About the Author 42 www.latinastyle.com LATINAStyle Vol. 25, No. 5, 2019
Forever Frida: A Celebration
of the Life, Art, Loves, Words,
and Style of Frida Kahlo
Authoring a book appears to be
glamorous and magical, but in reality,
it’s an emotionally grueling process.
I’m proud to have penned nine titles in my career,
especially when they were released year after year.
But something shifted after my last two books.
After writing seven crafting books, I made a risky
leap into the world of fiction. I devoted six years
to writing two novels, Waking Up in the Land
of Glitter, followed by Miss Scarlet’s School of
Patternless Sewing, both published by Grand
After all the late nights of rewrites, crying over
the book cover designs, the anticipation of the
release - I thought for sure my persona would
transform into a flashy bestselling novelist. I even
But life doesn’t always play out the way we
For the next several years, the only page-turner
I encountered were rejection letters for my book
pitches. I refused to give up. In between book
proposals and manuscripts, I used all kinds of
manifestation techniques on my annual vision
boards, my passwords, even sticky notes on my
bathroom mirror. I vowed to have a 10th book, no
matter what. After yet another rejection letter in
2018, I decided to give it a rest. I concluded I would
be proud of my nine books, I mean that is quite an
accomplishment! I released the pressure and
removed all traces of manifesting anything with
publishing. I made my peace with defeat.
However, I never stopped writing. Writing and
storytelling have always been at the core of who I
am. Letting go of the book deal idea freed up space
in my spirit and schedule to focus on my other
passions, such as blogging, creating art and sharing
craft tutorials and - The Phoenix Fridas, a Latina art
collective I founded 14 years ago.
Comprised of 10 women, we each are inspired
by Frida Kahlo for a different reason. Since
discovering the world of Frida in the early 90s, I’ve
always admired her passion and perseverance for
living and expressing her truth. For the past decade,
The Phoenix Fridas host an epic birthday bash in her
honor. Hundreds of families show up to celebrate.
We talk about her work, her life, her controversies,
and her struggles.
I clearly remember our event in 2018. As the
event planner, I hustled through the crowd that
sweaty July afternoon to direct as needed. On a
whim, I pulled out my phone to check my messages.
I stopped and gasped. There on my screen was a
message. An editor from Adams Media of Simon
and Schuster. She asked if I would be interested in
authoring a book about Frida Kahlo.
I didn’t even read the rest of the paragraph
before replying, “Yes!”
Fast forward a year. I was delighted to
announce my tenth book finally came to be - Forever
Frida: A Celebration of the Life, Art, Loves, Words,
and Style of Frida Kahlo. Think of it as a fangirl’s
guide to Frida. There are 160 pages and you can
open any one of them to discover artful inspiration.
My goal was to come up with lesser-known
facts and anecdotes about her and at the same time
honoring her legacy. I wanted her to be proud! The
way this manuscript came together so effortlessly
makes me think Frida approves.
My takeaway for all of you is sometimes when
we yearn and push for a goal so hard, we can
actually push it away. Like trying to catch a
butterfly. It’s good to let go and trust. Trust in your
past efforts. Trust in your willpower. Trust in what is
meant to be. And when you least expect, that
butterfly will come land on your shoulder. LS
Kathy Cano-Murillo is an author, artist & founder of the award-winning brand,
CraftyChica. A former syndicated columnist for The Arizona Republic, she is now
a full-time creativepreneur which has led to multiple Crafty Chica mass retail
product lines, and collabs with Coca-Cola, HSN, HP, WordPress, Disney & many
others. She has authored seven craft books, two novels, and recently, Forever
Frida: A Celebration of the Life, Art, Loves, Words, and Style of Frida Kahlo. She
has been featured in The New York Times, USA Today, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed+
more. Kathy is Mexican-American, a native Phoenician, mom of two, a wife, and
owner of three Chihuahuas.
To learn more about her visit: https://craftychica.com/
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By Kathy Cano-Murillo