Updated: Aug 8, 2022
I have always loved books. I have such happy memories of people reading to me- my mum, my various teachers, and friends. You will always find me with a collection of books on my bedside table. I have never thought of myself as a writer or as an author though. I was told I wasn't very good at English and writing while I was at school, particularly in high school. So, early last year, it was with great trepidation that I began the journey of writing a book. I made sure I let quite a few people know that I was writing a book, to help hold myself accountable. Ha!
Many neurons have been firing in new ways during this book-writing journey. I thought the actual writing of the book was the tricky bit, but there was so much more involved. Some of the new skills I've learned along the way are - how to use Microsoft Word 😂, how to add an index to a book, how to design an interior layout and then communicate it to a design team, how to create digital illustrations using Shutterstock, how to design a front cover, how to keep going...and the biggest lesson of all has been patience.
There were many dark quiet nights spent sitting at my laptop whilst the rest of the house was sleeping. I would wake at 4 am with my mind ready to write. I would write for a few hours in the dark until our home inhabitants woke. Then I would help the boys with breakfast and set them up for home school or onsite school. I would attend to my daily practice, make myself a ceremonial grade cacao drink, and then get back to writing. There were days when I was completely and utterly absorbed by the book, to the point of forgetting to eat and drink until hunger and thirst would loudly call to me in the mid-afternoon. It was like waking from a different world. I would slowly come to realise what time it was, and that I hadn't put a load of washing on let alone manage all the other life admin details.
There were also days of 'writer's block'. I alleviated this by listening to podcasts (The Secret Life of Writers was particularly helpful), drawing/illustrating, walking, gardening, dancing and practicing. Despite all the challenges, the hiccups, and the frustrations along the way, there was always someone to help encourage and support me in some way.
My mum discovered some of my early writing, from junior school, during my book-writing journey. I have attached a photo of something I wrote in grade 4 - I was already writing about gardens, healthy eating and our planet. Ha!
I feel so incredibly blessed and I would like to offer a big THANK YOU to all the wonderful women and the marvellous men in my life. I could not have published a book without you. I share detailed words of gratitude for you all towards the end of the book, Wonder Full Women.
I wish you all the best with your practice.