Two local writers live to author new works, but also enjoy taking the time to inspire others along their journey.
Chippewa Valley authors Julie Court and Diana Peterson spoke to a group of aspiring local writers Monday night at the Chippewa Falls Public Library, sharing their stories and books in addition to sharing some advice on how to progress and grow as a writer in the area.
A few pieces of the advice the two women shared were to write and chase what you’re passionate about, don’t be afraid to have others critique your work and do everything you can to make your work look professional both in the written works themselves and the marketing materials surrounding it.
Court’s book is entitled “The Incredible Life Makeover: Step-by-Step Transformation to Wholeness” and it echoes some lessons she has learned throughout her life. Court has been through many traumatic events during her life such as dealing with alcoholism in her family and navigating with a messy divorce, and she said her life experiences are what continue to inspire her to write and try to help those around her.
“My inspiration to write is to share the knowledge and wisdom from the lessons I’ve learned from my own life and being able to help as many people as possible,” Court said. “And some people just have something they need to share with the world, so don’t take it to the grave.”
Her book is a faith-based recovery system, but Court said you don’t need to be a Christian for the book to help you back onto the right life path.
“My book is not just for Christians that go to church and are very religious,” Court said. “My book ministers to people who just believe in God, have some issues and are open to him being a part of their journey. It can help a wide variety of people who are in different places in their lives.”
Peterson’s published works include diverse topics, with titles such as “The Adventures of Paul Bunyan,” “Logging in Wisconsin” and a series of original fictional works about a group of four sisters set in the 1950’s dubbed “The Montgomery Family Series.” With two of the four books in the series published so far, Peterson said she doesn’t see her literary output slowing down as new topics to cover and stories to tell are endless.
“I have always wanted to be a writer and I just keep finding new and fun things to write about,” Peterson said. “The more you read, the more you learn and the more you want to write about things. I love historical works, I love doing the research and writing about history. But I also love doing fiction. There is so much to write about out there and you can never hope to even cover half of it. There’s an endless supply of topics.”
Both authors echoed the sentiment that if you aren’t passionate about your work, you shouldn’t be writing at all; only do it if you love it. Peterson said she hopes her book and those from other area writers continue to inspire people to learn new things, and at the very least just enjoy their time with the printed word.
“I hope people enjoy my books and learn to like the people in them,” Peterson said. “I hope they see a little bit of themselves in there, learn new things and get spurred onto learning even more new things.”