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ALIGN YOUR STORY

A UNIQUE ONLINE
WRITING COURSE/ RETREAT

FOR WOMEN
WITH YOGA AND MEDITATION

Tap into creative, emotional, spiritual and physical well being…

Your story and your voice hold the key to your well-being, your power and your purpose.

But most of us don’t have the tools to access our full story or to write with our full voice.

Most writing programs focus only on the limited left brain and on the words on the page.

Align Your Story’s unique method brings together meditation and optional yoga with powerful lessons and detailed close readings to bring together craft and process.

It guides you to go deeper, quiet the mind, listen to the body and be inspired by other writers and thinkers so you can write your best work.

It’s a space to reclaim your full story, to come out of secrets, to embrace your full experiences and the full emotional and embodied dimensions of your creative vision and voice. 

It invites you to join a wonderful community of supportive and inspiring women writers around the world.

And once you join, you have lifelong access so that you can go through the course again and again at your own pace and continue to deepen your writing and your relationships in the community.

Find and honor your unique, authentic voice…

Align Your story is designed for women who are complete novice writers and also for professional writers and everyone in between.

How can this be?

This course meets you where you are, wherever that is, so that you can deepen your relationship with yourself and your writing life. And it gives you new tools that most writing schools don’t give us. 

It asks us to reconsider many of our implicit assumptions about writing that don’t help us, but actually hold us back and keep us stuck, unable to listen deeply to our voice or story.

This course gives you the tools you need to get through the blocks and frustrations that have been holding you back. It empowers you to step into your fullness and to embrace your full story, whatever genre you’re working in, whether it’s poetry, memoir, fiction, creative nonfiction, or any other form of writing. It reminds you what it’s like to shine.

  • Do you feel that you have something important to say but you can’t quite access it?
  • Do you wish that writing were not as difficult?
  • Do you sometimes wonder, “who do I think I am?” when you sit down to write?
  • Do you feel out of joint in your mind and your body?
  • Do you worry that if you write your story you will be trapped by its negativity?
  • Do you want to jump into your positive memories and experiences, but you aren’t sure how?
  • Do you worry what people will think of you if you tell your truth and what the consequences will be?
  • Do you feel isolated and alone as a writer and want a supportive community?
  • Are you ready to start giving your voice its real power and freedom?
  • Are ready to write your best, most original work with your full powers? 

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story”
-Maya Angelou

Enrollment opens only once a year. Join us! We start April 26th! 

Is there something in your own story that is holding you back?  For the past 15 years, I’ve worked with both novice and professional writers who know they have something important within them, but also sometimes find the process frustratingly difficult and are ready to unleash their full creative power.

We don’t allow ourselves to take ourselves seriously.

And often each of us imagines it’s only us.  We think there is something wrong with us. We become slightly ashamed. We think writing must be easier for other people.

Or we buy into the myth that writers and artists are supposed to struggle. We buy into the idea of the “war of art,” that creativity is a struggle, a battle. We think this is just how it is.

This is a problem for all writers. But it’s especially a problem for women, who have been taught for years to contort our natural experience to fit into other people’s ideas of ourselves.

I get it. It’s not surprising that we have these antagonistic experiences with our creativity and our creative voice. After all, we’ve been taught to speak in other people’s voices. Whether it is the parent’s voice, the teacher’s, or the boss’s, usually there are external voices that have been internalized. Those voices might tell us that we’re not good enough. Or they might tell us that we’re “perfect.” But they don’t really see or hear us .  

Many of us have rarely been really given the space and freedom and tools to explore the full range of our story and our own voice; to put our mind and bodies together and listen deeply; to make mistakes; to try new things; to play and discover; to get quiet; and also to lovingly push ourselves to expand beyond our comfort range. Often, the fancier our education is, the less of this space we’ve been given.

When we are given this space, we come to see that creativity does not need to be so difficult. And we come to know that the places of resistance, if we listen more closely, are really places of growth.

In fact, with the right tools, your creative process can become a source of great pleasure and exciting insights and you will have the tools you need to write the work you’ve been wanting to write.

Align Your Story gives you a whole range of tools, from practical tools of craft to embodied practices and writing prompts to help you come to love your writing.

And you might come to find that you recognize yourself when Marianne Williamson says: “our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”

When you align our story, you can come to love your own unique woman’s story. And to share your full story and creative voice with others.

I do this work because I also have this experience.

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost.”
– Martha Graham

Align Your Story is the only kind of writing class that brings together writing, close readings, meditation and optional yoga

Align Your Story brings  together the rigor of an Ivy League education with the insights and wisdom of the meditative and yoga traditions and the heart and soul of a mother and activist.

It gives you the tools to understand and expand your craft with the left brain and also the tools to, when appropriate, quiet that left brain and let other parts of yourself express themselves.

The meditation quiets the constant chatter and stills the anxiety so that we can listen more deeply to our deeper insights.

The yoga allows us to unlock the messages of our body.

The course allows us to access a fuller range of knowing, emotional well-being, and expression.

It connects in the same practice mind, body and spirit. 

It also  gives you life-long access to a wonderful community of supportive and inspiring like-minded women writers around the world on the private facebook group and in the live conference calls.

WHO IS IT FOR?

Align Your story is for novice writers and published authors,
for fiction writers and memoir writers, poets and business writers.

