Not everyone can come to my classes to write through trauma in a supportive group setting, so I decided when I started teaching that I would provide my core in-class resources on my site. I believe writing is an excellent tool in the self-care kit. I’ve put these posts in an order that you can use as an in-home syllabus. Consider working with one post per week, and complementing it with prompts from the linked page (see below). While I believe the safest way to start an expressive writing practice for the
*While this post is tailored toward trauma writing, relief projects and objects are necessary to any type of writing, especially when writing is your livelihood. ~~~ It’s very easy to get overwhelmed or burn out when you are heavily focused on one project such as a novel or personal essay. When I work, I generally have between three and five pieces I am writing at the same time. This allows me to switch gears without sacrificing productivity. Because the topics I choose to engage in writing most frequently focus on
Everyone experiences trauma differently. There is no way to predictive measure for when or how a person will become traumatized. One human’s stressor is another human’s thrill. Ultimately, we are in charge of our own narrative. It is not up to anyone else to determine whether or not trauma has touched us. We know by the aching, irritable, gone-and-back again hollow we cannot seem to fill with hope. We know by the hives, the lost hair, the nightmares, insomnia, dropped interests and seizing moments we live through daily. We know,
A main struggle I face as a writer is letting go. Sitting down to write has become easy. I have trained myself to get words on the page. But writing authentically, giving value to words and recording or creating a story with integrity–well, I know writers who seem to have mastered that skill. I imagine them at their writing tables in a state of flow, madly scratching out words as effortlessly as they breathe. It doesn’t happen that way for me. Much of the time, writing is like pulling teeth.