Jenny Kane: Coffee, cupcakes, chocolate and contemporary fiction / Jennifer Ash: Medieval crime with hints of Ellis Peters and Robin Hood

Tag: poetry

Interview with Trina Stacey: Inspiration and Inspiring Others

It’s lovely to have a friend and fellow writer popping by for a chat today. I’m pleased to welcome Trina Stacey back to my blog to talk about her writing and her inspiration.

Why not put the kettle on and take a five minute break for a little read?

Over to you Trina…

Delighted to have the opportunity for a return visit – Thank you Jenny and a big warm Hello to everyone else too!

What inspires you to write?

Well I love spending time with me, if that doesn’t sound too weird?! I like to grab a notebook (or iPad) and reflect upon my thoughts and feelings. If something has occurred, evoked an emotional response and left me feeling off balance, I delve for underlying limiting beliefs that could be lurking, so I can unpick them and choose more supportive perspectives going forward. It’s really self-therapy; I coach myself through my emotional stuff and keep going until I’m out the other side…feeling good again. I don’t want to waste any time stuck in fear-based or limited thinking. I believe that, just like everyone else, I am here for a purpose. I have something of value to share, so it is up to me to deliver on it to the best of my ability unencumbered by my stuff that if left unacknowledged will just keep resurfacing until I do anyway.

My poetry has emerged as a result of this journaling activity, taking me by surprise actually.

What is your writing regime?

What is this r word you speak of?! No regime here. I do journal most days, but simply when I feel inspired, not even at a regular time of day. My poems appear in waves, I could go months without writing a poem (which can be tricky at my monthly poetry group!), then out pop 3 in a day. I was taken aback when a children’s story fell out of me recently, one that I aim to get published soon…I’ll keep you posted!

It hasn’t always been this way, I used to pride myself on being highly organised, a high achiever, pushing through to get things done – a tick multiple items off a length list type person. A big part of self-discovery for me has been unravelling this way of thinking, learning to trust, pay attention to my energy, doing what I feel inspired to do – rather than what I believe someone like me should be doing.

Some may be challenged by this (I used to be too!), it may sound lazy or whatever, however I find that I end up doing more of what energises me, what I love to do and still somehow manage to get all necessary things done too, just happens more easily and in my time, rather than society’s expectation – which actually varies depending on who you speak to, making it impossible to get right anyway, so I may as well live according to my truth – Yes?!

Let’s just say I am whole lot happier now, living with this intent – even though I still get caught up in old patterns now and again, being human and all. It also helps me perform better as a coach, be more present when I write and hopefully am a nicer person to be around too. When you’re present it takes a lot less time and effort to do anything – makes sense doesn’t it?

Tell us more about your books?

This time I thought I’d give a little more attention to 100 Nuggets of Inspiration, (last time I dropped in I shared a poem from Join the Spiritual Dots).

Christmas is rapidly approaching…Yay! So if you’re looking for an uplifting and alternative gift this could be it!

100 Nuggets… contains very short inspirational verses, I’ll let you guess the number! It’s the perfect book to dip into when you need a little boost of positivity or inspiration. See what page it falls open on or pick a number between 1 and 100 and you may get just the message you need. I use this with my coaching and meditation groups and they are regularly amazed by how this works.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

Well, funny you should ask, I am a little excited about being a guest presenter at a certain upcoming writers retreat 😉

I will be running an interactive and thought-provoking session ‘Setting Your Sails for Writing Success’ to an audience of inspiring writer-types, where we’ll be discussing wonderful topics such as…connecting with your Why, being present, and showing up as the best version of you.

How does it get better than that! – Have you booked your place yet?  

Thank you so much for having me again.

Warmest Regards,

Trina

Bio:

Trina is a poet, author and spiritual coach. She writes uplifting, inspiring and relatable poetry that is accessible to everyone, and has published three books 100 Nuggets of Inspiration, Join the Spiritual Dots and Join the Spiritual Dots Goes Deeper.

If you’d like to connect with Trina, buy a book or find out more:

Visit: www.trinastacey.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/trina.stacey.3

Twitter: @trinajstacey

Find her books on Amazon: http://www.bit.ly/trinajstacey 

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If you would like to join Trina, myself, Kate Griffin and Alison Knight on the Imagine Writing Retreat next March, all the details can be found here- https://www.imaginecreativewriting.co.uk/writing-retreats

Many thanks for a lovely interview Trina,

Happy reading,

Jenny xx

Poetical twists and turns: Trina J. Stacey

I’m delighted to welcome friend and fellow Devon writer, Trina J. Stacey, to my blog today to share some thoughts and a little poetry.

Over to you Trina…

Thanks for inviting me over to your place today Jenny.

I grew up on a farm in mid Devon, UK, then left home at 18 to pursue a normal career and eventually discovered it wasn’t for me. At the age of 40, further to living in various parts of the UK and 11 years in Perth, Australia, I heeded the call to return home and now reside in Tiverton with my young family.

