book through a trial by fire so that it can move from raw material to shining gold. I am forever grateful to my editor who was kind, but totally honest.
"If you wish to be a writer, write." - Epictetus

“ are a writer the moment you start writing, not when you've sold your first book.” - Rob Bignell

LCR: Thank you so much, Marilyn, for taking the time to chat with me.

About the Author:

Marilyn R. Wilson is a freelance writer and speaker with a passion for interviewing. Her career as a writer began in an unusual way, by answering a Craigslist ad. It was while conducting her first interview the world shifted - she had found her passion. Since 2006, she has interviewed over 150 people from as near as her hometown of Vancouver, Canada, and as far away as South Africa.

​Whether through a random encounter on the New York subway or via a one-on-one interview with an internationally recognized artist, the goal is the same-to give wings to the unique journeys of inspiring individuals. This goal first led the author to co-launch a successful, innovative magazine focused on professionals working in the fashion industry paired with photography and illustrations by local artists. Then in 2015, Wilson took her passion to a new audience with the release of her first book, the first in a series featuring the lives of real people living real lives.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Instagram

Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Dec 31

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  1. this book interests me greatly. The topics and the interviews would be fascinating, inspiring and wonderful.

    1. Yes, I think you would like the interviews. They are interesting and inspiring. :-)

    2. If you love interesting stories and different journeys, this will be right up your alley. I loved interviewing each of these people and the diversity of their journeys really spoke to me. A side bonus - each chapter stands alone. So you can tuck your reading into a busy schedule.

  2. Thanks Laura for offering this spotlight on Life Outside the Box as well as the chance to share a bit more through an interview. Loved your questions - a few were brand new to me.

  3. I would like to read this book for inspiration, sometimes I feel stuck in life.


Thank you for commenting! I appreciate your feedback.

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