Who or what inspires you to become the person you are? I was strong-willed as a child and a teenage maverick (of sorts). Not by choice in secondary school, but I refused to become someone I’m not, to fit in or become part of a group of people who’s behaviour I didn’t agree with. I wasn’t much for authoritarian figures either – if they had no proof or legitimate reason for me abiding by their rules. Eventually becoming my own boss was kind of inevitable!I walked to the beat of my own drum, imagined a lot and wore clothes that inspired me – all crimes punishable by verbal abuse and shoulder barging by bullies and the tough girls. It made me stronger, independent and even more determined to live the life I dreamed. Can anyone relate?I cherished older friends in the years above me and mature, more worldly wise role models in my parent’s friends (and the music of Janice, Jimmy and Jim). Family friends were and still are a motley crew of artists musicians, CND demonstrators and even more fantastical folk. Although being different didn’t always do me any favours or feel so good when I was young, I wouldn’t change a thing. Well okay, maybe one or two.To become who I am today and going forward, I follow a recipe of 50% dreaming 50% eyes wide open, seeing, learning, listening. After a few years lost working for other people, (many life and work lessons to be learned there too, though). I have slowly carved out my own career and creative place in this world, inspired by amazing folk from all eras of time. Of course, I am lucky enough to have an amazing creative partner in my husband and a family that have always believed in me unconditionally. Plus the support of the beautiful creative network of online friends, who have been discovered and bonded with over the years since I started this blog.I have been entranced by learning and listening about pioneers, creatives and artists since childhood. Even more so in my late teens when I was at college, I was one of those who actually enjoyed the art lectures! I spent most of my free time in the library, creating art on the photocopier and reading about artists and inspiring characters throughout history.When the book fair rolled into campus, I was lost in the worlds of Dan Eldon, Dorothy Norman and Anais Nin. Some books so ‘Scandalous’ other students didn’t brave reading them, others about exotic creatures who refused to conform to the norm, broke barriers and had their work banned or hidden behind that of their counterparts. Stories of heroic, wild and strong-willed women have always captivated me and spurred me on in my quest for creative freedom. Brontës forever! I have always followed my heart and my dreams and although we all have bumps in the road – so far so good.My new discovery and collaborators on this post – BookBeat now have me enthralled day after day with even more stories. Founded in 2015 BookBeat is a digital audiobook streaming service that has a treasure trove of stories all available for £12.90 per month. Thousands of titles from the classics to new releases, that you and I can enjoy whenever we want, wherever we are – with unlimited listening on or offline. If you are UK based – you can join me and give Bookbeat a try with a free 1 month trial by clicking here. There are of course no commitments and you can cancel your account at any time you wish by logging in online, it’s as easy as that. Who will next inspire you?Being shy, I started a blog as a way to communicate all that inspired me with folk from all around the globe, and in sharing moments of creativity my world has blossomed into so much more than I can have imagined. I enjoy time creating and am not afraid of spending time alone, taking time for oneself is important and listening with BookBeat has enabled me to hear motivational stories while I work and play. If anyone needs a motivational kick up the butt some days – it’s me.Fairly new to the world of listening to audiobooks, we fell in love with this way of learning on our travels around Scotland. Twelve hours straight in a car is a lot of music to choose, so stories of modern day adventurers and historical figures were a welcomed addition to our travelling escapades. We used to pick up old audiobook tapes in charity shops and boot fairs, but our new-ish car has no tape player. So, the discovery of so many stories saved and stored neatly in one app on my phone is a delight! Dean the ‘neat freak’ is happy too as all the untidy tapes are gone.
I am a complete convert and now listening to all kinds of wondrous things, Japanese poetry while I work, learning languages – I like to play these while I sleep as I think something extra must sink in?! I love to listen to non-fiction aspirational stories in the day and fiction while I slow things down in the evenings, and of course, travel and commuting for any length of time is now a joy especially as you don’t need to be online to listen.
BookBeat is only available to purchase in the UK or with a UK payment method. Do give it a go and let me know how you get on and what titles you are loving, I love recommendations! :)
Disclaimer: Paid collaboration. All words and images are my own with huge thanks to BookBeat for collaborating with me on this post. Thank you for reading and supporting the posts that keep L&S going strong! x