Writers are strange. No, really, we are. Even we don’t have a clue whether it’s nature or nurture that drives us to weave words. We only know, it IS a compulsion.
I wrote my first poem at the age of five. My father kept the scribble in his back pocket. In grade six, I spent most of my lunch hours shelving books in our school library. At the end of the school year, the librarian rewarded me with a copy of “The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett, a book I still cherish. Some stories become lifelong friends.
As a child, I dreamt of penning such a novel, one full of insight. As a teen, I wrote poetry and, by doing so, survived a volatile family life. As an adult, I found great joy in learning the craft of writing. Now, as an author, I’m left speechless when someone tells me, “your story moved me to tears.” Readers become a writer’s extended family.
Montreal will always feel like home to me, even though I have not lived there for decades. However, Woodstock, Ontario, gave me a sense of security which I’d never before experienced, and I will forever hold dear those small town memories. The stability I experienced there was both temporary and everlasting…
I’ve been a Jill of all trades. I’ve worked as a personal care attendant in a home for young adults with multiple challenges. I spent years working with children as an Early Childhood Educator, and I’ve been a graver. One of the best jobs I ever had was working in a thrift shop. Every person and item under that roof had a story to tell. Poetry floated in snow globes or rushed out the door in a fascinator. Years later, I returned to college, obtained a software certificate and spent many happy years working with data.
I met the love of my life, Colin MacMillan, in 1989. We married in 1992. We waited and prayed for a child for sixteen years. In 2009, I gave birth to our daughter. Verity has become both muse and taskmaster. I am immensely enjoying writing children’s fiction, even when my second grade first-reader says, “Good. But give me more suspense, Mom.”
Sometimes, I wake up at 3 am and, then, that nature aspect of writing pulls me to the keyboard. It’s pointless to ignore the nagging voice of inspiration.
We live in New Hamburg, home of North America’s largest working waterwheel. It has one plaza and an annual fall fair. Like other families, we try to balance life and work. Sometimes, we face epic fails. Other times, it all comes harmoniously together.
Eventually, some yang/ying day will work its way into a story or verse. And I’m once again shown the undeniable role of nurturing.
I’ve learned this: I was born to be a writer, but every word that I pen has also been tenaciously nurtured.
Heart N’ Hand,