From time to time I feature other authors on my blog. Today I am very excited to have Robin Waters, LMFT on Muse News.
Robin L. Waters, who also writes under the name Robin Waters Casper LMFT, is a retired CA Marriage and Family Therapist now living Hawaii with her husband and her dog, Lucky. Robin’s background as a therapist and a Reiki Master Teacher lends itself well as inspiration for the healing stories, projects, and metaphysical fiction she loves to write, publish, and sometimes record. She envisions dabbling in non-fiction with an anthology series: a collection of phenomenal stories from healers. She also holds the space and spark for an impactful marketing network of websites that will sustainably uplift independent authors, artists, and musicians while also benefiting homelessness and human services nationally. Her books are available on Amazon.com, createspace.com, and in select stores. A listener may purchase CDs and Mp3 downloads on Amazon or downloads only on CDbaby.com. She is the owner of Waters N Light Reiki N Books.
Heather: Robin, thank you for joining me today.First, of all, let me say “e komo mai” to Hawaii. I hope you’re settling in nicely to island life. As you know I moved to Hawaii in 2016 and found the energy perfect for writing. Hope it is the same for you. Can you tell us about your book “Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy; A read-along, sing-along, feelings picture book and Mindful Max and the Mental Magic Club?
Robin: Mahalo for your welcome. I love my new life in Hawaii. Yes, Hawaii is my main muse, one that brings a natural flow of ideas. Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy; A read-along, sing-along, feelings picture book follows my real-life dog, Lucky, a beautiful Golden Cocker Spaniel, as he emotes feelings in doggy behaviors through full-color photos. After the story which is also a song, we ask questions to invite children to discuss emotions with their parents, caregivers, grandparents, teachers, spiritual leaders, and/or therapists. The song is sold separately as an Mp3 download, a CD, and a Song Audiobook on Audible.
Mindful Max and the Mental Magic Club launched the year after and is an early reader chapter book, the only chapter book that weaves mindfulness meditation as the vehicle for self-calming, caring, empathy and grief issues into a story for ages 7 to 9 (that easily could stretch from 6 to 10). It is an ebook as well as a print book.
Heather: What are you working on now?
Robin: I have a debut adult novel, Beaming up Rosie, in final copyedit and proof-reading that should launch for publication by the end of 2017, or at least spring of 2018. A thought-provoking book, it spins a surrealistic tale about Rosie Rich, an almost middle-aged dentist with a secret shameful past who becomes intertwined with Ken Wonder, a youthful, cosmic surfer dude in Pismo Beach, California. Ken dazzles Rosie with sex appeal while his magnetic force-field draws her into a vortex on a supernatural journey. Her quandary manifests through exposure to reincarnation, psychic phenomena, odd alternative modalities, signs of synchronicity, and karmic connection. The bizarre circumstances test her tenuous hold of sanity, an effect from traumatized early beginnings that spawned a soul convinced of only one eternal, hell-bound destination. Destiny looms as a monster that will destroy her unless she configures the pieces and messages together to transform her karma.
I know, intriguing, right? Please stay tuned for updates. I should also say that Hawaii played a major role in this book process for me. My debut as a published novelist would have to wait many years, as I was only able to write when I joined my Muse on visits here twice a year. As time progressed I improved in my ability to write the novel, but this went on for six years. Also, not to spoil anything, my travels to the major Hawaiian Islands inspired me on other levels that directly affected the novel.
Other projects that I am working on are the Spanish version of Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy and the Hawaiian version, Lucky Lucky Aloha Puppy, that has a new island-style chant for the song that has become a shortened story. I am seeking a Hawaiian language translator and consulting on the song/text that I have written.
On the back burner is a series of non-fiction books called, Sublime Super-healings 300, each exploring a different modality chronicling phenomenal healings and spotlighting the healers.
And, on the visionary horizon, as you and I have discussed, my muse and intuition has sprung something special into my consciousness: a massive network of empathy websites under the domain, www.ewarmth.life that will market local independent artists, authors, and musicians who agree to a seller’s commission to compensate social service programs that work to end homelessness and, in areas that choose to address other issues, other humanity issues desperately needed. The acronym stands for: Empathy Websites of Artists’ Revenue-share Marketing to Transcend Homelessness (or Hardship, Hunger, Hopelessness, Helplessness, the Health-impaired, the Hearing-impaired, the Hurricane-impaired, etc. for the “H”). This network will give independent artists, authors, visual, and auditory arts creators an avenue to market in their geographic area, enabling their communities to support them while also supporting programs that agree to collaborate on this venture to raise funds for effective, sustainable outreach. Heaven help us; this is a monumental task that will take coordination from multiple sources for it to be successful.
Heather: Can you share with us a little about your writing process? Are you more of a “Pantser” or a “Plotter”?
Robin: I assume you mean an author who flies by the seat of his or her pants or a person who plans meticulously. I am most definitely a “Pantser”. I am guided by intuition, dreams, mental images that fly in from the hypnopompic state (the state when a person transitions from sleep to waking, awake but not yet fully alert), concepts that hit me from my daily life that I can plug into my books. Inspiration pops in from TV shows, reading, songs, music, journaling, the ocean delivering a message, conversations with friends, and on and on.
