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Hi. I rode as a volunteer EMT for nearly 30 years before “retiring” (my whole family is career and/or vollie 1st responder), my FT occupation is a freelance writer. I write a monthly column in a trade newspaper about EMS issues – I am planning an upcoming column on EMS burnout and would love a few comments to quote (not necessarily identified): If you are or were an EMT or Paramedic, have you experienced feelings of burnout? Did you quit because of it? What do you feel are the strongest indicators of burnout? What contributes to burnout? What do you recommend responders do to avoid burnout?
Please comment below or send an email to
Thank you so much for your help.

Adrenaline rush

by Chelle Cordero


As a (volunteer) Emergency Medical Technician, I know what it is to arrive at a scene in a “big truck” with lights flashing and sirens blaring. I admit there is a bit of inflated ego to run into a scene and have strangers clear the way for you to reach a patient in need. There is also a momentary panic inside to look at your patient’s eyes as they look to you for help, sometimes to save their life, and the adrenaline kicks in to do all that you can do to make them more comfortable and get them to the hospital alive.


In over 25-years of doing this, I’ve known the euphoria of delivering babies, the desperations of knowing how precious every second is, the frustration of losing a patient, and the tears shed as a family member clings to you because you are their only hope.


EMS is a passion of mine. Whether an EMS provider career or volunteer, I have tremendous respect for everyone who takes their training and goes out into the world with the most important equipment, their hands and their brain, to use the equipment on an ambulance to make a difference. My husband and I both joined a volunteer ambulance squad when our two kids were little – and they grew into the EMS family. In addition to (still) volunteering for the same ambulance corps, our daughter is a career Paramedic and our son is a career EMT. (& forgive my crassness, but I am damn proud of them both).


Perhaps this is why I enjoy creating characters who are first responders. I’ve lived it, I’ve loved it, I respect it.


One of the characters I really enjoyed writing about is Julie Jennings, the heroine of my mystery thriller Final Sin. Julie is a NYS Paramedic, she is also a passionate woman who likes to live life to its fullest and cares for the people around her completely. Like most real life first responders, Julie isn’t in the field for “the money” (EMS is a truly under-appreciated profession) – she is in it to help.

Blurb for Final Sin

Deputy Sheriff Commander Jake Carson has his hands full with the investigation of a brutal multiple homicide, a troubled son and a vindictive ex-wife when he meets young, free-spirited paramedic Julie Jennings. He is immediately drawn to her and finds himself unexpectedly falling in love. Julie finds herself just as drawn to him. When Julie becomes the subject of an obsession, it puts both of their lives in extreme danger…


I started a Listopia list on GoodReads for Everday HerosThe main character(s) is a first responder (EMT, Paramedic, Police Officer, Fire fighter, etc). Why don’t you take a moment to go there and check it out? Please add any books you’ve read that fit the description and please vote for the ones that are there (three of mine are listed: Final SinHyphema, and Within the Law)

(the following did not appear in the original post)

June is Audio-Book month

Audible Audio Editions

Final Sin


coming soon Within the Law

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ems audio star

Final Sin by Chelle Cordero

Deputy Sheriff Commander Jake Carson has his hands full… investigation of a brutal multiple homicide, a troubled son and a vindictive ex-wife. He meets young, free-spirited paramedic Julie Jennings. When Julie becomes the subject of an obsession, it puts both of them in danger…

Final Sin was an Honorable Mention in the Fiction Category of the 2010 NY Book Festival & a 2009 Pushcart Prize nominee.

Final Sin
narrated by Gwendolyn Jensen-Woodward


Hyphema by Chelle Cordero

Hyphema: Bleeding in the eye caused by trauma… Matt Garratti, a paramedic from New York, moves his wife and son to North Carolina to work at his dream job as a flight medic. Pakistani born Sudah, his wife, receives frosty stares and insensitive comments from their new neighbors… Matt wonders if he is pursuing his dream or bringing his family into a nightmare from which they may never wake.

Hyphema won the Dec 9, 2011 Friday Book Cover Vote on the Shades of Love website & was recommended in the book Summer Reading: 2012 Blue Ribbon Selection published by Ewen Prime Co. 

narrated by Tim Danko


Living, Breathing, Writing

My Weekly Writing Workshop  (Living, Breathing, Writing) for Kindle has been discontinued. But you don’t have to miss out, go to for a copy of 60+ Days to Live, Breathe, & Write