“The True Secret of Writing” With Natalie Goldberg

imgres-1Natalie Goldberg’s book Writing Down the Bones was a mini Zen bible of self-liberation for a generation of self-doubting writers.  I have admired Natalie for years and was happy to talk to her about her new book, The True Secret of Writing.  This isn’t a woman who suffers fools.  She may live in Taos, the center of cool in the Sangre de Cristo mountains, but inside she’s still Brooklyn, as you’ll read in this new piece I wrote for Psychology Today.


Irina Tweedie – The Chasm of Fire

tweedieI’ve been watching a wonderful interview with Irina Tweedie, the Sufi master and author of an astounding book called The Chasm Of Fire. Tweedie makes this beautiful point that I wanted to share with you: ”One does not surrender to the guru — not really. Apparently. One surrenders to the light within oneself, the light of the soul, the part in us which belongs to eternity.” Watch this video if you have five minutes. It will change your day.

Keeping the Faith Without a Religion

rogerIt was great to talk to bestselling author Roger Housden about his new book Keeping the Faith Without a Religion. It’s an excellent read, full of wisdom, and makes an important point about the (un)necessity of organized faith for an authentic, fulfilling spiritual life. Roger has walked this path for decades. Here’s a link to the podcast. Enjoy!

Who Am I Now?: The Changing Self in Memoir

imagesI did a teleconference for the National Association of Memoir Writers. I talked with founder Linda Joy Myers about the changing self in memoir.  How do we write about our past self from the present?  How do we use memory, time, and distance to frame our stories in new ways?  Listen the discussion here.

The Fiction of Being

CJ-bird1If you don’t know the Contemplative Journal, I highly recommend this new online publication and spiritual community. I’ll be doing a monthly column for them called “The Seekers Forum” starting in March. Here’s my first piece for them, The Fiction of Being.  Enjoy!

“Every life is a work of fiction. That’s what I tell my memoir students. People come to me wanting to tell their life story, the narrative that sums them up, the myth that captures their essence. They expect to find this story hiding inside them like one of Michelangelo’s statues trapped inside the marble, fully formed and waiting to appear. Continue reading

The Only Place I Want Drama is on TV

images“It was one of those moments you never forget, a betrayal so deep you can’t rebound. I hung up the phone after hearing the news, disgusted by what my friend had admitted, sick with rage and disbelief that a woman I trusted and loved, who I thought would be my friend forever, had become, in five short minutes, someone I never wanted to speak to again.” That’s the beginning of my new piece for Purple Clover. I’d like to know what you think.  Read the blog here.