Heather C. Markham

Phoenix, AZ

Engineer, assistive technology professional, competitive parasurfer, public speaker, award-winning international photographer and author of Rough Waters

Booking Info

Jill Maxick

512-501-4399 x711



Pub Date: July 11, 2023
Genre: Memoir / Inspirational / Biography & Autobiography/ People With Disabilities
Making Waves for Good Publishing
Page Count: 368
Format, ISBN, Price:
Paperback, 979-8-9874147-0-5, $17.95
Ebook, 979-8-9874147-1-2, $9.99

Sample Interview Questions


2020-2023 International Award Winning Photographs (visible at JustForTheLove.com)

2018 Hawaii Adaptive Surfing Championship Womens Assist Prone Division, 4th Place

2015 Life Rolls On Adaptive Surfer of the Year

2013 Ms Wheelchair Kentucky; Platform: Equality Through Technology


Competitive Para Surfer Heather C. Markham is no stranger to rough waters.

At age 34, Heather received a life-changing diagnosis: she had a progressive muscular dystrophy and would eventually need a wheelchair. Her walking days were going to end much sooner than she’d expected. 

Despite her body’s betrayal, Heather fearlessly leaned into adventures (with a capital “A”)—performing as a belly dancer, falling in love, becoming an avid Para Surfer, winning Ms. Wheelchair Kentucky, and pursuing her lifelong passion for photography.

With humor and heartbreaking candor, Rough Waters chronicles Heather’s slow decline in mobility and her determination to live an extraordinary life—one full of laughter and joy, sand and salt water. The challenges she chronicles are both specific to her circumstances yet somehow relatable to all of us. 

This inspiring memoir is also a courageous call for more empathy from medical professionals, care attendants, the travel industry, and anyone who knows and loves someone with a disability. Limits are only in your mind, Heather says, and nearly anything is possible with the right team, tools, help, and perseverance.


Heather C. Markham is an engineer, assistive technology professional, public speaker, competitive Para Surfer, educator, ADA architectural barriers specialist, golfer, and award-winning international photographer. 

Her company, Making Waves for Good, launched in 2018 as an umbrella for a variety of ventures including publishing and photographic projects and to help companies solve disability access problems they didn't know they had—not just staying within ADA code but looking beyond it to make the world more accessible and usable for all.

Heather currently lives in Phoenix, Arizona, with her super snuggly Maine coon cat.


  • Having to change priorities or personal goals in life is not only okay but can lead to opportunity.
  • Why in life, it’s important to FIND YOUR TEAM—those people who will be there to help you navigate times of change and adversity and challenge you to do more with your life.
  • The importance of advocating for yourself and trusting your own voice. (But also, why being open to new voices is important.)
  • How persons with disabilities are often seen as an inconvenience.
  • The difficult challenges of traveling with a disability—but why it’s amazingly worth it.
  • How nearly anything is possible with the right tools, help, and perseverance.
  • What it’s like to navigate through the world with your “cloak of invisibility” stripped away.
  • Different types of adapted driving systems and adaptive technologies. 



  • National Hug your Cat Day - 4
  • National Cancer Survivors Day - 4
  • World Ocean Day - 8
  • National Making Life Beautiful Day - 11
  • Nature Photography Day - 15
  • International Surfing Day - 17 
  • National Arizona Day - 21
  • International Women in Engineering Day - 23
  • National Camera Day - 29
  • National Adopt a Cat Month


  • Special Recreation for the Disabled Day - 2 
  • National Hawaii Day - 5
  • Chronic Disease Day - 10
  • National Tattoo Day - 17 
  • International Self Care Day - 24 
  • National Disability Independence Day - 26 
  • National New Jersey Day - 27 
  • National Get Gnarly Day - 28
  • Paperback Book Day - 30


