Venturing Out to Reach Others By Alice J. Wisler

I’ve always been a writer, but not of the sorrowful poem or self-help article. Those additions to my writing portfolio came after the death of my son Daniel. With his passing, I realized that writing romance stories like I composed in seventh grade was not going to get me through the lonely nights. I delved into heart wrenching writing for survival.

As my essays and articles were published, I was asked to teach on writing through grief at bereavement conferences and seminars. I created an online course, Writing the Heartache, and offered it to those who had experienced the loss of a loved one.

One day, my husband of thirteen months said to me, “Do you have enough material to conduct an all-day workshop?”
That question made my heart swell with love for him. Daniel was not his son, he had not lost a child, and yet, he knew of the importance of my work. “Yes,” I said, “Holding my own workshop has been a dream of mine for years.”

We planned an agenda and then booked a local hotel conference room. Creating flyers, we got the word out. I had a link to the workshop on my website. I hoped for paying attendees, then doubted that there would be enough to cover the room rental, the lunch, coffee breaks, and materials. I wondered why I’d felt led to venture out. I knew writing worked for me, but would others see the healing, health, and hope it provided?

The first Writing the Heartache All Day Workshop was held in Morrisville, NC and had nine participants. The feedback we received was encouraging. “I needed this time for me.” “Thank you for this day of healing.” “I now know how therapeutic writing is.”

We hosted another workshop the following month and have plans for future events. Each time we’ve covered our costs and made a small profit. You never know what stepping out on faith is until you try it, and when you do, you know this is one of the things you’ve been created to do.

Alice J. Wisler’s next five-week online Writing the Heartache Workshop, will be held January 17, 2011. Register at her website: In addition to grief-writing, Alice has three inspirational novels published by Bethany House, with a fourth scheduled for release in October 2011. Read about them here:

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