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  • Writer's pictureKaren Ann Bulluck

Guest Writer: Karen Ann Bulluck - Writing "Discovering Power" was an Adventure in Trust and Learning 

Thank you to our guest contributor, the fantastic Karen Ann Bulluck, author of the International Bestselling series Ascending Ladders. Karen is a leadership coach for women and the founder of Daring To Transcend. We are so lucky to have her share part of her story with us!


My first attempt at writing a book was a total mess!

When I left my corporate career, one of my goals was to write a book. I wanted to write a book about women in leadership that would inspire, encourage, and support women in corporate environments. So, I started writing a non-fiction book that wove together all the things I had learned, and I was bored to tears. So much so that I was positive it would bore my readers too.

Stumped, I let the project go. Maybe writing a book wasn’t for me. I focused on other things.

Then one day, I went for a walk. It was a beautiful early summer day. The temperature was perfect. The sky was a brilliant blue, and the grass and the trees were a vibrant, rich green from all the spring rain. I was listening to music and walking briskly along – attempting to get some exercise while I enjoyed the day.

I started hearing a voice in my head. Not mine. It was a woman’s voice, and she started telling me her story. Her name was Sheryl Simmons. She was a corporate leader and she had just been appointed to the board of directors. But. . . she didn’t agree with the other members’ positions on a critical issue. What was she to do?

Intrigued, I wrote down what I heard when I got home. That piece became the prologue of Discovering Power

I started hearing more of the story at other times. Sometimes, I’d wake up in the morning with a new chapter or two already formed in my head. I kept writing because by that time I was curious about what would happen next!

Now, I was an English major in college and a lifelong reader, but somehow that’s not the same as writing a fiction book. As excited as I was about the story, I knew I needed to get help making it really good. But where to start? I could have taken courses on fiction writing, but that felt like it was going to take too long and not get me where I truly wanted to go.

That’s when Bridget Cook-Burch showed up in my life via an introduction from a mutual acquaintance, Linda Fisk. 

One of the things I’ve learned is that when we take risks and commit to a goal, especially a goal that is aligned with our true selves, the resources that we need suddenly appear

I hired Bridget to help me with the book, along with her talented editor Hannah Lyons, and I got a crash course in fiction writing. They were able to help me enhance what I already did well (writing dialogue is one of my superpowers) and taught me a lot about world creation, pacing, and hooks.

What I love most about Discovering Power now is that it still holds the original essence of the leadership story I wanted to tell, but it’s richer, deeper and so much more exciting. The beauty of fiction is that it allows the reader to put herself in the shoes of the various characters and decide whether she agrees with their actions rather than “telling” them what’s right or wrong or what to do. 

I also learned that characters often live on after a book is complete, demanding that their stories continue. Pursuing Truth and the as-yet unfinished Book Three of the Ascending Ladders Series are proof of that.

Writing is such a joy for me! But it’s also a little scary to put these stories out in the world. It can feel like I’m exposing parts of my deepest self to a potentially hostile world. It’s a risk. 

But when you have a story or stories – fiction or non-fiction – that your spirit is driving you to tell, you just have to take that leap of faith and do it! I’m pretty sure you find that it’s totally worth it.

Karen Ann Bulluck with Bridget Cook-Burch

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