I’m a huge believer in fate, although I do think sometimes we need to give ourselves a little push. There’s been many times in my life where I have found myself jumping out of my comfort zone – and I really love my comfort zone! – and wondering why I did it. Some examples from earlier in my life are: when I decided to do Japanese as a university subject in Year 12, though probably not being quite up to the standard I needed to be; enrolling in a six week intensive German course at the end of my first year of uni (we learnt a whole year’s worth of university German in that time – nuts!); and applying to live and work in Japan for six months after I finished my Arts degree. I think some things are meant to happen.
I’m not one to take huge risks that often and yet find myself doing so, scaring the complete crap out of myself, but ultimately feeling glad that I challenged myself in the end. Recently I have found that with each event or risk, it leads on to another opportunity. I feel like this may have started last year when I entered a poem in an ABC radio contest. When I won, (we got to meet The Waifs and glamp at The Lost Lands Festival, as well as feed the giraffes at Werribee Zoo – best ever!!!!), I think it gave me the confidence to get back into my writing again. Around that time as well, The Organic Place shared one of my old blogs about getting your toddlers to eat healthily, and then I shared My Organic Story with them, and snatched at a chance to write a recipe for them too.
I was in such a writey state of mind, I gave myself the birthday present of a Writing Memoir workshop, which led to learning about more writing competitions, got me introduced to Bush Poetry, and got me involved in a monthly writing group as well. Meanwhile, I was asked to write a recipe regularly for The Organic Place. All these amazing opportunities seemed to be presenting themselves to me and I felt that if I didn’t take them, maybe I wouldn’t get another chance. And each event seemed to lead to another.
The bloggers I followed introduced me (perhaps unknowingly) to other bloggers and writers and I found myself booking into an online blogging course (Blog with Pip) and also finding writer Allison Tait and her gem of an idea, Write a Book With Al. You start writing your novel and keep yourself accountable by sharing the amount of words you’ve done a day with the hashtag attached. I’ve always wanted to write a novel but have always had excuses as to why I haven’t started. I am now past the 40 000 word mark. I’m not trying to be braggy; I’m kind of a bit mystified how I got here myself. And as much as I’m a believer in saying ‘no’ to things you don’t really want to do (soooo hard!)- for things you do really want to do, keep saying ‘yes’.
So, I have a lot of things on the boil at the moment. I’m waiting to hear back about a picture book I sent off a while ago and a short story for a competition (so much waiting as a writer!!). I’m still writing my novel, although with not quite as much vigour as when I started, but I’ll keep plodding along. I also started a side job as a Social Media Manager for The Organic Place, (seriously, if you’re in Melbourne you need to check them out, and I would have said this before I worked there too!). And, I’m still being a wife, mum and teacher. But – I’m feeling very happy and inspired and wanted to share the love. Everything is connected, people! Do what makes you happy – and keep saying ‘yes’!