Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Author Tamara McClintock Greenberg: Surprises In Writing And A Giveaway

As someone providing care for a family member with Alzheimer’s Disease, I was interested to see the latest book by Author Tamara McClintock Greenberg, WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS: HOPE AND HELP FOR THOSE PROVIDING SUPPORT.

I’m also pleased to welcome Tamara here today as she makes a stop on her Nurture Virtual Book Tourz™.

Tamara, Psy.D., M.S., a licensed clinical psychologist, works with patients and family members affected by acute or chronic illness. She is an associate clinical professor and clinical supervisor at the University of California, San Francisco Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute. Tamara has written three books and numerous chapters and articles on aging, illness, as well as issues pertaining to women. She writes for Psychology Today online and The Huffington Post. She also speaks to medical, psychological, and public audiences on the impact of illness, caregiving issues, and dealing with the modern medical system as a patient or loved one. She is in private practice in San Francisco.

Tamara joins us today to talk about the writing process. In addition, thanks to Tamara and the great folks at Nurture, I have a print copy of WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS to giveaway. Please see the end of the post for the guidelines.

Now Tamara answers “What surprised you the most about the writing and publishing process?”

WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS is my third book, so I have been surprised for some time about the idiosyncrasies of publishing in general! 

Authors have a better experience when they try to figure out what a particular publisher aims for and then try to meet it. That does not mean giving up central ideas, but each publisher is a unique culture and I try to be sensitive to what the norms are. I am totally fine with compromising when an editor has questions; I just choose to argue about only points that I think are crucial. I never try to get overly attached to one idea. Editors and agents have much more experience in the writing world, so I work hard to incorporate feedback.  

Another surprise that I have experienced in the last couple of years is that of writers block. This was never an issue for me—I just felt passionate and wrote. Even if I changed a piece later, or realized it did not work, I felt kind of uninhibited about my writing.  

As I have aged and now am in mid-life, creativity takes on a different form. I work slower and more methodically. It takes me longer to write things, but I am often happier with what I write. IWhen Someone You Love Cover still look back at some of my writing and cringe, but I can usually try to be more sympathetic with myself about where I was coming from, even if I wrote something that I would change. This is the hard thing about blogging, by the way, because there is a quick ability to put stuff out there! Impulse control when blogging is often a good thing!

The biggest surprise is that publishing a book is not that difficult, though there are some caveats. 

For me, all it took was a good proposal, and regarding this current book, a good agent. To publish outside of academia, one needs an agent they can have a comfortable relationship with. I was lucky in that I found an agent who wanted to work with me on the development of the idea for the book.  

This is not often the case. After publishing for academic presses, I was surprised regarding how hard it was to find an agent. This seemed to be the hardest part of publishing for the popular press. So while agents can seem hungry, as authors, we need them more than they need us. They have people pitching them all of the time! Good agents are very busy. Spending the time to find someone who is really interested in your project means a lot. 

One final thing about this: it is really important to be willing to alter your ideas and plan for your book. Agents know this business really well; I think it is reasonable to trust them.

Tamara, thanks for visiting today and for this insight into the publishing field. I would have thought finding an agent wouldn’t be as hard as it once was.
When Someone You Love Nurture Tour Banner
For more on Tamara and her writing, visit her website, check out her blog or find her on Twitter.  

Tamara earned a bachelor's degree in psychology at Hamline University in Minnesota and was awarded the prestigious Jacob Markovitz Memorial Scholarship to continue in the doctoral program at the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology. She graduated in 1997 with a doctorate in clinical psychology with a specialty in clinical health psychology.

Thanks to advances in science and medicine the lifespan of the average American is now longer than ever and many illnesses that once would have proven fatal have become manageable, chronic conditions. Great news, right? Sure, but there is another side to the 21st Century health picture—and it is increasingly becoming part of the lives of Americans. Many more people are living with chronic illness and that means that more than ever family members, friends, and partners are needed to provide formal or informal support.

That’s why Tamara, a clinical psychologist who specializes in treating individuals with chronic illness and their families, wrote WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS: HOPE AND HELP FOR THOSE PROVIDING SUPPORT (Cedar Fort Books, ISBN: 978-1-59955-939-1, Trade Paper). In this groundbreaking book Tamara shows readers how to provide the best care for their loved ones, without losing themselves.

So, how can caregivers meet the demands of care giving without sacrificing self-care? Throughout WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS: HOPE AND HELP FOR THOSE PROVIDING SUPPORT Tamara offers compassionate, authoritative, and step-by-step help for striking this critical balance. At the end of each chapter readers find a “coping checklist” that provides helpful, no-nonsense guidance on how to best address their loved ones’ needs and their own.

To enter the giveaway for a copy of this book, send me an e-mail ( with the subject line, “Win When Someone You Love.” Your message should include your name and mailing address. The contest is open to residents of the U.S., U.K and Canada only. And, just so you know, I don’t share this information with anyone other than the publisher nor use it for any other purpose. The deadline to enter this giveaway for a chance at a copy of WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE HAS A CHRONIC ILLNESS will be 8 p.m. (EST) on Thursday, Oct. 4.

Tamara’s tour continues this week as she visits with the following bloggers:
Thursday, Sept. 27th - Tori Pe. @ Mommy’s Musings (an eBook giveaway will be included).
Thursday, Sept. 27th – Kristina Ha. @ Kristina’s Books & More (an eBook giveaway will be included).
Friday, Sept. 28th – Bobbie @ Nurture Virtual Book Tourz™ Blog.

Have you had to provide care for a family member or friend? Do you know someone who is a caregiver? Thanks so much for stopping by today.


  1. Tamara, thanks again for visiting and sharing this information with us. Caregivers need all the support we can get. Wishing you much success.

  2. Mason - Thanks for hosting Tamara.

    Tamara - Thanks for sharing some very helpful information for people who care for those with a chronic illness. That kind of care can be absolutely enervating and it must be very helpful to know that others understand and can offer assistance.

  3. Sadly, my need for this book has passed but I'm sure there are many who will benefit from this book. Best of luck on your tour, Tamara.


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