It took me seven years to rewrite and publish my first book, “The Second Piece of French Toast.”

It’s a memoir.

I had been so focused on getting it published, that I hadn’t thought past finally having my book in print.

Kind of like when I got married. I was paying so much attention to the wedding, that I never thought about what it would be like to actually BE MARRIED. (But that’s what the book’s about.)

So when people started telling me they were reading the book, I got really uncomfortable.

Publishing the book was my dream – it had taken 7 long years of hard work. It was an amazing accomplishment.

So what was the problem?

That I wrote about personal stuff. My whole life, my act was that I was a “good girl.” Only what I wrote about was “bad girl” stuff.

My family was reading this. What would they think? Would they disown me? Would people judge me? Would they shun me out of their lives?

I couldn’t sleep. The bad thoughts were swirling through my head. My heart was racing through my attempts to meditate or quiet my fears. Nothing seemed to calm me down.

Until I heard a podcast with Brene Brown.

She was asking whether we were going to be “Comfortable” or “Courageous?”

I realized that publishing the book was my choice to be Courageous.

So now, when my heart starts beating out of my chest and my mind goes crazy, I remember my choice to be brave.

I decided I’m a “Pioneer for Getting Real”. My book is one of the first steps in this exploration. I’m venturing into the unknown. Which can often be uncomfortable. But it can also be very rewarding.

Wish me luck.

Risking judgment and having people know the REAL ME, I published my memoir.


  • Hilary Arnow Burns

    Hilary Arnow Burns, Creating Life in the Present Moment

    Graduated from Wharton Business School, Hilary pursued a career in management consulting, ending up on Wall Street during the 1989 crash. "It was certainly exciting," she says about her time at Drexel Burnham Lambert. From there she found her way to many entrepreneurial ventures, ending up as a District Sales Coordinator at AFLAC. She has always loved to entertain, empower and acknowledge people and does so through her writing and speaking. She specializes in memoir and poems which tell a person's unique gifts and story.   She has published her first book, "The Second Piece of French Toast," available on Her website: GettingRealwithHilary connects you to her YouTube channel and blog.