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Conversations Live with Vicki St. Clair

Journalism, Memoir, Non Fiction

Sep 21: Rebel with a Clause – Ellen Jovin

Tales and Tips from a Roving Grammarian

Ellen Jovin‘s journey of almost 30,000 miles around America began outside her Manhattan apartment, with a folding table, and a sign saying GRAMMAR TABLE. From lawyers , couples, and families, to  writers, students, and rappers, passers-by had questions for Ellen — and she had answers.

But how did this take Ellen to 49 cities and towns, by five modes of transport? We discuss why people stopped by the Grammar Table, how that led to the  documentary film and Ellen’s book. And why this isn’t just about words, language, and grammar, but connection, community and — yes — sometimes just wanting to be right.

About Ellen Jovin

Ellen Jovin is the author of four books on language, and a cofounder of Syntaxis, a communication skills training consultancy. She has a B.A. in German studies, an M.A. in comparative literature …  and studied 25 languages just for fun. Her latest book is Rebel with a Clause: Tales and Tips from a Roving Grammarian.

 

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Non Fiction, Personal Development, Psychology, Self-help

Sep 07: Get Unstuck & Out of Your Own Way Using Voice Dialogue

A Deeper Dive Into The Final 8th with Bridgit Dengel Gaspard

What stops us reaching a goal that we say we really want? Why do we walk away right before the finish line? It’s often because not every part of us wants what we think we want, says returning guest Bridgit Dengel Gaspard.

In our follow up conversation about Bridgit’s work with inner selves and voice dialogue, she explains: How neuroscience backs up this innovative technique, and how we can turn our inner critic, and other inner selves, into allies. Why we often stay too long in a situation or relationship. How our nice and scared selves can create negative patterns. And how to practice “safe success” and keep the saboteurs at bay.

About Bridgit Dengel Gaspard

As a therapist and founder of the NY Voice Dialogue Institute, Bridgit Dengel Gaspard has led workshops for Omega Institute, New York Open Center, and many other organizations. She’s a former performer and comic, and as therapist and voice dialogue expert, specializes in overcoming creativity blocks. The foreword to The Final 8th: Enlist Your Inner Selves to Accomplish Your Goals is written by the original creators of voice dialogue, Hal and Sidra Stone.

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Creativity, Non Fiction, Personal Development, Writers on Writing

Aug 31: Propel Your Creative Life with Matthew Dicks

Winning Strategies to Take You From Dreaming to Doing

Returning guest Matthew Dicks is a jack of all trades, but a master of … several? How does he wear so many hats yet still remain super creative and extremely prolific?

Matthew’s goal is to help you go from dreaming to doing, from talking to creating, wiping out those excuses of being too spent or not having enough time along the way. We discuss black holes, living a life of YES, performative productivity, the power of accountability, the importance of gathering your tribe … and much more.

About Matthew Dicks

It might be easier to list the things Matthew Dicks hasn’t done than those he has!  Among his accomplishments are bestselling novelist, nationally recognized storyteller, playwright, communications consultant, award-winning elementary schoolteacher, humor and advice columnist, minister, wedding DJ, and professional public speaker. He’s won multiple Moth GrandSLAM story competitions. And with his wife, Elysha, created the organization SPEAK UP. Vicki last talked with Matthew Dicks about his first book on creativity, Storyworthy – podcast. Today we discuss his latest, Someday is Today: 22 Simple, Actionable Ways to Propel Your Creative Life. vv

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Arts, Children's Fiction, Fiction, Writers on Writing, Young Adult Fiction

Aug 17: Sometimes I Grumblesquinch with Rachel Vail

A Big Feelings Book Teaching Kids it’s OK to be You

Rachel Vail is the award-winning author of more than 40 books. Today we  discuss SOMETIMES I GRUMBSQUINCH, and why Rachel chose to write for children and young adults.

She shares some of the considerations that go into her storytelling. How she develops the characters in her books (hint, by getting into character herself). Why we need to teach kids they don’t need to be perfect. And the 5 Big Questions Rachel asks at the start of every book she writes … and continues to ask as the story develops.

About Rachel Vail

Rachel Vail‘s novels for middle-schoolers, teens, and tweens include BAD BEST FRIEND, UNFRIENDED, THE AVERY SISTERS TRILOGY, and the Friendship Ring series.

Her picture books include PIGGY BUNNY, and The BIG FEELINGS series, where Rachel  explores key social and emotional learning skills. Those books include SOMETIMES I’M BOMBALOO. And the picture story book we’re talking about today, SOMETIMES I GRUMBLESQUINCH.

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Creativity, Journalism, Non Fiction, Science

AUG 10: Matt Richtel’s Journey Through Art, Science, and the Soul

Harness Your Creativity Through Inspiration

Few things in a creator’s life cause more frustration than staring at an empty page or blank canvas in search of that spark of inspiration.  Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Matt Richtel weaves scientific evidence with insight from great creators and his own personal experiences to help you discover how to optimize your creative potential.

“Creative people actually physically see more of the world,” says Richtel.  We talk about The Muse and Hope.  How impact and openness are vital components of creativity.  Why intelligence doesn’t always factor into creativity.  How anyone can become more creative. And more delicious insight from  Inspired: Understanding Creativity, A Journey Through Art, Science, and the Soul.

About Matt Richtel

Narrative storyteller and New York Times Science reporter Matt Richtel was awarded the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for a series on distracted driving. He’s authored three narrative nonfiction books, several novels, and a daily comic strip. His latest book is Inspired: Understanding Creativity, A Journey Through Art, Science, and the Soul.

Catch our previous podcast with Matt Richtel right here A Deadly Wandering.

 

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Career, Non Fiction, Personal Development, Professional Development

Aug 03: Career Self-Care with Minda Zetlin

Find Your Happiness, Success, and Fulfillment at Work

Minda Zetlin says building the life and career you really want is about changing “… the way that you value yourself.” Science shows the better you care for yourself, the better it is for your career. And that’s what differentiates Career Self-Care from other career books.

We discuss why we must stop working so hard. How to show up at work as our authentic selves. Why you have a responsibility to be happy. And why, even when we say we want something, goal ambivalence often gets in our way.

About Minda Zetlin

Minda Zetlin is an author, speaker, journalist, and contributing editor at Inc. Minda is a former president of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and contributor to CNBC.com, Insider.com, and CIO.com. Her latest book is Career Self-Care: Find Your Happiness, Success, and Fulfillment at Work.

 

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Fiction, Writers on Writing

Jul 27: #1 NYT Bestselling Novelist Susan Wiggs with Sugar and Salt

Everyone has a past. It’s who you are now that matters.

A long-time listener favorite joins us with a great new story just in time for summer. Sugar and Spice takes us back to Perdita Street (introduced in The Lost and Found Bookshop) with a tale of family, friendship, redemption, and love.

Susan Wiggs is known for weaving women’s issues into her storylines, and Sugar and Spice is no exception — including abortion, sexual abuse, and racism. Today we find out how Susan gets in the right headspace to write those challenging scenes. How she approaches writing multiple timelines. And how has she learned to draw readers into her books from page one.

About Susan Wiggs

Susan Wiggs is a #1 New York Times bestselling author. She’s authored more than 50 novels including the Lakeshore Chronicles series and the New York Times bestsellers The Lost and Found Bookshop, The Oysterville Sewing Circle, and Family Tree. Her award-winning books have been translated into two dozen languages.  Susan lives with her family on an island in Washington State’s Puget Sound.

 

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