  • Happiness Happens Month
  • National Wellness Month
  • International Assistance Dog Week - begins Aug 6 2023
  • Book Lovers Day - 9 
  • National Roller Coaster Day - 16
  • World Photo Day - 19
  • National Accessible Air Travel Day - 20
  • National Dog Day - 26
  • National Just Because Day - 27
  • National Thoughtful Day - 28
  • National Beach Day - 30
  • National Grief Awareness Day - 30
  • We Love Memoirs Day - 31 


  • Muscular Dystrophy Awareness Month 
  • Self Improvement & Self Care Month 
  • Read a New Book Month 
  • National Suicide Prevention Month
  • National Live Fearless Day - 2 
  • National Read a Book Day - 6
  • Duchenne Awareness Day - 7 
  • Buy a Book Day - 7
  • World Physical Therapy Day - 8
  • National Day of Encouragement - 12
  • Positive Thinking Day - 13  
  • Day of the Programmer - 13
  • National Live Creative Day - 14
  • National Dance Day - 16
  • American Business Women’s Day - 22
  • National BRAVE Day - 22 
  • Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy Awareness Day - 30


  • World Occupational Therapy Day - 27


  • National Assistive Technology Awareness Day - 1


"[Markham] writes with humor and exuberance. An honest and encouraging narrative about seizing life, no matter your limitations." 
Kirkus Reviews

“Heather’s story is a captivating exploration of how living with a disability is like looking in a mirror showing the unfiltered truth of who you are. Heather defied all expectations by believing in herself.” 
—Peta Hooke, host of The I Can’t Stand Podcast 

“Markham takes her readers on a journey of loss, transformation, and growth. Her wit, dark humor, and intelligence shine in this memoir about thriving with a progressive disease. Rough Waters is for anyone who wants an equally authentic and hope-filled story.” 
—Jenny Smith, author of Live the Impossible: How a Wheelchair Has Taken Me Places I Never Dared to Imagine and blogger at Jenny Smith Rolls On 

Rough Waters is the memoir of a young woman who spent years seeking a diagnosis, then continued fighting to survive it with a zeal most of us could not muster. Heather is annoyingly persistent, shamelessly bold, and a tireless advocate for those with disabilities, even as her own body betrays her. The book was impossible to put down as I had to know what new and amazing thing she would accomplish in the next chapter. A story of faith and resilience to inspire us all.”
—Ranette H. Halverson, PhD, professor emeritus, Midwestern State University, Texas

“I’ve been an occupational therapist who has worked in assistive technology with thousands of clients with all kinds of disabilities for over forty years. Part of the job is to get to know people’s “stories,” so that you know what direction to go in with your recommendation (so, the technology will actually work the way the client needs it to). This story, the way Heather writes it, is so moving, so funny, so real. She takes us on a journey and shares the lessons she learned. She slowly builds upon her inner conversations and experiences as her physical body fails her in a way that allows the reader to understand the turmoil they might never outwardly see in a person living with a disability. I highly recommend this story!” 
—Susan Johnson Taylor, occupational therapist, ISWP certified, SJT Consulting

“Heather has a way of writing that draws you in not only to her inner thoughts but to the whole feeling of the situation and setting. In sharing her memoir, I felt all the feelings: frustration, laughter, sadness, excitement, and love. For those who may not be familiar with what it’s like to live with a disability, don’t think for a second that you can’t find common ground or relatability. Anyone can get a lot out of reading Heather’s memoir. Through sharing her story, Heather allows us all to glean a greater understanding and empathy for anyone who has a disability. As a medical professional, I feel that by reading Rough Waters, I have learned so many things that a degree can’t teach you. Thank you, Heather, for taking yet another exciting risk in your life and making a positive impact through your book!” 
—Kelly Twichel, licensed occupational therapist, CEO of Access Trax


Pub Date: May 17, 2022
Genre: Memoir / Christian Inspirational
Publisher: She Writes Press
Page Count: 304
ISBN: 978-1647429003
Price: $15.99



In the age of social media, what does it mean to connect through a hand-written letter?


