Hunting for rogue apostrophes in the land of the Queen’s English

I went on holiday in London earlier this summer and revisited all my favourite British things. I took a selfie in a red phone booth, watched Glastonbury on the BBC with a sleeve of digestives, and spent many hours happily perusing the bookshops of Charing Cross Road.

For most editors, the enthusiasm for language runs even deeper than a desire to shop for first editions: we are never not aware of language and tend to edit the world around us constantly. I enjoyed listening to the conversations on transit—it seems like even working class Brits’ vocabularies are four times the size ... keep reading


Escape the Deadly Writing Trap that the Smartest Authors Fall into

I was working with an author last week who was struggling to find his way with his manuscript. “When I talk about these ideas, I’m succinct, relaxed, sometimes even funny. But when I sit down to write, the words come out all formal and stiff. Why can’t I be myself in my writing?”

Sure enough, his chapter draft was dry, stuffed with extraneous details, and weighed down by industry jargon. I knew him to be a lively, quick-witted person of passion and deep empat... keep reading


The Running Writer: My path to whole life fitness with Dai Manuel

Part one in a four-week series.

There are a few popular sayings–“put your money where your mouth is”, “practice what you preach”, “talk the talk, walk the walk”–that encourage purveyors of information to be really, really careful with what they say. This is especially true for anyone giving any kind of health advice, yet the media is inundated with food fads and easy exercise routines that “sound crazy, we know, but you’ll drop eight pounds a day!” Those outlets rarely put their money where their mo... keep reading


Detox Your Brain: 7 Mental Clutter Cleanses for Writers

Every January, the number one New Year’s resolution made by North Americans is to improve their health. In response, the media will soon unleash a torrent of detoxes and cleanses, all promising to leave us glowing after only two weeks of consuming nothing but asparagus water. However, most of these programs completely ignore an essential aspect of our wellbeing: the mind.

As every writer knows, a healthy mind leads to clarity of thought and productive writing sessions. Wait, scratch that. As every writer knows, an unhealthy mind leads to procrastination, indeci... keep reading


Writing About Writing: How to Move Past Fear so You Can Finish Your Book

Any act of creativity will activate your fear in a big way. That’s how you know it’s working. Creative acts involve a swirling kaleidoscope of emotions, ranging from vision, exhilaration, industriousness, boredom and grandiosity to sheer terror. Sometimes there is shame too. We rotate through all of them along the way, repeatedly, throughout any creative act.

Everybody loves the fun part; the exhilaration, grandiosity and industriousne... keep reading


Focus on excellence and the success will follow

In a recent Fast Company article, Deepak Chopra stated that “wealth is nothing other than abundance consciousness.” In our lives, we are constantly bombarded with different ideas about what “success” is. Admittedly, the definition of success is different from person to person, but for many of us, this term is associated directly with financial gain. This means that we climb hard and we climb fast from the moment we step on to the botto... keep reading


January: a time for change – and divorce?

Recently Simone Paget at the Toronto Sun asked me to give my opinion as a therapist on why more divorces are initiated in January than in any other month of the year.

When you think about it, it makes perfect sense. January is the time that people are looking to make positive changes in their lives; they want to quit smoking, lose weight, exercise more, and generally be happier. It’s a time of personal inventory; a time to come face to face with oneself and ma... keep reading


Mastering moment to moment mindfulness

The great thing about doing yoga at home is that it’s always available. If you can get away from dogs and kids and clear a strip on the floor, you can do yoga, even in your underwear.

But the downside to doing solo yoga, of course, is the absence of a teacher to lead you through the poses and – critically – to remind you to breathe.

I was doing yoga at home the other day when I realized that when I’m practicing alone, I have a tendency to cut myself short every time I transition from one pose to another. And I realized that tendency carries over into my... keep reading