So, who is Catherine?
Catherine Gracey is an Australian writer and editor. She enjoys working across a range of areas, including short fiction, novels and non-fiction. Her personal blog is published three times a week. For information about her recent work and works in progress, you can visit her website.
To get into the spirit of this blog, here are Catherine’s answers to the 11 Questions:
1) What is something you do in your professional or artistic life that you think is really cool, and why do you think that about it?
The coolest thing about my professional and artistic life is that I get to decide what is important to me. I can work on projects that I feel passionate about instead of things that other people tell me to work on. I am the one taking all the risks, and I am the one responsible for my success. It’s a big thrill.
2) How did you come to be in the career position you are currently in?
I have always loved writing, but I have not always followed it as a career. One day I asked myself if I wanted to spend the rest of my life doing what I love, or if I wanted to spend my time on things that do not fulfill me. When put like that, it was a simple choice.
3) What is something from your personal life that you are very proud of, and why are you proud?
I’m proud of travelling overseas alone. A lot of people are shocked that I am prepared to travel alone to places I haven’t been to before, where I don’t know the language or anyone there for protection. Feminism might have been through a few waves, but being a single woman in a foreign country still unsettles a lot of people.
4) What is a personality trait you possess that other people might not notice, and how would they miss it?
I am shy. Once I’m comfortable with people I can open up and share a lot about myself, but until then forget it. I think a lot of people mistake my shyness for just being quiet, polite or tired. When I’m with good friends I can be so loud that it is easy to forget I was ever quiet to begin.
5) If you could change just one thing about the world, what would it be and why would you change it?
I would give everyone a healthy dose of self respect. So many of the problems I see around me could be avoided if the people involved cared about themselves a little bit more. It is a lot easier to be gentle and kind when you aren’t desperately trying to get other people to meet an internal need.
6) If you could give a young person one piece of advice, what would it be?
Just keep looking to your goals and putting one foot in front of the other; you’ll get there eventually.
7) What is something that you would like to do in your life that you haven’t done yet, and why haven’t you done it?
This is such a long list, but thankfully it is getting shorter. My next big goal is to publish the books that I am working on. There is an amazing amount of work that goes into something like this, but the real reason I haven’t done it yet is confidence.
8) What is something that you have sworn to never do again, and why won’t you repeat it?
I have promised myself that I will never let my body get out of control again. It is a lot easier to keep weight off than to shed it once it is on, and so much easier to maintain muscle strength than to build it. My life is so much more fulfilling when I feel good about the body I’m in, and it is easier to feel good about it when I feel healthy and strong.
9) If you could break one personal habit, what would it be and why would you break it?
Telling myself “I can’t” is the first thing that would go. It is a really negative habit, and one that benefits nobody. I would rather fail after giving something a go than fail because I never tried.
10) If you could take up a new hobby or learn a new skill, what would it be and why?
I would love to be bilingual, and my current mission is to learn German. I studied German in high school, but then I didn’t create the opportunity to use it for years, so I forgot most of what I learned. There are quite a few native German speakers in my life now, so I have plenty of opportunity to practice. I’m always impressed by people who can speak multiple languages, and it would be a thrill to count myself in that number one day.
11) Is there anything from you that we should be looking out for in the future?
Heaps. I have publications pending in Ink Monkey Magazine, which I am also a guest editor for, pending with Pill Hill Press, and a few books that I’m working on. It is a busy time in my life.