The Newsletter of 
June 2016


  • Write about some of the similarities between you and your father.
  • Write about a special memory or time you spent with your father. 
  • Write a short biography about your father's life before and after you were born. 
  • Whether your father is alive or has passed, write a letter to him.

Me, my Dad and my Kids, circa 1990
For me, the month of June represents the beginning of summer and vacations.  June also represents a month long celebration of fathers. During this month, I am reminded of my own father and maternal grandfather, who were a vital part of my childhood. I think of my father's father, who perished in the Holocaust and whom I never met. I think of all the kids today, mine included, who have great fathers. I pray for those who never met their fathers, and for those whose fathers were never there for them.

My father, Edward
My father died in 1991, but he is in my thoughts every day. I see so much of 
his vibrancy and zest for life in each of my children. I often reflect on how happy he was to be a grandfather.

My father-in-law, Alex
My father-in-law died last year, and this will be the first Father's Day when we can't call him. Both of these men were Holocaust survivors and were so grateful for each day of their lives. 
Whether your father is alive or has passed, or whether you have (or had) a positive or challenging relationship with him, I believe it's important for you to honor the person who helped give you life. This, in and of itself, is a cause for celebration!

Hindsight (nonfiction)
by Mark Freeman

I've been a longtime admirer of Mark Freeman's work, and even though this is not his most recent book (which was The Priority of the Other, next on my reading list), Hindsight is one that I just reread while working on my own next book, Writing for Bliss. I thought that as Father's Day approaches, the month of June would be the perfect time for me to review Hindsight, because in this work, Freeman references his father. Freeman lost his dad when he was 20, and in his writing, he often refers to their sometimes turbulent relationship. However, he goes deeper than that--closely examining the ups and downs of their interactions.
In Hindsight, Freeman contends that looking back on our lives and our relationships can serve as a source of insight and understanding. He also relates this concept to his coined term, narrative reflection, which is an important part of what I write a lot about myself--that is memoir. Freeman says that hindsight can lead to moral growth, which is akin to what I call transformation.
Those of us who lost our fathers many years ago often become reflective during this time of year. As such, when thinking about his father, Freeman says, "I feel the presence of his absence," a poignant way to say that he truly misses his dad. I can say the same about my own father, especially when I look around and see my children growing, thriving, and beginning to start families of their own.
This is a book you may not be able to put down! Freeman's warm, authentic voice--which weaves personal experience with psychology, philosophy, and literature--makes you feel as if you're entertaining him in your living room, having a lively discussion about hindsight. Highly recommended!

"Writing Naked for Changed." (blog).  Psychology Today.  May 12, 2016.

"Self-Awareness Is Sexy." (blog). Psychology TodayMay 24, 2016. 

"Intimacy and Sexuality After Bodily Disfigurement." (blog).  Psychology Today May 31, 2016. 

"Why You Should Treat Your Mom Like a Goddess." (blog).  The Huffington Post.  May 21, 2016.

"How to Seduce Your Soul." (poem). Soul-Lit.  May 2016. 

"The Writing That Shaped My Life."  Soul Survivors: From Trauma to Triumph. June 2016.

"Mountain Peace."  Snapdragon Journal: Journey Issue. June 2016. 

Creatively yours,

P.S. Please send any comments to 
(Subject: Newsletter) 


huffington post huffington post huffington post 

Stay connected:   Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  View our profile on LinkedIn