(On Leave of Absence 2014)
Trisha Winn is the founding Publisher and Editor in Chief of Rawboned, a literary magazine dedicated to short form literature. She is a freelance writer, blogger, and editor for Better Write Now, providing writing and editing services to activist organizations and authors focused on social justice, sustainable small farming, disability rights, sexual assault/abuse, and environmental issues.
Ms. Winn earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College. Her creative nonfiction, vignettes, scholarly articles, and poetry have been published by TOSKA, Elohi Gadugi, Peninsula College Press, and The Pitkin Review. She recently won the runner-up prize in Hippocampus Magazine’s Remember in November contest. She has been a homeschool educator and tutor for students with autism. She lives and writes in Michigan while raising four children and advocating for women with disabilities.
Academic interests include Native American literature, literature of the American West, environmental literature, ecocriticism, and ecofeminism.
Blood memory—a genetic connection to the places, spirituality, history, and language of one’s ancestors—I learned from my original scholarly muse, Dr. Roseanne Hoefel. Words she said to me in the three short years I knew her: be succinct. (Best writing advice ever.) About great passion: “Don’t ever lose it!” And when I was struggling, she looked hard in my eyes and said, “I like your mind, and I like your face. I want to see both in class.” Roseanne taught me to show up. She gave me stories and ideas that changed the course of my life and made it infinitely richer, more connected to ancestors and living people. Her literary passion, talent, and intellect were concentrated into obsidian perfection, hard and shiny, as if all the mundane bits of life burned away from her sharp, precious self.
Showing up is especially important for writers—we need to bounce the creative energy around for a while, then go home (back to our all too often introverted lives) filled up with new ideas and a sense of momentum. Through writing, and reading, we connect to things outside ourselves, things often unreachable by any other means. Writers must read. A big part of my job is to help you figure out what to read, and why. You have to see what’s out there (and what’s not) to understand what’s possible. Does that mean you will write like anyone else, or should write like anyone else? Absolutely not. But creativity doesn’t happen in a vacuum. My role is to support your efforts to shape the astonishing words that come up and through you into something truly extraordinary.