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Badass Women at Any Age

Dec 20, 2022

Marlene Wagman Geller always wanted to write.  Believing that success is not in succeeding but in trying, Marlene was determined to live out her dream of being a writer.   A teacher, Marlene was in Toronto, Canada, where she taught high school English and then moved to San Diego, California in 1986 to teach at a Tijuana San Diego border school which she says, “surviving that was badass enough.”  Her life changed in 2008 when she published her first book with Penguin, Once Again to Zelda: The Stories Behind Literature's Most Intriguing Dedications. Marlene took a leap of faith sending it out as everyone said her chances were few to none. However, she abided by the belief that dreams do not have to be for sleeping. Marlene has now published 11 books with traditional publishers and is the author of five books dealing with badass women.  They are as follows, StillI Rise: The Persistence of Phenomenal Women, Fabulous Female First: Because of Them We Can, Women Who Launch, Women Who Shattered Glass Ceilings, Unabashed and Women of Means. Marlene says she's a badass through association with these women, but there is a lot more to her badass story.

What You Will Hear in This Episode: 

02:21 Marlene’s personal story

07:58 Becoming a published author

11:17 Major challenges 

12:41 Marketing

16:16 Lesson Marlene learned about herself

17:16 Badass role models

22:34 Common denominator in Marleen’s writing   

26:48 Writer's Block

29:13 Tips for aspiring writers and overcoming rejection and persistence

36:00  Newest book


“It's not that big a leap of faith from reading books to wanting to see your own name on the spine of a book.”

“The chances of publishing with a traditional publisher is sort of akin to winning the lottery. When you try, you're buying hope, but you're not really buying reality.”

“The failure in life is not in the not succeeding, it's in the not trying.”

“Dreams don't have to be for sleeping.”

“In life you have to make your own fortune.”

“It's not the 99 that reject you, it's the 1 that accepts you.”

“I think the difference between those who succeed and those who fail is simply those who didn't give up.”


Peyton Place - Grace Metalious

​​Eureka: The Surprising Stories Behind The IdeasThat Changed  The World

Still I Rise: The Persistence Of  Phenomenal Women

Unabashed Women The Fascinating Biographies of Bad Girls, Seductresses, Rebels and One-of-a-Kind Women

The Secret Lives of Royal Women

Behind Every Great Man


Connect with Bonnie





Gendered Ageism Survey Results

Forbes article

5 Tips to own the superpower of your age


Purchase my book Not Done Yet on Amazon: 


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