Karen Connelly
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Upcoming Events & GOOD NEWS: Salons and Workshops this winter . . .

I’m looking forward to my Political Writing, Meditation, and Writing the Sexual Body seminars at the SURREY INTERNATIONAL WRITERS CONFERENCE! October 19-21, 2018. Registration is now closed, and many seminars are sold out. (Bravo to the tireless organizers.)

I plan to host several salons (delish parties with wine and poetry), writing workshops, and WriteLife Seminars (healing/meditative work) this winter. FINALLY! I’m working out the details with my little team. Dates and detes to follow here.

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BEING ADDED TO THE GUEST or PARTICIPANT LIST, please send a note through my contacts page or through Facebook.

WriteLife Seminars are NOT writing workshops. Yet they yield extraordinary, embodied, living words (which is what many writers seek in their work.) But they’re more personal and more tender than writing workshops. The work we do in WriteLife is about self-discovery and self-healing through language. I build on Narrative Therapy techniques and incorporate some OEI grounding techniques. OEI is a trauma therapy I’ve been studying in B.C. (I’ve used OEI therapeutically, on myself, for almost 20 years.) OEI is a body and brain-centred trauma therapy developed by Audrey Cook and Rick Bradshaw. I am certified to practice the first level of this work and I look forward to being fully certified. I am also currently a therapist-in-training in a Masters level counselling and psychotherapy program.

“Why are you becoming a therapist?” is the subject of a future book. In part because I’ve been doing ‘informal’ therapy with writing clients and friends for many years. I needed to formalize and deepen this important work, bound it ethically and call it what it is.

I have several private WriteLife and OEI clients. Because I’m in training, I’m limited to the number of clients I can work with. Please contact me if you are interested in a consultation and assessment.

For those who have asked about private editing: Yes, I can accept up to THREE book manuscripts to edit this fall/winter. I prefer to work on relatively strong manuscripts that are past ‘the sentence stage’ of development. These are books (and writers) in need of serious editorial direction but already at a relatively high level of craft.

For others with manuscripts at an earlier stage, I will be advising writers through the Humber School in January, 2019.

This important parting note: don’t forget to breathe! And to keep breathing . . .

May all beings, including you and me, be free from suffering.

A few words about The Change Room

My last four books were heartbreakers. They explore how adults and children survive (and do not survive) violent rupture: war, dictatorial repression, imprisonment, physical and mental abuse by governments and by families. As an artist, I found myself running on empty. I needed to lift my eyes away from  valiant struggle--at least for a while. I needed to have some serious fun . . .

Enter The Change Room. Enter Eliza Keenan, Shar Radfour and Andrew Taylor. Enter, in all its disturbing glory, Sex as one of the main characters in a novel about love, marriage, bisexuality, sex work, adultery, and washing the floor. Again. Like countless adulterers and adulteresses before her, Eliza herself enters that ancient labyrinth of half-truths and outright lies that lead to . . . 

 . . . Come and see what it all leads to! Spoiler alert: the ending is not the traditional one. I left perdition and brutal punishment out. The adulteress is not beaten. Her children do not die.  All over the world, our cultures and our religions, our ‘values’, and plenty of our novels, still embrace the punishment of sexuality in general and transgressive sex by women in particular.

I wanted to see, as a woman and a writer, what would happen if I CHANGED that old story and wrote a new, more complicated one instead.

My gratitude to everyone who has read and will read this challenging novel. My gratitude to everyone who has written to me about it— especially to the growing number of in-the-closet bisexual women who’ve said, “Thank you.”

You are welcome.

A Glance in . . . The Change Room, my new novel, on sale the week of April 10, 2017. This book will make you laugh . . . and provoke other physical reactions . . . I hope this is the first of many my friends . . .




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