Who We Are

At Vancouver Women’s Writing Courses, our mission is to create vibrant, creative, supportive and healing communities. 

We do this through our Writing as Healing for Women program, our Muse Lab series,  our Intuitive Development + Energy Work courses and our  Retreats.

We also offer free monthly Circles: the Muse Lab, Writing as Healing and Women’s Intuition. To register, see our Events page.

As part of our mandate, we offer one-on-one writing coaching and energy healing for women at any stage in their writing journey/process. 

For the greater community, we offer entertaining and empowering Lunch + Learns and Writing for Wellness workshops for corporations and organizations. 

Our Story

Vancouver Women’s Writing Courses’ founder Marn Norwich has been creating and running writing workshops since 1994. 

She’s taught in schools, prisons, treatment centres and through Continuing Studies at Langara College and Emily Carr University of Art + Design. She’s also facilitated onsite for organizations and schools, for groups as large as 100.

She has a background as a journalist and worked as a writer, editor and consultant for 25 years. As a journalist, she’s specialized in social justice, complementary health and women’s issues, and her writing has appeared in the Globe and Mail, CBC and Georgia Straight.

Marn is the author of an IPPY award-winning collection of poetry — Wildflowers at my doorstep, Karma press — and has read and performed her work on many Vancouver stages.

She’s also a playwright who has written for the Toronto and Vancouver Fringe Festivals. Her recent musical comedy, A Coveted Wife of East Van, premiered at the Vancouver Fringe in September, 2021. (Read the Vancouver Sun review and an interview with Marn about the play.) 

Marn has been practicing energy work for 25 years and has studied modalities from Healing Touch and shiatsu through reiki and body-energy counseling. 

From February through June of 2023, she served as Artist-in-Residence for the City of Port Coquitlam.

Marn has recently been nominated as a YWCA Woman of Distinction for Metro Vancouver, 2024, in the category of Art, Culture + Design.

With VWWC, Marn combines her writing workshop facilitation background with her work as an intuitive energy therapist to create dynamic workshops,  coaching sessions and retreats that empower, inspire and heal. 

In Marn’s words…

My name is Marn Norwich, and I specialize in workshop facilitation and coaching women writers. I have a 30-year background as a writing workshop facilitator and writer and worked for 25 years as editor and consultant. I also have decades of experience as an intuitive energy therapist. 

I have a passion for supporting people, especially women, to connect to their creativity! I love to create safe and light-filled spaces where women feel comfortable to share with each other deeply and grow more fully into themselves.

I have a structured yet playful approach to facilitation. I come prepared to fill each workshop to the brim with inspiration, ideas, themes and writing prompts, while welcoming the energy of the circle and flowing with the moment. I listen deeply to participants and respond as appropriate with practical and intuitive input to support their writing, growth, inner-connection and healing.

It is so magical to witness women dissolve their own blocks and move into full expression! It is a great privilege to be part of this sacred process.

I’ve worked with women extensively both in the therapeutic context and as a facilitator of women’s groups.

During the pandemic, I wrote this article for CBC Arts on my experience of being a single, childless poet living alone in an attic.

Read it to get sense of me at work and at play!

In the midst of lockdown, I met someone…

 

What I offer women

My Women’s Writing as Healing workshop series, now in its fifth year, has taught me a tremendous amount about how vital the writing process can be for women, as we work to address core issues around mental, emotional and physical health.

As a woman writer myself, I have a profound personal understanding of the hurdles that women artists face, in both the inner and outer realms. 

In my group and individual sessions, I offer clients my expertise in the writing and editorial processes, with a specific emphasis on the issues commonly faced by women writers.

These issues include but are not limited to perfectionism, self-doubt and the need for outer validation, isolation, depression, anxiety and the desire for a regular writing practice.

As a member of a community of women artists and a writing coach and energy therapist for women clients, I am privileged to be privy to the trials and successes of many other women at this time.  As a socially engaged adult, I’ve spent my entire life surrounded by women! I know, love and appreciate the sacred power of the feminine.

Women have a unique relationship with creativity and writing. We are inherently extremely creative — right down to our biology. But growing up in a largely patriarchal society can impede our creative expression. 

Many of us have also had to contend with multiple prejudices around race, ability, class and sexual orientation. 

We have faced judgement, abuse and attempts to constrain our voices. 

Many of us are emerging from the veil of codependency that has affected our capacity to speak our truths. 

Many of us have survived trauma that we are still working through in order to fully express the whole of who we are.

My work is woman-centred, trauma-informed and non-hierarchical. Safety, respect and fun are its hallmarks!