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Writing for Healing

Writing stories heals body and soul and is a powerful way to integrate and change our perspective about the past.

The place of true healing is a fierce place. It’s a giant place. It’s a place of monstrous beauty and endless dark and glimmering light. And you have to work really, really, really hard to get there, but you can do it.

– Cheryl Strayed

Welcome to Writing for Healing

I have been helping people find words to heal for more than forty years as a therapist and writing coach. 

Putting words to our experiences is a powerful technique to unlock secrets and open doors to freedom and wellbeing. Words can release us from guilt and shame, once we’re able to say what it is that’s hidden in the darkness. Over twenty years of research by Dr. James Pennebaker has shown that writing about significant events, particularly troubling or traumatic events, helps to put them in perspective, and even helps to heal our bodies. Writing gives troubling moments a frame, a context. Words structure our experiences and help us to understand ourselves better. We make meaning through words and stories and discover where we belong in the scheme of things.

We live in a world of words, yet we often hide our deepest truths. We all need safety in which to allow words to form, to emerge, to be heard. And we need listeners. The first listener and witness to our truths is ourselves. We write to find out what we’re thinking. Often we don’t know until the words spill out of our fingers onto the page.

I’ve been teaching writing and healing for many years. I have written two memoirs to heal myself—Don’t Call Me Mother and Song of the Plains. My book Power of Memoir—Write Your Healing Story helps guide writers to find their story and write their truths.

Memoir writing helped me to heal and gave me a voice so in 2008 I founded the National Association of Memoir Writers. I wanted to connect writers with each other and spread the word about writing. Members enjoy articles, live events each month and a community who cares about writing and the power of words.

But not everyone wants to write a memoir. They just want to write. Write for pleasure, write for sanity. Write poetry without being a “poet.” Write family stories without being a Writer.

The resources on this site—articles, lessons, inspirational tips are meant to encourage you to find your way to writing—for yourself. Because you want to write. Because you want to use writing to sort yourself out. Perhaps you love words and poetry and want to play. Enjoy!

Linda Joy Myers

About Linda Joy Myers
Linda Joy Myers, Ph.D., MFT, MFA, is president and founder of the National Association of Memoir Writers. Her first memoir, Don’t Call Me Mother: A Daughter’s Journey from Abandonment to Forgiveness, was a finalist in the ForeWord Book of the Year Award and the IndieExcellence Awards, and a BAIPA Gold Medal award winner.

Her memoir Song of the Plains was a finalist in the Best Book Awards and the Next Generation Indie Book Awards. Author of The Power of Memoir—How to Write Your Healing Story, Journey of Memoir, and Becoming Whole, her prize-winning fiction, nonfiction, and memoir pieces have been published in literary journals and online. She is co-author with Brooke Warner of Breaking Ground on Your Memoir,  and The Magic of Memoir.

Linda Joy has been a therapist for 40 years, where story is part of the healing process. A memoir coach for two decades, Myers helps people dive deep into writing their truths while crafting a publishable story. Her monthly programs on NAMW offer tools about breaking silence, developing a powerful story, and finding the best publishing path.