Monday, September 8, 2014

2014 St. George Book Festival Interview with M. Bridge Cook



M. Bridget Cook is the New York Times Bestselling Author well-known for penning riveting tales of transformation. Her gift is her courage to bring light into the darkest places of humanity, and illuminating paths that awaken readers to their own magnificent journey. Her powerful work has been showcased on Oprah, CNN, Good Morning America, and in People among others. Bridget’s new release took the world by storm in September of 2013: The Witness Wore Red, the 19th Wife Who Brought Polygamous Cult Leaders to Justice with FLDS survivor, Rebecca Musser. The book already has the publishing world buzzing! Bridget is also co-author of best-selling Shattered Silence, the Untold Story of a Serial Killer’s Daughter with Melissa G. Moore, and Skinhead Confessions: From Hate to Hope with former neo-Nazi TJ Leyden. Bridget’s stories continue to rock readers around the world. In writing as in life, she loves to refute stereotypes. Bridget runs Inspired Legacy, LLC, while enjoying her four amazing children and more pets than her beloved husband can handle. An internationally sought-after speaker and activist, Bridget wows audiences on the subjects of transformation, conscious business, and how to leave the footprints of an inspired legacy.


When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer? 
I LOVED writing when I was young, but I didn’t think about it as a career until after a near-death experience brought me in touch with my purpose in life.  When I worked with gang kids in Denver and other high-risk youth, and I saw the incredible stories emerging from the struggles of these vibrant and brilliant and troubled lives, I fell in love with the human soul.

Where did the inspiration for (title of book here) come from?
The last time Rebecca spoke with Warren Jeffs inside the polygamous group, he told her he would BREAK her. That’s when she escaped his clutches.  Warren had outlawed the color red for his people, especially women.  Rebecca Musser had to testify in over 20 legal proceedings in Utah and Texas, and every time she wore the color red. It was her reminder to herself –and to Warren -- that she was not broken.

What is the main message or theme that you hope readers of this book come away from it with?
Every person has the power to change the world for good.

Who is your favorite author?
Harper Lee

Do you have a writing routine? A special pen, a certain type of music, time limits?
Yes.  I listen to Pandora’s station I made, 2002, with lots of instrumentals.  I write early in the morning before being in reaction to the rest of the world.  Then I write later in the day when I’ve tackled business, and then sometimes late into the night – or in the middle of the night – when the muse strikes.

Do you enjoy edits/rewrites, or not?
Yes, very much.  I don’t like the time it takes, but it sure makes for much, much, much better writing and prose!

Please tell us a little bit about your journey to publication:
I started with Cedar Fort in Springville Utah.  I was impressed they were willing to take on the two very difficult subjects of my first two books: 1. Skinhead Confessions: from Hate to Hope, and Shattered Silence: the Untold Story of a Serial Killer’s Daughter.  Both memoirs, both true, both inspirational. For my next book I procured an incredible agent, and it’s been worth every experience, and every penny.

What is the hardest part of being a writer?
Making it sacred.  People think you have to sacrifice – but it’s really about making that time sacred to yourself – to express your dream, to taste life twice, as Anais Nin says.

Are there any common themes that you feel are particularly important to write about?
For me, yes.  Transformation.  Period.  I believe every human has an incredible array of choices and that we learn so much through those choices. And then… when we have faced all the learning that those choices have brought us, we can choose to leap or emerge into a more conscious version of ourselves.  It’s certainly a journey, and it can be a rough one, but it is beautiful in all its complexity.

When you're not writing, what are your other hobbies/passions?
My family is my biggest passion, and second only to activism of human rights and teaching others how to write their powerful stories – fiction and nonfiction.

Are you working on any new projects?
Oh yes!  Always.  Stay tuned!

Quick Fire round:

Coke or Pepsi? Neither. :D  Water! Or jasmine green tea
Chocolate or Vanilla? – oh, oh, oh, ALWAYS chocolate
Rainy winter days or blazing hot summer days? They’re both delicious, but for writing, give me a rainy winter day for genius muse!
Hard Copy or e-book? Nothing beats holding the real thing in your hand, and smelling the pages… I love the visceral experiences.  I will say that as much as I travel, however, e-books are becoming more popular to me!
Favorite book?  DON’T MAKE ME CHOOOOOOOOOOOSE!
Last book you read? The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
What's a quote that inspires you? “I am a pen in the hand of a God who is writing a love letter to the world.” ~Mother Teresa
What's your favorite comfort food?  Besides my husband’s lips? Dark chocolate.  Milk chocolate.  White chocolate.  And every delicious nuance in-between.

St. George Book Festival October 20-25, 2014 - Learn More at http://stgeorgebookfestival.org
 

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