Waking Mama Luna: the stories behind the stories

People have been asking me where I got the ideas from for the stories in Waking Mama Luna.

Waking Mama Luna by Jessica M Starr Cover

Where do you get your ideas from?

It’s such a difficult question to answer, because often it just feels like they come from nowhere. Well, not exactly nowhere but somewhere that doesn’t exist in real terms. We all have ideas (we are all artists and creators) so we all know this feeling of something just popping into our head, like it was dropped or dictated there just for you.

For me writing is a spiritual practice that gives me direct connection to this creative source (or God, or Spirit, or whichever name works for you). How else could these ideas just flow into our heads? I believe our job is to notice, to take notes, writing down the words as they come, and then share them.

Anyway, all this is rather vague and perhaps useless. So, I have tried my best to answer in a more specific way…

Waking Mama Luna

I have long been fascinated with the moon. The way she waxes and wanes and how her ebb and flow affects us and our cycles as women. I love to take full moon walks and one autumn evening the moon was so huge and close I could feel her almost touching me. That night I had “the dream” and woke Mama Luna.

The Call of the Sea

In 2011 I miscarried our second child. A few weeks later it was a beautiful day and we went to Rest Bay in Porthcawl. I have always found being close to the ocean healing; the sand, the salty air. It sparked something and ‘The Call of the Sea’, was the bittersweet result. For me this story is about grief and loss and loving someone who is no longer here alongside us.

The Special Place

I heard a story about a woman who could carry a cow. When she was asked how she managed it she said she had cared for the calf as a baby and carried it each day (I can’t remember why she needed to carry it). Each day it grew a tiny bit bigger and each day she continued to carry it, until it was full grown. Those tiny daily increases felt like nothing but they added up to something so powerful and surprising. This inspired ‘The Special Place’. Again, a powerful mother-daughter relationship weaves through this story.

Iris’s Rainbow

I love Iris. I see her very much like my daughter Ella – though Ella is not as loud. This would make me her Mama, the one who dies. This story, for me, explores the motherline, that invisible thread which ties our generations together, grandmother, mother, daughter. It gives me faith that my children will be fine when I am no longer here to take care of them.

Breaking the Surface

Many moons ago I worked with GCSE English students. ‘Breaking the Surface’ came after a conversation with a student who was in a dark place at the time and feeling trapped. I understood those feelings. I knew them. I also knew the way out. ‘Breaking The Surface’ is my offer of hope.

Where do you get your ideas from? Is this the same for you? I’d love to know.

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