Welcome to Library Confidential.

I’m Anna-Marie O’Brien, aka “The Metalhead Librarian.”

I grew up in Ohio as a big fan of books and rock music. In 1990, I moved to Los Angeles as a teenager to pursue my big-hair, heavy-metal dreams on the Sunset Strip. 

After surviving my metal adventure in LA, I eventually went on to college and graduate school and I worked as a public librarian for almost 20 years.

I know, it’s an unusual path.

During the last few years of my library career, I wrote a big juicy memoir about my heavy metal experiences, called Adventures of a Metalhead Librarian. 

The process of writing that book was a transformational experience for me.

I realized that being a public librarian had changed me, too. It was alot like being in a mosh pit - really brutal at times. Fun, but brutal.

So of course I’m writing a book about surviving that adventure, as well.

I’m calling it Library Confidential: A Not So Quiet Memoir.

I’m just getting started on it, which brings us here.

I started helping writers a few years ago, both as a part of my job at the library and eventually as my part-time side hustle.

When I was finally - finally!! - able to quit my library job, I started working with writers full-time.  I guess “coaching” is the general term for it. I help with various things like beta-reading, structural advice, moral support, whatever.

Mostly what I do is - I help get writers unstuck.

Writing a book is hard. There is no other way to say it.

But how can I become a better coach and a better writer if I’m not actually doing that hard work myself?

Library Confidential will be my third book, and as a librarian, I have an ingrained impulse to share. Even though I’m a fairly introverted person, writing “in public” and connecting with people feels really good.

So in the interests of public service and curiosity to see where it goes - I’m putting my work out into the world via this Substack newsletter.

I’ll get down and dirty and personal and raw about the realities of the writing life. I’ll be releasing early chapters of the book, rough drafts, other bits of other projects as they come up.

And of course, I reserve the right to write about other topics - being human, a parent, an artist, a sensitive person, a librarian, a metalhead, a believer in magical things — all of that.  

Feel free to poke around and read my archive to get a feel. It’s longer form writing, not for your Twitter brain.


I’m hoping that my journey with this book will be of some service, entertainment, or comfort to you.

Maybe it’ll give you a little inspiration and encouragement to start your own creative journey.  

Just click the *FREE plan to get all the good stuff.

I publish about every three weeks or so, more if necessary.

(*The other plans are listed as donation options for those who have asked, and in the future I may charge for this newsletter - but for now, all of my content is free. Yer gettin’ in early!)

Thank you for being here!

**All of my writing is fueled by coffee, books, lots of love, & rock n’ roll. Donations appreciated, but never expected.

Visit my website at annamarieobrien.com to inquire about help with your writing, other resources, or upcoming classes. If you scroll down and enter your email address on my home page - you can get a FREE digital copy of my last book: The Magic Key: Unlock Your Memoir.

Thanks again!



Anna-Marie O'Brien
Writer, Writing Coach, Rocker. Author of Adventures of a Metalhead Librarian: A Rock n' Roll Memoir. ADD+OCD+ESP=INFJ. Kinda Woo-Woo. I'm more rebellious than I look.