What exactly is a Writing Process Blog Hop you may well ask? This is the question I asked when invited by Sherri to be a featured writer for her on her blog hop. When she told me it was writers writing about writing I just had to accept. I love talking about writing and the process and no matter how little importance you give something you have learnt it could be a monumental step forward for someone else. We all have something to give and we all have lots to learn and this seemed to me to be a great way of doing just that and meeting other people doing the same.
Here’s How this Writing Process Blog Hop works:
I introduce the person who invited me to take part, then answer four set questions about my writing process and finally, I introduce three writers/authors/bloggers who have graciously agreed to take part in this blog hop with me and then keep it going.
With no further ado then, it is my delight and privilege to introduce you to my inspiring and talented writing/blogging friend Sherri over at http://sherrimatthewsblog.com where she takes you into her Summerhouse or off on a walk reminiscing and talking the entire way. Her writing is a joy to read.
Sherri Matthews – A View From My Summerhouse
Sherri has worked in both the legal and medical fields but her defining and most fulfilling career was that of full-time mum for many years to her three, now grown children. Widowed young, remarried, divorced and remarried again, Sherri has ‘started over’ more times than she can remember, both in her home country of England and in California, where she lived and raised her family for almost 20 years.
The call of the pen beckoned throughout but it wasn’t until 2011 when Sherri lost her job and her daughter was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome at the same time that she made the life-changing decision, as a late-bloomer, to pursue her writing career.
Since then, and while pursuing her life-long dream of becoming a published author, she has had articles and a prize-winning short story published in Prima and Your Cat magazines (UK) and freelances writing blogs for a law firm’s website.
Now writing her first book, her true story about her chance-meeting with her American G. I. when both eighteen years old and the cataclysmic events which came out of nowhere, profoundly altering the course of both their lives forever, she hopes to inspire others to never give up hope and that it is is never too late to change your life for the better.
Sherri is also a committed blogger and invites you to read all about her adventures, experiences, travels and writing journey over at her blog, ‘A View From My Summerhouse’.
Today, Sherri lives in Somerset in the West Country of England, happily with her husband, daughter, two cats and a corn-snake called Charlie (her daughter’s, acquired after many years of persuasion).
You can connect with Sherri at:
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/aviewfrommysummerhouse
*Memoir Book Blurb: http://sherrimatthewsblog.com/memoir-book-blurb/
Thanks very much Sherri for asking me to take part in the Blog Hop and I can assure you that I will be the first reader of your book when it is published but until then I will be visiting in your Summerhouse and wandering around in your world with a huge amount of enjoyment.
Here are my answers to the four set writing questions.
1. What am I working on?
Currently I am working on the sequel to my memoir Nightmare in Paradise which was set in the Pacific. After the Nightmare follows our life on our return to Australia. Traumatised by our experience in Vanuatu, we choose, not to return to the city but, to move to the country and open a bed and breakfast in idyllic surroundings. The ideal property we purchased came with more land than we had anticipated but luckily a local farmer adopted us and took it upon himself to teach us about farming and life in the country.
Discovering that we were not farmers and feeling the isolation, I accepted employment in Taree as a haemodialysis nurse, setting up a community dialysis facility. Roger left on the farm alone could not see himself maintaining the property by himself and he decided to purchase the Barrington General Store.
Here we worked harder and longer hours than we had in Vanuatu. We were so busy that although we now knew many people, friendships still weren’t made as we were simply too busy or too tired to make them. The General Store consisted of post office, groceries, tourist souvenirs, canoe hire, petrol station, cafe, gas refills, camping equipment, hardware, lolly shop, newsagency and licensed silver service a la carte restaurant.
This book looks at the personal struggles we both had dealing with not only our return to Australia after the traumatic time we had been through but also the new challenges we faced as we launched into yet another unknown life which although stressful was dotted with many humorous moments.
2. How Does my work differ from others in this genre
Memoir by the very nature of the genre is different to everybody else’s life experience. My life experience is peculiar to me. I have not found any other memoirs written about community haemodialysis and I have struggled to find any general store memoirs so I believe combining all three in this memoir will make it significantly different from any other memoir available.
