Creativity that runs in the family should be celebrated in my humble opinion. I was delighted to chat with Roger Wilson-Crane a few months ago about his fabulous book Certified, and I’m thrilled to now have the opportunity to chat with his lovely wife, Dr Victoria Wilson-Crane about her memoir Sixteen Days.
Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, Dr Victoria Wilson-Crane supports children and adults grieving life losses. Her memoir and self-help book Sixteen Days, due to be published in January 2022, provides advice for those supporting others in shock and grief following sudden death.
Educational innovator and leader, Vic used her academic writing skills and love of words as therapy as she faced significant bereavements in 2020.
Vic lives in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England, with her husband. They share their life and sense of humour with their dance-crazy daughter Holly Mae and their exuberant, unique, yet typically bonkers flat-coated retriever, Ted Hastings.
Tell us a little about yourself. (How did you get started writing? What do you do when you’re not writing?)
I work in education so I write a lot for work, but I took to creative writing last year during the Covid-19 lockdowns. I joined some online networking and personal development groups run by Michael Heppell and turbo coaching with him led me to his Write That Book online programme: https://www.michaelheppell.com/writethatbook/
When I’m not writing, I’m keen on learning so I’ve usually got some personal development on the go. Most recently, I became a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and I’m starting to work with clients which is interesting and rewarding.
I enjoy running, theatre and comedy, playing very basic things on the piano and spending time with my husband and our flat-coated retriever, Hastings.
Is this your first book? How many books have you written prior (if any?)
Yes, Sixteen Days is my first book – but hopefully not my last(!) – I’ve also begun to write a story for children based on Hastings and his unique abilities to help other people and spread happiness wherever he goes, as only dogs can.
What genre is it, and what is it about?
My book, Sixteen Days is a memoir, which contains some helpful advice for the reader on how to support people in shock and grieving, following bereavement.
What or who inspired you to write this book?
I experienced two sudden, unexpected family deaths early in 2020, my niece and cousin. So many people told me, and my family “I don’t know what to say.” And that was something I recognised; before this happened to me, I’d never felt like I had the words either when other people talked about their loved ones dying. Death is such a taboo subject. At the time, I read a lot of books to try to help me. Many of them were useful but none really spoke to me as someone close to the epicentre of grief but not quite at the heart of it. I wanted to share my story and the things people said and did which helped, in the hope that it might support other people.
What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?
Just get on and do it! Don’t be held back thinking you can’t – everyone has stories to tell and there are people out there who want to hear them.
What do you enjoy most about writing and why?
Sharing my ideas; I prefer writing to speaking in many ways, being a classic introvert, I like to think before I put my ideas ‘out there’ – writing gives me the chance to do that.
List three interesting facts about yourself
I performed at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
I have sung with Russell Watson on his national tour.
My wedding ‘cake’ was a stack of double-decker chocolate bars. We got married between Christmas and New Year so I was keen to make sure we weren’t relying on anything fresh that might be spoiled with the Bank Holidays or ruined on the drive to the venue. By choice, we had no fresh flowers either, as there were Christmas decorations everywhere.
What is your least favourite part of the publishing/writing process?
That’s difficult as it’s all been really interesting, learning different skills. It was obviously quite emotional writing about the subject so I had to be in the right frame of mind and I had many weeks when I made little progress. I was, therefore, rather inconsistent, and this frustrated me, at times. I’ve learned that it takes time, however, and I should be less impatient.
What can readers who enjoy your book do to help make it successful?
It would be wonderful if any readers who think the book is helpful could share it in their networks. Also, readers might consider whether my skills as a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist may be of use to anyone they know who is grieving and looking to feel a bit better than they do now.
What is your next project?
I’ve always got plenty on the go! I’m going to focus some time in 2022 to continue working on Hastings Helps – look out for that, soon.
Connect with Victoria:
Facebook Page for Sixteen Days
Clubhouse – @vicwilsoncrane
Sixteen Days is out 13th January. Buy a copy via Victoria’s WEBSITE