Passion, the centre of your life

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Do you have a passion? A passion to write, to paint, to create something the world needs? Have you followed that passion?

My passion started in year one at school when I opened my first reader. Who were the people on the page and what was their life like? It sparked a curiosity in me that has been with me ever since. In year four I walked into the library and I found rows upon rows of books. Intimidated by seeing so many books, I stepped cautiously into that world of silence. My pulse raced as the different coloured spines drew my attention. The more spines I looked at the more overwhelmed I became. How I was ever going to read all those books? My teacher assured me I only had to read the ones I was interested in and it would be a good idea to read something outside my interest every now and again as I grew older, she said.

I took her wise words to heart and I lost myself in the world of words, characters and foreign lands. This passion for reading has led me to write and now writing is as much a need for me as breathing. The simple task of sitting at my keyboard and typing words or using a pen, which I often do, puts me into a different level far away from my everyday life. You could call it escape, but that's what I want to do: help my readers escape from their everyday struggles and take them on an emotional journey where they will become good friends with my characters so that they live in their hearts for a very long time.

My next novel, Mr Bojangles is the sequel to African Hearts. I've been writing this story on and off while I wrote Dusty. Justin and Kizza floated into my mind every now and then reminding me their story wasn't complete. I pushed them back saying I wasn't ready, but they insisted it was time, so here I am enjoying being with them as they take the next step into the future out of their village, Gumboli to Bond University at the Gold Coast.

My process with this novel has been different. I've made notes whenever Justin and Kizza have entered my conscious and taken time to write a few scenes. This week I looked at these scenes in detail and discovered they don't fit the story I want to tell. These young people aren't just learning about medicine, they are learning about themselves and growing in ways they had never thought. They are young people with loving hearts and the desire to be loved by their peers. This need for acceptance challenges them in ways that have surprised me. Their presence is so strong now they have overtaken the story showing me their journey into the future instead of me writing the story.

My passion for writing this story is well and truly on fire and is all consuming so that I now can't not write the book. Has your passion taken hold of you and consumed all of your waking time? Is it a passion or is it something you think you'd like to do because you've seen others doing it? A passion will grab you and it won't let you go no matter how hard you try to push it away. A passion demands attention and you had better give in to it and follow it, otherwise you will be miserable. Are you feeling lost and irritable and unable to focus? I used to be like that when I was in the world of numbers. It has taken me a long time to take that numbers shirt off and put on the words shirt. It feels good in my words shirt. I've come home and I've settled in with Kizza and Justin and I have accepted they have as much to teach me as what they will learn on their journey.

So what's your passion? Are you following it? What's stopping you? Start making small changes toward your project and eventually you will find your passion shirt is just the right fit for you. I'd love to hear how well your shirt fits in the comments below.


Back to school

It's been a few months since I've posted. Life has happened and challenged me in many ways, but I am a better person for having come through the struggles. It has been a time to learn about the person I am and how I see the world. The start of the new year is a good time for me to get back into blogging and re-joining the world.

The first week of school has ended and I feel excited even though my son has left the family nest and is on his unique journey of life. Today I reflect on the first week of the home schooling years. Back to when the box of books and lessons arrived on the door step. We opened the box with curiosity and anticipation. What would the theme of Dan's learning be this year?

There is no other smell that comes close to that of new books. For me it brings pleasant memories of hours spent in the library, choosing books, checking them out and taking them home where I anxiously waited for the first quiet moment when I could sit and let the words fill my imagination and take me places.

This week, students all over Australia opened books, smelled the freshness of new paper and hopefully are looking forward to the year with anticipation and curiosity as they learn academically, socially, physically and spiritually. For some students, school isn't greeted with the same enthusiasm. I feel for you. You require a different approach to learning and life, but I believe schools are looking for new and innovative ways to help you, too. To all the students from prep to university and mature aged, grasp hold of these opportunities, learn much, but most of all have fun.

Never think you can't do it. Change your attitude...yes you can!

Never think you can't do it. Change your attitude...yes you can!

I'd love to hear how your first week of school went. Please leave a message. Thank you.

Leaving Home

Usually, it's young people who leave home to take on the world when school is finished.

For me, I decided it was my husband and I who were going to leave home, not our son who was looking toward to leaving. When he came to me and said, "Mum, I'm leaving home in the new year to live with friends", it came as a shock to learn my one and only child had grown up much quicker than I'd thought possible. He was ready to leave home, but was I ready for his leaving home?

No! I wasn't ready for him to leave the nest. I panicked and tried to come up with every excuse why he shouldn't be leaving home even though he's nineteen. Didn't I bring him up to be independent and with a positive outlook that anything he set his mind to could be his if he applied himself? Well, there was my answer. Yes, I've equipped him with everything I know and now he was ready to put all that he's learned to the test, so I gave my blessing while he started looking for a place to live with his friends.

Two weeks later, I woke up and thought what if Frank and I left home? I'd always thought I would leave home when Dan left home, so Frank and I decided we would leave home, and rent our home to Dan and his friends. Once the initial shock of this idea was over, it started to make sense. I'd always wanted to let my adventurous spirit loose, and now that Dan was ready to leave the nest, there was nothing holding me back.

So, much to Dan's delight, he accepted his crazy mother's idea of leaving home and he's counting the sleeps until we go. As a result, Frank and I have bought our caravan, are in the process of selling our furniture and preparing to leave on the greatest adventure of our lives.

I'll write novels while we're travelling. It's my hearts desire to meet all my readers wherever we go at book launches, signings, library visits, workshops, and speaking engagements at your church or service group. The title of my website has been changed to Writing All Over Australia. So keep posted to this blog to find out when I'm in your town. Come and chat, while I sign your copy of African Hearts.

As I write this post, my house is covered with boxes of all sizes, and furniture is being taken away as people buy it. During the next few weeks, I'll keep you posted on where we're at with packing our belongings. Perhaps the last few days before we leave we'll be living in the van.

How was it for you when your children left home, or what are you expecting when this life-changing event becomes reality for you; or maybe you haven't thought about that yet?