Author Guest Post With Ann Whitely-Gillen

Ann Whitely-Gillen has kindly agreed to guest post here about her work, and share her inspiration for becoming a writer in honor of her debut release, Last Train to Omaha.


 About The Author:

ANN WHITELY-GILLEN is a freelance writer, musician, and communications advisor. She happily lives with her husband and four children in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Find Ann Whitely-Gillen on the Web:
Official Page
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 Guest Post:

Last Train to Omaha came about under very extraordinary circumstances. Being diagnosed with breast

cancer last year changed my life – in many ways, for the better. Taking a step back during my recovery allowed me to take the time to actually see things more clearly and redefine myself to become more the person I was meant to be. Although I knew my role in life well (mother of four, wife, full time public servant), I was certain that I was missing something deep from within. Breast cancer was the catalyst to change everything – and so I began the search. 

After my surgery, I felt compelled to find the answers to life’s questions – Why are we here? Why is life so complex and without guarantee? I wanted desperately to fight off the anxiety that comes with having a life threatening disease, so I began to read everything I could to prepare myself both physically and spiritually for the worst. I ended up stumbling across a poem by Carl Sandburg entitled “Limited” and the premise of its few lines put my anxiety to ease. In this particular poem, Sandburg symbolizes death as a collective journey we must all face. This simple theory allowed me to work through my fear and isolation.

One night, I dreamed about a man who suffered from post traumatic stress disorder as a result of a tragic accident that occurred years before and that continued to plague his life. I started to feverishly write about him and the people who made up his life.

I think I rediscovered myself through the characters in this book. I was able to seek solace in their ability to overcome diversity with courage in their hearts and a peaceful resignation in the connections they share amongst themselves. Each and every one of them represents the connections I’ve made in my life.

Through the eyes of James Milligan and his ensemble cast of supporting characters, we see that destiny is not only what life brings us – but how it can be uniquely tailored simply by how we choose to respond to it.
 CFRA Interview:

  Last Train to Omaha:

Title: Last Train to Omaha

Author: Ann Whitely-Gillen
Publication Date: March 11th 2013
Ann Gillen Books

“…in order for a man to be free,
he must bind himself to his own destiny…”

What happens when a bright young man’s promising future is
tragically derailed at the age of eighteen?

Thirty-five-year-old James Milligan, the solitary and impenetrable chief architect at one of Chicago’s leading design firms, has never recovered from the gruesome death of his best friend nearly two decades before. He’s learned that a distant heart is the only way to shut out the nagging guilt and pain that threatens to capsize him at any moment. Only the dying veterans at the Aaron Milligan Palliative Care Center know the depth of the overwhelming compassion that James harbors within himself, and he is determined never to let anyone else into his heart — or his future — again.

However, when caring and patient palliative care nurse Rebecca Doyle enters his world, his hardened exterior begins to crack against his will. Will Martin Diggs, the charismatic and perplexing Vietnam War veteran convince James that it’s not too late to reclaim his future?

Find Last Train to Omaha Online:  

  Read A Book Excerpt:

 Visit the link below to read an excerpt of Last Train to Omaha:

Happy reading until next time!