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I am ashamed of my creative journey.

Or at least I have been. Until now.

For as far back as I can remember I have felt ashamed of who I am. About the things that make me who I am. For the things I want- to travel the world and write- or don’t want- to study, establish a career, settle down. What I want and don’t want has felt like it doesn’t fit the mold of what is acceptable in mainstream society. My life’s purpose lives outside the realms of the traditional paths of study & career. I’m not opposed to a having a day job, but I’ve never identified a long-term vocation that remotely appealed to me to deserve the investment of my time, money and energy. As a result, I am ‘uneducated’ in the traditional sense. I didn’t graduate high school and I have not attended college or university. I have studied writing, in the form of attending many workshops and masterclasses. In this method, I am also a highly skilled circus performer, specializing in advanced level hula hooping.

My doubt isn’t associated with my ability to write or the importance of my stories. My doubt stems from my perceived inability to survive in the mainstream world without a mainstream vocation.

Until now I’ve seen my creative passions and interests as not viable in the ‘real’ world. I questioned how I was supposed to live in the ‘real’ world. I have never believed and trusted that I could survive doing what I do. Not because I doubted that my passions could be monetized. It wasn’t a matter of whether I could do it. It was a matter of whether I should. Whether it was a responsible choice for my life, and as that of a contributing member of society. I have never believed and trusted that I could get by in the world being what I am and doing what I do.

I have spent years trying to put myself in a box into which I do not fit. Ultimately in order to be approved of and accepted by others, whether it be parents, family members, romantic partners or friends.

Today I felt as if I was finally able to start letting go of the shame around my preoccupation with my life’s purpose of being a storyteller.  To start letting go of the fear and guilt around my lack of interest in a ‘traditional’ life path of study and career.

I no longer believe that the pursuit of my passions is irresponsible.

I no longer believe that I am being naive to believe that I will be supported in this pursuit of my life purpose, whether directly or indirectly.

As a creative, as a storyteller, I am worthy of love and connection.

This self-realization- this permission– has brought me to a whole new phase of my creative journey.

Watch this space.

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Books By The Beach: A Kind Gesture at Burleigh

Welcome to Burleigh, stop no.8 on my Books By The Beach tour!

Burleigh Heads is a suburb that extends north to Miami Headland, and south to Tallebudgera Creek, Palm Beach. The centre of the neighborhood is James Street, which consists of cafes, delis, hairdressers, retailers, chemists, restaurants and charity stores.

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Burleigh Beach

 

Burleigh Heads’ surf break attracts surfers from the Gold Coast and beyond. At the headland of Burleigh, locally known as “The Point”, is a popular vantage point for surfing spectators. On Sunday afternoons, bongo drum players gather in Justins Park for a jam session, which attracts a crowd for a picnic dinner in the park. Many also practice acrobatics, juggling and hula hooping to the beat of the drums.

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Burleigh Beach

Indigenous Australians inhabited the area of Burleigh Heads for thousands of years prior to European settlement. The Indigenous tribe were known as the Kombumerri clan, who had named the area ‘Jellurgal’. The Jellurgal Aboriginal Cultural Centre is based at the foot of the Burleigh Headland, alomgside the pristine Tallebudgera Creek.

In 1840, James Warner was commissioned to survey the coastline near Moreton Bay. Warner named the Headlands near tallebudgera Creek ‘Burly Head’ because of its massive appearance. Decades later the name was adapted to the more genteel spelling of ‘Burleigh Heads’ and was declared a town reserve by the Queensland Government in 1871.

Burleigh Heads has a number of heritage-listed sites, including the David Fleay Wildlife Park located on Tallebudgera Creek Road. Burleigh Headland is part of a wildlife corridor connecting coastal forests south to the Queensland New South Wales border ranges.

The Gold Coast skyline can be seen in the distance from Burleigh Heads. The north-east facing beach is protected by the point to the south and offers one of the best swimming, body boarding and surfing beaches on the Gold Coast. A mature stand of Norfolk Island Pines form a backdrop and are home to native birds.

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Burleigh Hill, with a view north of the Gold Coast skyline

The Quiksilver Pro, an event on the World Surf League, is often contested at Burleigh Heads when the surf is not contestable at Kirra or Snapper Rocks.

A Kind Gesture is yet another short story that put me through my paces. Loosely based on true events, A Kind Gesture tells the story of Stuart, a lonely divorcee who picks up a young hitchhiker on a cold night in Chicago. As their encounter progresses, it becomes obvious that neither is who they seem.

PLEASE NOTE: At the end of this video there is information about purchasing A Kind Gesture on Amazon. My books are not currently available on Amazon. Instead you can download a PDF version of the story for FREE HERE: A Kind Gesture

Thank-you for joining me here at Burleigh! See you next at Tallebudgera Creek!