Purchase Kindle edition
1. Who has been most influential in your life?
My mother, Mary Jo Nocero.
2. When you aren't authoring books, what does your life consist of?
Because I have over 20 years of experience as a federal prosecutor, I now work with lawyers and other professionals as an empowerment coach. I host a YouTube channel and a podcast called Manifesting with Meg: Conversations with Extraordinary People. I also host two I.G. Lives: one called Amazing Authors! and the other Butterflies Breakin' it Down! I am a keynote speaker (TEDx included) and a guest on many podcasts. My friends call me a creative supernova. I have to make an effort to sit still because it feels like after I resigned five years ago in August as a federal government attorney, there are so many things to learn and creative things I get to do. I am living my dream come true right as I get to meet so many amazing people.
With Butterflies & Bliss L.L.C., I set out to write and publish my Butterflies & Bliss Trilogy—The Magical Guide to Bliss: Daily Keys to Unlock Your Dreams, Spirit & Inner Bliss; Sparkle & Shine: 108 M.A.N.T.R.A.s to Brighten Your Day and Lighten Your Way; and Butterfly Awakens: A Memoir of Transformation Through Grief. Then, I wanted to serve, so I founded S.H.I.N.E. Networking Inc., a nonprofit that provides educational scholarships to young innovative leaders in her community. (S.H.I.N.E. recently won an Inaugural Anthem Award in the Education, Arts & Culture – Networking and Community Organization category.) We are preparing for our next SHINE Networking Event entitled SHINE Bright Ball, which will take place on October 16, 2022, at the Rusty Pelican in Miami, Fl. I have been married for 22 years and have two wonderful children and a Shetland Sheepdog; my daughter is an actor in middle school, and my son is an undergraduate.
3. Do you believe in writer's block?
Not really. We can always sit down and put ideas on paper, but making time is hard. If we want to write, we must put it on our schedule and make it a priority. Like everything in life, those things we want to master take practice. And, as writers, it is our job to get still in a writer's space and respond to whatever prompt so that it becomes more effortless.
4. Let's discuss your book Butterfly Awakens. This is your story. Why did you decide it needed to be written?
In April of 2011, not only did I lose my mother to breast cancer, but I also lost my way. I retreated into my closet and did not want to come out and face a world without my mother. I showed up for my responsibilities at work and home but fell into a depression and did not want to live anymore. It was a terrifying feeling. My kids were 2 and 8 years old when my mother passed away. I knew I could not abandon them, but the sadness and disillusionment enveloped me.
When I was moving through grief, I promised that I would keep going to share a better story for my life, healing myself and in service to others. The metamorphosis of the butterfly and the guidance of the lighthouse were symbols that stood foremost in my mind. I chose never to give up, do the hard things surrounding transformation, and in the end, embrace my inner beauty—writing all about what unfolded so I could inspire others. I wanted other people to know that there is always light, even in the darkness and that they are more than enough to be authentic. And to offer hope to those who were where I was when my mother died, I intended to share my story to inspire others to keep going and reach out for help when they need it, never giving up.
My book offers hope and inspiration, especially if one feels stuck in a dark place, unsure if a light is at the end of the tunnel. I hope my book is like a lighthouse that offers help navigating rough waters and represents strength, guidance, and hope.
5. It includes your mother's journey through breast cancer. What is your advice to those struggling through this, either personally or through a loved one?
Everyone's journey with grief is different. It is essential to start there and not judge yourself or compare yourself to others as you go through the process. While the journey will not be easy, you will gain wisdom that will make you stronger and more resilient. I have heard it said, "pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional." The inability to go to my mother for guidance and unconditional love was painful. And I spent many months in tears, thinking I would never be happy again, trying to make sense of this profound loss. And even though I knew she would not want me to suffer, I had no idea how to move on. So, when I realized I could not heal alone, I reached out to others for help to learn how to navigate the grieving process. When I got the support, I started to walk through the suffering rather than unpack there. As a result, there was a great relief in the release of not having to figure it all out on my own. This collaboration allowed me to begin to heal; I was ultimately able to honor and build on my mother's legacy while aligning my passion and purpose so that I don't have any regrets at the end of my days. And, paying attention, I am confident and grateful that, as my angel, my mother has never left my side.
6. Can you tell us about the writing and publishing process? What was most difficult? What was most rewarding?
The best thing is meeting and collaborating with so many creative people who have taught me daily—this made an already steep learning curve easier to navigate. The hardest part of being an Indie is marketing and getting my book in front of the perfect audience.
7. The book also contains poetry. Would you consider yourself a poet?
I believe myself to be a lyricist more than a poet. I love music, and I make up songs to the music that always plays in my head.
8. We would love to hear a little about your other works and what's next for you.
I am currently adapting my memoir into a screenplay for musical theater and am writing a work of fiction with a working title The Sunrise of A Soul's Bliss.
I like to end on fun questions.
9. What's your favorite time of year and why?
I love December. In my book The Magical Guide to Bliss, I call December the month of "Awe-Inspiring Magic and Miracles." December is a month to celebrate birthdays, mine and my children, the holidays with family and friends, and the weather in South Florida.
10. If you could eliminate one animal—insect, pest, or other—without affecting the circle of life, what would you get rid of?
I would get rid of mosquitoes.
11. Can you share with us a favorite inspirational quote?
"Pay attention, be astonished, and tell all about it." Mary Oliver
12. If you could choose any one profession, regardless of talent, what would you choose?
I would be a fashion designer who created bold gowns that told a story.