About Solange

When attorney and new author Solange Ritchie isn’t practicing law, you can usually find her penning her next legal thriller. Solange’s first psychological thriller, The Burning Man, featuring FBI forensic pathologist, Dr. Catherine (“Cat”) Powers hit book stores on September 15, 2015. Published by Morgan James Publishing, The Burning Man promises to have you on the edge of your seat from the first page. Her second novel, Firestorm, is due for release in March 2018.

Born in the beautiful tropical island of Jamaica of a Jamaican father and a French mother, Solange immigrated to the US at age 11. Since then, she has been a dynamic force for change. Fed up with thrillers that start with a fizzle and longing to see more power women as lead characters, Solange decided to create her own characters. Despite the demands of a busy legal career, she accomplished her ambitious goal by rising each morning to write before work, dedicating her weekends to writing and even spending her vacation time writing.

Words have always been Solange’s passion. Now so, more than ever.

Solange achieved a successful writing career while doing “last minute trials,” mostly in Southern California. Dubbed “the Case Saver,” Solange did the “heavy lifting,” handling intense legal motions that either make or break a case, especially in business, labor and employment law areas. Once the cases get beyond that point, they either settle or they go to trial.

Solange received the State Bar of California’s Solo and Small Firm Section’s highest award, the Myer J. Sankary Attorney of the Year Award for 2014. Only one attorney is selected for this honor each year. The Myer J. Sankary Attorney of the Year Award is presented to an individual who has exercised notable leadership or contributed to the development of greater justice in a field of law. The award is presented annually to an individual who is a sole practitioner or a member of a small firm and who has devoted years of faithful service and leadership to the community or his or her fellow attorneys. To be eligible, the individual must be a member of the Solo and Small Firm Section of the State Bar of California.

One of 11,000 plus graduates of Western State University College of Law, Solange was recently inducted into the Western State University College of Law Alumni Hall of Fame. While in law school, Solange rose through the law review ranks to become Editor In Chief, while working full time as a paralegal. When people told her it couldn’t be done, she did it anyway. Solange has always been tenacious. Her personal motto is “Don’t quit and never surrender.”

When Solange was just 37 years old, her first husband died due to gross medical negligence at a Southern California hospital. That life-altering experience helped shape her to the person she is today. She began writing creatively as a way to deal with the stress of his hospitalization and his death.

With a passion for philanthropic work (stemming from growing up with an older brother with Down’s Syndrome and John’s death), Solange served on numerous charities and legal boards, including The California Women Lawyers Association, The Orange County Bar Association, The Orange County Women Lawyers Association, The Orange County Trial lawyers Association, The Community Court’s Foundation and El Viento.

Solange’s magazine articles are too numerous to list. They include Employers’ Liability for Punitive Damages: The California Supreme Court Defines “Managing Agent” Under California Civil Code Section 3294(b) (2003), Consumer Protection: The Trend Towards Finding Unconscionability in Arbitration Agreements (2007), Finding the Smoking Gun: A Hands-on Guide to Dealing with Electronic Discovery (2007), Can You Bet With a Sicilian When Death Is On the Line? What’s New and Hot in Anti- SLAPP (2010) and The Case Against Dispositive Motions in Limine Part 1 and 2 (2011 and 2012). Solange’s other articles and her legal presentations can be found at her legal website – www.solangeritchielaw.com.

She regularly publishes and speaks to both attorneys and law students on areas such as punitive damages, civil procedure, diversity and gender equality, and finding fulfillment and balance in the busy practice of law. Solange now lives in south Florida. She enjoys traveling, writing, Pilates and yoga, as well as good food and great conversation.

RECENT BLOG POSTS

New novel Firestorm is on the way!

Solange’s second book is on the way. Firestorm promises the return of someone from Dr. Cat Powers’ past, as well as her tracking a new killer who is a fire fighter by day and a twisted arsonist by night. McGregor returns to chase down a mad man hell bent on watching Southern California’s scenic neighborhoods burn. Cat is caught in a hellish firestorm she cannot control.  Will she survive or succumb to the heat?

Women Attorneys of Michelman and Robinson (WAMR)

the WAMR Hammer

The Women Attorneys of Michelman and Robinson, LLP (WAMR) present Solange Ritchie the WAMR Hammer in appreciation for serving as a guest speaker. January 28, 2015.

