Writing for Bliss: A Seven-Step Plan for Telling Your Story and Transforming Your Life

Loving Healing Press
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ÿWriting for Blissÿis most fundamentally about reflection, truth, and freedom. With techniques and prompts for both the seasoned and novice writer, it will lead you totap into your creativity through storytelling and poetry,examine how life-changing experiences can inspire writing,pursue self-examination and self-discovery through the written word, and,understand how published writers have been transformed by writing.Poet and memoirist Raab (Lust) credits her lifelong love of writing and its therapeutic effects with inspiring her to write this thoughtful and detailed primer that targets pretty much anyone interested in writing a memoir. Most compelling here is Raab?s willingness to share her intimate stories (e.g., the loss of a relative, ongoing struggles with cancer, a difficult relationship with her mother). Her revelations are encouraging to writers who feel they need ?permission to take... a voyage of self-discovery.? The book?s seven-step plan includes plenty of guidance, including on learning to ?read like a writer,? and on addressing readers as if ?seated across the table .? Raab covers big topics such as the ?art and power of storytelling? and small details such as choosing pens and notebooks that you enjoy using. She also helps readers with the important step of ?finding your form.?
--PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY

"Writing for Blissÿis about the profound ways in which we may be transformed in and through the act of writing. I am grateful to Diana Raab for sharing it, and I trust that you will feel the same as you read on. May you savor the journey."
--from the foreword by MARK FREEMAN, PhD

"By listening to ourselves and being aware of what we are saying and feeling, the true story of our life's past experience is revealed. Diana Raab?s book gives us the insights by which we can achieve this through her life-coaching wisdom and our writing."
--BERNIE SIEGEL, MD, author ofÿThe Art of Healing

"Only a talented writer who has fought hard to overcome life?s many obstacles could take her readers by the hand and lead them through the writing process with such enormous compassion, amazing insight, and kindness. Diana Raab is a powerful, wise, intelligent guide well worth our following."
--JAMES BROWN, author ofÿThe Los Angeles DiariesÿandÿThe River

"Writing for Blissÿis far more than a 'how-to manual'; it enlightens the creative process with wisdom and a delightful sense of adventure. Bravo to Bliss!"
--LINDA GRAY SEXTON, author ofÿSearching for Mercy Street: My Journey Back to My Mother, Anne Sexton

"Uniquely blending inspiring insights with practical advice, Diana guides you on a path to discover the story that is truly inside you?and yearning to be told."
--PATRICK SWEENEY, coauthor of the New York Times bestsellerÿSucceed on Your Own Terms

DIANA RAAB, PhD, is an award-winning memoirist, poet, blogger, workshop facilitator, thought provoker, and survivor. She?s the author of eight books and over one thousand articles and poems. She lives in Southern California. Learn more at www.DianaRaab.com
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About the author

ÿDiana Raab, MFA, PhD, is a memoirist, poet, blogger, workshop facilitator, thought provoker, and award-winning author of seven books and over a thousand articles and poems, as well as the editor of two anthologies. Her passion and expertise is in writing for healing, transformation, and self-empowerment. She is very interested in creativity and what drives the creative process. Her early inspiration came from reading the journals of Ana‹s Nin, as she was impressed by Nin?s candor and honesty. Raab has been writing since childhood, when her mother gave her a Kahlil Gibran journal to help her cope with the loss to suicide of her beloved grandmother.ÿ

Raab?s MFA is in nonfiction writing from Spalding University, and her PhD is in Transpersonal Psychology from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (aka Sofia University), where she researched the healing and transformative aspects of memoir writing. She is also a registered nurse and was a medical journalist for more than twenty-five years.

For decades, Raab has been a motivating force, inspiring others to write the stories and narratives of their lives. She has worked with those from all walks of life, including esteemed writers, business people, published and emerging writers, cancer survivors, and those surviving various types of trauma.

A world traveler, Raab was born in Brooklyn, New York, and has lived in Montreal and Florida. She currently resides in Southern California with her husband of four decades. She has three grown, creative, and entrepreneurial-driven children and two grandchildren. When not writing or offering workshops, she may be found meditating, hiking, nurturing her bonsais, or sitting on a cliff or by the sea crafting poems and musings in her journal.

Raab serves on a number of boards, including that for Poets & Writers, and she is a trustee at the University of Santa Barbara (UCSB). She blogs regularly for Psychology Today, PsychAlive, and The Huffington Post.

