JOIN US for a workshop in Raleigh, NC! This all-day workshop is open to anyone who wants to discover the benefits of writing from the loss of a loved one, loss of career or relationships, dreams, or health. There are many sorrows in life; writing through them brings healing, health and hope!


Journey through Life's Losses


Date: Saturday, July 27, 2013

Time: 9:00 AM to 4 PM

Location: Hampton Inn and Suites

111 Hampton Woods Lane, Raleigh, NC 27607 

Phone:(919) 233-1798



Facilitated by Alice J. Wisler


Alice is a bereaved mother, author of five novels, one devotional, a cookbook compiler (in memory of children), freelance writer, social worker, and instructor of many writing through grief workshops.  She travels the country presenting her workshops of healing, health and hope. 


Journey through Life’s Losses symbolizes a road trip we will embark on together and individually. Coupled with writing prompts, wisdom from well-known authors’ works, encouragement and instruction, we'll have ample time to silently reflect and write from our life experiences for healing, health, and hope. We will also learn how our journey can help others as we perfect our work to be published in magazines or newsletters. If you have suffered the loss of a broken relationship, childhood trauma, the death of a loved one, loss of finances or career or health, you'll certainly benefit from writing about your situation. Poetry, essays, journaling, using mementoes to reflect, and writing from photographs—this all-day workshop will give your writing and life a boost. Discover how writing is a gift you give yourself as we travel together.



 REGISTER -- with light breakfast from 9 AM to 9:15 AM

1. Preparing for the Trip

 a) Participants will discover the many health benefits of a writing journey and how effective truthful writing can be as we venture through our grief and losses. 

b) Uncovering hidden memories or feelings, either from the past or present, we’ll prepare ourselves for the emotions that may come (anger, sadness, regret, guilt) as we travel.

c) We will learn how to keep a journal of how we feel; tips and prompts for journaling will be discussed.


 2. Setting Out

 a) To start off on our journey, our first exercise will be to we'll be to write a description about ourselves and what we hope to gain from our time together.

b) Using questions, statements, and quotations provided by the instructor, we’ll generate our responses to these.  Among the quotes used is one by Mary Tyler Moore:  “You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you.” Students will see how this tool of “spring boarding” serves as a vibrant way to get creative minds moving to pour pain onto paper.


3. Mapping our Mileposts

  a) Each student will plot a timeline of significant events he has faced in his lifetime

b) Choosing one event, he will write a few lines about it. This will be the start of our session on memoir writing.


4. The Scenic Route

 a) Using a personal memento, picture or object, students will:


     Describe the object in simple non-emotional words


     Explain its value or significance


    Add emotions to the description, freely writing what the object means to him

 b) From the description, we will pull out words. We’ll create a list of nouns, verbs and adjectives—vibrant words to enhance our works, attempting to rid ourselves of words that take up space but don’t convey much.


BREAK -- 10:50~11:10 AM


5.  Viewing the Valleys and Mountains

a) We'll discuss various styles of poetry

b) We'll spend time writing:

      a poem of sorrow


      and a poem of beauty


 6.  Charting our Progress

 a) Making lists helps us get our thoughts onto paper quickly. We'll discuss the value of them and how to freely jot things down as quickly as words come to us, letting our thoughts flow onto paper.

 b) We’ll work with listing a number of things we like about our journey, what we don’t like, what is important to us, detours and fears we encounter, and what we want to change.


7. Long Stretches

a) We’ll learn the key points to a well-written essay as well as spend time on tips for forming the beginning, middle, and end.

b) Picking out a theme that may come from the lists, students will construct their own essays (four to five paragraphs).



LUNCH BREAK -- 12:45-1:45 PM




8.  Seeking the Travel Experiences of Others

 a) We have been through an adventure. Our words heal us and can heal others. We’ll read what other authors have written about their childhood, their traumas (even their humor) and life-changing experiences, while focusing on three popular memoirs: Rick Bragg’s All Over But the Shoutin’ Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie and Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes. 

b) As we relate to these accounts, we'll discover how certain techniques can be mirrored in our writing to strengthen it, particularly with writing a memoir.


9. Sharing the Sights

a) We’ll add to our essay we wrote, edit and polish it.

b) We’ll set a goal to submit our poetry or essay to magazines or literary websites and/or to commit to finishing  a memoir in the near future.


10. Future Destinations

 a) How have we grown through our writing? We’ll garner tips on how we can continue to maintain a writing lifestyle through journaling and writing so that our voice can be heard and others can learn from us as they read what we write.

b) We’ll talk about how the writing exercises have changed us and what we hope for our continuing journey.


Resources used for instruction

Well-known authors we’ll gain insight from:  Professor James Pennabaker, author of Opening Up; Kathleen Adams, author of Journal to the Self; Stephanie Ericsson, author of Companion Through the Darkness; and Anne Lamott, author of Bird by Bird.


A light breakfast, and a catered lunch, as well as snacks, will be provided and are included in your workshop fee.


What you need to bring:

*Your own notebook or journal

*A comfortable pen

*Personal memento, picture or object to write about


 Cost for workshop:

The early bird special has ended as of April 15th.  Cost is now $85.99.

 [Please note: A 25% cancellation fee applies.]

To register, send a check to:

Alice Wisler

Daniel's House Publications

P.O. Box 51531

Durham, NC 27717


pay via PayPal by clicking the "Buy Now" button below. 


 PAYPALJourney through Life's Losses  -- $85.99