It is for professionals, stay at home moms, retirees and anyone interested in self expression and growth.

Align Your Story is designed for interested beginners and experienced meditation and yoga practitioners .

It meets you where you are.

Be guided by the course to create all new work.

Or bring a writing project you’re already working on to the course and get new inspiration and tools for it. 

Whether you have a lot of time to devote to the class or just a little, the course can fit your schedule.

You have lifetime access and can go at your own pace. 
And you can choose which aspects of the course to focus on. 

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Align Your Story is comprised of eight modules. Each module contains a lesson, close readings of great literature, yoga, meditation, writing exercises, a live optional video conference call, and access to a private facebook group.

Unlike other writing groups, the focus of this course is not on constantly getting critique or on being expected to read and critique your peers’ writing. Instead the focus on this course is to learn to listen to yourself, practice new techniques and skills, access different parts of yourself in the writing process, go deep and become your own best witness, reader and editor.

While there is opportunity to share your work, and many students do, that is optional, so that you have the ability to be as honest and exploratory on the page as you want.

The next of round of  Align Your Story starts April 26th and unfolds over 8 weeks,but you can go through at your own pace, if you prefer, and once you enroll, you have access to the material, the private facebook community, and the conference calls for life.

WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

Module 1 : FREE WRITING : Learn how to set up a sustainable writing practice, get past your inner critic, embrace your writing practice, Connect Mind and Body, & More

Get comfortable with not knowing, with play, experimentation, mistakes, with the ugly, the beautiful, and non judgement.
We will look closely are a wide variety of voices exploring a wide variety of contents to give you more freedom in your own range of expression includes Mindful Exercises and Unlocking the Spine in YogaStudied Texts: Rumi, W.H.Auden, Ann Lamott, Natalie Golberg

Module 2 : DEEP LISTENING : Learn how to listen deeply with the mind and body, Come into greater awareness and write from that attentive space, & more

In this module we will write from listening—and then we will practice listening to and reading ourselves. In this module we will try to find a place of stillness and see where that takes our writing. We will read some pieces that encourage us to go deep within ourselves.Includes Mindful Exercise and Yoga of Stretching​Studied texts include Hafiz, Emily Dickinson and W.G Sebald

Module 3 : RESISTANCE, SHAME AND JUDGMENT : Learn how to find practical tools to get out of the blocks that so often stop our writing and get in the way of living; learn to approach resistance as an opportunity for growth and for better, not harder, writing (& living)

What we can learn from our shadow side so we can embrace our truest power.Sometimes we need to go into the difficult places before we can really move forward.Meditation exercise and strengthening the lower chakras​​. Studied texts include: Rumi and Christa Wolf

Module 4 : CHILDHOOD : Learn how to write from the richness of childhood without getting trapped in it; bring the aliveness, physicality and wisdom of childhood experiences to whatever genre you're working in

The good the bad the funny the ugly the beautiful. You can connect with the source of your own power by reconnecting with your power as a child.Meditation exercise and heart opening yoga​​Reading includes Annie Dillard and Proust

Module 5 : JOY : Learn how to make your writing (and your life) come alive by accessing joy in the body and putting it on the page so that your writing has a greater range of emotion and experience.

What have been unexpected moments of joy in your life? When have you had sustained periods of joy? Find your true voice, even if it is deeply sad or hurt or angry; there is joy in the creative act its

Meditation, chanting and yoga to open your throat chakra

Studied texts include: Ross Gay and Walt Whitman

Module 6 : REVISION and RE-VISION : Learn how to re-imagine revision so that it makes your writing process more free, rich and vibrant. Come to love the revision process and make it as creative as the writing process itself

In this module, you will experiment with revising, rewriting, re-seeing. Try on different hats: play, experiment, align. We won’t stress perfection, but will be open, curious, and diligent.

Meditation and yin yoga

Studied texts: Ann Lamott, Elizabeth Bishop

 

Module 7 : THE ART OF THE STORY LINE : Learn how to put the different pieces of your story or any story all together! Explore different techniques and possibilities and have the tools to decide which is right for which piece.

How do you tell your story? Where do you start? What is significant? What do you put in and what do you keep out? What tone do you take?

In this module, we’ll put together the pieces in a variety of different ways and come into alignment

Meditation and yoga flow

Studied Texts: short stories and personal essays

 

Module 8 : WRITING FOR LIFE : Learn how to keep going for the long term and write what you love and love the writing process itself.

So how do you keep going? In this final module, you will have the tools to keep your writing practice going for as long as you like–perhaps your whole life. 

Full of inspiration and encouragement, in this module you’ll fall in love–if you haven’t already–with your own writing. 

Meditation and heart opening yoga

Studied texts: Hafiz, Rumi, etc.

EACH MODULE COMES WITH THESE SEVEN COMPONENTS

LESSON

Each lesson— on themes such as resistance, joy, childhood, revision and more—will explain and develop the theme of the module, bring together the different elements of the course, and help you connect to your voice and to the full range of your story and creativity. Course material is delivered in downloadable audio so that you can listen at your convenience and also as text.

