Kathryn Rudlin, LCSW has credentials as both a mental health professional, and a professional writer. Since 1988, she has worked in California as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), having completed her Masters Degree in Social Work at The University of Denver, a Bachelors Degree in Psychology at The American University, Washington DC, post-graduate courses in family therapy, and clinical supervision, and being personally trained by Dr. Karyl McBride in her recovery model for daughters of narcissistic mothers.
She has worked at every level of therapeutic treatment to include foster care, alternative schools, residential treatment, wilderness therapy, and psychiatric hospitalization. Currently, she is a therapist in private practice in San Diego, specializing in counseling and education for daughters with mothering issues, in addition to providing training on this topic to mental health professionals.
Kathryn is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, the Endometriosis Association, and the Unity Center of San Diego. As a professional writer she has published articles in the NASW California newsletter, San Diego Woman Magazine, and is a widely read contributing writer for About.com/A New York Times Company, on the topic of troubled teens. In addition, as has written a workbook on effective group therapy with adolescents, created bi-lingual learning materials for children, and was co-owner of Clinical Inspiration, a company that developed continuing education materials for mental health professionals. Recently she edited Dr. Carolle Jean-Murat’s award winning book, Voodoo in My Blood: A Healer’s Journey From Surgeon to Shaman.
1. How did you come up with the title of your book?
Initially I had no idea what to call the book that I intended to write. Then I had a dream in which I was chasing a woman who had something I desperately wanted. When I caught up to her she disappeared into an explosion of silky mist. When I woke up, the term ghost mothers was resonating in my head, and I knew that I’d found my title.
2. What is your writing environment like?
I’m lucky, it’s very nice, a desk with 2 large windows nearby. Sometimes it becomes a disaster area because of all the books and papers that build up – as if I’m not writing on a computer at all!
3. What is your favorite quote? Why?
One of my favorites quotes is from Ella Fitzgerald: It isn’t where you came from; it’s where you’re going that counts, because it’s full of hope for the future and our ability to decide who we want to become.
4. How has your upbringing influenced your writing?
I was always encouraged to read, and was read to at a young age. On my father’s side there are several published writers, of detective stories and children’s books.
5. What inspires you to write?
Writing is inside me, and even though sometimes I try to ignore it, this just isn’t possible for any length of time. When I’m working on a project I’m filled with inspiration, although often not when I’m actually writing… Ideas keep coming to me that demand to be expressed.
6. What do you consider the most challenging part about writing a novel, or about writing in general?
A significant challenge in writing is finding compelling ways to express what I have to say. This is the first book I’ve written and it took on a life of its own that at times was fun, and other times exasperating.
7. Did you learn anything while writing this book? If so, what was it?
I learned how simultaneously frustrating and amazing the creative process can be.
8. What have you done to promote this book?
Initially the prospect of promotion was overwhelming, there were so many directions to take and I had no idea where to start. Setting up a compelling website and defining how to describe what my book is about is where I started. From there the process started coming together on its own through word of mouth, and information I came across without really looking for it.
9. What are some of the best tools available today for writers?
The resources available on the Internet today about writing, to include the opportunity to get feedback and support from other writers is amazing. My experience suggests it’s best to find a balance between learning the mechanics of writing, gaining experience by doing so, and relying on your intuition to express what’s inside of you.