Written by JJ Barnes
I interviewed inspirational wellness coach and author Jacqueline Kent about her career, what inspires her, and the creative process that went into her latest book, Onward And Upward.
Tell me a bit about who you are.
I’m Jacqueline, a women’s wellbeing coach and author. In my mid 40s, I’m a mum of boys and full time carer to my 23 year old, I’m also a soon to be wife (hence the use of 2 different names on my books currently), having met my soulmate Bruce in 2017 after a long journey of self discovery. I love to share lessons I have learned in my life in the hope that they may help or inspire others.
When did you first WANT to write a book?
I’ve always had it in me to write, it’s a passion of mine, I love words and love to find ways to express things that may otherwise go unshared. I think I’ve known from my 20s that I would write a book and maybe get published one day, but my first short story (it was very short!) was brazenly shared in front of my class in 3rd year juniors!
When did you take a step to start writing?
I drafted lots of ideas in 2017 when my life was changing for the better – and fast! I was inspired every day to create something in words and really began to step into into being a writer. It was already becoming very much a part of my world then, and although I didn’t know it I had already connected with the person who would help me bring my ideas into reality.
How long did it take you to complete your first book from the first idea to release?
In February 2018 I made a conscious decision that I was going to write a life changing book, by the end of the following month I knew what it was going to be about, when I began writing I would write between 1,000 and 3,000 words in an hour and by the August of the same year it was available to buy – so less than 6 months.
How long did it take you to complete your latest book from the first idea to release?
I had the first inkling of my 2nd publication in July 2018 but I didn’t sit down to get it done until about April 2020. The final version wasn’t completed or available until June 2021 so this one was a bit longer in the making even though I could see how many people it was going to help.
Focusing on your latest release. What made you want to write You’ve Got This?
After I had finished writing my first book Onward and Upward, I realized I had learned and carried myself through so much, and come through it in a healthy way that I felt I really needed to share those lessons with others. I completely underestimated just how huge it was that I had taken myself through so many huge life events without crumbling – or to come through it now happier than I have ever been. Happiness is something not enough people spend time seeking and I want to make that journey a little easier for them even if they feel life has dealt them a pretty rubbish hand.
What were your biggest challenges with writing You’ve Got This?
Balancing the sharing of my personal experiences with the insights and knowledge of actual methodologies that can help. In my mind personal experiences are important to share but that isn’t always what the reader wants to hear – they want to know how it’s going to help them.
What was your research process for You’ve Got This?
I have encountered many experts of the different processes along the way, I had also done a lot of personal learning around some of the methodologies such as reiki and tapping so I shared the learning from those and looked at other books which covered similar information so I could pit it alongside them.
How did you plan the structure of You’ve Got This?
I began by plotting out just how many different techniques I wanted to share, and then grouped them together, but the structure changed along the way. As I did more work on the kind of audience I wanted to reach this book with, and once I had the epiphany that it needed to be helpful for those who didn’t yet know how to help themselves, I included enough self-care related topics at the beginning so as they started on those they could see that more was available to them. It was very important to me to help them develop rather than just read.
Did you get support with editing, and how much editing did You’ve Got This need?
I didn’t get any help for this book it was a complete standalone project, but I am lucky enough to be part of Cassandra Farren’s writing academy and both her support and the academy members as well as my business coaches have been a wealth of support to me during the process.
What is the first piece of writing advice you would give to anyone inspired to write a book?
Make it your non-negotiable if you are serious about finishing it. Treat yourself to the time rather than looking at it as a chore – other things can always find a way to prioritise themselves, it’s your job to keep focused on the end goal, no one else will give you the time you need.
Can you give me a hint about any further books you’re planning to write?
At the moment I’m looking at creating some pretty journals rather than written books, to sit alongside my other books for the ready to gain more helpful insights.
And, finally, are your proud of your accomplishment? Was it worth the effort?
I’m really proud of my books, it’s always been something I wanted to do and I feel like I have definitely left something that I can be remembered by, which is a huge deal.
Pop all your book, website and social media links here so the readers can find you:
Collaboration book – The Girls Who Refused to quit Volume 1 – Bit.ly/TGsWRTQ
My facebook page – www.facebook.com/jacqueline.e.author
My facebook group where I help midlife women take the first steps in self-care – www.facebook.com/groups/flipscript