Inspirational Writer – Yolanda
Life is fleeting thing,
We’re born, we live, we die.
What happens in between,
Sunshine and blue skies bring,
Or thunderous, blackened sky.
A power deep within us,
That helps map out our life.
Do we lay down, be still and wait?
Or do we stand and strive?
No obstacle exists, unless we put it there.
What treasures life can offer,
So precious and so rare.
Life’s masterpiece created from a canvass that is bare.
The beauty of a sunset, preparing for the dawn,
A rainbow’s vibrant colours,
If heart and mind are open,
Will every day adorn.
How adorable – little Yolanda
I was born in Madrid Spain and immigrated to Australia with my parents when I was four years old. I speak and write Spanish fluently and dabble in Italian. I have grown up surrounded by Spanish culture and traditions and have integrated them into my life in the land down under. I guess you could call me a Spanaussie.
I live in beautiful Sydney, Australia and am a Licensed Conveyancer. For those of you who don’t know what that is … I practice Property Law and all that it involves.
I have many interests one of them being the theatre both performing and attending. I am a member of a community theatre at which I perform.
Yolanda loves to act and write!
My greatest passion is writing. Life is my inspiration with all its beauty and its ugliness. I have always enjoyed writing, but started my blog as a way of externalising my thoughts and emotions. Whilst I enjoy writing prose, poetry is my first love. I love the freedom of expression it allows. Writing allows me to immerse myself in another character or travel to another world. It feeds my soul and lets my imagination take flight. It is as essential as breathing.
I live, I love, I breathe …. a mixture of unique and ordinary. A little bit mad, but sometimes very sane. Life has brought moments of overwhelming joy and dark despair …. I travel through this journey that is life, with one eye open and the other closed to unnecessary reality.
Please visit Yolanda’s blog and connect with her on Twitter.
Describe yourself in five words?
Outgoing, Socially Conscious, Loyal, Passionate, Creative.
Who do people say you look like? Elizabeth Hurley.
If a star could play you in the story of your life who would you hire?
Cate Blanchett because I think she is the greatest actress Australia has produced. I would only want the best to tackle my life LOL.
What genre would your life story be? And do you have a snappy title for your life story?
Drama and Romance – ‘The Jigsaw Puzzle’
What fact about yourself would really surprise people?
I sometimes feel very insecure and lost.
What are you addicted to?
Coffee and Writing.
*I have become addicted to coffee since moving down under Yolanda – it is just so good in Australia!
What assumptions do people make about you that are wrong?
That I am confident all the time.
And what assumptions are bang on right?
I am outspoken about what I believe in.
How do you work through self-doubts and fear?
I write and talk myself into having the courage to move forward.
What scares you the most?
Growing old without someone to share old age with.
What makes you happiest?
My relationships with friends and family and of course writing.
What’s your greatest character strength?
My ability to listen to others thoughts and opinions and see things from all perspectives. I am extremely just and never one-side. I am very balanced in my life.
What’s your weakest character trait?
My need to try and please everyone. I am working on this.
What are you most proud of in your personal life?
My two beautiful daughters.
What do you hope your obituary will say about you?
‘She touched people’s lives.’
*Yes, you have already.
What other jobs have you had in your life?
I was a Legal Paralegal and I am now a Licensed Conveyancer. I have always worked in the legal industry.
If you could study any subject at university what would you pick?
Can I pick two? Fine Arts encompassing Writing and Psychology, I have always been fascinated by people and what makes them tick.
*Oh that does sound fascinating. I might join you!
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I would love to live in Paris for a while. The romantic in me. Truthfully, I would not want to permanently live anywhere other than Sydney. I love this city.
Tell us about your family?
My father passed away 18 years ago and I still miss him. I have a crazy family from my mother to my three brothers. We are family, but most importantly we are great friends. Then there are my two beautiful daughters, the loves of my life.
Yolanda with her parents
How much sleep do you need to be your best?
Seven hours does it.
If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask?
I’ve been asked this before, but only for dead people so I will not give the same answers as some of you have read the previous interview. I will do people that are alive.
Cate Blanchett – I love theatre and would love to learn from her.
Pink – I love her music and the fact that she is very much an individual.
Nelson Mandela – He is one of the greatest leaders of all time and I respect his courage and humility. I read The Long Road to Freedom. What an inspirational book.
I have to add one dead person and I will leave it there:
Jane Austen – I would love to meet my favourite author.
If Jane Austen came I would have to ask my eldest daughter as it is her favourite author also and because I love spending time with her.
What’s your favorite meal?
This is hard, I enjoy all types of food and do not really have a favourite dish. I do love soups, any kinds of soups.
What color represents your personality the most?
Yellow, I am generally a very happy person. White is my favourite colour though, it represents a blank canvass that can filled with whatever you desire.
What movie do you love to watch?
So many … I do still love ‘Gone With The Wind’. It is the ultimate love story.
How do you feel about social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter? Are they a good thing?
