December 2017

"Human rights is a  universal
 standard. It is a component of every  religion
 and ever civilization." 
                                                      ~Shirin Ebadi


For many people, December is a month of festivities, but for other less fortunate individuals, it's just another month in the year. While glancing through my calendar, I noticed that December 10th is International Human Rights Day. It was chosen to honor the United Nations General Assembly's adoption and proclamation in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These are fundamental rights that each person is entitled to. 

Under normal circumstances, I am not an activist and typically, I don't look for controversy, but I am compassionate and care about human rights. December 10th, therefore, is only an example of one day when we all can be more mindful of the importance of equality and living a life of dignity and worthiness. 

One aspect of human rights is the right to be a seeker. During my own lifetime I am grateful to have been called a seeker or one who has followed the path of self-discovery. I've had the opportunity to search for answers by exploring different paths through reading, talking to people, and traveling. Some people believe that once you find your path, you get this incredible feeling inside, knowing that you found what you've been looking for. You feel blissful most of the time. Your path will ring true to you inside, while others feel that you can be a seeker for the entire life span.

In August, I had an article in Yoga Journal called, "Are You a Seeker? How to Tell & Tap the Transformative Power of Writing."Check it out to see how writing can help you on your journey.


Spiritual seekers are those who follow the path of self-discovery. One way to navigate self-discovery is through the process of writing. Being a seeker might be a lifelong path or one sought as a result of a life-changing event, such as trauma. I have been a seeker my entire life, and when I stop to think about it, it was probably initiated during my childhood when my voice was silenced and I had to seek peace and answers from within, from my readings and from the jottings in my journal. My seeking might also be traced to my fascination as a young girl with reading biographies and magazines that featured true stories about real people. Real-life stories provide a deep connection to the kinds of experiences that offer answers for seekers posing questions. We want to learn how to navigate our paths and often do so by reading and hearing about how others have found their own way. Those lessons are consciously or subconsciously incorporated into our own lives.

Some years ago, I facilitated a workshop called "Writing with Lust" at The Open Center in New York City. Regardless of the specific reasons why people enrolled in the workshop, there was one common thread-each person in the room said they were a seeker. They had questions for which they sought answers. They were on a journey of self-discovery, and writing is a great way to take that journey. (p. 31).

Creatively yours,
December Writing Prompts from
  • Write about a time when you felt joy, elation, and wonder. 
  • Write about a fascinating or compelling family story.  
  • Write about a question you've had difficulty answering.
  • Make a list of 5-10 transformative moments.
Recently Published Works

"One Day at a Time" (article).  HerStory. October 25, 2017. 

"A Room of Our Own" (blog).
     Psychology Today. November 9, 2017. 

"7 Ways to Start a Gratitude Journaling Practice."
Yoga Journal. November 22, 2017.

"A Thanksgiving Greeting"  (blog). 
     Book Readers Heaven.  November 23, 2017. 

"Surrendering to Gratitude" (blog).
     Psychology Today. November 26, 2017. 

"7 Ways Journaling Can Save Your Life" (article).
     Berkeley Wellbeing. November 27, 2017. 

"How Writing Heals" (article). Sivana East. November 29, 2017.

"Writing for Personal Growth and Healing" (article). Museletter: The National Association of Poetry Therapy.  November Issue. 

Workshops + Book Signings + Presentations

December 9, 2017
"Writing for Bliss" (Workshop)
Yoga Soup
Santa Barbara, CA
To register: Click Here

January 6, 2018
"Writing for Bliss" (Workshop)
Mystic Journey Bookstore
Venice, CA
To register: Click Here
January 13, 2018
"Writing Is Bliss" (Workshop)
Vroman's Bookstore
Pasadena, CA
To register: Click Here
January 27, 2018
"Writing for Bliss" (Book Signing)
Barnes & Noble
160 Westlake Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA

February 23-25, 2018
"Writing for Bliss" (Workshop)
1440 Multiversity
Scotts Valley, CA
To register:  Click Here
June 17-22, 2018
"Memoir Writing" (Workshop)
Santa Barbara Writers Conference
Santa Barbara, CA
June 30, 2018
"Writing for Bliss: Finding Joy Through Personal Writing" (Workshop)
Open Center
22 E. 30th Street
New York, NY  10016

  "Interview on Writing for Bliss."   StraightTalk with Nick Lawrence. 
October 15, 2017. 

"Interview with Diana Raab." Tell Me Your Story.
October 23, 2017. 

"Interview with Diana Raab."  Advice to Writers.
November 21, 2017.

"Interview on Writing for Bliss." The Intuitive Woman Podcast.
November 28, 2017. 

SUGGESTED READING (Great gift idea)

If you're looking for the perfect gift, one that will both inspire and intrigue your friends all year long, this hardbound 93-page volume is an elegant choice. Proust lived a long time ago, and is an enigma, of sorts, the questions he posed are timeless and can help us understand ourselves-our likes, dislikes, preferences and beliefs. It's also a great coffee table book, and the questions within could be asked outlaid as  conversation starters or as part of a getting-acquainted game.  

My favorite writer, Anais Nin, loved reading Proust, probably because of his passion for probing and analyzing the human psyche in its conscious and unconscious states; thus, the answers to his questions were intended to provide insight into the inner soul. According to Henry-Jean Servat, The Proust Questionnaire is one of "the most popular methods of interview used by media throughout the work, enjoying exceptional and indisputable renown" (p.14).

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