Monday, August 31, 2015

Laura Garrett: The IAN Interview

 Laura Garrett, author of What Happens After "Happily Ever After?" and Creating Your Own Fairytale Life has written both books based on her professional and personal experiences with relationships and life skills. She is a licensed professional counselor who graduated with a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver and a second master’s degree in Adult Education and Training from Colorado State University. She is currently in private practice with over 20 years’ experience in relationship, mental health, and addiction issues. 

Laura has worked with hundreds of individuals and couples who struggle with relationships, self-esteem and other life skills. She knows what it takes to acquire and master the tools needed for the purpose of having a happy and fulfilling life. Laura is eager to share this insightful knowledge with her readers. 

IAN: Please tell us about your latest book.


What Happens After “Happily Ever After”? Tools to Help You Build and Maintain a Healthy Relationship.

L.G.: As we grow up, we learn about fairytale romances where a prince and princess fall madly in love and live “happily ever after.” But what happens after the “happily ever after” when the romance fades and real life gets in the way?

In What Happens After “Happily Ever After?” we meet a Fair Maiden who is at a crossroad in her marriage with her man. She sets out on a journey of self-exploration and a quest to unlock the secrets to a happy and fulfilling relationship. It is here she happens upon a Wise Fairy Guardian who offers a relationship skills seminar for all the land. With the help of the Wise Fairy Guardian, the Fair Maiden learns about the realities of being in a relationship, the work that it takes to maintain a healthy relationship and the skills that are needed to ensure its success.

This book provides you with tools to help you build and sustain a healthy relationship with a significant other. The book is an easy, fun read, offering 6 important relationship skills that are essential to the success of your relationship, to include building a relationship with yourself. 

IAN: Is What Happens After “Happily Ever After”? published in print, e-book or both?

L.G.: Both

IAN: Where can we go to buy your book?

L.G. Here https://www.createspace.com/5020576

IAN: What inspired you to write What Happens After “Happily Ever After”?

L.G.: I have been a mental health therapist for over 20 years working with hundreds of individuals and couples who struggle with relationship issues.
I wrote this book because I strongly believe that everyone deserves to be in a happy, healthy, long lasting relationship and I believe they exist, with some work and know how. Having both personal and professional experience with relationships I felt passionate about sharing the tools and skills that I offer my clients with others who may not otherwise seek counseling. The skills presented in this book use a cognitive behavioral approach that has been proven effective in the improvement of relationships.

IAN: Did you use an outline or do you just wing the first draft?

L.G.: While I was pursuing my second Master’s degree in Education I took a class on program development. I developed a relationship skills training that I intended to present in a 9 hour workshop. While reviewing the outline I decided to use that as the template for my book which ended up writing itself.

IAN:
What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?

L.G.: It is my greatest hope that the information presented in this book will help readers to re-evaluate their expectations in relationships and more importantly of their partners. We are all just human trying to live our lives the best we can with the hopes of finding a compatible partner to share it with. There are no super heroes or fairytales and if we can approach relationships for what they really are then perhaps we can alleviate the unnecessary broken hearts and love turning to hate that so often result from entering relationships for the wrong reasons.

IAN:
How is your book different from others in your genre?

L.G.: What Happens After Happily Ever After is written as a fairytale narrative to make it fun and easy the learn the five necessary skills for building and maintain a healthy relationship with a significant other.

IAN: What books have most influenced your life most? 

L.G.: Don Miguel Ruiz and Eckhart Tolle’s books have been most influential, particularly The Mastery of Love and The Power of Now. Both books have inspired me to live in the present moment and approach others with the same love and compassion that I would have for myself.

IAN: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

L.G.: I would definitely have to say my editor. It was her great sense of humor, love and support, in addition to her invaluable input that made the writing of both books possible. It also made the growing pains of this project worthwhile.

IAN:
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

L.G.: I never really considered myself a writer; I have always been a therapist first and foremost.  Therefore my biggest challenge was wrapping my head around the idea of being an author. As for my writing, the main challenge was ensuring the concepts in my head were thoroughly delivered in concise and understandable way.

IAN: Who designed the cover?

L.G.: Originally Stephani an artist from Milan, whom I found at 99 designs, designed the first cover of my book, I have recently changed it to the second cover as it was more appropriate for my target market and it better depicts the message and content of the book. My editor designed both covers.

IAN: What was the hardest part of writing your book?

L.G.: The hardest part of writing this book was the introduction. I had the content but had no idea how to deliver it in a creative way. So I started the book with “Once Upon A Time”, just to get started, the plan was to write the content and then change the introduction, however, once I started to write, as mentioned earlier, the book just wrote itself, so I left beginning as it was.

IAN: Tell us about your next book or a work in progress. Is it a sequel or a stand-alone?

L.G.: The second and final book, Creating Your Own Fairytale Life, Seven Keys to Your Happily Ever After has been released, June 2015. This book is the prequel to What Happens After “Happily Ever After”?  It is the book that teaches you how to have a relationship with yourself prior to being in a relationship with someone else. In this prequel, the Prince, under pressure from his parents to marry and rule the Kingdom, takes to the forest on a quest for self-discovery.  He meets a helpful Wizard, who enlightens him about the seven most important skills needed to succeed in life and to overcome any obstacle to peace, success, and Happily Ever After.

By using the 7 fundamental life management skills offered in this book you will learn to build your self-esteem, manage your stress and anger, learn to identify your feelings so you can communicate them and resolve conflicts more effectively, in addition to learning cognitive reframing skills.  Once practiced and mastered, you will be empowered to trust yourself, have confidence in your decisions and embrace you very own fairytale life.  This book is available on Amazon and through this link:  http://www.createspace.com/5472243

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