CLOSE READINGS

Each module offers carefully chosen close readings that illustrate  the module’s theme and offer inspiring and beautiful examples since good writing comes in part from good reading. We read writers such as  Sapho, Rilke, Proust, Rumi, Maya Angelou, Virginia Woolf, Zora Neale Hurston, Mary Oliver,  Rebecca Solnit as well as inspiring thinkers such as Thich Nhat Hanh, Christianne Northrup and many others. A bonus section of extra suggested readings is also included in each module so you can go deeper if you want. Course material is delivered in downloadable audio so that you can listen at your convenience and also as text.

WRITING EXERCISES & PROMPTS

Each module contains numerous in depth writing exercises and prompts that guide to through the course not only the first time but also so each time you come through the course. These prompts are designed for writers working in any genre and can be adapted for writers working on a larger writing project. 

MEDITATION

In each module, I guide you through a carefully chosen meditation to help clear the static from your mind so that you can come into greater concentration, clarity and insight. I give you the tools to establish a home practice. Material is delivered with a short teaching video and audio to practice with. Each module contains numerous in depth writing exercises and prompts that guide to through the course not only the first time but also so each time you come through the course. These prompts are designed for writers working in any genre and can be adapted for writers working on a larger writing project. 

YOGA

In each module, I lead a carefully selected yoga set to complement the theme of the week, deepen the focus of the lesson and bring mind and body into integration. Our bodies as well as our minds carry our stories, and the yoga is designed to help you listen to, release what you no longer need, heal and harness the power of your body’s stories and languages. The yoga can be rigorous for those looking for good physical, emotional and mental strength building and stamina, but it can also be modified for all body types and be taken very gently. Yoga is optional. Material is delivered with a teaching video and audio to practice with. 

CONFERENCE CALL

Weekly conference calls/video sessions to ask questions, engage in discussion and practice together are offered once per module. This is a great way to connect more with the community of women writers around the world. These are optional and if you can’t make them live, you can email questions in advance. Everyone will get a recording. Once you enroll, each time I offer the course, you are invited to these live sessions.

FACEBOOK GROUP

There is an ongoing facebook group of engaged, supportive, inspiring women writers around the world. We have students in Israel, England, South Korea, China, Canada, California, Texas, Ohio, Florida, New York, Massachusetts, Maine and many other places. Share work, ask questions, get support, offer feedback, be inspired. The facebook group is a great way to connect and also to make lasting friendships. Many students have made lasting in-person friendships from this group as well.

– MY STORY –

Hi, I’m Nadia Colburn, and I’m the founder and creator of Align Your Story.


I believe that your voice and your story matter. I’m passionate about helping women share their unique stories and their creativity with the world.

I was always a good student. I got straight A’s, went to Harvard and then to Columbia where I got a PhD in English. I was rewarded for my good writing. But the truth is, I didn’t really know my own voice or my own story. And while I looked “good” on paper, I wasn’t really expressing myself fully. My goodness was its own kind of trap.

I needed not just to express my story, but also to understand and heal the places that were wounded. I needed to learn how to be my own best witness. To do this, I stepped away from a successful academic life to do the hard inner work of healing and growing and of showing up for myself—and also for my children.

I didn’t want to just have things to teach from my mind. I wanted to learn how to live as myself with all my complexities in our complicated world. I needed to learn how to put the different sides of me together, the mind and the body and the heart and the spirit; they all felt fragmented.

There wasn’t a model for me to do this: my creative writing community focused only on what was on the page; my healing and yoga and spiritual communities focused on the inner work, but didn’t have a way to integrate that work with outer expression or with coming back into the public world. I needed to create my own method.

It was a long and bumpy path. In addition to my training as a an award winning creative writer and PhD in English who has been a literature professor at lead schools like MIT, and a creative writing workshop leader, I also got trained as a yoga teacher and became a serious student of Thich Nhat Hanh and have experience in ten day silent vipassana retreats and am trained as a kundalini yoga teacher.

When I integrated these different modalities for myself, amazing things began to happen. I found that I could write from my center,  with more ease and more power. Because I knew better who I was, I could access my own authority and write about my authentic experiences as a woman.

I came to come to love my own difficult, twisty, painful, wonderful, joyful, unique story. I came to write about what it means to me to be a woman with a body, a woman who was once a girl and is now a mother, a citizen, a survivor, a lover, a thinker, an animal. In the process, not only did I feel less anxious, but also, many of the health problems that I had had for years also cleared up! I began to bring these methods to my students. I’ve now taught thousands of students and have seen the exciting transformations that this process brings to them.

My writing has been published in more than 80 publications, including The New Yorker, Spirituality & Health, American Poetry Review, LA Review of Books, Tiny Buddha, Lion’s Roar, Truthout and many other places. My debut poetry collection, The High Shelf, will be published in 2019 and my essay “The Language of Silence: Listening to the Body” is published in The Anatomy of Silence: 26 stories about all the sh*t that gets in the way of talking about sexual violence” I’m a founding editor at Anchor Magazine: where spirituality and social justice meet, and have taught workshops in a wide variety of places including Copper Beach Institute, The Muse and the Marketplace, The MA Poetry Festival, The Harvard Divinity School and many other places.

Each writer has a different story, but the unique method that I created first for myself and now share with others helps can help you access your true creativity and authentic voice–and authority. Your voice matters; your experiences; your story, and your creative vision matter. I want to help you realize them fully. This is powerful, transformative work that regenerates us not only individually but also collectively. It is the change we need and the change the world needs.

