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Wising Up: What a trip!

Wising Up: What a trip!

By Barbara Clarke Regarding gaining wisdom... Where to begin? In childhood, of course. In my complicated family, wisdom was reserved for the grownups and dispensed like Pez whenever conflict arose. By conflict I mean those awkward moments when I challenged my parent's...

Why You Can’t Get Your Book Done Alone

Why You Can’t Get Your Book Done Alone

If you’ve got a book in your heart that is NOT on the page yet, this blog post is for you. As you know by now, I’m a huge believer that anyone who has a story living inside of them MUST write that story—or find some other way to perform it for other people (on stage,...

Follow Your Own Instincts!

Follow Your Own Instincts!

Since I posted my birthday wish, I've gotten so many lovely lessons from friends and acquaintances. Below is one from my friend and former coaching client, Diana Dodds. Diana served as a nurse for many decades. Here she talks about the lesson she learned to say no,...

Things You Learned the Hard Way

Things You Learned the Hard Way

Hi buddies. I turn 50 in a few days, and my friends have been asking me (as friends will do), “What do you want to do for your birthday?” Up until last week, every time someone asked me that question I spontaneously burst into tears. The idea of turning 50 has felt...

Truth vs Fact

Truth vs Fact

I’ve been a teacher my whole adult life. At eighteen I was teaching Sunday school. Then I went to college and got a B.Ed in English and theater. I taught ESL for eight years, high school English for two, several college classes in various institutions, community...

We the People

We the People

Resistance against inequality, commentary on the dark ironies of culture, and expression of effective anger against injustice have ALWAYS been within the purview of writers. Recently I was telling a friend that I was taking part in a year-long blogging project focused...

The Notable and the New

The Notable and the New

I am bubbling over with excitement. First, you may have heard that the book I edited with Susan Tive, Beyond Belief, was named on The Washington Post’s Notable Nonfiction list. Susan and I are so very grateful that others are finding the volume we all worked so hard...

Why Memoir?

Why Memoir?

I’ve been talking with and coaching memoir writers—many of them are published now—for about a decade. Before I embark on a project with an author, I always ask this question: Why do you want to write this story? I ask the question first of all because I’m a therapist....

Finding Your Team

Finding Your Team

In her retelling of the ugly duckling story Clarissa Pinkola Estes, author of Women Who Run with the Wolves, observes, “[W]hen an individual’s particular kind of soulfulness, which is both an instinctual and spiritual identity, is surrounded by psychic acknowledgment...

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