Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I am a licensed clinical psychologist, author, speaker, consultant, and mental health advocate. In my clinical practice, I work with children, adolescents, and adults who present with a wide range of emotional, behavioral, and adjustment problems such as depression, anxiety, executive functioning, and ADHD. One of my passions is public speaking, and in my consultation work, I have spearheaded a variety of workshops on positive parenting, teen issues, and family conflict resolution. I am fluent in five languages and love to travel and learn about different cultures. I am also a mother of three children ages 15, 12, and 9.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My current and first published book is called, Franky and The Worry Bees. It was released on September, 30 2020. When COVID-19 hit in March 2020, I found how difficult it was to connect with my clients online. We were both adapting to telehealth and I could see how disconnected they were. I began sketching and using illustrations to help my clients express their negative thoughts. I created two bubbles one with bees inside it and the other was empty. The exercise was to imagine that the bees represented all the negative thoughts one felt. For example, “I am not good enough, I am not smart, I am not brave.” These negative thoughts feel very real to a child or person so the idea was to switch those negative thoughts into positive ones and write in the empty bubble the antonym of the negatives. For example, I am good enough, I am smart, I am brave.” The child, teen, or adult (yes my adult clients have enjoyed this exercise as well. What I discovered and by repeating the positives every day they actually started feeling better and more confident. My character Franky was then created and brought to life by my incredible illustrator Timna Green.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I am not sure if this would be considered as unusual but I tend to draw out my ideas first. I can see the story unfold and then just start writing. I love writing articles and blogging so when I feel inspired I could write about 3-4 articles in a few hours. I also discovered my love of writing children’s books which was very spontaneous and not planned. Now I can’t stop writing and am creating a Franky series.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
One of my favorite children’s books is Wonder by R.J. Palacio. The main character August is so inspirational and has touched all my children as well. August just wanted to be treated normally despite his differences. I love that the book focuses on empathy, accepting others as they are. Nowadays many children are bullied for being different. Children with anxiety, just want to “feel normal.” I try to always normalize and empower children that they are not their disability or mental illness. When a child finds their inner passion and self-confidence it’s a game-changer. As a clinician, nothing makes me happier. When I saw this happen with my Franky character I knew I had to turn it into a story and share it with the world.
What are you working on now?
At this time, I am working on three new titles in the Franky series.
1. Franky and His Homeschool Adventures
2. Franky and His Special Talent
3. Franky and His International Adventures
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
My website is www.reginemuradian.com I have a book tab where you can click and it will direct you to my amazon page.
I have also been promoting via Instagram, Twitter, and Linkedin
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Many in my profession or other authors have reached out to me asking about my journey. I love helping people and I had great advice offered to me as well during this process. My best recommendation is to not allow fear to get into the way. Writing, editing, re-writing, illustration creation is such a long process. I was patient and did not give up on the process. I was mindful and kept reminding myself during the difficult days that the end product will be beautiful and all worth it. Keep your vision and focus on the results!! I promise you if you do you will reach your goals.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
“Listen rather than offer advice especially with family.” This is one of the best advice I have received from my father who has been my mentor and greatest support. I recall him saying this to me as a child and it stuck with me. Interestingly most children and teens just want their parents to listen and not ask advice. This is something I teach my parents to listen and ask if their child wants their feedback or advice. This puts the person who needs to share in a position of control and creates peace and healing.
What are you reading now?
I have dedicated my reading time to my son. It’s a wonderful time to spend together where he chooses a book he’s interested in and I read a chapter and he reads another. This is our favorite time together before bedtime.
What’s next for you as a writer?
At this time I am busy for the rest of this year and 2021 with my three new titles in the Franky series. I am also a frequent contributor to various magazines and love blogging. You can check out my blog on my website and stay updated with my media contributions as well.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
I would bring:
1. Mindfulness by Ellen J. Langer
2. The Art Of Happiness by Dalai Lama
3. Cooking Wild by John Ash