ABOUT ALIGN  YOUR STORY
I offer this class only once a year.
Join us!

TESTIMONIALS

See what some people have said…

“People often talk about how tortuous the writing life is. Align Your Story offers a different path, one that incorporates community, physical exercise, meditation, readings, writing prompts, and Nadia’s own gentle, insightful presence and listening. I loved the diversity of resources I found here and how the course (quite literally) strengthens the muscles needed for a regular writing practice.

I now incorporate the yoga exercises from this course, as well as meditation exercises, into my daily writing schedule. It puts me in a better mood and reminds me of the rest of myself, the entirety of me, on days that feel frustrating at the computer.

I’ve made exciting progress on my second novel, and I’ve felt a lot less alone. AYS has given me the chance to re-examine my relationship to success and self-worth, in a way that serves not just my writing, but the rest of my life, too. It’s been an important way for me to honor and embrace my own voice, both on and off the page.”

Brittani Sonnenberg
author of Home Leave

Austins, TX
http://brittanisonnenberg.com

“I stumbled upon Align Your Story in a moment of sheer desperation. From day one, Align Your Story is a thoughtful, engaging and inspiring series of modules that takes the writer on a deeply spiritual, soul-filling journey that has the potential to shift your life dramatically. The yoga and meditation exercises were an unexpected bonus and gave consciousness and clarity to each of the writing practices. I had never before written with so much freedom and personal insight as I was compelled to during Nadia’s course. Her genuine interest in bringing out your authentic voice, and gently teasing out the parts of your personal journey that lend weight and meaning to your work keeps you coming back for more each week.

I look at this course as my own personal spiritual spring cleaning…the fact that I can access the course anytime I want offers endless opportunities to regularly clear out the “dust” that collects in the crawl spaces of my soul. ” 

Karen Biscoe, MA
http://greensearchpartner.com

“For a long time, trying to write felt like poking at a hot bruise of self-doubt and fear. Nadia’s course, which combines yoga, meditation and serious literary work, catalyzed a fundamental change in how I approach my writing, and now, I write with enthusiasm and minimal anxiety. Align Your Story finally allowed me to achieve coherence between my spiritual, physical and creative lives—something I’d been looking for that all of my life without knowing where to find it.

I recommend this course to everyone who wants to take their creative lives to the next level. After all, theworld needs creative people to align themselves more than ever these days; we are the superheroes the world needs.”

Simone Grace Seol
writer, illustrator

Seoul South Korea
http://simonegrace.me/about/

“At last I discovered a writing mentor, Nadia Colburn, who dares to value both the craft of writing and one’s personal journey of body, mind, spirit and voice. What I did not expect was how intentionally and lovingly Nadia would hold herself, her students, and the world to that vision throughout Align Your Story.

Her profoundly powerful lessons, readings, supporting yoga movements, meditations, and guidance in the weekly phone conversations, met me exactly where I was on my own path. Her insight and candor reached directly to parts of my own unconscious.

I responded to Align Your Story with an unexpected and welcome shift in a long-standing, difficult recurring dream. Working with Nadia through Align Your Story allowed me a depth of internal movement and self-integration that infused new life and strength into my path and voice.”

 —Jennie Meyer,
mother, meditation teacher, reiki practitioner

Gloucester, MA

“When I retired , I was determined to move into my most creative self without the constraints and rules of others’ expectations. I just was not quite sure how I was going to get there. To my delight and surprise, Align Your Story came along and lit the way.

Align Your Story’s approach to writing as storytelling made me lighter and happier; once I saw myself as a storyteller I also became a story writer. And with that realization came freedom.

I was amazed by how the simple act of writing a new ending to an old memory brought me into a different relationship with that memory. What I have found with Align Your Story is a new relationship to myself!

Align Your Story is a wonderful writing course; I could not have wanted for more content, personal connection, creative support or input. I see its effect in all of my life.”

 Lisa Humphrey
Retired from career in Human Resources

Chillicothe, OH

TWO WAYS TO TAKE ALIGN YOUR STORY

Unlike so many writing courses, the primary focus of Align Your Story is not on getting immediate critique and feedback from the teacher or peers, a practice which keeps people stuck in immediate judgement and criticism mode.

Instead, this class asks you to go deep inside and to learn to listen to yourself and to become your own best witness within a community of support.

​That said, the premium plan is available for those who want extra support and guidance with setting up a regular practice, with getting through emotional blocks and breaking old habit patterns and with editorial feedback for a truly unique experience.

CLASSIC PLAN

  • The full Align Your Story Program
  • Lifetime access to all course material
  • Access to Private Ongoing Facebook Group
  • 8x 60 min live video conference
  • Plus 5 Program Bonuses

PREMIUM PLAN

  • The full Align Your Story Program
  • Lifetime access to all course material
  • Access to Private Ongoing Facebook Group
  • 8x 60 min live video conference
  • Get access to 4 one-on-one 40min conferences with me, in person or over Skype, to be used over three months from starting Align Your Story to Support your progress through and after the course
  • Editorial support to complete a strong draft of a piece of writing
  • Email support to stay on track with the course
  •  60min real-time call-in meditation & writing session

 

PLUS YOU GET: 

5 PROGRAM BONUSES

with both the basic and the premium plans 

 

ONE-ON-ONE SESSION WITH NADIA

A 45 minute one-on-one session with Nadia for Basic members
and extra 45 minute session for Premium Members

($140 value)

 

 

AFFIRMING THE POWER
OF YOUR VOICE FOR WOMEN

This audio meditation and writing prompt is designed especially for women to empower you to access your inner feminine power and bring it out.

