... want to check out these amazing pre-and-post shows. All of them support the charity Given to Live which enables vulnerable and disabled people to attend live music events. Please check event posters for start times and bands. All events are also within walking distance of the stadiums so you've got no excuse for not going before and after the Foos! You can also take a look at the interview that Given to Live founder, Tom, gave.
Wendy is one of those people who gives off a wonderful, calming feeling. You get the sense that she'd invite you in for tea and you'd spend the entire day (and night) talking. Wendy was kind enough to stop by the blog and have a chat.
I was born
Wendy Steele in Romford, Essex back in the dark ages. I've lived all
over the county, settling in Billericay for 25 years. I moved to
Wales in August 2013...first living in a tent, then a caravan and
finally in a house in November 2013. I live on the outskirts of a
village in a dilapidated Grade II listed farmhouse with my partner
and two cats. My three grown up children still live in Essex and I
miss them every day. Living on a building site wasn't the original
plan but location was our priority and affordability a close second
so we're having to work hard to make our house a home.
restorer wasn't on my original CV but the more I learn about building
with stone and lime mortaring, maybe it should be!
I've been a
lover of words since I could read. During the power cuts in the 1970s
(told you I was ancient!) we played word games on scraps of paper by
candle light and I've loved solving anagrams and crosswords ever
since. I was encouraged by an English teacher to continue creative
writing and the desire to write every day has not left me.
As a chubby
child, taunted as a fairy elephant, I came to dance late in life but
as a dance teacher, I view my work as a mission to encourage everyone
out goddess!....I believe we all hold the universe inside ourselves,
just as we dwell within it. Limitations of what we can achieve are
set by ourselves, our fears and worries so I try to face my fears and
challenge myself, striking out in directions I once thought
the City was a narrow, blinkered existence so once I left to have my
first child, returning to cover holiday for a colleague, I recognised
that I was no longer part of this money orientated way of life. If
you have a dream, follow your heart. I waited almost 15 years before
moving to Wales but the dream never left me. Once the children were
through school and University, it was our time and though the break
away from family and friends was difficult, their support and love
has kept me going through tough times.
One of the
reasons we left the south of England was the focus on wealth as a
measure of worth and the judgemental attitudes of people living
there. Since starting our life in a tent in a field in Wales, we've
met many local people and not one of them has judged us on
appearances. Money and celebrity as goals in life cannot lead to a
happy planet. Until we put people first, there will always be a
growing chasm between the 'haves' and the 'have nots'. I'm a huge fan
of the Dalai Lama and his teachings and he puts kindness and
compassion at the top of the list. While the media supports celebrity
as an attribute and governments support bankers who cheat and steal
with no recourse, nothing will change.
from the Tutankhamun exhibition in London at the age of 10 and wrote
my first poem...I've been coming home and writing about my
experiences ever since and received my first paid commission as a
writer after attending my first belly dance workshops in London.
After a two day writing course at a local college, I spent three
years writing my first novel....it was wordy and the plot got a
little lost but the characters were good and this inspired me to keep
magical realism...real people, real magic. The first novel I
published was Destiny of Angels, First book in the Lilith Trilogy
and, like most of my writing, came out of a 'what if' question...what
if you could face the perpetrators of a childhood trauma and offer
them the choice of redemption? Who would take it? Who would shun it?
Angel Parsons works with Lilith and other gods and goddesses on the
astral plane, working magic and rituals alone and with her friends.
In the second book, Wrath of Angels, Angel stands up to Lilith and
faces the consequences of using magic. I have also published two
short story collections, one an easy read and the other, touching on
less pleasant subjects. There's also a wee erotic book, Too Hot for
Angels, expanding the sex scenes in Destiny of Angels and my
non-fiction book Wendy Woo's Year – A Pocketful of Smiles – 101
ideas for a happy year and a happy you. Having lived with depression
all my life, this book is full of ideas I use and have used, keeping
me smiling through life. Dedicated to my best friend from school who
died from cancer at the age of 40, I wanted to share these thoughts,
ideas, meditations and recipes to help others.
The Standing Stone book series in November 2014, inspired by the
landscape of Wales. The first book, Home for Christmas, is the story
of three women living in different time and space who are linked
together by the Standing Stone. The second book, Silence is broken is
in the final stage of editing and the cover will be ready very soon.
Cats - always willing to "help"!
