Colleen at the Lusitania Memorial in Ireland
American Society of Journalists and Authors
Authors' Guild of America
Historical Novel Society
Historical Writers of America
Member of History Talks! Speakers' Association
National Federation of Press Women
Women Writing the West
Colleen at Robert Louis Stevenson's house in Edinburgh, Scotland
Colleen Adair Fliedner is an award-winning author, journalist, and historian. She has written three nonfiction books, radio and t.v. commercials, screenplays, and hundreds of articles for newspapers, magazines, and online publications. She was a staff writer for the Orange County Register newspaper’s online travel website and was a regular contributor for Talking Travel Radio Network based on the East Coast. In the Shadow of War: Spies, Love & the Lusitania is her first novel.
Colleen began her professional career as a research historian, writer, and oral historian at California State University, Long Beach, CA. Her job included writing newspaper articles, brochures, radio, and cable television scripts, and more. Her first nonfiction history book was written for the County of Los Angeles, a five-year-long project which required conducting more than 100 oral history interviews and combing through historic ledgers, photographs, and dusty, long-forgotten boxes of old documents.
Her next two books were a history about Park City, Utah, “Stories in Stone: Miners and Madams, Merchants and Murders,” and “Quick Escapes from Orange County, published by Globe Pequot Press. She was then hired to ghostwrite two books and numerous blog articles for an internationally famous psychologist.
Her awards include Alumni of the Year (California State University, Long Beach) for her first nonfiction book commemorating the 100th anniversary of Rancho Los Amigos Medical Center, which began as the Los Angeles County Poor Farm. An article she wrote about Oklahoma City received an award from the Oklahoma Convention and Visitors Bureau. And her historical novel, In the Shadow of War: Spies, Love & the Lusitania, was the grand prize winner over 300 entries in the San Mateo Literary competition, an award which resulted in its publication by the Sand Hill Review Press. Recently, Colleen was honored by the California Writer’s Club (statewide competition) for a nonfiction short story about George Freeth that appears in their annual literary magazine.
In addition, she has optioned a screenplay and two teleplays, written radio and t.v. commercials, plays, and hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. Her credits include the Los Angeles Times Travel Section, the Orange County Register; Westways, Home & Away (both Auto Club publications), France Today, BajaTRAVELER, and Native Peoples Magazines.
Her latest project is a nonfiction book, “Fascinating True Stories from Old California,” a compilation of interesting accounts of some of the Golden State’s most unique people, places, and things.
Colleen lives in Orange, California with her husband, Rick, and two Pomeranians.
Learn more about Colleen and her writing process in her Author Profile on the Historical Novel Society website.
Awards and Honors
As a senior in high school, Colleen won the Bank of America Award, a statewide debate competition. A paper she wrote for her history class about the Civil War was entered into a county high school competition by her teacher and won first place.
While at Cerritos College, Colleen won the Outstanding Student of the Year Award for the School of Engineering and Sciences for her work in the archaeology lab, as well as for her work at the Calico Archaeology dig site in San Bernardino County.
First place award for a scholarly paper about Biddy Mason in Old Los Angeles, written while a student at Cal State, Long Beach in a competition for the California State University system.
Valedictorian (1984) for the Schools of Behavioral and Social Sciences, California State University, Long Beach.
Honorable mention for Columbus Screenplay competition (1992) for Fatty Arbuckle screenplay, The Forgotten Clown.” Her screenplay was later optioned by actor Ned Beatty.
Second place award for first novel manuscript, The Adventures of Mountain Charley, in the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ competition.
Alumni of the Year (California State University, Long Beach) for her first book, The Centennial History of Rancho Los Amigos Medical Center. (1994)
An article she wrote about Oklahoma City received an award from the Oklahoma Convention and Visitors Bureau (2009). The travel article was published in several publications, as well as online by the Travel Talk Radio Network based in Florida, where Colleen was a regular contributor and interviewee.
In the Shadow of War: Spies, Love & the Lusitania, (2018) was the grand prize winner over 300 entries in the San Mateo Literary competition, an award which resulted in its publication by the Sand Hill Review Press.
Colleen's article, "George Freeth, the Father of California Surfing," was a winner in the annual literary contest sponsored by the California Writers Club, founded by Jack London. Her article was published in their prestigious 2020 Literary Review magazine.