A SHORT HISTORY OF WOMEN’S VOICES AND YOUR PLACE IN IT

 

This bonus lesson is designed to help you think about this history of women’s voices in our culture and will guide you through placing yourself in the context of that shared history and also of your family and personal histories.

CHECKLIST TO GET OUT OF YOUR OWN WAY AND LOVE YOUR WRITING

Do you ever sit down and find that, whatever you do, you can’t get out of the way of your nasty inner critic, even after meditation? This check-list, available only as a bonus to Align Your Story, will give you some powerful tools to shift those voices.

REVISION CHECKLIST

 

We’re more successful at asking the inner critic to get out of the way if we have a plan to do when she comes back during revision and editing time. This revision sheet will give you the tools you need to make sure you’re doing your most successful editing.

 

Sign up with a friend and each of you get a 100.00 USD discount!

(Just send me your friend’s name or the name of your friend already in the class who referred you)

 

PREMIUM PLAN​​
(with 4 one-one calls with Nadia)
** The premium plan is open only to the first ten students who sign up.

(6 spaces left)

 

Everything from the Basic Plan

Lifetime access to: 
8 Live Q&A/Discussion Session plus recording
Access to Private Facebook Community
160 mins Audio of Lessons
90+ WRITING EXERCISES and PROMPTS
70 mins Meditation Videos to teach you the meditation
120+ mins MEDITATION AUDIO to practice within your home
160 mins CLOSE READING
60+ LINKS TO DIVERSE & INSPIRING PIECES OF LITERATURE
80 mins YOGA VIDEOS to teach you the yoga sets
130+ mins YOGA AUDIO to practice within your home

 

+ 5 Bonuses including extra 45 minute session with Nadia

PLUS… lots of personalized attention including:

Four one-on-one 45min conferences with Nadia, in person or over Skype, to be used over three months from starting Align

Your Story to support your progress through and after the course

You can use these sessions:

  • To share work and get editorial feedback;
  • To integrate Align your Story with a longer term project;
  • To get personalized meditation/yoga support to help you create a home practice and to work with any resistance;
  • To receive spiritual/life coaching to help you get through any difficult emotional material that comes up through the course;
  • To set personal goals for yourself to reach your fullest potential and breakthrough to the next level.

AND YOU GET:
Editorial support to complete a strong draft of a piece of writing (personal essay, chapter of a memoir, collection of four to six poems, short story) within three months of starting Align Your Story, over email, within google docs, and/or in our one-on-one sessions.

In this plan, you finish Align Your Story with at a polished draft of a piece of writing.

AND YOU GET:
Email support to stay on track with the course

AND YOU GET:
 60min real-time call-in meditation & writing session and recording of available only to premium members to keep you practicing with my support ​and the support of the private premium plan community.​​

Normally 1397.00 USD
it’s on sale  
for 1297.00 USD

Sign-Up With a Friend Discount
(just send me a message with your friend’s name)

CLASSIC PLAN

Lifetime access to: 
8 Live Q&A/Discussion Session plus recording
Access to Private Facebook Community
160 mins Audio of Lessons
90+ WRITING EXERCISES and PROMPTS
70 mins Meditation Videos to teach you the meditation
120+ mins MEDITATION AUDIO to practice within your home
160 mins CLOSE READING
60+ LINKS TO DIVERSE & INSPIRING PIECES OF LITERATURE
80 mins YOGA VIDEOS to teach you the yoga sets
130+ mins YOGA AUDIO to practice within your home

+ 5 Bonuses including 45 minute one-on-one session with Nadia

Normally 697.00 USD
it’s on sale  
for 597.00 USD

Sign-Up With a Friend Discount
(just send me a message with your friend’s name)

Frequently Asked Questions About Align Your Story

Got questions about Align Your Story?
I go over the most common questions below.
And if for some reason you still have a question that went unanswered,
feel free to contact our support team at [email protected]

Below are some of the most common questions I hear:

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF AN ONLINE COURSE INSTEAD OF AN IN PERSON COURSE?

While there are benefits to an in person class, there are also great benefits to on line courses. 

In this course, you get more material than you would get in almost any class of similar length. You get not only writing instruction, but also meditation and yoga instruction.

You can take your time with the course and keep the materials for life, going deeper and deeper into them with time.

You can go through the course at your own leisure and on your own time-table. 

Students benefit from repeating the material in this course many times.

Like an in person class, this online course also offers a community of supportive, dedicated writers.

This course also offers one-on-one coaching with Nadia.  

ISN'T THE POINT OF A WRITING CLASS TO GET FEEDBACK ON MY WRITING?

There are many points to writing classes. And while one of the benefits of a writing course is that you get feedback from other people, that is only one benefit of a writing course–and sometimes that benefit has its shadow side. 

In this course you will learn to write without constantly worrying about feedback and judgement. 

You will be encouraged to really experiment and explore the limits of your writing and understanding and voice.

You will unlock your creativity and authenticity. 

You will become a better reader. 

You will connect mind, body and spirit. 

