The Real Story Behind my Book

Today I celebrate the five-year anniversary of my book, “If I Kiss You, Will I Get Diabetes?”, being published. This is one of my greatest professional achievements. Not just because the book will be going on it’s 3rd print next month, but because of the hurdles that I had to overcome to even get it printed.

bookpicYou see, if I only posted the good things, it leaves out why this book means so much to me and why my mother was in such shock and tears when I surprised her with it early on New Year’s Eve.

Three years before the book was published, I quit my full-time sales job because I was battling with bulimia, and it had overtaken my life. Inpatient and outpatient treatment just weren’t cutting it for me. I kept relapsing. In 2012 I took the drastic step to go out-of-state to a residential treatment facility and then a halfway house to transition out. I was away for nine months. When I returned in late 2012, and was in a healthy place of recovery I felt this call to write this book. It was so compelling to me that I sold my house in South Minneapolis, cashed out my 401K account, moved back to my hometown in my parent’s basement and found a job at night working as a waitress so I could write during the day. I just had a feeling this book was going to get published. Unfortunately, no one in the publishing world agreed with me, or even in the diabetes publishing world. I was crushed. But I kept waitressing and I kept writing.

One night at the place I waitressed at, Cru at Grand View Lodge, a nice family asked me about the insulin pump that I was wearing on my belt buckle. I told them I had type 1 diabetes and that I moonlighted as a waitress, but that I was writing this book about what life is actually like with a chronic, incurable illness. His wife looked right at me and said, “Quinn, you just got your golden ticket. My husband is the General Counsel of one of the largest diabetes companies in the world.” I couldn’t believe it. He turned to me and said, “Can you bring the first three chapters of your book to me tomorrow night?” That next night I brought him the chapters in a manila envelope. The following night he told me his wife and him absolutely loved it and it was something they’ve never read in the diabetes world and he wanted to order 500 copies right away for his staff. I told him I didn’t have it published yet. He told me I better get going on it because he wanted to give them out for gifts! Curt and Lisa were like angels to me. They believed in my book when so many others had not, and they had the power to make something happen with it. The picture of me in the bottom right is me signing each and every one of the copies for his staff. Him and his wife became great friends of mine, and went on to order a lot more copies over the years.

I learned a two very important lessons five years ago, and I hope that if you haven’t experienced them in your life yet, you will eventually. 1. Defeat isn’t permanent, it’s temporary. Yes, I felt like I had hit rock bottom when I was going in and out of treatment facilities and then had to quit a great job, move back in with my parents and then waitress to make ends meet, but that lasted for only a short period. 2. If you believe in something enough, never let go of it, fight for it, hold on to it, because it will eventually happen for you. My mother knew all the ups and downs of my years of struggling with an eating disorder, getting the rejection letters from publishers and diabetes organizations and companies, and then finally getting to see me get my golden ticket while waitressing.

If you haven’t read my book and are interested in getting a copy, click here:

Just Say No (to New Year’s Resolutions)!

new-year-resolutions-768x804Did you know that 80% of New Year’s Resolutions fail by February 1st? JUST SAY NO (TO NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION’S with me!). Read my latest blogpost for Center for Change about other ways you can stay on track in 2019…

The FDA Finally Has a Plan to Reduce the Cost of Insulin

cost-of-insulin-75881258_MSome of you may have heard the news that came out from the FDA Commissioner about news impacting lowering insulin prices. When I read the statement initially, there was a lot of medical jargon in there for me. So for my latest blogpost for OnTrack Diabetes I asked my pharmacist Dad to help decode it to find out if we will really see a benefit from these changes. Read it below….

Diabetes Connections Podcast

dcI recently had the honor of being interviewed by Stacey Simms for her podcast, Diabetes Connections.

She was asked, “If I Kiss You Will I Get Diabetes” so Quinn Nystrom wrote all about it in her first book. This week, she shares her story of advocacy and education. Plus, mySugr CEO Frank Westermann.


Listen on your phone or computer!

Apple Podcasts:
Homepage (website):

Owning Our Stories

story1“Through stories, we can embrace our past, own who we are today and the people we’re becoming. Right this moment, pause and look at who you’ve become from all the things you’ve made it through. This life is your story. Own it.”
Read my full December blogpost for Center for Change below.

Eating Disorders & Type 1 Diabetes

I recently had the pleasure of getting to interview Jenaca Beagley, NP, CDE, and T1D from Center for Change for a podcast episode about the high prevalence of type 1 diabetes and eating disorders (you may have heard this called diabulimia or ED-DMT1). She recently had conducted research that tells us more about this complicated problem that has severe and often irreversible complications if left untreated.The good news is, recognizing and treating the problem properly can make a difference.
Take a listen by clicking below:

Losing Alec


Nicole & Alec

The price of insulin in the US has more than doubled since 2012. As a result, the cost of this life-saving hormone is out of reach for many people with diabetes. Some try to make it last longer by rationing the expensive substance—putting their lives at risk.
Alec Smith tragically lost his life in June 2017, a few weeks after his 26th birthday, from a condition known as diabetic ketoacidosis—a consequence of dangerously high blood sugar. His family believes he had been rationing insulin in an attempt to make it to his next payday when he would have the money to purchase more.
Nicole Smith-Holt, Alec’s mother, shares her son’s sad story and explains what can be done to combat this troubling problem.

Listen to the podcast interview here: