I met Gina last year while visiting family in Los Angeles, and asked her to guest post here today about her journey to publication. If you enjoy poetry, inspiration, and people with amazing positive energy, Gina is a poet, author, and person you should know (and read!). You can find both The Color of My Heart Is You and Calling Love Home on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback formats.
And now, with no further ado….here’s Gina.
My Journey to Becoming a Writer
As I sit here in my apartment in Los Angeles, CA brooding over the events that have taken place in my life the past few weeks, I feel a sense of relief, excitement and a need to surrender to the unknown.
Yesterday, I officially reached what is known to be middle age. My second book of poetry got published, and after 6 years of trying to wrap up the pieces of the past, they have finally been released forever to blow into the wind.
As the past has a way of making people bitter and angry, I’m quite thankful for the lessons that it taught me.
I was raised in small town America with big dreams of becoming a famous singer and I even studied opera in college, so at the age of 26, I left with a few things and drove with a high school friend to live in Minneapolis. After a little over a year of growing done with the cold weather and a few gigs singing backup for a Neil Diamond/Elvis impersonator in between serving food for tips, I left with a suitcase and took a train to Memphis TN, to join a Marriot circuit band that travelled the US. The hotel life wasn’t as glamorous as I had imagined, but it did introduce me to my past, and brought me to southern California.
There, I would spend most of my late 20s, 30s and 40s, chasing that dream of fame to only find myself with minor successes, many failures, countless jobs in different industries, promises left by the wayside, and the longing for wanting so much more while making the wrong choices to get there, and would eventually cause my world to fall apart around me. I needed change especially in my personal life.
Flash forward to 2013 when I was given an opportunity to move my life forward.
I would leave LA in a Prius, with a friend to help drive, two dogs, and a moving truck with some things and hope for new beginnings.
I had never been to Austin nor did I know anyone by name, except for my store co-manager who I had spoken with a couple of times over the phone. But what was soon to happen would not only change my life, re awaken my heart, but would also turn me into an author.
That vision that I had manifested and wrote in my journals at night while living back in LA, came in blue jeans, a white t-shirt, work boots, a trucker hat, and power tools. On paper, we would be the antithesis of each other’s lives, other than we grew up in the same state, a few mutual friends, and shared the experience of broken relationships.
Still, eleven years younger, he had this profound energy about him that drew me in took my breath away, and with just one kiss, I fell head over heels immediately. As of today, our lives have gone separate ways, but it’s the memory of him that stays deep within my heart space and inspires me to write my poetry.
Gina grew up in Nebraska, where she studied opera. After college Gina moved to the hotbed of Minneapolis and ended up singing backup vocals for an Elvis / Neil Diamond Impersonator. Wanting more she left with a suit case and took a train to Memphis, where she connected with a Marriott circuit band that toured all over the east coast and Wisconsin. Then, she was drawn to California for personal reasons and continued to pursue music. In addition to music, Gina’s creative talents branched out into fashion and she started her own jewelry line, GINA VENTURNI DESIGNS. Her jewelry has been seen on celebrities and has been worn on the red carpet at the Oscars, Sag Awards, Golden Globes, the Grammys & Tony Awards. A job and personal reasons transitioned Gina from Los Angeles to Austin Texas in 2013 where Gina’s creative talents evolved into writing and she wrote her first poetry book, “Calling Love Home” A journey of the heart. After a brief stay in Austin Texas, Gina moved back to Los Angeles to start the next chapter in her life which has evolved into here second book, “The Color of My Heart Is You.”