Bio & Curriculum Vitae

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(See Tanya’s Curriculum Vitae for a full list of credentials, and click on the image for a full-sized PDF.)



Tanya J Peterson 2015 (1.1)With credentials as a Nationally Certified Counselor and personal experience with mental health care, novelist and columnist Tanya J. Peterson uses writing to increase understanding of and compassion for people living with mental illness.

Her most recent novel, Twenty-four Shadows was released on May 1, 2016 by Apprentice House Press and has been acclaimed by The Midwest Book Review, Kirkus Reviews, and The US Review of Books. My Life in a Nutshell: A Novel (Inkwater Press, 2014) was awarded a Kirkus Star, an honor given by Kirkus Reviews “to books of remarkable merit.” Further, Peterson’s My Life in a Nutshell: A Novel was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2014.  The novel also received a coveted “Recommended” rating from The US Review of Books. Her novel Leave of Absence (Inkwater Press, 2013) was selected as a Finalist in the National Indie Excellence Awards. Losing Elizabeth (Createspace, 2012) received Storytellers Campfire’s top honor, the Marble Book Award, for being “a book which has made a significant difference in the world.” Beginning in 2017, Tanya is taking Losing Elizabeth into schools and communities, using the book as a tool for group discussions and activities about healthy relationships.

Passionate about helping others create their own life worth living and thrive despite obstacles, Tanya has written a self-help workbook entitled Break Free: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in Three Steps – A Workbook for Overcoming Self-Doubt and Embracing LifePublished in December, 2016 by Althea Press, Break Free is for anyone wanting to life a quality life they value. It is also available to professionals seeking continuing education credits; find it on

Additionally, Tanya J. Peterson writes for She currently writes the main article in the weekly newsletter, writes numerous content articles about a variety of mental health topics, and is a weekly columnist for the HealthyPlace Anxiety-Schmanxiety blog, writing articles to help readers understand and overcome difficulties with anxiety disorders. Her Anxiety-Schmanxiety blog was a winner in the Fall, 2016 Digital Health Awards, and it was dubbed one of the Top Ten Anxiety Blogs of 2014 and awarded a “Best of the Web” designation by renowned psychology and mental health authority

Tanya is also a mental health speaker, presenting locally and nationally to a variety of audiences on mental health topics. She has been invited to author events and book clubs where she provides readings and engages in discussion on mental health, and she frequently presents about mental health in schools. Additionally, she has been interviewed on a wide variety of online radio shows and podcasts, both mental health- and book-related.

Tanya lives in Oregon with her husband and two children, one in college and one in high school. She has served as Secretary of the Board of Directors of her local NAMI affiliate and has volunteered with them in other capacities as well. She loves the outdoors and enjoys spending time with her family.

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