After several years of sporadically journaling my thoughts, feelings and emotions and attempting to process them, they began to form themselves into poems. This took my simple logical brain somewhat by surprise yet I also had a hunch that my outpourings weren’t meant just for me, so began sharing a few on social media. The responses I received gave me ample confirmation that others were connecting with them too.

Apparently I can now call myself a poet and author, something I am both embracing and still coming to terms with. I am also a spiritual life coach and not least a mother of two highly energetic (spirited) children!

The many twists and turns of my life and consequent spiritual development journey form the basis for the insights that I now share through my poems and in my books Join the Spiritual Dots, Join the Spiritual Dots Goes Deeper and 100 Nuggets of Inspiration.

The poems are not intended to be literary masterpieces indeed this is not their purpose. They are authentic, simple and inspiring verses that are accessible to everyone.

 

I meet many writers and poets who have had a long-term love of words. I am a late-developer (in many ways!) and actually believe that what triggered the unlocking of this more creative aspect of myself was a big life challenge I faced during my mid-thirties. At this time I lost everything in a financial sense. It was a very traumatic time in many ways, but somehow I maintained a strong-belief in something greater at play leading me on, a feeling deep within that there was a bigger role for me to fulfil, inspiring me to simply keep on keeping on in spite of everything that was occurring in my outer world. I am now in immense gratitude for this deeply humbling and life-changing event which prompted me to completely re-define what being successful meant to me. As a result I made a firm commitment to myself to keep following my heart and focus on doing what I love.

….

Love Change (from the book Join the Spiritual Dots)

The fear of change is all around, it’s everywhere we go

People hold on to the past, to what they think they know

What lies around the corner may be different than the now

We want to control the outcome and to figure out the How

What we really fear is the path ahead that’s unknown

Yet our future is being determined by the seeds already sown

So by continuing in fear, what are we trying to create?

Why not let this way of thinking go? Choose a different fate

What’s the point of having worries? Most don’t even come about

Let’s not water those fears further, let them think that there’s a drought

And, What if something magical was on its way to you?

But by holding on to fear, you prevent it from coming true

Could we choose to form a new belief? Decide to embrace change

Expect the unexpected, the exciting and the strange

Be open to a miracle, believe they can be real

Imagine the impossible and how that would make us feel

Let go of rules, how things should be and live in such a way

That it would be unusual if change wasn’t part of our day

To evolve is vital for all of life, so why would we choose to fear?

An important part of ourselves, our reason for being here

…..

My books are available on Amazon in both paperback and e-book formats:

www.bit.ly/trinajstacey

You can also find me on:

Facebook www.facebook.com/jointhespiritualdots

Twitter: www.twitter.com/trinajstacey

Web www.trinastacey.com

***

Great stuff! Thanks Trina.

Happy reading everyone,

Jenny xx

Guest Post from Nell Peters: Write Therapy

I’m delighted to welcome Nell Peters back to my site today! This is a fabulously poetic blog!!

Over to you Nell…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Hello again – and huge thanks to Jenny Kane for risking her blog’s fine reputation once more.

Since I was last here, I’m thrilled to have signed another contract with Accent Press, for Hostile Witness, a psychological crime/thriller. It will probably appear in 2016, after I’ve pared down the word count by approx 6,000 words – don’t you just hate it when that happens? Hostile is my Book That Will Not Die, having been around for quite a while – initially written in the first person, now converted to third. It sold reasonably well on sites such as Lulu.com and later Amazon KDP and collected some spanking reviews – but no publisher showed more than a sniff of interest, until lovely Greg Rees cast his eagle eye over it. Hey presto!

Here’s the blurb:

When her husband leaves her and their sons to shack up with a mere child, Callie Ashton thinks she’s hit rock bottom. She’s wrong. Already unemployed – possibly unemployable – and struggling to hold everything together, her life goes into freefall when she finds a neighbour dead and the murderer becomes intent on killing her too, wrongly assuming she can identify him.

Nothing makes sense – the killer’s motive is buried deep in the past and the police seem incapable of finding it. Despite her new man, David, being in charge of the investigation, Callie is in great danger – and the sinister Balaclava Man isn’t too worried whom he kills or maims by mistake, in his quest to eliminate her. No one is safe and Balaclava Man seems to know her every movement. Faced with a mounting body count and what she perceives as police ineptitude, Callie feels she has no choice but to take matters into her own hands.

However, she discovers that like a scorpion, Balaclava Man has a sting in his tail and many a twist in his plot – and she has no idea just how very close to home the real danger lurks.

Even when her nemesis is safely behind bars and she dares to resume normal life, a shocking revelation makes her realise she and her family may never be safe.

How can you resist? ☺

Someone asked me recently how I came to write crime – good question, and it was a very convoluted pathway. Probably like most authors, I’ve always had some writing project or other on the go – from dreadful children’s stories to creative missives to the milkman. When the family suffered a bereavement, I suddenly started to write poetry even though I’d never been a particular fan – not serious stuff, as you might reasonably imagine, but mostly humorous.

