Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Overwhelmed Writer Rescue by Colleen M. Story (Review, Author Interview & Giveaway!)

The minute I saw the title of this book I knew I wanted to read it. I've been trying to write my second book but with owning my own business and raising two teens, life is hectic to say the least. Well, this one is a must-read for writers and chock-full of useful advice and tips. Check out my review and fun interview with the author. Want to win a copy? Enter the giveaway below.

Book Details:

Book Title: Overwhelmed Writer Rescue: Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within
Author: Colleen M. Story
Category: Adult Non-Fiction, 280 pages
Genre: Self-help
Publisher: Midchannel Press
Release date: Sept 3, 2017
Tour dates: Sept 4 to 15, 2017
Content Rating: G

Book Description:


Do you feel like you’re always behind? Do less important tasks frequently flood your schedule and sink your creative motivation? Are you frustrated and out of touch with your inner artist?

After 20 years experience in the writing industry, author Colleen M. Story extends a lifeline to pull you out of the sinking swamp of “busyness” and back into the flourishing creative life you deserve.

Today’s demands on writers and other creative artists are overwhelming. Not only must you produce the work you love, but build and maintain a platform and market your finished products to the world—all while holding down a day job and/or caring for a family.

You teeter on the edge. What waits on the other side are burnout, exhaustion, and a complete loss of creative motivation.

"Overwhelmed Writer Rescue" provides practical, personalized solutions to help beginning and experienced writers and other creative artists escape the tyranny of the to-do list to nurture the genius within. You’ll find ways to boost productivity, improve time management, and restore your sanity while gaining insight into your unique creative nature and what it needs to thrive.

Ultimately, you’ll discover what may be holding you back from experiencing the true joy that a creative life can bring.

My Review:
Reviewed by Laura Fabiani

The minute I saw the title of this book I knew I wanted to read it. I've been trying to write my second book but with owning my own business and raising two teens, life is hectic to say the least. Although this book is written primarily with the writer in mind, the advice and tips are useful to any person or creative artist who wants to embark on a creative project and "reconnect with the joy of the creative process". In my case, the author has succeeded in doing this, and doing it well. I felt motivated and inspired as I read this self-help book.

The book is divided into 4 parts. The introduction helps one to understand time wasters and what can rob of us of making full use of our creativity. The second part is all about how to increase our productivity with most of the advice useful to anyone. In part 3, the author tackles what she calls saboteurs, 7 things that can get in the way of our motivation, those unconscious things like perfectionism (my problem) and self-doubt. And finally, in the fourth part, the author continues to help us not give up even when we fail.

This book is chock-full of information. I had to read it in bits so that I could assimilate the info and put it into practice. I realized early on that the information and exercises were extremely useful in boosting my current work productivity and managing my work and personal time better. I'm happy to say that I was already implementing some of the useful advice, but I learned quite a bit too. I especially loved the chapter on training the brain to focus better and faster. I've practiced the concept of chunking but this chapter really brought the benefits to light.

I appreciated that the author backed up her info by including studies, stats and references which is included in the back of the book. She also quotes other books on the same topic. Clearly, the author has done her research. I have a background in psychology and loved learning this info.  I am truly impressed with this book. It is well-written, comprehensive and above all, very practical and useful for writers and anyone who wants to make better use of their time and energy.

Overwhelmed Writer Rescue is the must-read guide for writers, creative artists and anyone who is determined to accomplish their dreams. It is one of the best resource books I've read on this topic, and I highly recommend it to anyone who dreams of writing a book, starting their creative project or just managing their time better. A keeper on my bookshelf, this book will continue to motivate and inspire me as I dip into it again and again.

To read reviews, please visit Colleen M. Story's page on iRead Book Tours.

Disclosure: Thanks to the author for sending me this book for review. I was not told how to rate or review this product.

My Interview with Colleen M. Story:

LCR: Hi Colleen, welcome to Library of Clean Reads! I'm thrilled to have had the opportunity to read and review a second book by you. I loved Loreena's Gift, which I read last year, and as a writer myself, I was very excited by your new nonfiction book Overwhelmed Writer Rescue. Can you describe your book in 20 words or less?

CMS: Thanks, Laura! Very kind of you to mention my last novel, and I’m so glad you liked it. The book in a few words: Boost productivity, improve time management, and restore your sanity while gaining insight into your unique creative nature and what it needs to thrive.

LCR: What makes your book for writers different from other writer resource books currently on the market?

CMS: There are a lot of writing books out there that focus on things like plot, characterization, and setting, all facets of the writing craft that we need to learn. There are also many that talk about creativity, and self-publishing, and marketing.

But I felt there was a huge gap in addressing a writer’s struggle to find time, energy, and motivation for her craft in a world that is moving faster and faster every day. We all have so much to do, and we’re finding it more and more difficult to come up with the time and mental focus that’s required to produce our creative work. On top of that, many of us are dealing with productivity saboteurs like self-doubt, workaholism, and perfectionism, and we don’t even realize how much they inhibit our progress.

Overwhelmed Writer Rescue is a resource that helps writers and other creative artists to get back on track, find new balance in their lives, and learn how to get around their own demons so they can get the work done. I see it as a sort of in-home coach that gets writers past distractions and overbooked schedules so they can truly focus on their creative priorities.

LCR: What do you hope to accomplish with this new book?

I want to help writers and other creative artists restore themselves to themselves. Since I started my blog, Writing and Wellness, back in 2014, I’ve found that my readers were really stressed. Not only were they struggling to find time to write, but they were having a hard time balancing writing with marketing, and writing with child rearing, and writing with caregiving, and writing with the day job.