Heather: In addition to children’s books, do you blog, or write poetry? How do you allow the muse to work through you?
Robin: My mother passed away last December. She was an established Los Angles poet, known for her dream poetry, so that was her area, not mine. I’ve considered a blog, but haven’t yet put energy into one. Further musings about my Muse: She whispers to me from the ocean, Hawaiian-style. Additionally, various forms of intuition grace my writing life. Aside from a Hawaii Muse, often I employ guided automatic writing by meditating, then writing scenes that arise from somewhere beyond in free-flowing form. The title “Sublime Super-healings 300” floated up to my consciousness in a hypnopompic state. The capitalized word, WARMTH, grabbed my attention during a weekend camping trip in Lake Tahoe in a spiritual download. I knew it was an acronym for a magnanimous organization that helped people be successful and overcome obstacles, but I wasn’t certain of the exact details for what it represented until a year later. Dreams offer rich symbolism and metaphor; sometimes calls for action spell out clearly and definitively. Often, an idea arrives in one of these modes and will preoccupy my mind until I flesh it out and seriously consider manifesting it.
Heather: What tips do you have to overcome writer’s block?
Robin: What works for me may not work for others, or it might work great. Writer’s block is fussy and cruel; it picks at the edges of our creativity, taunting us with a lack of flow. I suggest to my writer friends they listen to their inner voice, their Higher Self, the part of their psyche that already has the story or the concepts outlined, ready for us to zoom in and adeptly pluck it out. The way I found to do that is through energy healing self-treatment through Reiki. Before I was introduced to Reiki, I used meditation to still the mind and observe what was flowing through after the mind-chatter phase had passed. Then I would listen to the inner thoughts and sometimes ask questions for this deeper part of myself to answer. When I snapped out of it, I noted details of the experience and any wisdom gleaned. This next avenue might sound odd unless you have experienced kinesiology, more commonly called “muscle testing”, but another way I tap into my Higher Self to write is a kind of mind-body awareness that allows me to ask my body questions in yes or no fashion and feel the ensuing sensation as an affirmation or as a signal of denial.
Heather: What is your process for stepping into the character? Do you find it difficult to write from a child’s perspective?
Robin: I use the above methods and ask questions of my characters, then listen inside for the answer. In automatic writing, when I allow the flow of creativity to authentically pour through, it becomes clear what motivates my characters, their hopes, dreams, concerns, how they relate to others, how others react to them, their schemes to reach their goals, what blocks them from reaching their goals, what compels them, what makes them happy, or sad, or angry, or frustrated, etc., their language and speaking style, personality type, education level, hobbies, and all that goes into developing defined characters. As for writing from a child’s perspective, that is easy for me as I was a children’s therapist, so it was my job to explore their inner worlds. I loved my work and found I have a rich inner child that related well to my clients.
Heather: Do you have any advice for writers on how to put away the creative hat and put on the revising hat when it comes time for revisions?
Robin: Oh, Heather, I may be the wrong person to ask. I have a habit of habitual revision. Two out of the three projects to date have taken years to publish. I wrote Lucky’s book swiftly. As I was singing the song to him, I recorded it and published months later. The creative process is fun, especially with intuition as your guide and ally. Revision is much more calculated. Chopping away at my specially cultivated text pains me. Nevertheless, each word and sentence matters as part of the big picture, an ingredient in a very complicated recipe that if not tossed together with finesse will end up a mush of words, instead of a delicacy for reading engagement. Truly, I’d say the time to stop writing and start revising is when you feel it in your heart, not just your brain, that you’ve come to the end of the road, driven your first draft as far as you can. Of course, at some point a professional editor working on projects helps immensely, because as good as we think it is, nothing works the magic in development and/or cleaning up that an experienced editor can. It also helps when you give early drafts to readers, or writing coaches, for feedback so you can take their honest reactions into consideration when deciding which way to proceed.
Heather: Thank you again for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk with me today. Where can our readers find your books?
Robin: My pleasure. It’s always an honor when someone requests an interview. I feel lucky to share my sphere of knowledge. Clearly, we all have light to share with the world, so if anyone is interested in contacting me, please do. The lighthouse of exchanging thoughts and ideas stays eternally open at Waters N Light Reiki N Books. I especially love to engage with readers and receive feedback, positive or negative.
I am listing my contact info and links to versions of my books and all links are listed on my website www.watersnlight.com/books.html. The children’s ebooks only work on Kindle Fires due to the graphics. Beaming up Rosie will be available as a regular adult ebook as soon as possible after publication of the paperback.
Robin Waters Casper, LMFT, retired (and Lucky)
aka Robin L. Waters
Waters N Light Books
Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy; A read-along, sing-along, feelings picture book
Print Price: $9.99 plus tax and shipping
(above link has access to Kindle Fire ebook, print and audiobook versions)
Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy Song
Coming Soon: Lucky Lucky the Love Puppy; A read-along, sing-along, feelings picture book, Spanish Version and
Lucky Lucky Aloha Puppy which is this book’s unique Hawaiian/English song and story.