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In the Spotlight - Vanessa Bunting
Author of the Forever Home Within series
In this issue of The Imaginists, author Vanessa Bunting who lives in Shropshire on the border between England and Wales shares some insights about writing her Forever Home Within series of books based on her true life stories…
Welcome, Vanessa. When did you begin your writing journey?
In many ways, my writing journey began as soon as I could read and write. My earliest piece of writing was a note that I left on my teacher's desk to say that school wasn’t for me and so I was going home! (My parents did point out that it wasn’t my decision to make.) I did, however, enjoy English lessons and being able to write stories. I also corresponded regularly with penfriends.
What motivated you to write your memoir?
I was inspired to write my first book Forever Home Within to explain how my life and personality changed quite suddenly – almost overnight - due to unforeseen events. It was a scary time but the genuine kindness and understanding I received from those around me put me on a road towards finding inner fulfilment by trusting my intuition as well as my rationale. What had been the worst thing to ever happen to me then became the best thing to ever happen to me. I wanted to get this message across to anyone facing a similar situation.
Did you anticipate that you'd be writing a series of books?
After the first book, I carried on writing and soon completed another, Forever Home Within ~ and Beyond! The ‘home’ aspect encompasses my internal home where the inner spirit dwells. This was a continuing story of my life and new loves, that being my husband, pets, countryside and home. I'm currently working on the next one in the Forever Home Within series because life’s twists and turns continue of course but I am now living the right life for me.
What can readers expect from your writing?
I write about everyday life within my home and also about the wider aspects of life in certain News items involving the wonders of our planet and universe.
If there are examples of people’s acts of kindness or positive outcomes from difficult situations, I’ll try to include these too.
Life may be a serious arena but I’ve never lost my sense of humour and hope this is relayed through my writing.
Can you share your typical writing process?
My books are written as life happens, chronologically. I tend to keep notes on events or things that may be of interest, and type them later as if writing to a friend. I’ll print off and check for mistakes or duplication as part of the process. When the manuscript is complete, it's then professionally edited.
What's the most challenging book you've worked on?
The first book was a painful return to the darkest of days but it was necessary in order to relay the upside which was the arrival of the brightest of days.
What kind of books do you like to read?
My favourite reads are autobiographies because they are so insightful and, as they’re about real-life, they reflect other people’s outlook, principles, problem-solving decisions, resilience and frailties.
If you could live your life again, what would you change?
I’d like to have stuck to writing earlier on or otherwise work with animals. However, my career provided financial independence, which enabled me to write later on from the experiences that I did end up having, so it has worked out after all.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Follow your heart, trust your instincts, think about your health, appreciate nature, continue to love all creatures and do right by others. Never despair, and know that magic and miracles really do happen.
Can you share any nuggets of wisdom for anyone who'd like to write their own books?
Write naturally and what's true to you and it will be received as being genuine and authentic. Relaying the content, message and sentiment is down to the words you have chosen to use, and this is what makes your writing unique. I think it’s also important to stay grounded, be honest and be respectful of the reader and their time.
Thank you for sharing these insights, Vanessa. Where can readers find your books?
The Forever Home Within series can be ordered online at Balboa Press, ShieldCrest Publishing, Amazon, eBay and Barnes & Noble and from bookshops such as Waterstones. More information is available on the website at: https://www.foreverhomewithin.com