All these other things in our lives can take us away from our creative selves. And that not only slows our progress on our creative projects, but it hurts us as individuals, because it makes it less likely we’ll reach our full potential.

We’re all here to give the very best of ourselves, and those who have a creative calling owe it to themselves and those around them to answer that calling to the best of their ability. Unfortunately, that can be extremely difficult in today’s world. My hope is that the book offers a helping hand as well as a needed push to inspire creatives to fashion a life that will allow their talents to blossom.

LCR: What was the most challenging aspect of writing this book?

CMS: This book actually came quite easily, as far as the writing goes. I had been studying and researching the concepts for a couple years, so when I finally started to put them together the words flowed pretty quickly.

The research interests me, too, so I didn’t find that aspect difficult. Probably the hardest part was coming up with a title that I thought would speak to readers and adequately encompass what I was trying to do with the book. It took me months and lots of back and forth, but I’m happy with the final result.

LCR: If you were to give writers one piece of advice what would it be?

CMS: Realize that you are called to write for a reason, and that it probably has more to do with fulfilling your own potential and becoming the best person you can be than it does with selling a lot of books or making a lot of money.

Writing or any other creative art, if we pursue it wholeheartedly, requires a lot from us, and in the return we learn a ton. We grow and we stretch and we become until all of a sudden we look back and go, “Wow, I didn’t really expect I’d do all that!” It can help us expand in ways we never expected, and I think that’s the most beautiful part of it.

LCR: Any funny, strange or embarrassing moments you've experienced as a writer that you want to share?

CMS: I took my mom on a trip from Iowa to California, partially to research my new novel, and partially just to spend some quality time. It was amusing to see the look on her face whenever I wanted to go somewhere a little offbeat. I had already drafted the novel, so I had some locations in particular that I wanted to check out. One was a cafĂ© that looked like a run-down trailer with a parking lot full of Harleys—suffice to say my mom was a little hesitant to go in there! But the food was awesome and the people super friendly so it all worked out great.

Then I took her to a hospital and insisted we go inside so I could see what it was like, as I had a scene that was going to take place there. We both felt like criminals sneaking around the halls, but we made it to the top floor where we were greeted with some great views overlooking the city. Still, my mom breathed a sigh of relief when we left.

The biggest challenge came when I needed to research a casino in Reno. Drifting through as looky-loos wasn’t a problem, but we were told in strict terms there were to be no pictures taken in the gambling section. There were even signs up warning against it. But I desperately wanted a picture of the blackjack table, where I planned another scene.

I tried to “hang around” without looking too suspicious, burning the scene into my memory, but the dealer started to glare at me. Just as I was moving on I heard a soft click behind me. My mom managed to take a couple shots totally undetected! I don’t know how she did it, but we emerged victorious feeling like two undercover journalists researching a dangerous murder mystery or something. I wouldn’t recommend anyone else try this, but as they say, researching a book is fun!

LCR: Any future projects you want to share?

CMS: I’m working on my next novel, entitled The Beached Ones. I’ve been working on it for a few years now. It’s the most difficult project I’ve tackled so far, but it has an important place in my heart, so I’m pushing forward and hope to have a finished project next year.

I’m also already thinking about my next non-fiction book, but I’ve promised myself that I’ll finish the novel first!

LCR: Here's a fun one: If you could travel back in time, where would you go?

CMS: That’s a tough one for me, as I tend to look forward much more than I look back, but the first thing that springs to mind is that I’d like to go back to a time when my grandma was alive. She was an Irish lady who lived in a farmhouse in upper state New York, and since I grew up in Colorado, I got to see her only about once every year. The trips my family made back there were full of adventure, and the time we spent together was magical in many ways.

I experienced a lot of firsts at Grandma’s house—my first sighting of lightning bugs, my first homemade raft, my first time getting lost in a forest, my first discovery of a remote family cemetery, and even my first date. I’d love to experience one of those trips again, and just sit down and share a meal or play a game of cards with Grandma. That would be really cool.

LCR: Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with me!

CMS: Thank you, Laura! I so appreciate your amazing book tours, and your overall experience and expertise. You’re a treasured resource for writers!

Buy the Book:

About the Author:

Colleen M. Story has worked in the creative writing industry for over twenty years. Her novels include "Loreena’s Gift," an Idaho Author Awards first place winner, New Apple Solo Medalist winner, Foreword Reviews INDIES Book of the Year Awards winner, Reader Views award finalist, and Best Book Awards finalist; and "Rise of the Sidenah," a North American Book Awards winner and New Apple Book Awards Official Selection.

As a health writer, she’s authored thousands of articles for publications like "Healthline" and "Women’s Health;" worked with high-profile clients like Gerber Baby Products and Kellogg’s; and ghostwritten books on back pain, nutrition, and cancer recovery. She finds most rewarding her work as a motivational speaker and workshop leader, where she helps writers remove mental and emotional blocks and tap into their unique creative powers.

Colleen is the founder of Writing and Wellness (, a motivational site helping writers and other creative artists maintain their physical, mental, and emotional health and well-being throughout their careers. Sign up for your free weekly email containing tips for living your best creative life at: www.writingandwellness/newsletter.

To find more information on Colleen and her work, please see her website or follow her on Twitter. She loves to hear from readers—feel free to use the “contact” form on either her website or Writing and Wellness to get in touch with her.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter

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Ends Sept 23

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1 comment :

  1. Thanks for this invaluable resource which I would use and treasure greatly.


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