More or less for my own amusement, I was writing a how-to book on composing basic poetry, when I read of research undertaken at Bristol Royal Infirmary, which concluded that creative writing – poetry in particular – had helped patients suffering from depression, anxiety, bereavement and stress, to the extent that over half were eventually able to stop taking their medication. I could recognise that improvement in myself, even though I’d never been under the chemical cosh. Much like you might write a letter or email to someone you’re really pissed off with – and probably never send it, because you feel a whole lot better after venting your feelings on paper – writing poetry can be a means of expressing destructive, negative emotions so that they become impotent. You have written them down, so you are in control.

As Graham Greene said; ‘Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.

I rehashed my masterpiece to include the research findings and sent it off to the Submissions Editor at Hodder Stoughton. Though she said I’d ‘taken her breath away’, (I think she meant it as a compliment) ultimately it wasn’t for them, but she asked me to write a novel and let her see it. I decided on crime, because that is mostly what I read for pleasure – too bad the editor was made redundant before I had got as far as typing The End, but it didn’t stop me plugging away.

write therapy cover

I recently revised Write Therapy, incorporating snippets of what I learned when I returned to uni to read Psychology and Sociology. It now reclines on Amazon KDP – if you mention poetry to publishers in general, they tend to suck air in through their teeth and shake their heads meaningfully, in much the same way that car mechanics do when they sense a hopeless auto-dunce in their midst, just waiting to be led to the slaughter.

One of the exercises in Write Therapy is to write as someone else. I have had a character named Bazil Bratt knocking around in my head for years – he uses his way with words as a form of therapeutic escapism from a pretty miserable existence, although at eight or nine he’s probably far too young to realise that. He writes about things he has seen or done at school or home and drifts off into his own little world, where nothing can touch him. Writing is his creative armour, his defence mechanism.

Grub’s Up

School dinners are disgusting

All lumpy, green and gooey

I don’t know what we had today

But it was very chewy

The standard of the cooking

Gets worser everyday

The bins are fit to burst by one

As we throw the muck away

The local pigs are laughing

They get such a lot to eat

Well, they’re welcome to my dinner

‘Cos it smells like cheesy feet

Birthday Boy

It was my birthday yesterday

and the coolest gift has come my way

a whoopee cushion! It does loud farts

and I’ve got placing it down to an art

When Granny came to birthday tea

I sat her down right next to me

The foulest noise then filled the air

(it was under the padding, on her chair)

Poor Granny bowed her head in shame

I was delighted with this game!

But as Gran turned the brightest red

My rotten Mum sent me to bed

Season of Goodwill

The Nativity Play didn’t go too well

in fact, it was a big disaster

The scenery fell right off the stage

and landed on the Headmaster

We could have coped and covered that up

if it hadn’t been for the lighting

a spotlight blew and frightened the Mayor

then he and Joseph started fighting

Peace and Goodwill to All Men – maybe

but not in our school hall

The audience rose and rolled up their sleeves

and the play ended up in a brawl

Beanz Meanz Farts

Monday, we had beans for tea

(we had no bread for toast)

But it didn’t matter, we were quite content

seeing who could fart the most

First Bern let rip – a noxious pong

that scored eight out of ten

but the big surprise was the amazing noise

that came from Little Ben

Easter Bun

That Easter Bunny should get the sack

He forgot our eggs, but didn’t come back

To apologise and give us the chocs

May myxomatosis rot his socks

It’s not as though he’s overworked

Just once a year the little jerk

Has to hop around delivering the loot

If he can’t manage that, then give him the boot

Dad’s Stir

Our Dad is doing porridge

No, not the cereal kind

He’s gone to jail for many years

And left Mum in a bind

But she is very lucky

She has we four young men

If we could just dig up Dad’s loot

We’d not need him again

We’d fly off to the sunshine

For unlimited ice cream

But ‘til Dad coughs and draws a map

We sit and freeze and dream

Ralph

Our dog called Ralph is brainy

He’s qualified in Woof

He doesn’t have a girlfriend, though

I think Ralph is a poof

Nitty Nora

The Nit Nurse came to school today

She looked through all our hair

But I’ve no head lice, so she says

Well! I don’t think that’s fair

I could train them to do circus tricks:

Acrobatics and trapeze

Wait! Another plan has come to me

I could always breed cat fleas

And finally, returning to every small boy’s favourite subject: farts;

The Bum’s Rush

The laughs and guffaws had turned to screams

When my brother was playing with chums

I rushed to his room to see why the fuss

And saw flames attacking his bum

I scooped up the duvet, to smother the fire

(He was lucky I got there so fast)

No real harm done, though his pants were destroyed

And he had blisters all over his arse

The aim of their game was to fart and ignite

But my brother’s a dense little brat

He didn’t remove his underwear

And his friends set fire to that

 

I don’t think Carol Ann Duffy is losing any sleep …

Perhaps I should go, before the men in white coats catch up with me.

Write Therapy – also written under my pen name Nell Peters, can be found at:

viewBook.at/WriteTherapy

My currently crime novel, By Any Other Name, published by Accent Press, can be found at: viewBook.at/By_Any_Other_Name_by_Nell_Peters

By Any Name final

Thank you again, Jenny!

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Wonderful blog! Love the poems!

Happy reading,

Jenny xx

 

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