Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Q&A with Renee Linnell




Renee Linnell is the author of the new memoir Still on Fire. She also has written the memoir The Burn Zone. She lives in Colorado and in Florida.


Q: What inspired you to write your new memoir?


A: I was inspired by The Burn Zone readers who kept asking for a sequel.


I was also inspired by my amazing girlfriends who started laughing hysterically (with me, not at me) and said, “You have to put this story in your next book” every time I told them about one of my sex-capades (trying to regain my mojo after not dating for so long).


And I was inspired by a sentence in one of my favorite Burn Zone reviews (by The Plucky Reader): “If she were to write a travel memoir of just the places she’d visited, I’d swallow it whole.”


Q: You've said that self-love is the best way to get the love that we deserve. Can you say more about that?


A: We will never be truly happy when we look outside of ourselves for the things our soul craves—like love, validation, and safety. When we hand outside sources the responsibility of providing these things, we live in a state of constant anxiety and fear that those people, objects, or situations will be taken from us.


It’s unfair of us to not love ourselves and then expect others to—it’s kind of like selling something we wouldn’t buy. So many of us think we need a romantic partner to love us and make us feel whole, but we have it backwards: once we love ourselves and feel whole, we attract other whole people who love us.


Until then it’s broken people attracting broken people, hoping to fill each other’s voids, and eventually getting angry that the other person can’t. This is why so many relationships turn toxic: “You don’t bring me flowers anymore.” How about, I buy myself flowers and I love that you get to enjoy them with me when you’re around.

Q: What impact did writing this book have on you, and what do you hope readers take away from it?


A: As with writing my first memoir (The Burn Zone), baring my soul in this memoir was extremely liberating. I write in detail about the most intimate parts of my life, sharing with my readers all of me (body, mind, heart, and soul.) It’s scary, but I also think it’s very healing—for myself and my readers.


I hope that readers will feel liberated after reading Still on Fire. I hope that they will feel more freedom in being themselves exactly as they are, and I hope that they will feel inspired to go out into this world and play more, be adventurous, try and fail, make mistakes, open their hearts and risk getting hurt.


I hope readers will feel less alone as they see so many of their own feelings, thoughts, and mistakes expressed by me.


Q: How would you describe the relationship between this memoir and your previous one, The Burn Zone?


A: I would say The Burn Zone is an exploration of what happens when we don’t listen to our Inner Guidance and Still on Fire is an exploration of what happens when we do.


I also think readers of The Burn Zone will feel inspired and uplifted when they see how my life continues to improve after such a complete and catastrophic undoing. And I think readers of The Burn Zone will enjoy knowing more of my back story.


I think readers of Still on Fire will enjoy being taken on a wild and fun ride of magic, miracles, travel and romance, even if they have not read The Burn Zone. Still on Fire is much more light-hearted than The Burn Zone.


Q: What are you working on now?


A: I am working on the third book in this trilogy, Twin Flames. That and getting Still on Fire out into the world.


Q: Anything else we should know?


A: Maybe just how grateful I am to be writing books that inspire, soothe, thrill, and uplift people. I’m grateful for people like you who help me get my story into the hands of those who can benefit from it. And I’m really excited to share Still on Fire with the world!


--Interview with Deborah Kalb

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