Written by JJ Barnes
I interviewed Zurlia Sevellon about her career, what motivates her, and the process she went through to write her new book, The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind.
Tell me a bit about who you are.
I am a lover of good stories. I believe storytelling is the best way to authentically connect with others. Listening or reading about fascinating stories allows us to dream and grow. I had a really tough childhood being from El Salvador, one of the smallest countries in the world, but sharing the stories that have shaped my life have given me the opportunity to help others improve their lives. Since I am always excited to create new stories, I now live around the world. I have lived in 21 countries so far and I am really excited to keep evolving as a person and keep helping others evolve with me through my personal experiences.
When did you first WANT to write a book?
I have always been a dreamer. When I was struggling as a child, daydreaming helped me escape and cope with my challenging situations, so writing all of my thoughts and sharing those with the world was always one of my greatest goals, but I was not confident enough to get started. When I finally found the courage, I did it without thinking much and finished my first book within a week. I just started writing and kept writing as a form of meditation while backpacking South America. My book is nonfiction, and through writing it, I not only helped others heal, but I also healed myself.
When did you take a step to start writing?
I was drinking tea one morning while in Colombia, and a thought jumped to my mind. I had imposter syndrome and thought I did not have what it takes to be an author. My book is also not perfect, but I believe nothing in life is. However, I also believe we all have gifts we can share with the world and we should always strive to help others. I thought writing was scary, but not sharing my knowledge was selfish and it was time for me to step up and even if I failed, at least I gave it a try, and I thought that was better than not doing anything at all, and so far the feedback I have received has been very positive.
How long did it take you to complete your first book from the first idea to release?
To be honest this is very unconventional, and all of my author friends think what I did was crazy and I should’ve taken longer to improve my first book, but my goal was not perfection. My goal was authentic connection, so I took messy action and finished the first book within a week and it published within two months after I had the crazy idea to start writing.
How long did it take you to complete your latest book from the first idea to release?
The second book is an anthology of many stories written by different authors, so it took about three months to publish once we all started working together. I am currently planning my third book, but the ideas and topic are not very clear yet.
What made you want to write The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind?
I saw many people struggling and wanted to reach them and help them somehow. I thought sharing my story and advice was the best way to help at the moment.
What were your biggest challenges with writing The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind?
Battling insecurity and self-doubt. I think we all have great stories to share and we are all capable of writing a book, but listening to the voice of love instead of the voice of fear is a big challenge we all have to fight through.
What was your research process for The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind?
I have a master’s degree in psychology, so I used the essays I had written and lab research I had done to write my book and make it relatable to the readers.
How did you plan the structure of The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind?
This is so bad, but I did not plan anything. I just started writing and kept writing and I honestly think that is what made it more authentic and successful.
Did you get support with editing, and how much editing did The Hidden Patterns Of A Successful Mind need?
Yes, I hired an editor. He finished editing within two weeks and mostly only fixed grammatical errors.
What is the first piece of writing advice you would give to anyone inspired to write a book?
Listen to the voice of love instead of the voice of fear. Don’t strive for success, although if it becomes a best-seller, that is a great achievement, but it shouldn’t be your main goal. Your main goal should be to help, success is just a byproduct.
Can you give me a hint about any further books you’re planning to write?
I think the world needs love. If we pay close attention, love is honestly the answer to everything, so I am writing about that.
And, finally, are your proud of your accomplishment? Was it worth the effort?
The effort was very worth it. It was a very humbling process that taught me a lot, and I am very excited to continue.
Pop all your book, website and social media links here so the readers can find you:
People can connect with me through instagram
And they can find the book here