For more information, visit www.dianaraab.com.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Loving Healing Press
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Published on
Sep 1, 2017
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Pages
236
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ISBN
9781615993239
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Language
English
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Genres
Language Arts & Disciplines / Composition & Creative Writing
Self-Help / Journaling
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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A stunning masterclass on the creative process, the craft of writing, and the art of finding inspiration from Stephen King, Elizabeth Gilbert, Amy Tan, Khaled Hosseini, Roxane Gay, Neil Gaiman, and more of the most acclaimed writers at work today

"For artists in need of a creative fix, Light the Dark is as good as a visit from the divine muse." -Bookpage

What inspires you? That's the simple, but profound question posed to forty-six renowned authors in LIGHT THE DARK. Each writer begins with a favorite passage from a novel, a song, a poem—something that gets them started and keeps them going with the creative work they love. From there, incredible lessons and stories of life-changing encounters with art emerge, like how sneaking books into his job as a night security guard helped Khaled Hosseini learn that nothing he creates will ever be truly finished. Or how a college reading assignment taught Junot Díaz that great art can be a healing conversation, and an unexpected poet led Elizabeth Gilbert to embrace an unyielding optimism, even in the face of darkness. LIGHT THE DARK collects the best of The Atlantic's much-acclaimed "By Heart" series edited by Joe Fassler and adds brand new pieces, each one paired with a striking illustration. Here is a guide to creative living and writing in the vein of Daily Rituals, Bird by Bird, Draft No. 4, and Big Magic for anyone who wants to learn how great writers find inspiration—and to find some of your own.

CONTRIBUTING AUTHORS: Elizabeth Gilbert, Junot Díaz, Marilynne Robinson, Jonathan Lethem, Michael Chabon, Aimee Bender, Mary Gaitskill, Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Roxane Gay, Angela Flournoy, Jonathan Franzen, Yiyun Li, Leslie Jamison, Claire Messud,  Edwidge Danticat, David Mitchell, Khaled Hosseini, Ayana Mathis, Kathryn Harrison, Azar Nafisi,  Hanya Yanagihara, Jane Smiley, Nell Zink, Emma Donoghue, Jeff Tweedy, Eileen Myles, Maggie Shipstead, Sherman Alexie, Andre Dubus III, Billy Collins, Lev Grossman, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Charles Simic, Jim Shepard,  T.C. Boyle, Tom Perrotta, Viet Thanh Nguyen, William Gibson, Mark Haddon, Ethan Canin, Jesse Ball, Jim Crace, and Walter Mosley.

"As [these authors] reveal what inspires them, they, in turn, inspire the reader, all while celebrating the beauty and purpose of art." -Booklist
"Healing With Words: A Writer's Cancer Journey" is a compassionate andwry self-help memoir written by an award-winning prolific author, nurse andpoet, who at the age of forty-seven found her life shattered first by a DCIS(early breast cancer) diagnosis and five years later by another, seemingly unrelatedand incurable cancer--multiple myeloma. The book includes the author'sexperiences, reflections, poetry and journal entries, in addition to writingprompts for readers to express their own personal story.Raab's journals have provided a safe haven and platform to validate and expressher feelings. Raab views journaling to be like a daily vitamin--in that itheals, detoxifies and is essential for optimal health.
Readers will learn to: Understand the importance of early cancer detection and how to take control of their own healthDiscover the power of writing to release bottled-up emotionsLearn how the process of journaling can facilitate healingSee how a cancer diagnosis can be a riveting event which can renew and change a person in a unique way
Praise for Raab's "Healing With Words"
"One woman's story, beautifully told and inspiring to those for whomjournaling will ease a cancer diagnosis."
--Barbara Delinsky, author UPLIFT: Secrets from the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors
"Time after time, Diana articulates incisively the thoughts and feelings thatconvey hoped-for meaning and encouragement. She is a woman who knowswhat it is to live fully in the face of mortality. She will add value to the life ofevery person who reads this book. Healing With Words resonates at a spirituallevel for me."
--Sena Jeter Naslund, author of Ahab's Wife and Abundance: A Novel of Marie Antoinette
Author's proceeds from the sale of this book donated to benefit the Mayo Clinic Foundation
Learn more at www.DianaRaab.com
Another inspirational book from Loving Healing Press www.LovingHealing.com
HEA039031 Health & Fitness: Diseases - Breast Cancer
SEL501000 Self-Help: Journal Writing
MED058160 Nursing - Oncology & Cancer
ÿHow Dare We! Write: a multicultural creative writing discourseÿoffers a much needed corrective to the usual dry and uninspired creative writing pedagogy. The collection asks us to consider questions, such as ?What does it mean to work through resistance from supposed mentors, to face rejection from publishers and classmates, and to stand against traditions that silence you?" and "How can writers and teachers even begin to make diversity matter in meaningful ways on the page, in the classroom, and on our bookshelves?"How Dare We! Writeÿis an inspiring collection of intellectually rigorous lyric essays and innovative writing exercises; it opens up a path for inquiry, reflection, understanding, and creativity that is ultimately healing. The testimonies provide a hard won context for their innovative paired writing experiments that are, by their very nature, generative.
--ÿCherise A. Pollard, PhD, Professor of English, West Chester University of Pennsylvania

