We had the opportunity to interview a powerful advocate for women who have endometriosis, Julie Watson-Daly.
“Society tends to make us believe that we should fit into standards they’ve defined in order to be considered a part of the status quo. But what does that even mean? I think normal is boring. It’s mundane and ordinary. Shouldn’t we each strive to be our own person? That which makes us different makes us uniquely beautiful.” – Julie Watson-Daly
1. How do you rank your writing compared to those you admire?
I’m entirely too critical of myself. I never thought I’d live to see the day that I’d have my own book of poetry published, but here we are. I’m still in shock over it, actually. I don’t think I’ll ever be on the New York Times best seller list, but I think I can hold my own.
2. How long do you have to write for each session before you get “in the groove?”
It depends on the topic. I write poetry, and many are based on my experiences. Difficult topics take longer because they’re so emotionally draining. The more pleasant poems can be fairly quick. I once wrote a poem about a sunset in less than 5 minutes.
3. Where does your inspiration come from?
Life, love, loss, nature, heartache, writing prompts, and my always favorite (NOT!) wakes-me-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night epiphany about the most random things imaginable. For example, I wrote an entire poem using only words that start with the letter “e”.
4. When was that moment when you realized that language had power?
I have always loved the written word, but when I was a freshman in high school, a classmate died in a tragic accident. I grew up in small-town America where everyone knew everyone else. Our class was super small and we were all friends. I didn’t know how to vocalize how I felt about that loss, so I just started writing it down on paper. My English teacher noticed and immediately had me start writing for the school paper. That same teacher told me, “You have talent and a story to tell. Don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise.” I’ll never forget that.
5. If you could sit down with one writer from any period who would it be?
That one is a tough question to answer because I have two. First and foremost is William Shakespeare. I adore the rhythm and cadence of his works. It’s like his words come to life and dance on each page. He has been an inspiration to me since I was a child. The second one is Maya Angelou. She was one of the most inspirational and influential writers in our lifetime. Her words are so poignant and moving. Her dedication to the civil rights movement was awe inspiring.
6. If the universal super being came down right now and said, “I give you two choices. 1 – I will give you 100 million dollars for your work, but no one will ever be able to read a word you write, or 2 – You can never ever benefit even one dollar ever off of your work, but 100 million people will read every book you ever write. Which one do you pick?
You would think this would be a hard question, but honestly, it’s not. I would go with the second option. Like question 4 states, language has power. Words have significant meaning and you never know how much of an impact they can have on someone, especially when you write from experience. If my words help just one person, that’s worth more than all the money in the world.
7. What accomplishments do you want at the end of the year?
- I would like to have my next book well underway, if not already completed.
- Now that my first book has been published, I’m hoping it helps get the word out about endometriosis. It nearly took my life. I survived for a reason, and I truly believe it’s to help others. No woman should ever have to fight this alone. I not only raise awareness, but also speak to women I’ve never even met who are fighting a battle with this disease that is so misunderstood. I hope this platform will give me a broader reach to help more and more people.
- We’re also in the process of rescuing a dog through the rescue I volunteer for. You never know, but by the end of the year, we could possibly add a second rescue to our family.
- In my spare time (haha), I’d like to go back to school. I’ve always been a bit of a nerd. I love learning!
Julie Watson-Daly is the author of the book “On Purpose”. She fought stage four endometriosis and wants to help end the stigma surrounding the disease. She lives in New Jersey with the love of her life, works as an analyst by day, writes in her free time, and volunteers for One Love Animal Rescue in NJ.
Check out more of her story, nearly dying due to this disease, here on Stigma Fighters.
(check out Eliezer Tristan Publishing who welcome any writer who is passionate about mental health and survival, regardless of whether they are currently published authors or not.)