Writing through grief

I did not write a word during my seven-week stay in Toronto in my parents’ home, just prior to and following my mother’s death. The experiencewas utterly overwhelming for me and left me with no capacity for written expression. On the airplane on the way back to Vancouver, my first poem about my mother’s death […]

The revolutionary act of falling in love with our writing

Before anyone introduced to us the terrible idea that art could be good or bad, we loved our art. We were little girls who drew and painted, wrote and performed our own plays with our friends. We were inherently happy with our creations because they were ours, like a mother with her new babe. We […]

Healing at our fingertips: Writing into our wounds

I’ve been thinking a lot about the power of writing to transmute our suffering. I recently went through a rough period where finding energy to write felt like a miracle. When I did write, I found myself creating absurdist comedy.  The activity was indisputably healing for me. I could be having a gruelling day, open […]

Conjoined twins: art, emotion and the process of creation

Twelve years ago when I was having chronic issues with my knee and back, I visited an orthopaedic specialist. At the start of the the session, he bewildered me by asking which of the two areas I’d like to focus on. After months of waiting for the appointment, I was taken aback. Isn’t the knee […]

The enemy of good writing

“Last, perfectionism is not a way to avoid shame. Perfectionism is a function of shame.”  ― Brené Brown, Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts. Dear Women, Perfectionism is the enemy of good writing. It’s a savage problem clothed in a pretty word. So many women writers grapple with this issue, and it’s […]

“The woman who stayed silent”

What are you not writing about? What is vital yet unspoken, what silently underscores your daily thoughts and habits, what drives you and your choices, yet goes unexpressed?  When we use our notebooks to reflect our shadow-sides — the unnamed and unclaimed parts of ourselves that we keep buried — we free great truths and […]

Fear-Free Writing

The most common obstacle standing between a woman and her words is fear.  Fear of writing poorly, fear of self-criticism, fear of public ridicule, fear of familial judgement, fear of not being able to express ourselves in a manner congruent to our internal sense.  Our fears are real, they trigger huge internal dilemmas, and they […]

Introducing the Women’s Writing as Healing Sisterhood!

Vancouver Women’s Writing Courses now has a Facebook group!  The Women’s Writing as Healing Sisterhood is a place for women to connect wth each other about their writing processes and healing journeys. These two phenomena are often deeply intertwined. We write for the joy of creating and also to hear ourselves, soothe our pain and […]

Pandemic poet-in-a-garret

I wrote this article for CBC Arts on my experience of being a single, childless poet living alone in an attic during the pandemic. Read it to get sense of your facilitator at work and at play! I managed to weave in a supportive moment during an Online Women’s Writing as Healing workshop, the story […]