Solange recently spoke live in Orange County and via video conference in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco about writing and character development for her novels. She was presented with this stunning award by the Women Attorneys of Michelman and Robinson (WAMR).  Solange wants to thanks all who attended both live and via video.  It was so exciting to speak to like-minded attorneys who enjoy writing, story telling and share a little of her own story about how her writing career began and has now taken off. It was also very rewarding to hear from many of the female attorneys that they could really connect with her lead character, Dr. Catherine Power’s struggles as a power woman in her career and her role as a mother.  They loved the cover and Solange provided 2 chapters of the final edit on the novel. Many told her that they wanted more to read.  So thanks to the Mona, her fellow lady lawyers (and a few gents) at Michelman & Robinson for the opportunity and this award. One additional item, the breakfast talk was videoed and they promised to send it to Solange When she gets it, she will post it on this blog.  Hope everyone has a great weekend.

The Burning Man Book Cover

The Burning Man cover

Hot off the presses. Here it is! The cover for The Burning Man to be released later this year.  (E-books in late spring early summer and hardcover to hit bookstores August/September if all goes as planned). I promise that this psyche thriller featuring lead character, FBI agent/forensic pathologist, Dr. Catherine Powers, will have you flipping though the pages from the very first paragraph until the surprise ending.

And Morgan James is eagerly awaiting final edited version of the second thriller in the Dr. Catherine Powers series called Back Burn. In this novel, she will face off against a serial arsonist/firefighter who is intent to watch southern California burn as the strong Santa Ana winds gust.

KEYS TO LIVING A PURPOSE DRIVEN SELF-ACTUALIZED LIFE

How many of us feel like we go though life without purpose? I know many parents got kids back to school this week. So you probably feel more drained this week than most.

So many people go to work each day and repeat the same patterns for years. This leads to physical exhaustion, a mental lack of clarity and a sense of emptiness.

How many times do we wake up in the morning and realize we have a choice each day.

We have a choice to live life with happiness and gratefulness. Or we have a choice to live life filled with complaints, “drama” and unhappiness.

I know which of these I do each day.

Do you?

Do you bring happiness to those around you?

Do you live life with gratitude, joy and purpose?

If not, here are some ways to get there.

1. Identify your core values:

Your core values are the things that are the most important to you in your life. These tend to be very different for everyone and range anywhere from health to family to contribution, etc. Take a piece of paper are write down 10 core values. Just dump them out at first. Don’t over think them and don’t judge them. Then, list them by priority. For many of us, family is first, but it is an individual exercise. No right or wrong answers. No judging what you wrote down.

2. Figure out where you are:

Once you have figured out your core values, you can ask yourself if whether what you are doing in your life right now gets you closer to or farther away from living in alignment with those core values. For example, if your core value is family, but you do nothing to reach out to your loved ones on a daily basis and tell them they are loved, then you are probably not working from a place of alignment. In addition, if your top core value is freedom but you are tied down to a 9:00-5:00 job, could it be time to reevaluate your path? Do you want to start a business? Do you want to change your line of work? Do you want to do more charitable work? Figuring out whether you are near or far from your core values in your daily actions will get you moving in the direction of your dreams.

3. Make an action plan:

As a fulfilled full time attorney, passionate philanthropist, lecturer and soon to be published novelist, people always ask me how do I find the time to do it all. The answer for me is simple. I live my life with passion and with a plan. Now I am not here to tell you that at the end of the week, I am not tired. God knows, some weeks, I just want to go home on a Friday night, put my feet up and have a glass of wine and forget the week.

But having a goal and an action plan helps make the week something I can look back on and feel like I accomplished something. A goal and action plan can take you from being a dreamer of great things to being a doer of great things.

If you have decided that you don’t feel aligned where you are right now, make an action plan that will help transport you to where you want to go.

First, make one master statement. This statement will combine your top three core values into one sentence. Then, break that statement into three separate goals.

Here is an example: Statement – I am an inspirational speaker, life coach, and author. Goals – 1. It is January 1, 2015 and I have scheduled one speaking engagement per month. 2. It is January 1, 2015 and I am coaching 10 clients per week. 3. It is January 1, 2015 and my book has been published. These goals will start moving your life in the direction of your purpose.

Once you have identified these goals and committed them to paper, list ten action steps you need to take under each goal. For example, if we pick goal 1 above, the action steps may be: Reach out to local organizations to procure speaking engagements; reach out to corporate wellness programs; create flyers to hand out at events and local businesses; create a newsletter of potential attendees for seminars, etc.

These action steps will bring you clarity on what you need to do to live a purposeful life. This exercise takes your thoughts surrounding purpose and makes them more tangible so you can begin to see them come to life. So you can do what you need to actually accomplish them.

Dreams are just that – dreams. Dreamers are just that – dreamers.

But by following the steps above and taking action to make your dreams a reality, you will find “A Purpose Driven Self Actualized Life.”