And you will learn to give yourself feedback. 

You will learn to become your own best witness in the safety of a supportive group.

The course also includes a one-on-one coaching session with me that you can use to get feedback on a limited amount of written work. And if you want more feedback you can schedule more coaching with me.

That said, I do value feedback on writing, and sometimes people really want it. That is why I developed the PREMIUM PLAN, which will give you that editorial support even as it guides you to trust your own voice. 

I'M A PUBLISHED WRITER; IS THIS CLASS FOR ME?

Yes! If you want to deepen and align your writing practice, this class is for you. 
I find that writers are often the people who most need this class–we need to get out of our heads and reconnect and re-integrate our hearts and souls. We need to reconnect with our authentic purpose as a writer–not just for others, but for ourselves. 

Often the most experienced writers have forgotten that it’s okay to be vulnerable in their writing. But the vulnerability hasn’t gone away–this is a place to explore that vulnerability with grace, compassion, wisdom, and humor. And ultimately to allow that vulnerability to become your greatest strength.

I'M JUST A NOVICE WRITER; IS THIS CLASS FOR ME?

I believe that even when we are writing about a completely made up bank robbery, some part of us is writing from our childhood self. So take the time to really dive in and explore writing from your childhood. Again, you might surprise yourself by what you write–you might find yourself writing about things you didn’t remember you remembered, or writing in a tone that surprises you utterly. 

And once you have written explicitly about your childhood, you might be surprised what happens next: some people want to dig in deeper. And they have the tools to do that. And some people are surprised by how much new energy they have to explore other directions and let their imagination free. 

I DON'T WANT TO DO YOGA OR MEDITATION. MAYBE THIS COURSE ISN'T FOR ME.

If you don’t want to do the yoga or meditation, don’t do it. They are optional; it’s all optional.

But you might surprise yourself and try–and just see what happens….the yoga and meditation will deepen your writing practice, and your experience of yourself, your body, your mind and the world! 

I DON'T WANT TO WRITE ABOUT MY CHILDHOOD AND SOME OF THE OTHER TOPICS OF THE MODULES. I ALREADY KNOW WHAT I WANT TO WRITE ABOUT

You can take this course to help you with a pre-existing project that you are already working on. If that is you, just reach out to me in the first week of the course, and I can guide you through that process. 

That said, even when we are writing about a completely made up bank robbery, some part of us is writing from our childhood self. So take the time to really dive in and explore writing from your childhood. Again, you might surprise yourself by what you write–you might find yourself writing about things you didn’t remember you remembered or writing in a tone that surprises you utterly. 

And once you have written explicitly about your childhood, you might be surprised what happens next: some people want to dig in deeper. And they have the tools to do that. And some people are surprised by how much new energy they have to explore other directions and let their imagination free to get to the next level with all of the projects they are working on!

I'VE DONE JULIA CAMERON'S ARTISTS WAY AND MORNING PAGES. IS YOUR COURSE SIMILAR?

My course is similar in some ways to Julia Cameron’s excellent artist’s way method, and different in others. Much as I admire that wonderful, groundbreaking book and method, my course offers much more than it, and truly integrated mind body and spirit, going more deeply into each of these three areas. And my course unfolds in real time with a community of real people and a live teacher, me! 

So that said, here are some of the ways our work is similar: 

Like Cameron’s work, my course gives you tools and encouragement to tap into and stick with and value your creative self. Like Cameron’s work, my course helps you move through blocks, and like Cameron’s work, my course also has a spiritual dimension.

And here are some of the ways my course is different: 

First of all my specific method and insights are different from Cameron’s.

You get to have live check-ins with me and a community of supportive writers, with whom you can have a life-long connection. And for a limited time, participants also receive a free fifty-minute one-on-one session with me. 

Third, my course is released module by module, so that you can chart your own progress, and really develop a writing practice over time. 

Fourth, while the Artists Way focuses mainly on writing exercises, my course also develops deep reading skills.  I believe that good writing comes from good reading. And  I also believe that good reading awakens and fuels our creative selves. Included with each module is suggested reading of great published texts and close readings of those texts, that help you understand both content and technique. 

Fifth, my course also offers a true mind-body-spirit integration and includes yoga and meditation along with the writing exercises and close readings. 

I'M ALREADY WORKING ON A LONG PROJECT IS THIS COURSE FOR ME? WILL THE COURSE HELP ME CONTINUE TO WORK ON A PROJECT I'VE ALREADY STARTED?

Yes! Most people who are working on a long project find this course very helpful. If you want detailed feedback on your project, this course is not for you. But if you want to deepen your relationship to your project, to come at it from some slightly new angles, to get through blocks and to invigorate your writing, then yes, this course is for you. You can work through these modules to fit specific writing projects that you are already working on. If you want some support doing that, feel free to reach out to me for some suggestions about how best to do that. Other students have taken this course as a way to get through a memoir-writing project or other book-length project and have had great success.

I THINK OF MYSELF AS PRIMARILY INTERESTED IN YOGA AND MEDITATION BUT NOT IN WRITING. IS THIS COURSE FOR ME?

