GET STARTED

What provokes a story and makes me want to write?

Finding an entry point is often the biggest hurdle. Its a bit like jumping into a cold lake –– a daunting idea, alarming at first, more comfortable soon enough, and exhilarating before you know it. Keep it simple. Pick a moment in time and write about what happened, as if you want to explain it to an intimate friend who wasnt able to be there with you. Be in the moment if that feels right.

"Dear Cancer..."

See where it goes. You may be quite surprised.

Here are some suggested topics for patients, caregivers, and medical professionals:

My Initial Diagnosis

How do I deal with my best friends cancer?

Managing the strain of treating sick people

Learning to Say the C Word

Breaking the news to loved ones, friends and co-workers

Whats happening to my body?

My husband has cancer but what about me?

No Hair Days (embarrassing and humorous moments)

Cancer and Sexuality

Discovering faith and spirituality

Facing fears and mortality

Letting go of a loved one

What Have I Learned?

Life is not always "fair", but I always say, "its my one and only."

Each and every one of us reveal a unique piece of the human spirit –– from finding strength we never knew to feeling an absolute fear of losing control; from discovering what true support and love means to realizing we are all alone; from finding faith to losing it and finding it again.

Everyone seems to have a story to tell about cancer. Many are uplifting while others may not be easy to digest. But all are authentic and honest, and they reflect the staggering reality of the cancer world.

Open your heart. Give writing a chance.

Personal expression can be a gift –– to you, and everyone you know.

WHAT WORKSHOP PARTICIPANTS HAVE SAID

Writing improved the way I think about cancer or other aspects of my life because it:

•Organized my life and is cathartic

•Helped me face my fears

•Helped me get it out and move on

•Makes me feel closer to others and share my thoughts

Additional comments:

•I would have liked it to be longer because I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would have liked more time to talk to my partner.

•Would have liked to let people know that writing can be messy.

•Very much enjoyed group discussion and interactions

•I will try to write on a daily basis – even if its rubbish, its my rubbish! I just like to write!