Starting over … with Donna Trinder

If you’re on Twitter, I’m sure this has happened to you … suddenly, someone comes into your network and from the first moment, you ‘click’ with them and then afterwards discover that you really do have quite a lot in common on many different levels.  This is what happened with Donna and I.

Donna is a ‘new’ writer, relatively recently starting out.  We all get the chance to read how authors are doing on their own websites, blogs and in other media but what about writers who are just starting out?  I asked Donna if she would like to share her story with others.  This is what she had to say:

Starting over…

I would like to thank Sharon for asking me to write this, I felt very honoured. I read her interviews with published and indie writers with envy, and live in hope of the day that I can class myself as being ‘there with them’!

I have recently been able to take up writing, which has always been a dream of mine when I was working and the children were young, but there did not seem enough hours in the day – and when there was a free one in which I could sit with my feet up, it would normally result in me snoring in the armchair.

My life took a massive turnaround when I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in Dec 2006 which was an unbelievably hard time, and put paid to my career as my health was very poor indeed.

After a long year of rehab I was able to step back into the classroom, but only as a helper. I chose to go in and read with the children, as many did not get the support needed at home to compliment their education, and as in all schools there was never enough time for teachers to read on a one to one basis with every child, every day and I felt I could help just a few. It gave me the opportunity to work with the children, inspiring and encouraging, without the pressure.

Donna dressed as Harry Potter for World Book Day

Unfortunately this ended in 2010 when my health took another turn for the worse, leaving me dependant on a wheelchair for many things, so I knew my life needed to take a new direction.

This is when I first started thinking about being able to develop the aspiration I had stifled for some years, to write. I tried to find a writing group in the local area, to no avail. I am still toying with the idea of doing an online course but the thought of getting out and meeting people appeals to me … but I always keep my eyes open!

Luckily I have found much support from other authors, meeting on social networking sites and through writing my blog, it is always a comfort to speak to people who have been where you are and I have found the friends I have made are incredibly friendly and helpful when things get tough.

My first thoughts for writing were always of children’s books, with bright, stimulating illustrations to capture and enthuse young readers, but I have found since starting to write, my head is actually filled with other ideas.

I have always enjoyed reading romances, some of my favourite authors being Jill Mansell, Katie Fforde, Jenny Colgan and Sophie Kinsella, and found that the old saying of ‘writing what you know’ is probably true, as once I actually put my ideas down on paper, the words flowed far more naturally.

Last year, I was also asked to write a regular blog for the MS Society, which gives me the chance to share my experiences, thoughts and worries, and hopefully help others, especially people who may be recently diagnosed.

I find I can escape easily into my own writing, and just being able to get up and write a blog, or know I am halfway through a chapter that is really gripping my attention, makes me feel far more positive and like I am again doing something worthwhile.

I feel I have an unbelievably mammoth task ahead of me, but so far am enjoying it immensely, from researching for my book to the actual writing itself. I am not looking forward to the really hard work that I know comes after, but in true ostrich style, I shall think about that later!

Thank you for sharing with us Donna 🙂  You truly are in inspiration.  Wishing you oodles of success in your writing career!

You can find Donna on her blog, Lost and Found.  You can tweet with her and find her on Facebook.

As Donna mentions, one of her favourite authors is Jill Mansell.  To enter a giveaway for a paperback copy (UK entries only) of A Walk in the Park by Jill Mansell (published 5  July), leave Donna a pick me comment below.  This giveaway closes midnight Friday 18th May.  Good luck!



19 thoughts on “Starting over … with Donna Trinder

  1. Hey Donna, it’s so lovely to see you here on Shaz’s blog and I’m delighted this opportunity has come along. I’d like to second Shaz’s thoughts about meeting someone–YOU–on Twitter and just clicking with them!! I had no idea about your background and health problems, and I admire your persistence and courage and ability to turn situations around. Hopefully I can tell you that in person sometime soon when this move of ours has finally gone through…! Meanwhile, keep writing and keep working away at your platform, you’re doing all the right things. Rock on!!

  2. A huge well done to you for your courage and determination. I certainly wouldn’t dare to say that getting to the end of 90k is anything like the adversities that you’ve face and overcome, but that ability to ‘hang on in there’ is what every writer needs and you’ve got in it spades. Here’s wishing you every success in your writing career.

  3. Hi Donna, having just ‘met’ you recently on Twitter and FB, I obviously had no idea of what you have been through and I admire you for staying positive and looking forwards. I hope your writing goes well but if you ever need anyone to ‘talk’ to for advice or just general keeping your chin up stuff, you’ll find loads of support on Twitter and FB. Not only that, but you will meet some fantastic people who you will come to regard as friends.

    I like to think of several people I’ve met through Twitter as friends (the lovely Shaz being one of them) even though we haven’t actually met in person – although that will change come 16th June.

    Thanks for posting.
    Sue x

    • Thanks for your lovely comments Sue. YES, we will get to meet very soon 🙂 We’re also holidaying in August near Hastings. Anywhere near you?

  4. Hello Donna

    We all come to writing from many different paths but it’s a lovely feeling to find out that there is so much support out there from others who are in the same boat. That’s definitely something we’ve found ourselves.

    Good luck with the writing and see you in cyberspace!

    The Romaniacs

  5. Hello Shaz. Super post and good to make Donna’s acquaintance…


    I am sitting here, inspired by your spirit and determination and smiling at some of the paralells (I have Behcets disease and have had to re-invent myself several times over the years) Good for you for not giving up when many would. Keep on writing, keep on blogging, try some non-fiction – maybe specialist magazine articles??? You are sure to inspire others… Whatever happens, keep on following your dreams. If anyone can succeed despite the cruel challenges and adversities in life, it sounds like you can.

    Warm wishes

    • Thanks for commenting Debbie. It sounds like you can identify with Donna and I wholeheartedly agree with you. If anyone can do it, Donna can. She truly is an inspiration x

  6. Hi Donna
    We’re Twitter mates and it’s really lovely to have met you! Keep going with the writing – hard work and determination to make a passion happen is the key!! Love tweeting with you and do keep posting your progress! x

  7. Thanks for all your lovely comments for Donna. It was great to host her on my blog 🙂

    Donna has chosen BluestockingMum to win the giveaway so congratulations!

  8. Oooh, THANK YOU so much, Donna. How exciting!

    I can’t wait to get it. All the best to you, for your ongoing health and with your writing. You’re a true inspiration!


  9. Pingback: Awards | Jera's Jamboree

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