By Renee Larr
On June 23, the Westfield Washington Public Library will host local author Shannon Lee Alexander. Her 3 p.m. seminar, “How Writing Can Heal,” will discuss using writing as a tool to cope with devastating loss. She will discuss her own personal experience through the death of a friend.
“My first book, ‘Love and Other Unknown Variables,’ is dedicated to a friend of mine who passed away due to ovarian cancer,” she said. “I began writing it while she was in chemotherapy. A lot of what I realized much later was that I really was helping myself work through a lot of the grief and the loss. I was processing what I had just gone through, what my friend had gone through and what the world looks like now without her in it.”
Her book, though fictional, was a safe way for Alexander to express her emotions.
“The characters are bits and pieces of myself, but not myself. You can go a bit deeper and explore a bit more,” Alexander said. “In the workshop, I’ll go through the process of where the story started and all the different revisions. It changed a great deal from its start to its finished product.”
The seminar is and open to all ages. Alexander will answer questions about the writing process.
“People who might be interested in the discussion may have experienced the loss of a loved one or experienced something in their life that has hurt,” she said. “They might be struggling to find a positive way or a creative outlet to work around it and understand it. This is another tool they might be able to use to help themselves process the pain and whatever it is they’re going through.”
For more, visit wwpl.lib.in.us.