Cynthia Morris, author of Chasing Sylvia Beach

Author Cynthia Morris at launch party for Chasing Sylvia Beach

There was a time in the United States when people were punished for speaking any language other than English.

So when I had to choose a language in high school, I chose French because my grandmother, a Louisiana native, was severely reprimanded for speaking it.

Taking up French was my way of connecting to my heritage and honoring my grandmother.

This choice led to an ever-increasing interest in France. As a twenty-something with a French degree in hand, I set about trying to figure out my way in life.

As a bookseller in Denver, I discovered Sylvia Beach, who moved to Paris in 1919 and survived there as owner of Shakespeare and Company. This literary heroine sparked my imagination and provided inspiration to dare a life of adventure. Part of that journey was to become an author of a novel inspired by her.

Writing a novel about Sylvia Beach required many research trips to Paris. Fueled by pastries and explorations around the city, I found my way to the story only I could tell. Chasing Sylvia Beach shares the adventure of Lily Heller, a young bookseller who finds herself transported back in time where she has no choice but to enroll the help of her literary idol, Sylvia Beach.

Over twelve years and sixteen drafts, I circled the themes of my life: belonging, creative expression and the quest for role models who can guide us to our own authentic path.

These themes form the basis of my work helping writers, artists and entrepreneurs find their authentic expression in a world that dispenses much advice on the ‘right’ way.

My other works include Create Your Writer’s Life: A Guide to Writing with Joy and Ease, The Creative Toolkit for Travelers, Cross the Finish Line  and other guides to living a creative adventure on your own terms.

When not writing, I am filling notebooks with colorful illustrations, riding my bike scouting treasures at yard sales in Denver, cooking or practicing yoga. I blog regularly and publish a bi-weekly newsletter, Impulses. Find more about my work as a coach and speaker.