Thursday, August 2, 2012

That Forty Thing

 Welcome to Balanced Thursdays!
Today I am honored to have 
Racquel McDonnell stop by.

Hi, my name is Racquel, I'm 43 years old and only decided to start writing when I was 40. At first it was quite easy: a few scribbled notes, writing when the kids had gone to bed, and at work any time I could. Then everything got busy, work, kids wanted to do more out of school activities, breaking and training my horse. Hair pulling out time. 

As the pressure of daily life built up my escape in writing saved me from going round the loop. The frustration of waiting to be published, wondering if it was good enough, would people like it, how to market, getting my profile out there, wondering what where to go next and what would people think?
Then I was sitting quietly. I had left my other life, that of the boring mundane working mum of two, who was nothing like her characters. I wanted so badly to escape into other places. That wasn't going to happen  in a month of Sunday's, so I had to decide what was important, I had to plan and share my quality time. So I limited my writing to days off and late nights, which annoyed my husband as in the middle of the night I'd get ideas and write them down, that strangely enough was better than writing in the day when I had more distraction. Also I encouraged my daughter and son to write stories and then type them up, reading them to each other. I learned to share my passion.
When I was younger I was too embarrassed to let anyone read my stories, my English teacher dismissed them. I was never encouraged to write and shunned away from the lime light but I didn't want to shun this away, I wanted to share and prove that I was good at something. I never wanted to write That Forty Thing, it was an accident. I suppose that everyone meets a mile stone and, reaching 40, I thought I'd done nothing. So with the encouragement of friends and family I wrote That Forty Thing. Before I thought of the plot I wrote screen plays for my own amusement, then my friend Angie read one and said that it should be a book she enjoyed it. Making myself a forty list of all the things I wanted to do, writing was at the top. 
Piggy Pag is my next book out on ebook later this month and I have a kid's book in the pipeline with my daughter being my critic, my husband, he helps more with the kids and the house, who also understands more tech stuff then me and understands that my writing is important. 
When I started I knew nothing! I don't know a lot now but more than when I had started, not just in writing but also in living. I may never be a best seller but I've achieved a childhood dream. So I think it is hard at first but once you know where your going and don't get swept up in false ideals you can be and do what you want. Just don't forget to drop the kids off at school.  


Racquel McDonnell, born 24-12-1968, Lincoln England and placed under the Christmas tree, while the turkey was being prepared. Middle child to Pat, born in Dublin, Eire and Fred, born in Belmullet, Co Mayo Eire. I have two brothers, Fred and Anthony, we lived in a two up, two down terrace house with no bathroom, but we did have an outside toilet, bit chilly in winter. My parent worked hard and bought their own home, where I got my own bedroom and we had two toilets(both inside).

I went to the South Park High School, no we didn't have anyone called Kenny there, left in 1986 to work as a clerical assist on a youth training scheme. Didn't really know what I wanted to do but always had the feeling that should be somewhere else. As my brothers excelled at their chosen careers, I drifted from job to job not really knowing what I wanted to do. Had a lot of fun and made new friends along the way and they are good friends as where still in touch.
Went to Sheffield Hallam University 1991 to 1995, enrolled on a Environmental Engineering course, where I met my husband Andrew, we got married and have two fabulous children Courtney and Anthony, living in Doncaster and I work for an Insurance company.
When I was younger like every young girl I wanted a horse but we could never afford one, so when the chance arose to look after one, they didn't have ask me twice. Now I have one of my own, they say that a horse finds its owner, as in life, God has a plan he's knows what it is but he probably hasn't finished writing it yet, maybe he's editing the next bit.
When I reached 40 I decided with a little encouragement to write, so That Forty Thing was born. A childhood dream realized, forever in print. I have other interests other than romantic fiction, my next book Piggy Pag, was written for my fans, they are few but they deserve it for their support. I have penned in a two murder mysteries, a children's book and a story about terrorist. I do have an over active imagination, always have. Writing is my passion not always understandable at first but I get there in the end. My inspiration can come from anywhere, a comment, a song, anything! I even wrote one about travel insurance. I live the characters in my head and visualize what they look like, makes them real. (I don't mean I live in fantasy land).
My friends would describe me as down to earth, straight talking, generous, the best one is if you don't like me then you don't know me or given me the time of day.

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