I can think about changing my life for decades. I can think about getting off the couch for hours. I want to learn how to go from static to flight at a moment’s notice, and so I watch the birds. I listen to all the reasons people have for not writing even though they say they want, more than almost anything, to write a book. I listen to the reasons why people don’t leave their marriages, their jobs, their book clubs, and it’s all starting to sound like Charlie Brown’s teacher. 


Later, this ability of his to listen would be medicine for me. It would let my body and mind know I was worthy of attention. It taught me to listen to others more closely. It taught me how important it is for adopted people--all people!!--to be able to talk out their full range of emotions and to feel they are valid. 

Oleg Lougheed Plays Write or Die and Lives

I am letting you into the secret world of Write or Die here. This is my cave, my favorite place, the place, to be honest, that I usually charge people to enter. But here you go. Here are the first three exercises I do in Write or Die and the reasons why. And here, thanks to Oleg’s courage and generosity and trust, are Oleg’s responses.

A Song of Love

I developed an exercise in my Write or Die classes where you imagine you have five minutes left to live and you have the sweetest presence by you—I picture it as an ear—something that can’t talk; something that just listens. It’s that voice, the voice I use to talk to that ear that is the voice of my soul, the voice of my spine, the voice of me. I have nothing left to lose when I use that voice. I am not speaking to win love. I am speaking to leave a handprint on the wall of the cave before I leave this mortal coil.

How To Figure Out Yourself and Your Life in Five Minutes

I listened to Ram Dass talk to Oprah today on her podcast, and so I have also been thinking about acceptance and love.

What if our hearts are peonies? What if life is not about changing or growing so much as about blooming? What if our hearts all bloomed fully when we looked into the eyes of our beloveds, or into the eyes of ourselves?

What then?

Why I Should Be Your Story Coach

Most editors or coaches or fellow writers will basically try to tell you what your own story is--rather than be a partner in helping you figure it out. I had a therapist tell me all her clients know their answers. It's just the therapist's job to pull them out. Anne's not a therapist. She's better. She costs less! She takes more time. And she's a helluva lot more committed. 

Coming out of the Fog and the Golden Chair

My friends thought I was moody. I thought I was moody. And I was, but it was because I was also getting beaten up from the inside by thoughts that had nothing to do with present reality. Old trauma was trying to find its way out, but since no one in my world knew about the effects on the brain when a child is separated from her mother, I had no one to help me create a pathway for these feelings to escape my body

The Pull of Skin

It’s like I’m part magnet and my skin is working to pull to it what it needs to feel complete and at rest. This takes energy, and so while other people may be running errands or making lists or running a company, I’m busy being a bag of skin that has a job it can’t articulate or accomplish. This means I spend a lot of time what to others might look like spinning my wheels but to me feels like trying to be whole.