So-called ?creative writing? classes are highly politicized spaces, but no one says so; to acknowledge this obvious fact would be to up-end the aesthetics, cultural politics (ideology) and economics on which most educational institutions are founded.ÿÿHow Dare We! Write, a brilliant interventive anthology of essays, breaks this silence.
-- Maria Damon, Pratt Institute of Art;ÿco-editor ofÿPoetry and Cultural Studies: A Reader

How Dare We! Writeÿa collection of brave voices calling out to writers of color everywhere: no matter how lonely, you are not alone; you are one in a sea of change, swimming against the currents.
-- Kao Kalia Yang, author ofÿThe Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir, andÿThe Song Poet, a 2017 Minnesota Book Award winner

How Dare We! Writeÿis a much needed collection of essays from writers of color that reminds us that our stories need to be told, from addressing academic gatekeepers, embracing our identities, the effects of the oppressor'sÿtongue on our psyche and to the personal narratives that help us understand who we are.
---Rodrigo Sanchez-Chavarria, writer, spoken word poet/performer and contributing author toÿA Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota

Learn more at http://blog.SherryQuanLee.com

From Modern History Press ÿwww.ModernHistoryPress.com
For anyone who has ever identified with a hero or heroine, been seduced by a strong opening sentence, or been powerfully moved by a story’s end, How to Write Like Tolstoy is a thought-provoking journey inside the minds of the world’s most accomplished storytellers, from Shakespeare to Stephen King.

“I have tried, as far as possible using the words of the authors themselves, to explain their craft, aiming to take readers on a journey into the concerns, techniques, tricks, flaws, and, occasionally, obsessions of our most luminous writers.”—from the Preface

Behind every acclaimed work of literature is a trove of heartfelt decisions. The best authors put painstaking—sometimes obsessive—effort into each element of their stories, from plot and character development to dialogue and point of view.

What made Nabokov choose the name Lolita? Why did Fitzgerald use first-person narration in The Great Gatsby? How did Kerouac, who raged against revision, finally come to revise On the Road? Veteran editor and teacher Richard Cohen draws on his vast reservoir of a lifetime’s reading and his insight into what makes good prose soar. Here are Gabriel García Márquez’s thoughts on how to start a novel (“In the first paragraph you solve most of the problems with your book”); Virginia Woolf offering her definition of style (“It is all rhythm. Once you get that, you can’t use the wrong words”); and Vladimir Nabokov on the nature of fiction (“All great novels are great fairy tales”).

Cohen has researched the published works and private utterances of our greatest authors to discover the elements that made their prose memorable. The result is a unique exploration of the act and art of writing that enriches our experience of reading both the classics and the best modern fiction. Evoking the marvelous, the famous, and the irreverent, he reveals the challenges that even the greatest writers faced—and shows us how they surmounted them.

Praise for How to Write Like Tolstoy

“The highest compliment one can pay How to Write Like Tolstoy is that it provokes an overwhelming urge to read and write, to be in dialogue or even doomed competition with the greatest creative minds . . . .  That Mr. Cohen is an editor, that his love of literature comes in large part from awe in the presence of better writers than he, is no small matter. His love is infectious, and regardless of how well he ends up teaching us to write, that is miracle enough.”—Wall Street Journal

“[A] perfect tasting menu . . . the homage of a passionate reader to the writers who have provided his ‘main pastime.’ ”—The Sunday Times (U.K.)

“This book is a wry, critical friend to both writer and reader. It is filled with cogent examples and provoking statements. You will agree or quarrel with each page, and be a sharper writer and reader by the end.”—Hilary Mantel

“These twelve essays are like twelve perfect university lectures on the craft of writing fiction. The professor—or, in this case, author—succeeds in being not only knowledgeable but also interesting, charming, and engaging.”—Library Journal (starred review)

“Insightful . . . [Cohen] escorts his readers to Iris Murdoch for sage counsel on launching a novel, to Salman Rushdie for shrewd guidance on developing an unreliable narrator, to Rudyard Kipling for a cagey hint on creating memorable minor characters, and to Leo Tolstoy for a master’s help in transforming personal experience into fictional art.”—Booklist
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