About Winfreda Donald



Winfreda Donald 

The early years:

Winfreda was born and educated in Queensland.

She was the first of seven children (four boys and three girls) born over an eighteen year period. The family lived in many parts of the state – mainly in rural areas and smaller coastal towns.

The family swam, walked, ran, played sport, cycled, camped and experienced the usual goings on of a large family.

In the midst of this Winfreda became a serious student and voracious reader, and has never stopped learning or reading. An early interest in fiction writing was swallowed by the need to earn a living.

* * *

The working years:

Writing was significant – yes – non-stop; but the mundane kind dominated. It started with personal letters and cards from distant places, about moves and work and rites of passage.

Became professional; from nursing notes, lesson plans, operational research documents from proposal to outcome evaluation reports.

Then continued as an academic slog, from assignments to post-graduate theses.

The pattern for a restless, active life continued – with work and study in Glasgow, Edinburgh, several counties in Northern Ireland and back home in Australia. All supplemented by travels in Europe, USA and Canada.

Between times there were clutches of bureaucratic writing, within national, state and local authorities in three countries: the gamut, from ministerial speech notes to writing large tracts of the National Women’s Health Policy (1989).

* * *

The now years:

Above all, those peripatetic years gave precious opportunities to garner both fleeting and deeper insights into the lives of so many different kinds of people as a friend, colleague, nurse, midwife, educator, manager and bureaucrat.

Retirement brought an opportunity to write as a hobby, but gradually the focus changed – writing became addictive and the motivation to publish set in.

Now there is so much enjoyment in the freedom to meld fiction writing with a lifetime’s experience; no picky constraints from legal interpretation or graceless facts. Laurie’s husband reckoned she would never get past ‘bureaucratic think’, her son is mildly bemused. Readers must be the judge.

With a small collection of short stories, mentions on a couple of competition long and short lists, a high commendation and favourable responses by an editor and an agent, it was time to shape up the draft of the first novel in the Long shadows series. This activity was diarised on the http://sagalines.wordpress.com blog.

Now the first three books of the series are published both digitally and as paperbacks.

Past Imperfect, Present Tense and Future Hope are available on Smashwords, Amazon, Feedaread and through other popular online book stores.



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