In 2010 life, as I knew it took a sharp turn. It just took me 5 years to catch up!
Let me explain: An incident at work caused me to suffer a Takot Subo Cardiomyopathy (a special kind of heart attack, if to survive you will make a full recovery). The trauma of the attack and consequent events took a toll far greater than I realised. I returned to work too early with no real support. For the next five years, I struggled to hold things together. A swan if you like, serene on the surface paddling madly underneath. Finally, in 2015 I shut down, dramatically, following trivial incident…is not the final straw always trivial. I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It doesn’t just happen to soldiers.
I was lucky. I had the most amazing husband, and my Doctor was incredible. She brought in a simply beautiful therapist, who was awesome in helping me find a way back. No, not back! I can never go back I’ve changed too much, and for the better. She helped me grow.
It was Jo, my therapist who suggested I try writing. She said I was so creative when I wanted to side-track her she’d love to see what stories I could tell.
At first, I would have an idea but couldn’t get very far when I tried to write. But Jo made me keep trying. She pushed me to believe in myself.
One day the words just flowed. I’d found my niche. I found a world where I had no anxiety, where I could enter the zone and just write. I was safe and I often surprised myself with what evolved. I’d learned to let go, let it happen and the books flowed. I had a series before I knew it and Brian, my exceptional husband, along with with Jo, and my family, encouraged me to try to publish.
I selected a firm in Australia, I was accepted immediately. I was to learn many lessons with this foray. They took my money and I got my book published but that was it….
I took feedback from readers and made changes in subsequent books. I felt my writing improve as I grew.
Again Jo and Brian pushed me not to give up. This time I sent my manuscript to many firms. There were some rejections I expected that. But there were also several offers. I chose Olympia because I liked their tone and prompt replies and that everything was spelt out in the contract. You see I learned!
The experience with Olympia was vastly different. If I had a question It was answered quickly. I didn’t have to chase them up at any stage, they were responsive and seemed caring. Yes I know it’s their job, but if you feel like they care that makes a huge difference.
Opening my books when they arrived was awesome. My words in print. I felt like I had achieved something awesome.
I write most days. It helps me make sense of the world and makes me feel I can still contribute.