Wendy Ronalds. I first met Wendy Ronalds at the Living Now Wellness Centre in Seaford where I was teaching How to Write and Publish Your Stories. My aim was, and is, to encourage people to write their own stories.
The first thing I suggest is to grab an exercise book and simply start writing.
Knock that negative critic right off your shoulder. You know…the one that says it is too hard, you haven’t got time and you can’t possibly become a writer. The idea is to spend ten minutes a day to record whatever pops into your mind. It’s amazing what is revealed and after a while you will have pages of material you can use towards your book.
Wendy has been doing this for some time now. Initially she wrote a short story about her mother’s life Emu in the Sky. For added interest she inserted personal photos, then took it to Officeworks and printed copies for her family. It was greatly appreciated. A small book about her experiences as a volunteer nurse Angels in Israel followed. She also became interested in Australian bush flower essences and brought some to class. I was delighted by the little brown bottles with their detailed labels, crowned with a jewel. Wendy gave me a lavender perfume spray for calming and peacefulness. It worked.
To find out more about Wendy go to her blog Wendy’s blog bio reads: I am a writer, blogger, mother, nurse, Australian bush flower practitioner, traveller and lover of life. I live in Melbourne, Australia and travel back and forth to Bali, writing stories of amazing people and not so amazing people I meet on my journey.
Living on her own with two grown up sons, Wendy has discovered a new unfettered life which includes frequent trips to Ubud in Bali. Last year the Ubud Writing festival had an extensive program Featuring writers such as Angela Meyer, Dias Novita Wuri, and Nick Low discussing why write short stories. As Neil Gaiman observed, Short Stories are journeys you can make to the far side of the universe and still be back for dinner. Also present at the festival was renowned children’s author Mem Fox with Jeni Caffin (p28) speaking about Possum Magic in an Ubud Treehouse.
Wendy came away inspired to continue her writing career. On her return another book appeared A Gypsy’s Adventures in Bali. Wendy now spends eight months in Australia and four months living in Bali. Her constant reflections on the differences she has experienced and why she lives the life she lives is reflected in the short story below.
‘I suppose it is women trying to capture being young again’. I thought about a friend’s statement after talking about going back to Bali for an extended stay. ‘It’s not really I thought. It is about trying to find our own sacred space deep within our own souls and expressing that. Would we really like to be young again?’ Heartache of losing a first love when you were sixteen. Competition to do well at school. Discipline to perform at work and the pressure from our peers. The undeniable will to find a boyfriend and to be married and have babies. We had the overwhelming worry of the health of our unborn child. The years of sleepless nights of a crying baby and breast overfilled with milk. Hearing our elders say to us to enjoy yourself before you settle down. Was being married a hard road even before you start? The blessing and gratitude of seeing my sons grow into fine young men was worth all the pain and sleepless nights. The beauty of words in a mother’s day card scribbled in crayon, ‘I love you as much as the earth’ from my then five year old son. I wouldn’t change a thing. No, it’s not about wanting to be young again; it’s about progressing to be an Elder Goddess. As we age or as we blossom, not as a flower of youth like an impetuous yellow daffodil but like a bold, feminine flower like a beautiful red waratah, strong, courageous and standing tall.
Wendy now has enough short stories and anecdotes from Bali to self-publish again. When she gets back from her latest sojourn travelling and living in Bali we will investigate how to put these books on Amazon.com. However, the focus these days is on laughing, dancing, writing and enjoying life to the full.