iUniverse is delighted to talk with Linda Noble Topf, author of Wheelchair Wisdom. Linda’s book recently won a medal at the Independent Publishers Book Awards, and she was also interviewed by Dr. Bernie Siegel on Boston radio.
iUniverse began by asking Linda to describe her book
Wheelchair Wisdom: Awaken Your Spirit through Adversity shatters widespread notions of what it’s like to spend life in a wheelchair by offering a practical spiritual guide to living life as your True Self and exploring what is possible, regardless of any challenges that you may face.
Do you have any particular literary influences that have helped you develop in your genre, subject and style?
Within each of us, there is an essential quality of being that is creative, peaceful, and whole—known in religions and cultures worldwide as ‘the essence of love’. I choose that genre that bears testimony to what I have learned and experienced—the importance of each of us being authentic to a higher self, regardless of circumstances. Possibilities open to all of us, to express joy in our power, freedom, self-expression, and peace of mind—whether living with an illness, confronting an injury, or embracing the aging process. I have an incredible partnership for 38 years with my husband, Michael. We have been a demonstration of a working relationship, where one member of that partnership is physical challenged. I have been an ordained minister since 1984, am a motivational speaker, hold a Master’s Degree in Applied Psychology, and am a trained and seasoned graphic designer and creative director. I was creative director for Philadelphia’s 300th birthday celebration in 1982. Before I was diagnosed.
I have been writing a monthly blog for the Huffington Post under the moniker “Healthy Living” since November 2012. I counsel people by telephone as an additional service.
What inspired you to write your book, and how long did it take you to finish it?
I HAVE BEEN IN A WHEELCHAIR SINCE 1990. Wheelchair Wisdom holds a life-affirming message, teaching that people or circumstances do not cause us conflict or distress. Instead, it is our own thoughts, feelings, and attitudes about people, events (or wheelchairs) that produce our struggle. Each moment of our lives is a moment of conscious choice. I gently offer my readers practical steps and sound advice that transform the conflict, fear, and separation that can easily dominate our lives. Using myself and my illness as a metaphor to living a full life, I share honest and inspiring lessons about spiritual tools that empower and uplift, regardless of personal circumstances. I offer my readers practical steps and sound advice that transform the conflict, fear, and separation that can easily dominate our lives. I wrote You Are Not Your Illness in 1995. Wheelchair Wisdom became a natural outflow of my first book, conceived in 1994 and published in 2014. The learnings are timeless and I am a student for life.
Discover and engage your true self more fully in life, with freedom from fear, illusion and judgment, and have the courage to live authentically in the present moment with compassion, vitality and joy with limitless possibilities.
Are there any events, marketing ideas or promotions planned for your book?
On April 14th, I was invited and interviewed by Bernie Siegel, M.D. as his guest on DreamVisions Network Radio 7 out of Boston. (That recording is available and on his website.) I will also appear again with him on September 1st.
I have a marketing background and have many ideas we can explore together. On June 6th, I will be speaking at my alma mater, Moore College of Art in Philadelphia.
At this time, I do not have any book signing events or promotions scheduled. Due to budget and minimal funds, I am designing a ‘GoFundMe’ campaign on social media. I have many great credentials and an exceptional Kirkus review to inspire people to invest in my message. I write for the Huffington Post, and Arianna has promised to speak to Oprah Winfrey’s producers about scheduling me for her Super Soul Sunday cable show on her OWN network. I AM OPEN TO SUGGESTIONS AND IDEAS.
What was your favorite part of your publishing experience, overall and with iUniverse?
Throughout the whole process, I felt very taken care of by each new individual who ‘held my hand’ during that period. For this I will always be grateful. For every step of the way, I had an invested partner.
Finally, what advice would you give to aspiring authors?
–Always look to your personal experiences and your heart for what is true and authentic.
–We choose to be peaceful inside regardless of what is happening outside.
–Forgive yourself for any judgments or comparisons you have placed against yourself. You are unique.
–Look only for the good in others and stay true to yourself.
–Let go of attachments to results or outcomes.
–Don’t fall in love with your own words or image.
–Let it flow from the inside, out.
–Relax and know, as creative people, we are the privileged ones that are responsible to keep the world beautiful, peaceful and meaningful.
–It’s all in God’s name.
Best wishes to Linda, and we at iUniverse congratulate her on all her recognition!