True Story: When Amy Daughters reconnected with her former friend from camp decades ago, Dana, via Facebook, she had no idea how it would change her life. Through social media, Amy learned Dana’s son Parker was at St. Jude battling cancer–devastating news, but what else do you do besides comment an “I’m so sorry,” nowadays? 


But more than a comment happened, Amy woke up in the middle of the night and felt called in a way she couldn’t fully explain to write handwritten letters to Dana–someone who through time and distance, had become nothing more than several hundred other faces on her Facebook account. 


When Parker died, Amy, not knowing what else to do, continued to write Dana. Eventually, Dana wrote back, and the two became pen pals, sharing things through the mail that they had never shared before. The richness of the experience left Amy wondering something: If my life could be so changed by someone I considered “just a Facebook friend,” what would happen if I wrote all my Facebook friends a letter?


A staggering 580 handwritten letters later Amy’s life would never be the same. As it turned out, there were actual individuals living very real lives behind each social media profile, and she was beautifully connected to each of those extraordinary, very real people.



A native Houstonian and a graduate of The Texas Tech University, Amy W. Daughters has been a freelance writer for more than a decade — mostly covering college football and sometimes talking about her feelings. Her debut novel, You Cannot Mess This Up: A True Story That Never Happened (She Writes Press, 2019), was selected as the Silver Winner for Humor in the 2019 Foreword INDIES and the Overall Winner for Humor/Comedy in the 2020 Next Generation Indie Awards. An amateur historian, hack golfer, charlatan fashion model, and regular on the ribbon dancing circuit, Amy — a proud former resident of Blackwell, England, and Dayton, Ohio currently lives in Tomball, Texas, a suburb of Houston. She is married to a foxy computer person, Willie, and is the lucky mother of two amazing sons, Will and Matthew.



  • Lost Art of Letter Writing – The deliberateness of a letter, honest, believable and genuine, more than Social Media could ever be. Bringing back the beautiful connection of a hand-written letter. 
  • How can we teach our younger generation to value a pen & stationery? 
  • The stages of grief and how to remain a constant and connected friend experiencing the grieving process.
  • The power of prayer and finding purpose.
  • The evolution of friendships and connections due to social media.
  • Work from home and the disconnect it creates–how letter writing can bring back more meaningful relationships.
  • Women in Sports – Amy is a decades long sportswriter–a position with its own trials and tribulations as a woman in a male-dominated field. 




  • Read a New Book Month
  • National Letter Writing Day – December 7
  • National Christmas Card Day – December 9


  • Self-Love Month
  • Universal Letter Writing Week – Jan 8-14
  • Hunt for Happiness Week – Jan 15-21


  • International Boost Self Esteem Month – February


  • Month of Hope; Day of Hope –  April 5
  • World Health Day – April 7
  • Tell a Story –  April 27
  • Trauma Awareness Month – May



“Dear Dana is an inspirational memoir about caring for friends near and far by reviving a lost art.” — Foreword Reviews


“. . . a captivating study regarding writing letters to friends and rethinking how people successfully bond in the modern world. An intriguing and inspiring exploration of different forms of communication.”— Kirkus Reviews


“This is a book for anyone who wonders about the differences between a Facebook friend and a Real-Life friend and who yearns to see a person’s real life behind their Facebook image. It is also about the power of prayer and the abundance of kindness in our world. But ultimately, it’s about connection and how we are all connected when we come from love.”    — Rivvy Neshama, author of Recipes for a Sacred Life: True Stories and a Few Miracles


“Captivating . . . I laughed and I cried as I followed the pleasures of real mail, and the lesson hit home: Whether written or spoken, our words matter. They have the power to illuminate someone’s darkest day.” — Laurie Buchanan, PhD, author of Note to Self: A Seven-Step Path to Gratitude and Growth and The Business of Being: Soul Purpose In and Out of the Workplace