Yes! Most people who are working on a long project find this course very helpful. If you want detailed feedback on your project, this course is not for you. But if you want to deepen your relationship to your project, to come at it from some slightly new angles, to get through blocks and to invigorate your writing, then yes, this course is for you. You can work through these modules to fit specific writing projects that you are already working on. If you want some support doing that, feel free to reach out to me for some suggestions about how best to do that. Other students have taken this course as a way to get through a memoir-writing project or other book-length project and have had great success.

I'M PRIMARILY A POET AND NOT PARTICULARLY INTERESTED IN NARRATIVE OR STORY

I use the word story to point to any meaning-making system. Stories come in every form: in our bodies, in our emotions, in our dreams. They need not only be narrative. Any time we have an act of creative expression and meaning making, we’re tapping into some story. This course encourages you to go deeply into your art, to let go of a traditional path, and to open up to the creative process. 

WHAT FORM OF MEDITATION DO YOU USE?

I am a serious student of Thich Nhat Hanh, who teaches breathing meditation and meditation in everything we do in our every day lives.   I also have a lot of experience with Vipassana meditation and have sat 10 day silent retreats and I’m a certified kundalini yoga teacher. I bring all of these practices toegther and offer a variety of teachings in Align Your Story, pairing individual teachings with the focus of each lession. For example, in our deep listening module, we practice attention to our breath. But in the module in which we are overcoming resistance, I lead students in an uplifting chanting meditation that helps break through old habit energy and blocks and quiets the mind in powerful ways.

WHY DO YOU BRING KUNDALINI YOGA INTO THE COURSE?

I practice a mixture of hatha, vinyassa and Kundalini yogas personally and bring a mixture of these practices into the course. I focus on kundalini, especially for writing courses, because of Kundalini’s powerful ability to help us break through old energetic blocks and come into greater awareness of the movement and power of our own internal energy systems.   

HOW LONG DO I NEED TO DEVOTE TO THE COURSE EACH WEEK?

 That’s a great question, and I have many people ask me that. Align Your Story is almost infinitely flexible. Even half an hour a week can help you start a writing practice and home meditation or yoga practice and get your creative juices flowing. What is great about the course is once you sign up, you have access to the material forever. So whether you want to take the course as an intensive retreat during a sabbatical or in retirement when you can devote several hours a day to the course, or whether you want to just dip your toes in, this class is for you! What is important is that you make this first commitment to yourself; the first step is always the hardest internal barrier to get over, but once you do, the course will give you support you need to keep going

COMMIT TO YOUR CREATIVITY AND ALIGNMENT TODAY

“Poetry is not a luxury. It is a vital necessity… It forms the quality of the light within which we predicate our hopes and dreams toward survival and change, first made into language, then into idea, then into more tangible action….The farthest horizons of our hopes and fears are cobbled by our poems” –Audre Lorde

I joined Align Your Story when I was feeling lost about what to do with my life. As I moved through the course, however, I found increasing clarity.

Since starting the course, and the writing I’ve done in it, I’ve realized I’ve known all along what I wanted to do with my life—to travel—but without finding my authentic voice, I would not have felt brave or confident enough to go forth….

The meditations were a big part of that transformation. Around the seventh week of AYS I noticed I could sit, stand and walk without any thoughts passing through my mind,

Writing was essentially the path of my self-discovery; AYS was my guide. It led me to a place where I could sit with myself and just be—no stirring thoughts, no questions, just peaceful contentedness. That was the most precious gift of Align Your Story.

Emily He
Travel Writer

Beijing, China
www.dirtyelbows.com

Align Your Story was the first online course I’ve ever taken, and I am so glad I took that leap. Nadia is an amazing facilitator – so warm, welcoming, and inquisitive. Her generous style lends itself well to learning and inner growth. I felt completely held by the group, even though I never met anyone in person! I am deeply grateful for having had this opportunity to combine my interests in writing, meditation, and yoga. I now have a new way to approach all three.

 —Mikki Pugh
Women’s Advocate

“I was in the final stages of putting together a manuscript when I first signed up for Align Your Story, so I wasn’t sure it was the best time to start the course. I was soon to discover, this course is so adaptable to any stage in which you find yourself that there is truly no wrong time to take it. Align Your Story meets you where you are.

The revisions I’ve done since taking this course have seemed so much truer to my own voice, from which I had felt fairly removed for a while. Nadia’s teachings helped me find a renewed joy in the writing process. I feel overall freer and more able to step away from my own judgement, and my work is much more powerful as a result.”

Christine Poreba
Poet and Teacher
author of Rough Knowledge

Tallahassee, FL
http://www.christineporeba.com

At the time I registered for “Align Your Story” I was in my second year of retirement from corporate America and struggling to recover the creativity I’d had as a child. In particular, I was drawn to writing poetry and creative non-fiction, which I was doing in fits and starts with little to show for it. I questioned whether I even had anything of value to write about.

When I discovered Align Your Story it was an affirmation to myself that I deserved to take my interest in writing seriously, and I’m so glad I made that decision. “Align Your Story” immediately gave me the structure and support I needed to practice writing, including a weekly one-hour live conference call led by Nadia and the community of the facebook group.

When I registered for the course, I was afraid that anything I wrote might be criticized and nit picked. My experience was just the opposite. Nadia was supportive and gentle with everyone, helping us see our strengths, providing feedback that further fanned our creative sparks. We followed her lead and treated each other’s efforts with the same respect. Align Your Story showed me I do have a story to tell.

