The Life Righting Collective runs courses to encourage self-exploration through life writing, raises funds for course fees and brings people together to share their stories and grow community.

Listen to Vicky Cole of CCFM interview Dawn Garisch, Chalotte Illunga and Nathan Festus.

We are delighted to see Janet Giddy's review of This Is How It Is in the South African Medical Journal.  You can read it online here  or below.  Thank you so much Janet! Copies of the anthology are available here.

janet giddy s tihii review in samj page 001 crop

The Life Righting Collective presents Cliff-hangers: extraordinary stories written by ordinary people. A story reading event which will leave you hanging on for more.

WHEN: THIS SATURDAY 20th October 10 30am - 1pm

WHERE: Kukoma Coffee Co 136 St George's St,  Simon's Town

Stop by for the best barista coffee and delicious snacks and be entertained at the same time. Listen to authors reading parts of their stories from our anthology This Is How It Is as well as stories published on our website.

Discover the fascinating behind-the-scenes story (written by Sebastian Daniels) about Kukoma here.

Arrive early to order refreshments or order in the break.  Anthologies and book marks will be on sale.

We've all got a story to tell. What's yours? Learn to write your own life stories by attending a life writing course. Find out more here.

Fabulously tantalising and detailed review by Arja Salafranca in Business Live yesterday.

The Life Righting Collective's first anthology This Is How It Is has been published by Jacana Press and is for sale in bookstores countrywide. There are 54 real life stories and poems packed between the covers; extraordinary pieces written by ordinary people with rich, vital stories to share. At various launches around the country, authors will be invited to read their stories and be acknowledged for their contribution to the anthology. However, there are six stories and poems in the anthology whose authors can never be publicly acknowledged as they have elected to use a nom de plume and remain anonymous.

Why would they do that?

What is it about these six pieces where the true identity of the writer needs to be hidden? Why is there a need to protect themselves,  their families and the people they write about? Perhaps it is because what they write about is too painful to admit to family and friends, or what they share is somehow unacceptable, taboo.

These six pieces explore topics such as mental illness and illicit love affairs, sexuality and suicide. These are not comfortable subjects, not easily spoken about and sometimes there is a struggle to even find the language to write about such things; often there is an element of shame. Nevertheless, they are realities that exist in many of our lives and I believe they need to come to the surface to be seen.

In this day and age of apparent tolerance and transparency, where the most revealing and intimate of topics can be publicly discussed online for every stranger to see, we still remain at risk for being shamed for who we are, what we think, feel and do by those who are closest to us, in our own communities.

Shame makes us especially vulnerable.

If  you have heard of  Dr Brene Brown, you will know she is a researcher on shame and vulnerability.

This is what she says:

Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light. 

Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen. 

I was pleased to have had the opportunity to speak about this at the recent LRC Authors' launch at the Crypt. I'm happy I also get to write about it here and pay tribute to the courage of these anonymous authors, who despite doubt and fear of repercussions, have still stepped forward to share their powerful stories, allowing themselves and the issues they write about, to be seen and known.

Image credit: Invisible World - Magritte

We're thrilled, so so proud and delighted that our first anthology -  This Is How It Is  -  is published!  Just a little over a year ago, this was just a dream, a seed that took root and blossomed, an idea that grew wings and flew! And we couldn't have done it without the contributions of our many courageous life writing course participants and Life Righting Collective members.

Our official launch takes place on 12 June at the Book Lounge 71 Roeland street Cape Town. RSVP or 021 462 2425.

This is how it is Life Righting Collective anthology

Our amazing, stunning, fabulous anthology is now  available for sale in bookstores country-wide. Here's LRC Exec team member Johan Jordaan's pic from Exclusives at the Waterfront.  In the meantime, there are celebratory parties and launches to be planned. Our first official launch takes place on Tuesday 12th June 2018 at The Book Lounge in Roeland street, Cape Town 5 30pm for 6pm. RSVP or call 021 462 2425.

Join Linda Kaoma and Dawn Garisch as they discuss the  Anthology in the context of sharing real-life South African stories to restore and reconcile a world in trouble. A selection of authors will read their work.

Invite all your bookish friends. We're planning on standing room only. See details of our event on facebook here.  See you there!

The Life Righting Collective runs courses to encourage self-exploration through life writing, raises funds for course fees and brings people together to share their stories and grow community.
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