Could you first introduce yourself to the reader?
I'm Anne Welsh. I'm an author and philanthropist, and a married mother of two. Recently I've launched my memoir, 'Pain-Less: Living with Pain, Finding Joy’. It's about inspiring people who, like me, live with sickle cell anemia and work hard to find a pathway to a gratifying life while living with pain. Hopefully the book will motivate the reader to act and overcome challenges in life.
I have a degree in Accounting and Finance and an MSc in Investment Management. I wanted to establish workplace practices for ethnic minorities and people with disabilities.
What inspired you to write this memoir?
Since I became an adult, I have felt it is my duty to raise awareness of the sickle cell condition. It is a testament to many dear friends that I have lost from the disease.
What are the parts of being an artist you don’t like or find challenging?
As an author, it was a challenge to frequently find the internal discipline needed to complete the task of writing the next paragrpah, the next chapter - and keep going! You never get the prose correct the first time so pushing yourself to go through many iterations until you get as close to perfection as you can really tests your stamina.
What are the highlights of your career to date?
The book is such a huge personal accomplishment. It took almost seven years from start to finish and so much happened during that time and required a disciplined approach to getting it finished.
Writing a memoir is a journey in self-introspection and takes a tremendous amount of soul searching to ensure your life, as presented, can explain with great clarity the positives and how to overcome the difficult challenges in life. A memoir is a collection of a person’s memories and life experiences and so as a personal experience, it's hugely different to writing a fictional book. It was certainly a challenge but a highlight too.
Do you have an artist who particularly inspires you?
As an author I have great admiration for classic writers that are able to make life just jump off the page – someone like Ernest Hemingway. I also have great admiration for James Patterson, both in his writings and as a philanthropist.
You’ve been granted the ability to send a message to 16-year-old you. What do you say?
Stop worrying! Everything you had hoped for in your future will work out, but gosh you are going to have to survive many days of pain and are going to work very hard to achieve your goals.
Do you have any advice for young people interested in doing your kind of job?
To first become an author, choose a subject that you have a passion for. If you think you can bring that vision to life and put it on paper that will be a wonderful thing.