April’s Book To Live By

Everyone has a story.

That’s the first thing Nancy Slonim Aronie tells you. And she believes you must share it.

You are about to have a writing class from one of the most respected and revered teachers in the business. This is a woman who has spent nearly half a century helping others find the magic that comes from telling their story.

Nancy is the founder of the Chilmark Writing Workshop on Martha’s Vineyard. She has taught at Kripalu, Omega, Esalen, and Harvard. She has been a newspaper columnist and an NPR contributor.

She is also one of the great allies in my beloved Wise Women circle, and she is a long-time friend and mentor to Women on Fire.

I am so happy and honored to announce that our April Book To Live By is:

Memoir as Medicine: The Healing Power of Writing Your Messy, Imperfect, Unruly (but Gorgeously Yours) Life Story by Nancy Slonim Aronie


Nancy’s first book, Writing from the Heart, is a classic in the field. This one, hot off the presses, looks specifically at the memoir. As the title implies, Nancy believes that writing your story can be a balm — for the writer and the reader.

A big part of Nancy’s story began when her nine-month-old son, Dan, was diagnosed with diabetes. Twenty-two years later, he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Nancy and her husband cared for Dan through his illness during the last 16 years of his life.

For guidance, she did lots of reading, but she never found the book she most needed to read. So she eventually wrote it, leading the way to a powerful healing. She believes with all her heart the same can happen for you, no matter the source of your pain.

A writer must do more than instruct; she must also inspire. Nancy lays out the path and processes of storytelling. She demonstrates where to look and how to listen. She helps you discover the necessary humor and humility, the gratitude and grace to enhance the telling.

She guides you on how to search out the details, telling you what to avoid and what not to avoid. There are lots of writing prompts, tips, and examples from her own writing as well as from other masters of the craft.

Nancy always supports and protects the writer to enable the courage to come through. This book gives you the capacity to trust yourself and your readers as you leave your comfort zone to do the soul work of writing.

Nancy Slonim Aronie is a pathfinder, and Memoir as Medicine will help you find your way and perhaps change your life in the process.

To learn more about Nancy and the Chilmark Writing Workshop, including a special class this fall for Women on Fire members, visit chilmarkwritingworkshop.com.


Debbie Signature


November’s Book To Live By

“I’ve always wanted to write, but… [fill in the blank].”

Nancy Aronie has heard countless such regrets. But she took to heart the underlying message: People really want to write. She made it her life’s mission to help them do that.

For this month’s podcast, I was thrilled to talk with Nancy, who is a beloved teacher, the founder of the Chilmark Writing Workshop on Martha’s Vineyard, and a treasured member of our Women on Fire circle.

And I am so pleased to announce that our November Book To Live By is:

Writing from the Heart: Tapping the Power of Your Inner Voice by Nancy Slonim Aronie.

Published in 1998, Writing from the Heart has become a classic of the genre. Generations of would-be writers have learned to navigate their own writer’s blocks from her hard-earned wisdom.

Although Nancy felt from childhood that she was a writer, it took years and tears for her to find her best fit. With warmth, candor, and humor, she tells stories of those struggles and triumphs.

In the process, she demonstrates how exploring your own stories can put you on a path of healing from past losses, disappointments, and other emotional pain. Her methods provide security and acceptance to ease you over the bumps.

After a rude awakening to the unkindness of others, she began offering her students a safe place to build their skills and confidence. People flocked to her classes in such places as the Omega Institute and Kripalu as well as her own workshop.

With Writing from the Heart, Nancy Aronie encourages you to release fear and self-doubt and take the risk of writing from your heart. To keep you moving forward, she suggests inspired and inspiring writing prompts to unleash your creativity and help you find your voice.

I have learned so much from this amazing guidebook, and I know you will, too. I recommend it with all my heart.

SPECIAL INVITATION: If you want to put your desires to write into action, please mark your calendar for October 3-6, 2022. You’re invited to join us on Martha’s Vineyard for a special Women on Fire edition of Nancy’s writing workshop. Seating will be limited! Please contact Daren@womenonfire.com for more information.

Here’s to your writing adventures,

Debbie Signature

P.S. Every day at Women on Fire, we offer expert advice, useful strategies, and woman-to-woman support. If you are not yet a member, please consider joining us today!