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Writing and Healing

Writing and Healing: What a Poet and a Nature Writer Tell Us

by Matilda Butler on September 6, 2016

catnav-interviews-active-3Post #115 – Memoir Writing and Healing – Matilda Butler




memoir and healing

A Concert and a Poem

A few months ago, I attended a concert performed by the Corvallis-OSU Symphony Orchestra called The Final Frontier, which had an emphasis on how music and words both take us to the next frontier…not really a final frontier. The first half of the program included a John Williams’s Star Wars Medley, Alexander Courage and Jerry Goldsmith’s Star Trek Through the Years, John Williams’s Theme from E.T., etc.

An unusual piece was composed by the arranger and guest conductor, Rob Birdwell. The music was backdrop for storyteller Shelley Moon’s reading of Maya Angelou’s “A Brave and Startling Truth”. If you’ve never read that poem, here’s a link to it. The poem begins:

We, this people, on a small and lonely planet
Traveling through casual space
Past aloof stars, across the way of indifferent suns
To a destination where all signs tell us
It is possible and imperative that we learn
A brave and startling truth

I hope you will follow the link to Maya Angelou’s poem and it will give you a great deal to think about in terms of healing. It just may elevate your thinking to consider the larger issues surrounding your writing.

And I especially want to draw your attention to another quote in the program notes. As a writer, you may have heard of Barry Lopez, known as “the nation’s premier nature writer” as stated in the San Francisco Chronicle. In the past, I researched Lopez and read his work specifically because of his focus on the relationship between people and nature. Understanding his work helps a writer. The following quote reminds all of us of the value of stories for life and for healing.

The stories people tell have a way of taking care of them. If stories come to you, care for them. And learn to give them away where they are needed. Sometimes a person needs a story more than food to stay alive. That’s why we put these stories in each other’s memory. This is how people care for themselves. One day you will be good storytellers. Never forget these obligations. — Barry Lopez

Be sure that you write your stories to take care of yourself and to feed others.

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Memoir Writing: Is It the Journey or the Destination?

by Matilda ButlerAugust 9, 2016
Memoir Writing: Is It the Journey or the Destination?

Matilda Butler returns with thoughts on memoir writing as a destination or a journey and how your understanding of these attitudes will influence your writing.

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Writing and Healing: The Fifth and Final Hurdle to Publication

by Pamela JaneJuly 1, 2014
Writing and Healing: The Fifth and Final Hurdle to PublicationWriting and Healing: The Fifth and Final Hurdle to Publication

Pamela Jane Bell returns with thoughts on five key steps to seeing your memoir in print. Where are you in this process?

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Writing and Healing: 5 Outstanding – and Surprising – Self-Help Books for Memoir Writers

by Pamela JaneMay 6, 2014
Writing and Healing: 5 Outstanding – and Surprising – Self-Help Books  for Memoir Writers

Pamela Jane Bell offers 5 books to get your writing and keep you writing your memoir. Her choices just may surprise you.

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Memoir Writers – Hold it Close, Toss it Away: Writing Your Heart Out

by Pamela JaneMarch 4, 2014
Memoir Writers – Hold it Close, Toss it Away: Writing Your Heart Out

Life, death, and writing. Yes, Pamela Jane Bell, our insightful guest blogger, returns with a thought provoking discussion of thoughts about death and about writing.

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Writing and Healing: How to Write a Memoir According to Shakespeare (and Four Other Famous Artists)

by Pamela JaneJanuary 14, 2014
Writing and Healing: How to Write a Memoir According to Shakespeare (and Four Other Famous Artists)

Pamela Jane Bell, WomensMemoirs.com guest blogger, took a look at advice from five authors and reveals what they say that will help you with your memoir writing. A must-read article.

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Writing and Healing: The 15-Minute Princess: Two Top Writing Tips

by Pamela JaneAugust 6, 2013
Writing and Healing:  The 15-Minute Princess: Two Top Writing Tips

Like Pamela Bell’s writing tips? This blog post on writing is great and just may give you a new perspective.

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