Every month, over the last three years, I have listened to invited guest speakers at the Gold Coast Writers Association (GCWA) because I am constantly seeking an outside perspective on cultural and community values, knowledge of social media and writers’ responsibilities as citizens; values of humanity and global issues. I seek charismatic characters to be inspired and to think deeper or to dream further.
I have to admit that the Gold Coast Writers Association speakers have rarely failed to fulfill my desire to know and to understand human nature, writing processes or the business of publishing and marketing.
Nanette Clifton is the author of a real life story of triumph over adversity – ‘The Muddier the Water the Brighter the Blooms’. It is not written as an autobiography or memoir but the book is definitely based on Nanette’s life experiences and family relationships. She reveals her early destructive patterns of being ignored by her father, a single-parent and an ignorant man who never encouraged her to get a better education or to succeed in life and to follow her dreams. Although having been unloved and later being physically and mentally abused by her husband, Nanette still found the courage to change her life and to succeed.
Reflecting on her experience of abuse and neglect she is now on a mission to encourage others to identify their source of pain, to refrain from bad choices and finding the right path out of the dark and to find peace and serenity just like she was able to do. “My book is for anyone that wants to find the light and ‘Shine’. We all shine when we come out of the muddy waters of life and we become the ‘Brightest Blooms’” – concluded Nanette Clifton.
Her real life story to recognize, survive, thrive and ‘Bloom’ – ‘The Muddier the Water the Brighter the Blooms’ will be officially launched in May. So keep your eye on Nanette’s website for the announcement or take advantage and buy her book directly from her website, before the official lunch.
The guest speaker was MaryAnne Leighton – an educator, a well-established author, an editor and a proofreader; a horsewoman (managing studs and breading horses for twenty years) and a features writer with a tremendous passion for writing.
In a businesslike manner, right at the beginning, she stated that her first passion is horses and her second passion is writing. “These days, I am writing mostly about horses. My writing, unexpectedly has taken me around the world. Horses have taken me around Australia across the Tasman and back again. The surprising thing is that none of it was planned; not one step in my journey was planned. It happened in spite of me,” said MaryAnne and continued to intrigue us with tales of her fascinating journey. We learnt that she is an introvert by nature and it was difficult for her to confront and overcome her fears. She is still “gobsmacked” of what she was able to achieve and were she is now.
She started her career in Wellington as a Public Relation Assistant. Producing journals and building media relations she quickly became a Public Relation Officer and 12 month later she was invited to work in London and two years later in Sydney. Since then, she has worked in places that she never thought she would. She attributed her professional career growth to her passion for writing. She has always written well. She wrote extensively; her feature articles were always published in magazines and international journals.
Her love for horses was always pulling her back and eventually she became a horse breeder and stud manager, working in Australia and New Zealand. In 2004 she was invited to write for the Horse Association’s professional magazine as a feature writer which resulted in over 200 articles for publications worldwide. In 2006, MaryAnne was commissioned to write a biography about an extraordinary horseman Ian Francis –Living the Legend, who from humble beginnings became an Australian success story.
Her book ‘Equine Emergency Rescue’ which was written as a comprehensive guide to Large Animal Rescue was inspired by a photograph of a horse rescue which ended with the tragic loss of the animal; and it led her to publish the first edition in November 2010, in Melbourne.
Now, MaryAnne is a very active educator and her Large Animal Rescue workshops are very popular. She is conducting lectures and is regularly invited to speak on Horse Talk TV. Her knowledge in the particular field of animal rescue has taken her around Australia and overseas. She is an international speaker, promoter and a recognised authority on all related topics.
Her life story was intriguing and her tips of how to draw support from professional and government organisations in order to sell more books were well received. However, her final advice to the writers was of great value: “Write articles and organize workshops. I sell my books primarily through workshops. You cannot just sit back. You have to work. Go to people. It is up to you to sell your book.”
As I said – every month, over the last three years, I have listened to guest speakers at the Gold Coast Writers Association and they have rarely failed to fulfill my desire to know and to understand human nature, writing processes, the business of publishing and marketing and yesterday I again wasn’t disappointed.
Thank you Gold Coast Writers Association! Thank you Nanette Clifton and thank you MaryAnne Leighton! Greatly appreciated!
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