Saturday Spotlight: Are we blagging it to blog it? by Christina Templeton

I’m delighted to welcome Christina Templeton to the blog today for her first ever blog post! She’ll tell you more of her story, but we met Christina in December when she got in touch after the publication of Winter Tales.  Christina’s two gorgeous grandsons have cystic fibrosis and she and her family have been heavily involved in fundraising for CF charities.  Christina is a member of the RNA’s New Writer’s Scheme which is, of course, how the Write Romantics met. I’ll stop talking now and hand you over to Christina (but please be nice to her, she’s new at this…)

IMG_3669

As an author with three novels in the bag you’d think I’d be writing blogs with no trouble at all, but the truth is this is my first attempt. I always thought people only blogged if they did something amazing, like my son-in-law when he ran seven marathons on seven continents in aid of cystic fibrosis. Now his blogs were interesting!

Yes, his chosen charity is close to my heart as two of my grandsons suffer from this disease, but he wrote about his experiences in China, Chile and Antarctica whilst raising over half a million pounds.  But what do I have to blog about? A retired civil servant, blessed with a happy family life and a passion for writing, I’ve never done anything dramatic or heroic, never made a difference to world affairs or even local affairs. Apart from the shock diagnosis of cystic fibrosis in my grandsons, most of the drama in my life comes from my imagination. Which, of course, is why I’m a writer. IMG_3665

My daughter put me straight.  ‘What about our charity?’ she said.  She was referring to a local charity we set up to make life easier for children living with cystic fibrosis in Hampshire.  We provided things like trampolines to keep them active, nebulisers that take one minute instead of twenty to administer medicine and access to laptops to alleviate their boredom during frequent hospital stays.

‘And mum, what about your writing?’  she said ,almost as an accusation.  She’s right, of course.  Whilst I’m still without an agent and yet to have my novels published mainstream, I have completed three, won several short story competitions, been published in local and county magazines, uploaded four children’s stories on to Kindle and published a book of short stories on Amazon.

IMG_3666I’m in the Romantic Novelists New Writer’s Scheme and am encouraged by their feedback. I get really great support at the twice-yearly Dunford Novelists conferences – supported by best-selling authors like Catherine King,  Della Galton and Pam Fudge to name but a few.  Established or beginner, attending authors share their work and offer it up for critique. It’s quite intense but very useful and I’ve met some lovely people, including novelist Julia Bryant, who I’m proud to call my mentor and friend.

Are we blagging it to blog it? I thought so until I recently discovered the Write Romantics.  As well as publishing an anthology to raise funds for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust, they bring together so many things I’m passionate about – love, life and writing. I think what I’ve learned is that whilst authors may be better at fiction than fact, as the protagonists in our own life stories we all have something to say, and we know from our craft that heroes don’t always need to do heroic things to be interesting or win hearts and minds.  Are we wasting precious time blogging when we should be focused on our novels? It’s a valid question, but we novelists know the journey is as important as the end goal.  The life of a novelist can be isolated and blogging helps you feel connected to a wider community – it makes the journey more enjoyable, and let’s face it – what’s the point of writing if you don’t enjoy it?

tenoutoftencover2

Christina Templeton has written three novels and is crafting her fourth.  In between, she keeps her imagination active by writing short stories and as from today, blogs.  She’d love an agent, a publisher or both. You can find out more about her and her work here.

Thank you so much to Christina for joining us today.  If you’d like to leave a comment for her please click on the word ‘comments’ in teeny, tiny type at the bottom of this post.  And as Christina mentioned, Winter Tales our charity short story anthology is available here with all the royalties going to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and Teenage Cancer Trust.   Have a great weekend! Alys x

Advertisements

10 thoughts on “Saturday Spotlight: Are we blagging it to blog it? by Christina Templeton

  1. Christina, congratulations on your first blog post! And, may I say, it’s excellent!

    Really, your daughter is absolutely right. You have an awful lot to be proud of. Not only have you achieved a great deal in your writing career, but you’ve set up this marvellous charity to make life that bit easier for children with CF in Hampshire. Now, that really is something to be proud of!

    Some of my own children carry the CF gene, and I have a nephew with CF, so I fully understand the impact that this condition can have on a person’s life – not to mention the impact it has on friends and family. That’s why I was so pleased to be part of the Winter Tales project. We can all make a difference, however small, and a lot of people making a small difference adds up to a very big difference indeed.

    Thank you so much for a delightful blog post. I hope your charity goes from strength to strength, and good luck with the writing! xx

    • Thank you Sharon, I’m glad you liked the blog. I hope to do more in the future via my web site and link them to my writing Facebook. I’ll certainly keep following the Write Romantics blogs and take an interest in the group. I hope your nephew will be all right, and at least if you know your children carry the CF gene you (and they) are forearmed.
      All the best and thanks again,
      Christina

  2. I agree with sharon above, what a lovely blog, its so lovely to hear about families working well together and that doesn’t come without skill and hard work. Your charity sounds very special, something else to be really proud of, as well as your writing success. Lovely to ‘meet’ you hope to hear from you again x

  3. That was a lovely post Christina and so good to have you on the Write Romantics blog. Great to hear you are getting useful feedback from the New Writers Scheme too- it can be a lonely game but it sounds as if you have a good balance and a lovely network of friends and family. Can only get better!

  4. Lovely post, Christina. I share your concerns about blogging and when it’s my turn I wrack my brains trying to come up with something earth-shattering or, at least, original. And then I forget all that and just write what I feel like at the time. It seems to work – well maybe… Anyway lovely to ‘meet’ you here, and best of luck with all your writing and charity projects.

  5. You know what you’re going to have to do now, Christina? More blogging! Thanks so much for being our guest for your very first experience of what I’m sure will be many more posts. It sounds like you have so much to share and, sometimes, a blogger doesn’t have to have mountains of amazing experiences to talk about; they just need to have an engaging voice and share a bit of themselves. Which is exactly what you’ve done. I’m sure you’ll find a home for your novels very soon, especially on the back of your competition successes. And we hope to be the first to hear all about it 🙂
    Jessica xx

  6. Hi Christina. What a lovely post and your daughter has it spot on, you have achieved something really amazing and worthwhile with your charity. I also think you absolutely got to the heart of things when you said there is no point in writing unless you enjoy it and clearly you love it and do it very well. Congratulations on your first blog post – it’s fabulous and, I am sure, the first of many. Jo x

  7. Fabulous first blog post Christina, they’re not very easy to write sometimes. I can write thousands of words for a novel but really struggle with blogging. Good luck with everything and how gorgeous are your grandsons 🙂

    Helen xx

  8. Hi Christina,
    Your daughter is right…it sounds as though you’ve done some amazing things with the charity and your writing. Glad to hear you’ve joined the RNA NWS too…its a fabulous scheme to take your writing even further.
    I really enjoyed this blog post…I hope to see you blogging again some time soon!
    Helen R 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s