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Transformative Writing: Fear as Muse

Once again, we’re thrilled to welcome Jackie Moloney as a guest blogger! Jackie is a writer, editor and creative writing instructor. She is a Reiki III master and volunteer rape crisis counselor and holds certifications in Yoga RYT 200 and from the Veterans Yoga Project. Her poems, essays, and stories have appeared in numerous publications under the name Jacqueline Henry. Enjoy her powerful words! 

“As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” — Nelson Mandela

The word fear is described in the dictionary as an “unpleasant emotion” triggered by something or someone considered dangerous. It’s both a noun and a verb, something felt, like “fright,” and an action we take, “to be afraid.” It can paralyze us, consume us, and prevent us from manifesting our dreams and living joyful lives. But it can also protect us, enabling us to intuitively react to the lion in life’s jungle or the monster in the metaphorical forest. It allows us to develop courage and fortitude. And — as we will see in a series of writing workshops — its energy can be used as creative Muse.

Beginning with the first class (see below for class information!) we’ll look at the language of fear, its “felt sense” in our bodies, and the metaphors we’ve attached to it. As we write from guided prompts, we’ll break fear down and question the truth of our perceptions, maybe even changing our fear narratives and putting that monster to better use in the process. 

Each class includes guided meditation and prompts, generative writing sessions, and an opportunity at the end to share your thoughts or read your stories. The Fear as Muse series runs monthly from October to February and can be taken as a single class or as a series. Please bring a writing instrument and notebook.

Fear as Muse Transformative Writing Series

The Monsters Among Us (Oct. 30 @ 6-7 pm)

Vampires. Ogres. Frankenstein. The Werewolf. Mr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde. We all remember the monsters of our childhoods, but what of the metaphoric monsters we carry? Or those who live among us, in our families and in our society, feeding off of our energies and fears? In this generative writing workshop, we’ll explore our monsters as characters and transform fear into the creative act of storytelling.

Into the Woods (Nov. 16 @ 6-7 pm)

This second class builds on story and setting. Like Hansel & Gretel lost in the woods, a place of mystery and the unknown, where and when have we been lost? What was — or needs to be — discovered?

Exposure (Dec. 7 @ 6-7 pm)

Winter exposes us to the elements and temperature, external, as well as our own internal weather. What do we expose of ourselves and what do we keep hidden? 

Fears & Phobias (Jan. 11 @ 6-7 pm)

Here we explore the craft elements of “premise” and theme. What fears do we cling to? Think: fear of flying or heights, fear of bridges, of water or enclosed spaces, or cats or spiders (arachnophobia, anyone?). How are our fears holding us back from manifesting our desires or doing the things we love?  

Hello, My Name is Fear” (Feb. 8 @ 6-7 pm)

In this class, fear is personified and embodied. We explore voice and how to recognize and embrace our own authentic voices amidst those that hold us hostage and fearful. 

What’s your biggest fear? Tell us on Facebook or Instagram!

Featured image: Avery Lewis/Unsplash