All my books
are self published. As the publishing industry changed daily around
me, I made the decision out of a desire to share my stories. My books
have strong female characters and though they are met by extreme
challenges, just as we all are, they fight for what they believe and
I hope the stories are inspirational. I was inspired by the work of
Dion Fortune and I hope to bring real magic into the forefront of
I was lucky.
A great friend of mine, Peter Jones, helped me (and still helps me!)
putting covers together and formatting my work. Without him, I would
not be published. I'll be honest, Destiny of Angels, my first novel,
is not the greatest book ever written...I made mistakes but the
reviews I received helped me greatly and Wrath of Angels is a
tighter, pacier and better written book.
I decided to
read and review Indie fiction in a bid to help other Indie authors
learn and grow into accomplished writers. I write an honest review,
always bearing in mind the work that goes into creating a book, but
also suggesting what I found confusing or a detriment to the book.
Having made a decision when starting on social media to be myself, I
continue this with my book reviews. I believed, naively, that others
would do the same, the standard of self published books would rise
and Indie authors would stand on a level field with traditionally
published authors. While reviewers continue to give 5* reviews to
their friends or fellow authors in a group, regardless of the quality
of a book, this system will not help Indie authors. Self published
books will remain in second class. If a reader starts a book based on
a rave review and finds it badly written, they won't trust the
reviews on an Indie book again.
reviews would help change the view of readers but while self
published authors publish books that haven't been edited (I have
attempted to read many!) and their friends rate them highly, this
will never happen.
If you have
a story you feel compelled to share, go for it....but be prepared to
be disappointed. An eye catching cover is a must and editing your
work is essential. If you are driven to continue to share your
stories, do it but learn from past mistakes. I read and reviewed a
book recently, the third by the author. Littered with mistakes and
badly written, I reviewed it as such; by book three, I want to read a
more accomplished book....the group disagreed, I was 'sent to
Coventry' and everyone else gave it 5*!
will like your book....be prepared for this...it hurts. My novels
take at least two years to write, edit and publish; that's a lot of
time and energy to put into a project and when few people buy them,
and even fewer review, it's tough to bear but, if you believe in your
work, if you are happy to stand up and say 'This is my book and I'm
proud of it', keep going.
Thank you so
much for interviewing me and allowing me to share a little of the
world of Wendy Woo with your fans. I hope they will be interested in
adding a little magic into their future reading choices.
Destiny of Angels
(First book in the Lilith Trilogy)
events in her childhood, send Angel Parsons upon a different life
Fifteen years later, with the help of her new 'family'
and the resurrected relationship with Jenny Parkes, her only friend
from school, Angel confronts the perpetrators of her misery. Rather
than seeking revenge and to free herself from her past, Angel uses
the skills she has acquired to offer her persecutors the chance of
Will Angel fulfil her destiny and put her past
behind her or will the demons she unleashes consume herself and her
'family' and leave her empty and alone once more?
Wrath of Angels
(Second book in the Lilith Trilogy)
Parsons – wife, lover, entrepreneur and witch – is back and
though she strives to put her past behind her, Lilith the Dark
Goddess has other ideas.
has the power at her finger tips. The choice is hers. Will she evoke
her wrath to take her revenge on Lilith or will she summon nature's
forces and the strongest emotion on earth to put right the wrongs of
the Dark Goddess?
Wendy Woo's Year –
A Pocketful of Smiles 101 ideas for a happy year and a happy you
upon a time, two eleven year old girls made a pact of friendship. One
left school at sixteen while the other stayed on to study. The
friendship remained. One went abroad while the other stayed at home.
Years passed, marriage and children followed and the friendship
continued to flourish via letters and video messages.
twenty nine years the girls were reunited and the friendship sparked
with renewed love and affection. Three months later, one friend was
diagnosed with cancer. Nine months later, she died.
was the girl who lived and I made a promise to live my life for two
and make sure that every day included a smile in memory of my
isn't easy and I don't claim to hold the key to a life of everlasting
happiness but the ideas in 'A Pocketful of Smiles' are used or have
been used by me and have brought smiles and happiness to my life.
Pocketful of Smiles' is about being happy, irrespective of the
challenges life brings.
Pocketful of Smiles' is often practical, sometimes spiritual but
never religious, occasionally witty and full of ideas to bring a
smile to your day.