The sweet reward of making a book no matter what

There’s something quite special about working on a personal creative project right through to completion. When friends tell me about their creative works in progress I can’t help but get excited for them and inevitably we’ll meet for coffee and talk about everything from the overwhelm of ideas to the excruciating challenges that can happen in the process. It helps. Creative friendships can be so rewarding.

Sometimes the idea turns out. Too often a good idea gets put on hold because of “life stuff”, or because it’s too hard or we’re too busy. Granted, there are times when we need to put creativity on pause. But most of the time, it’s a matter of hanging in there, being around other creative people who cheer us on, and persevering. So today I want to share the work of two women who have kept on creating, no matter what.

These two friends launched their own self-published books in March and did so despite facing ongoing personal health and family issues.  I’m so proud of them.

Karen Andrews launching her book at Readings Carlton, March 23 2017

 

Be Not Afraid, by Karen Andrews

On The Many Shapes Bodies Will Take

Karen Andrews has published a beautiful new collection of poems called “On The Many Shapes Bodies will Take”.

Karen invited a friend she had met through blogging, author Penni Russon, to launch her new book at Readings Bookstore last night.  Coincidentally, Penni and I met through an online mother’s forum many years ago.  So it wasn’t surprising to hear Penni talk of the way words can connect us – online and in printed form – through honest and vulnerable shared experience. She drew parallels to the words Karen shares in this book; words that draw from life, reflection, curiosity and pain.

Karen successfully hosted a crowdfunding campaign towards the cost of printing. I know there have been times when Karen doubted herself like we all do and faced some health setbacks and other challenges – but I’m so glad she persevered. She met her goal and created a real treat of a book to read!

Karen even gave me a special mention in her acknowledgements page. Squeeeee!

Wanderer

21 years ago creative producer Ellen Naismith hired me for a role in a small multimedia studio. We kept in touch and have shared our creative journeys often. As an artist, project manager, set designer…and now author (!) she was able take control of all the printing requirements and has already recouped her self-funded printing costs with sales. It hasn’t been an easy journey though. Ellen has persevered despite health and family challenges. She’s an incredibly dedicated mum to her two wonderful daughters and helps her youngest with the daily struggles of severe autism.

El had a creative goal and was consistent and determined to finish her books- making an appointment with herself one day a week over four years to write and publish the first two books in a trilogy of intelligent and imaginative medical science fiction. Most of the writing was done from her favourite local cafe. I loved reading Wanderer and I’m now into Part Two. She’s now writing Part III and has other creative projects on the boil…always!

Ellen Naismith (Words by El) launching her books

Ellen signing her books along with the assistance of her oldest daughter Brooke

 

Another surprise thank you!

I know I’m guilty of having too many creative goals that have been put on hold. But El and Karen have both shown me how you can make an idea happen if you hang in there, break down your project into tasks, and never give up!

Congratulations both!

PS They are all good reads! I don’t get a commission on these books – but had to share them with you in case you want to read something special.

You can buy a copy of Karen’s poetry and other work over at her blog

And you can buy a copy of Ellen’s Wanderer books by sending her a message at her Word by El page

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