Bio

Photo by Vanessa Zises Filley @ vanessafilley.com

Why write?

To think. To imagine. To feel. To go deeper into one’s self, all the way until you fall into the world.

Writers write because they must.

 

My life as a writer in bio form

I write to explore the world. You can read some of this writing, visit my award-winning health website: thegreenmama.com, or get one of my books (published by Dundurn Press and across Canada and the US and in four language territories around the world) Green Mama: Giving your child a healthy start and a greener future and Green Mama-to-Be: Creating a happy, healthy, toxin-free pregnancy

“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.”
–Anne Frank.

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
— Anaïs Nin.

I write to explore spirit, imagination, beauty, that which isn’t real…yet, and that which is too real.   An essay is a long walk through the spirit world. Perhaps the time for this art form is being reborn. Read some of my essays.

 

““I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means.

What I want and what I fear.”
― Joan Didion.

My life as a writer, as told in resume form.

Published Author
I am represented by Westwood Creative Artists, Canada’s largest literacy agency. My two existing books have been published by Dundurn Press, literary publishers since 1972 with more than 2,500 published books to their credit, twice nominated for the Libris Award for Publisher of the Year.

Green Mama: Giving your child a healthy start and a greener future (Published by Dundurn, 2014)
Distributed in Canada and the U.S. Also, published in Turkey, India, and Indonesia.
Green Mama is the story of my journey to become the “expert” on caring for my family. I research in medical journals and health booMonday, September 10, 2018ks, interview scientists, medical professionals, and other parents, and explore my way to answer many of the questions that face modern-day parents.

Green Mama-to-Be: Creating a happy, healthy, and toxin-free pregnancy (Published by Dundurn, 2017)
Distributed in Canada and the U.S.
A good farmer farms soil. The plant grows itself. At our best, parents are just good farmers, creating that soil of family, rhythm, meals, an home from which our children are nourished and fed. This book shares stories, research, and traditional wisdom to help inspire expectant, postpartum and adoptive parents, as well as those trying to conceive.

Select Additional Publications/ Productions
I have been working as a professional writer for 20 years, following is a selection of published/produced writing.

Radio Production
Writer. Producer. “Cultivating Traditional Health.” Island Waves podcast. May 2018
Writer. Producer. “Preserve/Preserve/Reserve.” Deep Roots podcast. August 2018

Essays, Columns, Feature Articles
Quarterly contributor of essays, columns, feature articles. EcoParent Magazine. April 2012 to present
“In Search of the Practical Life,” essay series. National Observer. Sept. 2018 to present
“The Green Mama” columns, Vancouver Observer Jan. 2010 to Jan. 2014
“The Greener Parent,” Chicago Parent Magazine April 2008
“What Women Aren’t Told About Childbirth,”Alternet.org Oct. 2007
“Waking up to Massive Change,” (distributed in all 4 sister publications), Conscious Choice Nov. 2006
Editor. Feature writer. F Newsmagazine Jan. 2004 to Sept. 2005
“Ecovillages: living with fewer trade-offs,” Communities Journal Fall/Winter 2002
Editor. Feature Writer. Contributor. EcoCity Cleveland bi-monthly, 2001 to 2004

Editor-in-Chief/Publisher
Editor, writer, and publisher of the award-winning website thegreenmama.com 2010 to present
Editor of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s (SAIC) F Newsmagazine Feb. 2004 to Oct. 2005
Editor and Founder of the SAIC Ink: Art, Poetry & Prose journal.

Select Literature/Writing Classes Taught
I love to share my enthusiasm for the written word and have done so in the public schools, with university students, and outside of school settings. Here’s some of the classes I’ve taught:

The Young Adult Lit Class, Cortes Island Sept. 2017 to present
A literature class designed for children ages 10 to 13, strategies to work with the functionally illiterate.
Writing for the School Newspaper at SAIC Sept. 2005 to May 2006
SAIC’s journalism class for undergraduates that focuses on preparing students to be responsible journalists.
The Green Zone at SAIC Jan. 2004
An interdisciplinary class for graduate and undergraduate students on the nature of design.
The Art of Crossing the Street at SAIC Sept. to Dec. 2004
A writing class intended to increase participants understanding of how artists shape society.

Sample Speaking Engagements/Readings
I’ve been fortunate to get to discuss and read from work that I’ve written and share this work through TV, radio, and in-person.

Select radio interviews include: NXNW on CBC Radio; Real Parenting Radio; Green is Good Radio;
Women of Green; Green Sense Radio 2011 to 2018
Select TV appearances as author/expert include The Beginning of Life documentary film, Breakfast TV,
The Lazy Environmentalist TV show daycare episode on the Sundance Channel, CBC TV, and
Live Well Save My Planet episode. 2010 to 2018
Guest radio co-host on The Little Green People Show. 2009 to 2010
Green Living Classes & The Green Mama Café: Brainfood & Community for Parents series Jan. 2007 to present
“Growing up Mid,” G2 Performance Space (curator and performer), Chicago, IL Nov. 2005
Powell’s North Reading Series, Rec Room, 1926 Gallery (performer), Chicago, IL Spring 2004 to Nov. 2005
“Green neighbourhoods: lessons learned from the Cleveland EcoVillage,” Pittsburgh, PA Autumn 2003
“Designing for the future: incorporating children into sustainable design,” St. Louis, MO Autumn 2003
“Young leadership in the green design movement,” Austin, TX Autumn 2002
“Ecological design and cities: lessons from Cleveland,” Oberlin College, CWRU, and CSU Spring 2002

Education
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago: December 2005, MFA in writing
Cleveland State University: Fall 2001, fiction writing workshop
Oberlin College: May 1998, BA with honours in environmental studies and minor in politics

 

“I realized it for the first time in my life: there is nothing but mystery in the world, how it hides behind the fabric of our poor, browbeat days, shining brightly, and we don’t even know it.”

― Sue Monk Kidd, Secret Life of Bees.

 

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

— Albert Einstein.