I’ve been tagged by my lovely writing friend, Sheryl Gwyther, to participate in an ongoing blog hop. I answer the questions, and then I tag two more people to carry the torch forward…here goes…
what are you working on at the moment?
Currently I am participating in a writing course online, to get my writing muscle flexed and working again. I’ve been dabbling in paint and ink for the past few years and I’ve missed writing – so I searched for an online course to give me the flexibility to turn out work around my current schedule. I was searching for a course that resonated with me. I found it in Sarah Selecky’s Story is a State of Mind e-course. www.sarahselecky.com
Writing and I have a tumultuous relationship. We break up regularly but always find our way back to each other. I think it’s our destiny to end up together. I hope so.
I started the blog “My story starts here” to hold me publicly accountable for completing the exercises and committing to a writing practice. So far so good – I’m loving being back in the saddle again.
how do you think your work differs from that of other writers/illustrators in your genre?
I think everyone’s work is unique referenced by their own collective experiences. The beauty is in recognising yourself in other people’s words. I hope my strength lies in my ability to pull at heart strings. I love writing about things that move me. Hopefully, by way of that deeper human connection, my words move others as well. As far as illustration goes, I think my style is fairly unique and happy. A whimsical carefree expression of life as I know it.
why do you write/illustrate what you write?
I write because it moves me. It helps me make sense of behaviours and motivations in the world around me. I write because, as I have found out over the course of many writing break ups, I can’t not write. Writing is intrinsic to my mental and spiritual health. It makes me happy.
what’s your writing/illustrating process, and how does it work?
My writing process is currently being reinvented as I work my way through this course. It has opened my eyes to new ways of thinking about my relationship with writing. Developing a “relationship” with writing has made all the difference to me. I never saw it that way before. It was always something I had to wrangle into my day. Sarah’s course has changed the way I think about it. I hold a greater respect for my craft now. I am taking care of it. Nurturing it daily by turning up to the page. Pushing through the resistance but also learning to be gentle and not beat myself up over stuff. I’m learning to let go of the ridiculous expectations that are probably the biggest forms of non productive fiction that reside in my head.
I also use meditation before I write. To reset my compass and drop myself into the zone. It snaps all the pesky connections to the real world nagging - must do the shopping, must walk the dog, must hang the clothes out, need petrol, did I pay that bill? etc and allows my brain to take a big deep breath as it shifts into its creative space.
The entire process of writing is magical and I am so grateful that I am drawn toward this beautiful craft. I think all writers should give thanks to their respective writing gods. It’s so easy to whinge and whine about how hard the process is but within that process, you can create magic. You transport people to other lands. You offer them new worlds and experiences,. You can agitate a cauldron of emotion inside people and make them question their deepest being. Through simple words. You can change lives. What a gift. What’s not to be grateful for?
My illustration process is pretty laid back. I love doing loose sketchy cartoony kind of illustrations, so the fun factor is always high for me. It’s really lovely to be able to flip from words to pictures and back again. I also do work as a graphic designer, which often brings together the two components of writing and illustration beautifully, producing an entirely different medium again. I’m a lover of watercolour. It has a mind of it’s own. I often feel there is a quantum side of art that takes over. When you let go of trying to control things, It often produces the best results. Everything moves to where it is meant to be. I think there is a good life lesson to learn in that. Let go and trust. Everything lands where it is meant to.