I think that they are a necessary evil. That probably sounds a little harsh. It allows us to communicate with people on a scale that we may never have been able to before, but it can also be all consuming for some.
If you could do any job in the world what would you do?
Writer and coming close second Actress.
What are you most passionate about? What gets you fired up?
Injustice … the weak being taken advantage of, whether it be rape, domestic violence, sexual abuse, bullying, drugs because the pushers are exploiting the vulnerable … the list goes on.
What makes you angry?
See above and rudeness in people. It is so unnecessary.
Are you a city slicker or a country lover?
Definitely a city slicker. Whilst I enjoy visiting the country, I love the hustle and bustle of the city and the accessibility to restaurants, theatre, art galleries etc.
What would you love to produce in your life?
A good novel. That seems to be the main objective at the moment.
What’s the reason for your life? Have you figured out your reason for being here yet?
I think we search all our life for this and very few people ever truly understand why they are here. I feel that I am here to gain knowledge, I don’t think I will ever stop learning. I would like to think that when I am gone I have left footprints in people’s lives. Is there a reason? Maybe there are many …
Do you know your neighbors?
Yes. One better than the other and they are wonderful.
How important are friends in your life?
Of great importance, they have seen me through some of the darkest moments in my life.
How many friends does a person need?
I think if you have two good friends that love you flaws and all and will be there for you no matter what, you are very lucky. There are different levels of friendship.
What does love mean to you?
This has changed so much over the years. I am a romantic so I guess I want it all. Someone that becomes such an integral part of me that he becomes the air I breathe. I do believe though that you have have to be individuals.
When you get free time on the internet or you go to the library – what do you want to read about?
Anything and everything, I think that is the way you gain knowledge.
Do you find the time to read?
Not as much as I would like.
Last book you purchased? Tell us about it.
The Power of One – Ekhart Tolle. It helped me to understand that we really do have to live in the now. That we don’t have control over the past and very little control of the future. I still refer to it when I need to.
Who do you admire?
My parents they lived a much harder life and never seemed to complain.
Why do you write?
It frees me and allows me to find my way in life.
Have you always enjoyed writing?
Yes, but it has become more prominent in my life in the last two years.
What motivates you to write?
The roller-coaster that is life, emotions … everything and anything. There is always inspiration.
What writing are you most proud of?
I am Here … I cried when I wrote it. http://lovepainandothercatastrophes.blogspot.com.au/2013/06/i-am-here.html
What books did you love growing up?
The Hobbit, Anne of Green Gables, Little Women….so many.
Is writing a gift or a curse?
Both I think. It can be all consuming and frustrating at times.
What book should everybody read at least once?
Pride and Prejudice … As I said, I am a romantic.
Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?
I was born in Madrid, Spain and was four years old when I came to Australia. Whilst I was raised in Australia I am a mixture of European and Aussie in my way of life and culture. I think it has enhanced my life in many ways.
How did you develop your writing?
It started as a way of expressing my internal struggle with life.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Life with its beauty and it ugliness. What greater inspiration is there?
What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?
Well, I have only had a poem published quite a few years ago, so I am not really qualified to talk about publishing. Writing I find brings me great joy. Finding the time to write is the problem. Marketing, well if you consider jumping from social media site to social media site to try to promote your writing marketing … this can be a full time job. I was inspired to write a blog about this.
What marketing works for you?
At this early stage I am finding that Google+ is the greatest marketing tool.
Do you find it hard to share your work?
No, I love sharing my work and am happy to receive constructive criticism. It only serves to improve my writing. We gain knowledge from others.
Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?
Yes, both my family and friends have been extremely supportive of my decision to write.
How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?
Wherever and whenever the inspiration and thoughts hit me … I journal write, phone, tablet, laptop. I find I need to get the things down as the words come to me and then I extend on them.
Where do you get support from? Do you have friends in the industry?
At the moment mainly from the writing communities I am involved in on Google+. The people I have met have been very helpful and supportive and I am very grateful.
Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support?
My friends and there is a small group of people involved in Support A Writer that I am particularly close to. They know who they are.
Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?
LOL … I’d be happy to get a book published, when I write one. I feel that I have already had some success. Many of my readers have told me that I have touched their lives. I would consider that to be success.
How often do you write? And when do you write?
I write every day, mainly at night and on weekends.
Sometimes it’s so hard to keep at it – What keeps you going?
I can’t imagine not writing.
What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?
I hope my writing touches them and they can relate to it. It would be nice to think that it helps them through life’s journey. Like taking a friend’s hand.
How do you think people perceive writers?
A little eccentric living in a fantasy world. I think most creative people are perceived that way. They are probably right, we are all a little crazy!
What’s your next project?
I write every day. I wrote my first short story last month and it was received very well. I have many poems that I have written. I am trying to decide in which direction to go at the moment. It is exciting.
Thank you Alana for giving me the opportunity to speak to you. You are an inspiration in the writer’s community.
*Thanks for the interview Yolanda, it was great to learn more about your writing journey. Please let me know how your book writing goes, I’d love to feature that too. All the best to you!