Saturday, 19 July 2014

Writing is a Journey of Self-Discovery.


A Memoir

Coming Soon


As I near publication next month of "Staying Strong" my memoir of breakdown, I know how relevant the self-discovery journey is to writers. Certainly I've had some big self-discoveries during the writing of this book. Understandable you may say, but isn't all writing about putting a little of your own heart and soul into your story, no matter what that story may be? And in so doing don't we discover truths or other aspects of ourselves previously not conscious?

I believe this is true for all artists, and thinkers . As we pour forth and pick over ourselves and our worlds, we 'allow' for more information to follow through, as the door widens ever more.

As writers and artists we must continue the journey of self-discovery our entire lives or risk becoming stale and boring. We need to hone our writing skills, our craft itself, the nuts and bolts of what we do, how to put together a great book or journal article, and also market, promote and sell etc if we're self-published, like me. But wait, more importantly, we need to uncover and understand more of ourselves.

I get fired up by such possibilities and potential discoveries. I'm a knowledge seeker and lover and can be inspired at any given moment to investigate an unknown thing, to uncover the magic and power of understanding.

I love it when this happens, when answers to questions come, when things unclear attain clarity. Sometimes I can work on a project but sense that in some way for me it is incomplete. It can be so close to completion yet that feeling remains, then as if by magic or design, I come across a piece of information, knowledge, a discovery, that explains everything, and changes me. It's the "aha" moment when the fog lifts and thoughts clear.

Writing a memoir is a mega journey of self-discovery. I knew it would be to some extent, and it has surprised me. It has taken a long time to discover what I wanted to know, 16 years in fact, and maybe I could have found my answers earlier, maybe not. Maybe it was all in the timing. In the end, what I discovered about myself has been life changing; beautiful, special and amazing. Imagine that.

Back in February I wrote a post entitled "Staying Strong" The Changing Names of a Memoir Part of that post described my journey through the book title changes I went through until I came to "Staying Strong" after reading this quote on Facebook. I was nearing the end of the first draft when I saw the quote and it was then that I had the first "aha" moment associated with the book. The title "Staying Strong" perfectly described how I felt before, during and after my experience but also portrayed a person full of inner strength.

Acceptance of myself and of what had happened to me and why had come to me via a very powerful quote. I felt more certain that what I was writing about would be okay. Memoirs after all are very self-exposing and therefore carry inherent risks. Was I really prepared to do this? I was, because I wasn't doing it just for me.

Then in April I had another insight on my journey of self-discovery which brought everything together for "Staying Strong" and for me. Whilst Pinteresting one day -I love Pinterest remember- and during conversations with my daughters, I came across personality information from Myers-Briggs Personality Type that seemed to scream "me". I already knew some of my personality type, don't we all, but the complete picture was very illuminating indeed and provided the second "aha" and explained so much about why I had had a breakdown as well.

Now I could finish my book feeling satisfied I'd put as much as I could into it. I'd covered all my bases, dotted my i's and crossed my t's for the story and as a bonus, for me.

This is why I love writing. It gives me a sense of wholeness and wellness, completion. It's not only from a memoir that I get this, it's from any writing that I do which I've carefully considered and constructed, which has sprung from my heart and been delivered thoughtfully to the page.

This creation is a journey, an inviting journey of self-discovery, one not to be taken for granted, for it is truly amazing and soul inspiring.

STAYING STRONG A Memoir.  Coming soon to Amazon, Barnes and Noble (Nook), Kobo, iTunes, Scribd, and more, many more.......

Have an inspiring week everyone,


Sunday, 13 July 2014

Writers: Get Your Fix, and Feast on Pinterest. 6 Pins to get You through the Week.

27 Delightful Obsolete Words Its High Time We Revived 27 Delightful Obsolete Words It's High Time We Revived.
Buzzfeed and on my Pinterest Board 'Write All About It'. See Sidebar.

I love Pinterest! How many times have you heard that? It's true. I love it because I'm a visual person and so is Pinterest. It's all about images, and initially, they speak to me louder than the words, unless of course the words are the image.

I've had a busy fortnight with little time for writing as other events have taken priority. My laptop has sat idle in this time, but my tablet, which I use for email and social media, has not. 

Every morning I commit writers' mortal sin: I read emails and scan my social media pages over breakfast before I do anything else in my day. I know I'm not supposed to if I want to be a serious writer, but I'm not the sort of person you can tie down to a routine, except for breakfast and social media that is. I like to do things differently, that's all, but therein lies another post I've been thinking about.

This week is about being lazy and taking the easy route, me that is, hence a Pinterest post with lots of images that can speak for themselves with fewer words from me. Incidentally, this serves to illustrate how valuable Pinterest can be as a writing/information/filing/promotion/marketing/business tool. But you probably know this already. If you don't then this is how it works. Sign up at It's free. Follow the instructions and create Boards on which you pin images you like. 

On my 'Write All About It' Board I Pinned several images this week that I wanted to save for future referral. Crapulous above was one of them. I only read it this morning; it was the image that caught me. I didn't want to read it at the time, so I saved it. It's easy to find as I scroll through, and even though it may not be the most obviously useful Pin, it made me laugh but then had me thinking about word choices and their power. So, all power to the image, and therefore Pinterest for their inspiration in setting up the website.

As well as the Crapulous Pin, there was 'How to Use Pinterest As an Author'.
How to Use Pinterest as an Author with Cynthia Sanchez | Author-shift

K.M Weiland's 'Do You Know the Answer to Your Story's Most Important Question?' in which she talks about the "dramatic question" and how "it defines your story".

 Do You Know the Answer to Your Story's Most Important Question? - Helping Writers Become Authors

How about 

100 Ways to Say "Good" These are wonderfullll
and so on and so on. There are many list like this one. Authors'/writers' aids in image form, just how I like them, nice and colourful, rather than boring black and white print. I find these images easier to use, therefore I use Pinterest more as a writing tool than any other medium.

5-5-14 b
8 Tips for Writers Using Pinterest by Frances Caballo

And last but not least...

I try to keep an open mind about everything except grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

Find all these Pins and more on my sidebar, and by searching Pinterest.

Have a great week everyone, 


Saturday, 5 July 2014

Off With a Ducati Roar on Holiday whilst Celebrating, Reminiscing and Researching.

I'm back.

I've been away holidaying, celebrating, reminiscing and researching, hence no post last week. I had no internet access yahoo, sorry for the pun, and mobile (cell) phone coverage was reduced to isolated pockets. It was wonderful.

I took my gadgets with me expecting to use them, indeed need them, but what I found was the glorious opposite. After 24 hours without I was relieved to be living independently of them. How little it takes.

Personally, I could easily live this way, far from the hustle and bustle  and demands of modern day life, if someone else took care of the basics for me. I very much enjoyed living in the technology-free lane if only for 4 days. I glimpsed again how pressured and goal orientated life has become. Give me the 'good old days' like childhood, when now, as a mature adult those days were full of magic, wonder and awe, when everything was slow. Ahhh, nostalgia.

But wait, maybe it's BECAUSE I'm a mature adult that everything seems fast now. Oh dear and sigh, as realisation comes and I shake my head!

And speaking of fast, there are some fast things in life not to be missed. Whilst away, I had the great fortune to ride pillion on a magnificent red Ducati ST4s. For 3 hours last Sunday I sat thrilled and sometimes terrified as 3 of us snaked our way on 2 bikes around some narrow country roads and open highways. What an awesome day and a very special treat, one I wasn't going to miss for anything, except bad weather, of course. We did go very fast.

This week has also seen my eldest daughter move back 'across the ditch' to Dunedin in New Zealand, Aotearoa, Land of the Long White Cloud, land of our birth. We came here to Oz 24 years ago, but home always calls. Those 24 years have passed faster than my childhood.

When it comes to reminiscing, part of my holiday was to do just that, as I wrote in my previous post. My friend Liz and I had travelled Europe in a kombi van during 1975 and 1976 and I needed her memories for my next series of books. Out came the old photo albums and as always, she remembered people, places and events that I didn't. Her information will be invaluable in recreating our story and adventure.

Last but not least amongst all of this I turned 60, a 'mature' adult. A joke really because I believe in fairies. And fast bikes, mostly without me on them but occasionally I'll go along for the ride because that's where you can find something extra, in life, and in yourself.

See you next week, and have a good one,