3. Why do I write what I do?
I love writing. I particularly like writing creative non-fiction of which memoir is a part. I believe that most fiction writers are writing non-fiction using their life experiences to mould their characters and scenes. I do just that but own it as mine.
4. How does your writing process work?
I writein my head constantly, from the time I wake up until the time I go to sleep and I’m sure that sometimes I dream about what I am going to write. As I am studying I spend at least a part of each day on my exegesis either writing or reading. I spend a part of each day writing my blogs. These I don’t spend that much time on. When I write it seems to flow probably because I have been formulating it in my head so by the time I put it to paper (computer) it is almost ready to go. A quick edit and publish. Then I sit and write my manuscript. Parts of it are like the blog and just flow. The words don’t falter. At other times I really struggle to make a start. I have taken Hemingway’s process to heart and never finish at the conclusion of a section. I finish part way through. That way it is easy to get the flow going again when I next get to my piece again. Surprisingly I am a hopeless letter and email writer. I put off and put off writing these which should be so simple.
Now please meet three writers/authors/bloggers, wonderfully talented ladies whom I respect and admire greatly:
Maureen-Helen always imagined that her adult life would involve a writing career, but the universe had other plans, and writing became a secondary occupation when she worked as a nurse, married, and later raised six children alone while she worked to earn a living. Over many years, she had short stories, book reviews, travel articles and even a poem published. She has written two novels which have not been published.
On her sixty-fifth birthday, Maureen-Helen retired from the full-time paid workforce and was accepted as full-time PhD (Writing) candidate at Edith Cowan University. She completed the degree in 2006.
Her first book, Other People’s Country, a memoir, was published by ABC Books in 2008. It is the story of the time she spent working as a fifty-three year old nurse in a remote Aboriginal community in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. The book was long-listed for a Walkley Award for Best Non-Fiction Book. The manuscript of her second memoir, about eloping when she and her husband were both seventy, is currently being read by a publisher.
There are many things she’s passionate about: family; home and garden; literature; language; travel; France and all things French; art; music; theatre; Benedictine spirituality; social justice and human rights; Aboriginal health and culture; preventative health and welfare; the rights of older people; prevention of abuse; Australian Rules Football; craft; food – and anything else that attracts her attention!
She still writes, as she has always done, and blogs each week. Sometimes, when she can fit it in between travelling with her second husband and enjoying their grandchildren and great-granddaughter, she facilitates workshops for writers.
She lives in Perth, Western Australia.
Maureen-Helen blogs at
Jennifer My name is Jenni not Trouble – don’t listen to my family they’re all a little crazy. Other than me OF COURSE, I’m the only one who is able to take the high road and do so with great pride. This pride has sadly led to many a tumble and slip but my wonderful and patient husband has never let me down when it comes to breaking my fall. I suppose the thing most people notice about me [other than my charm and good looks – shh mum or I’ll put you in a home] is my generosity of spirit and my deep belief in sharing my opinion with anyone who will stand still long enough to hear it. If you’re busy and don’t have time to stop and listen don’t fret I’m nimble and can expound even as I chase you down the street. I’ve recently started a blog for all those who are unlucky enough not to have the benefit of my erudite opinions in person and I would dearly love to see you at Unload and Unwind sometime in the future.
Jenni blogs at
Lisa Reiter – Sharing the Story
Recently a writer (a proper one with books an’all) introduced me to the phrase “how do I know what I think, until I write it?” For someone who believes in looking for answers not problems, writing has been that revelation.
I started blogging because I needed a bit of on-line support writing a memoir. I’d been lonely with the task for a number of years and consequently not making much progress! Having declared publicly that this is what I now do – I have had to do it! Friends and family have continued to be a fantastic support but the unexpected welcome from other more experienced writers, has been touching and humbling.
My blog is still evolving to reflect me, rather than a marketeer’s brief to build a platform to sell a book. So, I don’t worry too much about who my audience should be but take care to write honestly and with some attention and delight in the craft. I hope as a consequence there’ll be friends enough to want to read my words – just as I derive much pleasure reading theirs.
You can connect with Lisa at: