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Soul Craft: Writing for Self-Discovery

  • Iowa Writers' House 332 East Davenport Street Iowa City, IA, 52245 United States (map)

When: Saturday, February 16, 2019; 1:30pm-4:30pm

Where:  Iowa Writers' House, 332 East Davenport St

Cost: $75


Take a break from it all and join award-winning spiritual writer Lori Erickson as she reimagines writing not as a world of solitude but instead as a sacred place of self-discovery. As anyone who’s sat staring at a page or a computer screen waiting for inspiration can attest, writing can be a lonesome practice. But that solitude also has great spiritual potential. Join us in this workshop to learn how to access inner inspiration and self-discovery through your writing.  

We’ll share stories about how the creative process is intertwined with questions of meaning and purpose, including how other cultures have viewed writing as a sacred endeavor. We’ll try some mindfulness techniques that can prepare us for writing and explore new ways to access our inner sources of inspiration.

Come to this workshop to find a place for discussion, a space to share stories from your own writing, and a home for reflection on how the craft of writing can also be a powerful spiritual practice.



Lori Erickson is one of the country’s top travel writers specializing in spiritual journeys. Her memoir Holy Rover: Journeys in Search of Mystery, Miracles, and God (Fortress Press, 2017) explores the transformative power of travel through trips to a dozen holy sites around the world. It was named one of the top travel books for the 2017 holiday gift season by the Associated Press and won first place in the spiritual/religious category of the 2018 Hollywood Book Festival. Lori’s articles have been published in publications that include National Geographic Traveler, Family Circle, USA Today, Woman’s Day, and House Beautiful. In the fall of 2019, Westminster John Knox will publish her new book Near the Exit: Travels With the Not-So-Grim Reaper.



For a long time I kept my interests in writing and spirituality separate, until I realized how much these two paths have in common. Both require discipline, vision, and leaps of faith into the unknown, and both play with metaphor and imagination in a search for hidden truths.

For me, the intersection of travel and spirituality has provided particularly rich inspiration. Pilgrimage, one of the oldest forms of travel, is being rediscovered by a new generation, often by people who are disillusioned by traditional forms of religion. In my Holy Rover memoir, I link my inner pilgrimage to outer journeys I’ve taken, hoping that my experiences might encourage others to take similar explorations of the spirit.

Through the years I’ve learned that certain spiritual practices, especially meditation and prayer, have helped me become a better writer. They’ve given me ways to slow down, center, and notice the world around me, and they’ve also helped me weather the inevitable rejections and disappointments of the writing life.

The ancient Greeks, who honored the Muses who brought inspiration to writers, knew something we’ve forgotten. I think all of us can benefit from incorporating spiritual insights into our writing practice.


All course information is sent to participants upon registering, including confirmation of workshop times, location, and materials.