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  • How to Discover Your Authentic Wild Voice as a Conscious Writer

    How to Discover Your Authentic Wild Voice as a Conscious Writer

    Guest Judy Reeves
    Date Thursday 13th July

    As its name implies, wild voice is untamed and unbounded. It goes deep, like roots. Wild voice is what gives a writer the sentence or phrase that seems to come out of nowhere. Language erupts spontaneously with wild voice. It appears as writing that surprises both the writer and the reader. Wild voice is when the writing comes freely and easily, intuitively. The language is of the writer's own making and the rhythm is the beat of her own drummer.

    Other writing voices may be more restrained, more hesitant; the writer may think or plan before the words get to the page. Some writers edit as they write; they consider what should come next, rather than getting out of the way and letting the writing find its own form. There may be much scratching out and rewriting in the process of writing. Authentic wild voice comes when we trust the pen and the process. The revision and editing stages come after wild voice has had its say.

    In this interview, Judy Reeves will discuss the concept of “wild voice” and how writers can access that voice to give expression to stories, memories, thoughts, and feelings that are often ignored or set aside and how these might be explored for the wisdom they can offer.

    We’ll discuss:

    • What we mean when we use the word “authentic” in context with creative writing.
    • How writing from your authentic wild voice is different than following the directives of writing exercises that focus on the craft of writing.
    • How you can access your authentic wild voice
    • The benefits of writing from the authentic wild voice for Conscious Writers

    Judy Reeves is a writer, teacher, and writing practice provocateur who has written four books on writing, including the award-winning A Writer's Book of Days. Her work has appeared in magazines, literary journals, and anthologies; most recently, Expressive Writing, Classroom and Community. She has edited several anthologies and chapbooks, including those born out of her Wild Women writing workshops, which she has led since 1997. In addition to leading private writing groups, Judy teaches at University of California San Diego Extension and San Diego Writers, Ink, a nonprofit literary organization she cofounded. She also presents workshops at writing conferences and retreats internationally. Born in the Midwest, Judy has traveled throughout the world but somehow always finds her way back to San Diego, where she currently lives. Her website is and she blogs at

  • Show Don't Tell: How Conscious Writers Can Bring the Page to Life

    Show Don't Tell: How Conscious Writers Can Bring the Page to Life

    Guest William Noble
    Date Thursday 10th August

    Imagine you are at the theatre watching an exciting spy drama. The stage action is poised, the spy cornered in an empty room and rescue seems remote. Stage shadows lengthen, the spy hears someone at the door. He looks frantically one way, then the other...

    Everything stops. The lights come up and the director walks out on stage. “Good evening,” he says, “we're at an important moment in the play, and what you are seeing is the play's 'climax' where excitement and drama peak, and the story begins to get resolved...”

    This is the essence of Show Don't Tell and why writers should strive to “show” and not “tell.” Showing offers images, presents a picture, provides a scene where things happen, characters interact and story moves forward. Telling explains and lectures about what's being shown, and when this happens, story progress comes to a halt. Images dry up, characters turn wooden, the audience grows restless.

    In the interview, we'll touch on numerous ways a creative writer can “show” so the reader can see or hear images sparked by words on the page. It works the same with nonfiction as with fiction, with memoir or biography as with a novel or short story. The writer portrays or “shows,” and the reader sees and hears.

    We'll discuss:                       

    • opening a piece of writing so you “hook” the reader
    • developing tension through conflict
    • creating immediacy so “you are there!”
    • valuing similes and metaphors
    • advancing the story though dialogue
    • appealing to and using the senses

    William Noble has been called a “writer's writer” because of his numerous books which explore the conscious elements of writing creatively. He's written on developing plots and dialogue and characterization and scene-setting with both nonfiction as well as fiction. His books for writers are now part of the Classic Wisdom on Writing Series. In addition to his works on the writer's art, he has published books on privacy, psychiatry, classical ballet, step-family relationships, child custody, censorship, life among the Aztecs, and the infamous Watergate affair. In all, he's the author or co-author of twenty-three nonfiction books and hundreds of shorter works of fiction and nonfiction in such diverse publications as Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine and A practicing attorney for seven years, he gave up the law to devote full time to writing and teaching; since 1997, his biography has appeared in Who's Who In America. For more information, see:

  • The Inside Story of Indpendent Publishing

    The Inside Story of Indpendent Publishing

    Guest Michelle Pilley
    Date Thursday 7th September

    The publishing landscape has changed dramatically over the last few years. The days of traditional publishers exclusively holding the keys to the gates of authorship are long gone, and the digital revolution continues to present a mix of both challenges and blessings for publishers and authors alike.

    Independent publishers have always been a strong creative force in the publishing world. Those who are thriving in the market today have developed a different, sustainable way of publishing which has enabled their businesses and their authors to thrive.

    Hay House is a shining example of the new face of independent publishing. As a curator of content, they lead the way with a strong commitment to finding creative solutions for one of the key questions facing us all: how to put great books in front of the people who are interested in reading them?

    Join us to hear what Hay House UK managing director and publisher Michelle Pilley has to say on:

    • How the book industry has changed in the last five years
    • Where traditional publishers still triumph over self-publishing
    • What makes an author attractive to an independent publisher
    • How to develop a strong author profile and platform
    • The challenges in the market right now
    • Future opportunities for authors

    Michelle Pilley is the managing director and publisher of Hay House UK. She started work as an assistant to a Publisher of a vintage car and bike company and did her editorial training at a business consultancy. After a couple of years travelling, Michelle returned to the UK to work for Waterstone’s where she was able to explore her passion for spirituality and Mind Body Spirit topics, and draft the first Waterstone’s MBS core stock list. Her next move took her to HarperCollins as a Commissioning Editor for Aquarian and Thorson’s books, where she became the Senior Commissioning Editor for MBS. Then keen to leave London and in search of a new challenge, Michelle accepted the job of Features Editor for Kindred Spirit magazine. After 3 years she was lured back to publishing to help set up Anita Roddick’s publishing house, and finally joined Hay House Inc in 2002 to help to form Hay House UK.  See

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