Kathy Gruver, MS, LMT, RM – Author Interview

What is your most recent book? Tell us a bit about it.

The Alternative Medicine Cabinet. The Alternative Medicine Cabinet is a treasure trove of natural health information. Easy to incorporate, practical advice on everything from natural ways to improve your sleep and conquer depression to weight loss, helping back pain and corporate health. All without drugs or surgery. Valuable Information that will allow you to live longer and live better. Everyday language allows you to incorporate these recommendations in to your life immediately. Dissatisfied with your current choices for healthcare? Isn’t it time you discover better choices for your wellbeing? Take control of your health today. Peer into the Alternative Medicine Cabinet and start learning.

Tell us something about yourself.

I was raised in Pittsburgh, PA and moved to Los Angeles in 1992 to pursue an acting career. I’ve been involved in natural health and medical massage for almost two decades and have over 10,000 hours of hands on experience. In that time I’ve earned my Doctorate as a Traditional Naturopath, Masters in Natural Health and am pursuing my PhD. I’ve been featured as an expert in publications such as Massage Magazine, Discover, First for Women, DermaScope Magazine, and Pacific Coast Business Times.

I have always loved writing, both fiction and non-fiction and I have written dozens of health and wellness articles. I have appeared as a guest expert on over 30 radio shows covering topics such as back pain, mind/body medicine, healthy pregnancy, homeopathics, nutrition, and patient advocacy. My massage practice, Healing Circle Massage was selected as a “Best Practice” by Massage Magazine two years in a row. I also produced, directed and hosted an instructional massage DVD, Therapeutic Massage at Home; Learn to Rub People the RIGHT Way…and I’m a HUGE Steelers fan.

What inspired you to write this book?

One of my main goals with my clients is to educate them and give them knowledge that will help them make informed decisions about their health and wellness. I have been meeting so many people that are disenchanted, not only with the health care system, but also Western medicine as a whole. More and more people are turning to natural options and I want to be a resource for them. I want to do that on a broader scale by lecturing and writing not just seeing individual clients. I had been writing articles on health for years, but wanted to take it bigger.

How did you publish this book? Why did you decide to self-publish?

I chose to self-publish. I had numerous other health professions tell me the challenges with getting a publisher, waiting 12-16 months for the book to be released, photos changed, titles altered, indexes removed…and thought, “I don’t really want to go through those things for my first book.” I wanted it quickly and to my specifications. I’d love to have it rereleased at some point through a traditional publisher and will probably pursue that for my future books as well.

How did you know you wanted to be a writer? How did you get started?

I have been writing since I was a kid. I took every writing class that was available in my high school and wrote plays and scripts throughout college. Like everyone else in Los Angeles I had a screenplay and multiple short stories and poems. I had one of my plays produced in LA which was very exciting. Non-fiction was new for me though and I started writing health articles about four years ago. I was thrilled to be able to share what I was learning in my studies and knew it was a good way to place myself as an expert. I then knew it was time for a book and here I am.

What do you believe is the hardest part of writing?

It takes so much discipline; you have to be dedicated to the process of it. Learning to let go of your words during editing and not being afraid to cut, cut, cut. And have an end goal of when you’d like it to be done and what you’re going to do with it at that point. And sticking to that.

How do you do research for your books?

A lot of this book is information I learned in my studies, so I referenced a lot of my old textbooks. And I must admit I spent plenty of time on line looking for references and studies to back up what I was writing.

What are you reading now?

I’m still in the midst of pursuing my PhD and my current class is on the Spirituality of Prosperity. So I’m reading the Tao of Abundance. I don’t get to read much for fun anymore.

What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?

I love biographies and most types of fiction. I’m not really a science fiction or mystery fan though. I loved the Harry Potter books because I could relate to Harry and I love magic. I love reading Carolyn Myss and learning about mind/body medicine which is a big part of my practice. I can’t really say I have a favorite author; I just like good, well-written stories.

Are you working on your next book? What can you tell us about it?

I have several next books in my head, all on natural health, and a few pages of info down for each one but I have a tendency to do too much. I figure I’d better spend my time promoting the heck out of this one, before diving into another. And I want to get my PhD done. And I work full time as a practitioner. The next book will have to wait.

What is the best advice you could give other writers about writing or publishing?

If it’s in your head, get it on paper. And if you want to do it, find a way to do it. There are so many great POD and self-publishers now. Or Ebook options. You don’t have to try to be world-famous, but if you want to write it, go for it!

What are you doing to promote your latest book?

I’m using all the popular social media; Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. I’m doing local book signings and national radio interviews. I did a postal mailing as well as a huge email campaign. I’ve also submitted the book for review and awards and will promote the book during my lectures and workshops. I expect to be going national some time soon.

Where can readers learn more about you and your book?

The Alternative Medicine Cabinet is available on my site and there is more info about it and me there. www.healingcirclemassage.com/books
You can follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/klgruver
and facebook, http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100000500503264