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From Writer’s Remorse to #1 Best Seller

I am honored and humbled to announce that my second book, “The Reluctant Ninja: How A Middle-Aged Princess Became A Warrior Queen,” hit #1 Amazon Best Seller in not one, not two, but three categories at the end of February, just in time for the first anniversary of its release. On the other hand, the last time I used the word “humbled” when the book won an award, I was corrected by a colleague that the word was inappropriate to use in the context of receiving recognition. Whatever.

So, since humbled isn’t the right word, perhaps overwhelmed word be more appropriate. Because it is overwhelming. And humbling, in spite of what my colleague and the dictionary both say. Because when the book was finally published, instead of being delighted, reality hit, and it hit hard. I realized the story was out there for all the world to see, and there was no way to get the genie back in the bottle. There was a lot of personal and private information in the book that I had never shared with another human being. Uh-oh.

For the next three weeks I hid in my girl cave, suffering from a severe case of writer’s remorse. I did absolutely nothing to promote the book. It would be okay if perfect strangers read it, I didn’t want anyone who knew me even see it, let alone read it. It gave me a false sense of security, but it worked. Until the day I saw a copy of my book sitting on Sensei’s desk, which sent me running down to hide in the girl cave again.

Eventually I accepted that I had put myself in such a vulnerable position. It helped that the book started receiving rave reviews as well as an award, even though the first review was less than stellar, but I’ll save that story for another day.

Until then, I believe that we all need to share our stories with the world, no matter how vulnerable it makes us feel. I also believe that sharing our stories will help make the world a better place. So just in case you’re considering writing a book and sharing your story, go for it. You too might go from writer’s remorse to best selling author. But you’ll never know until you try.

Originally Published on

Cheryl Ilov is an author, speaker, dancer, martial artist, and physical therapist. She is also a former chronic pain patient who began a journey of self-discovery and self-healing after her medical team informed her that she would never recover. They were wrong.

Cheryl fired her medical team and found her own path to health and healing, as well as a journey of life-long learning. Her areas of expertise include the art of healing through movement, personal empowerment, and fitness over fifty. She is also the host of The FemiNinja Project podcast, which focuses on overcoming obstacles, personal empowerment, restoring human dignity, and alternative health and healing.

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