Thanks to Align Your Story and Nadia’s support, I continue to write, determined to own my power and let my voice be heard.

 Janet Bednarz

I went into Align Your Story unsure about doing another group focused class but the possibility of finding my way through some tough decisions about my writing life made the promise of a mindful experience with AYS and Nadia appealing.

I was unprepared for what happened during my first reading in the group. I felt this familiar welling up inside that I knew would lead to the one thing I tried to avoid at all cost – crying in front of others. I couldn’t get my words out because my voice was trembling so uncontrollably. I had a choice – quit and hide, as I normally would do or allow what was happening to happen. I chose to give my voice an opportunity for healing. The encouragement and level of acceptance I felt from Nadia and the group allowed me to move past the embarrassment and deal with this unresolved trauma around being seen and heard. My authentic voice had been buried under all of this fear and was ready to come alive and Align Your Story was an opportunity to come out of hiding. The course gifted me the opportunity to heal what was in the way of my own inner sense of knowing my own emotional voice.

Nadia and our group showed me the value of group support and how to follow what really needs my attention without needing to force a direction. The course taught me to mindfully step back and be still and just allow what needs to happen to happen, and this is a lesson I will forever cherish and take with me throughout my life. Nadia’s high level of emotional and spiritual maturity has prepared her to provide that light and supportive wisdom we most need to interrupt our fears of becoming.

I am truly grateful for Nadia and the AYS group!

Tawona Pearson

Take a Tour Inside the Course
to See How It All Works

Your Story and Your Voice Matter!
Align Your Story gives you the tools and support to unlock the full power of your creative vision

PREMIUM PLAN​​
(with 4 one-one calls with Nadia)
** The premium plan is open only to the first ten students who sign up.

(6 spaces left)

 

Everything from the Basic Plan

Lifetime access to: 
8 Live Q&A/Discussion Session plus recording
Access to Private Facebook Community
160 mins Audio of Lessons
90+ WRITING EXERCISES and PROMPTS
70 mins Meditation Videos to teach you the meditation
120+ mins MEDITATION AUDIO to practice within your home
160 mins CLOSE READING
60+ LINKS TO DIVERSE & INSPIRING PIECES OF LITERATURE
80 mins YOGA VIDEOS to teach you the yoga sets
130+ mins YOGA AUDIO to practice within your home

+ 5 Bonuses including extra 45 minute session with Nadia

PLUS… lots of personalized attention including:

Four one-on-one 45min conferences with Nadia, in person or over Skype, to be used over three months from starting Align

Your Story to support your progress through and after the course

You can use these sessions:

  • To share work and get editorial feedback;
  • To integrate Align your Story with a longer term project;
  • To get personalized meditation/yoga support to help you create a home practice and to work with any resistance;
  • To receive spiritual/life coaching to help you get through any difficult emotional material that comes up through the course;
  • To set personal goals for yourself to reach your fullest potential and breakthrough to the next level.

AND YOU GET:
Editorial support to complete a strong draft of a piece of writing (personal essay, chapter of a memoir, collection of four to six poems, short story) within three months of starting Align Your Story, over email, within google docs, and/or in our one-on-one sessions.

In this plan, you finish Align Your Story with at a polished draft of a piece of writing.

AND YOU GET:
Email support to stay on track with the course

AND YOU GET:
 60min real-time call-in meditation & writing session and recording of available only to premium members to keep you practicing with my support ​and the support of the private premium plan community.​​

Normally 1397.00 USD
it’s on sale  
for 1297.00 USD

Sign-Up With a Friend Discount
(just send me a message with your friend’s name)

CLASSIC PLAN

Lifetime access to: 
8 Live Q&A/Discussion Session plus recording
Access to Private Facebook Community
160 mins Audio of Lessons
90+ WRITING EXERCISES and PROMPTS
70 mins Meditation Videos to teach you the meditation
120+ mins MEDITATION AUDIO to practice within your home
160 mins CLOSE READING
60+ LINKS TO DIVERSE & INSPIRING PIECES OF LITERATURE
80 mins YOGA VIDEOS to teach you the yoga sets
130+ mins YOGA AUDIO to practice within your home

 

+ 5 Bonuses including extra 45 minute session with Nadia

Normally 697.00 USD
it’s on sale  
for 597.00 USD

Sign-Up With a Friend Discount
(just send me a message with your friend’s name)

THE 30-DAY “Align Your Story”
100% MONEY-BACK GUARANTEE

When you sign up you can feel fully confident that if you’re not happy with the course, I offer a full money back guarantee for 30 days after the course begins.
 

Here’s how it works:

When you sign up for a course like this, you’re making an investment in yourself. I’m here to support you. If you do the work for the first three modules of the course (and can show me that you’ve done some of the work) and if you aren’t satisfied for any reason, I’ll refund your money (for classic plan members I’ll refund 100%; premium members get the remainder of the price back minus the one on one sessions they’ve already had with me).

I don’t offer money back guarantee if you sign up but don’t have time to do the course work. Once you enroll, you have lifetime access, so if you can’t start right away, you can come engage with the material and community later.

When you sign up you are making a commitment to yourself that you’ll invest at least some time and energy into your own life as a writer, and I want to help you make that commitment to yourself. Just try the material.

“The number one step for healing is “getting your story straight”
– Christiane Northrup, MD

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