This book is the work of 52 (!!) diverse and talented people, listed below. Scroll down for their Wide Awake author photos and brief bios.

Boudreau, Bridgette
Burkholder, Tina
Cohen, Michelle
Cohen, Rebecca P.
Cohen, Warner
Cooper, Deborah
Dougherty, Mary
Druxman, Lisa
Duncan, Nancy J.
Fanucci, Jen
Fitz, Tom
Fowle, Dana
Frank, Darlene
Ganson, Rob
Hamp, Leslie
Hezekiah, Rage
Horwitz, Stuart
Hughlett, Kayce Stevens
Jauch, Bob
Kalmon, Amy
Kazel, Maggie
Kennedy, Eileen
Kephart, Beth
Kessler, Sally
King, Heidi C.
King, Kari
King, Robert
King, Starla J.
Lee, Jan
Madsen-Genszler, Elizabeth
Matusewic, Maureen
McMason, Emily
Miller, Anne Rud
Minette, Liz
Monaghan, Beth Andrix
Moore-Beitler, Rachel
Neff, Laura
Nelson, Roslyn A.
Otis, Laurie
Papp, Howard
Patel, Ushi
Schneider, Lori
Schoenfeld, Ellie
Showalter, Miriam Ebersole
Sorensen, Philip
Thomas, Deborah
Vander Puy, Nick
Wagner, Teresa J.
Wiebe-King, Steven
Wiggins, Mike
With, Barbara
Woodworth, Liz
Bridgette is a Master Life Coach and CEO of Martha Beck, Inc. “I started this spiritual journey looking for something outside of myself that would make me feel better. That didn’t work. Instead, I just had to get comfy with being me. Now, I help others do the same.” Bridgette is writing a book entitled either Enlightenment Tastes Like Salt or I Didn’t See That Coming: Confessions of a
Lesbian Life Coach.
Tina believes that writing provides an avenue for healing ourselves, and by extension, healing to the world. She is inspired by nature, city streets, and the transformative power of love. Tina welcomes contact at tinaburkholder (at) verizon (dot) net or
Michelle is a truth writer who believes life’s challenges are gifts that enrich our lives if we are awake to their messages. She is a certified coach in Holistic Health and the Psychology of Eating, and has a B.A. in English from the University of Southern California. Michelle is a blessed mom, inspiration junkie, bliss seeker and style lover. You can find her at
Rebecca believes time outside transforms our lives for the better. Rebecca is author of the new children’s book series: PJ’s Backyard Adventures, as well as author of 15 Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids, and creator of Rebecca Plants Curiosity Cards. She
is also host of the video series, Get Out of the House, which shows fun ideas for time outside in every season. For Rebecca’s inspiring blog and free downloads, visit
Warner is 10 and lives in Vail, CO with his mom, dad, older brother, and his black lab Sampson. He enjoys soccer, reading, sometimes writing, and arts and crafts. His favorite books include the Fable Haven and Beyonders series by Brandon Mull, Eragon by Christopher Paolini, and Harry Potter by JK Rowling. Reading inspires him in many ways. He will continue to write and publish.
Deborah authored five collections of poems, including Under the Influence of Lilacs (Clover Valley Press). In 2013, the anthology Bound Together like the Grasses, a poetry collection by her writing group of many years, won the Northeastern MN Book Award for Poetry. Deborah co-edits three poetry anthologies published by Holy Cow Press of Duluth and was 2012-14 Duluth Poet Laureate.
Mary moved to Bayfield, WI in 2007 with husband Ted, five children and three dogs. She has owned a restaurant, taught cooking, volunteers, and is deeply committed to the region. Mary enjoys exploring the Apostle Islands, photography, and cooking. She believes that advocacy and stories that evolve from imagining strong, vital communities are keys to creating lasting, positive change. Find her at
Nationally recognized as an expert in the field of fitness, particularly pre and postnatal, mompreneur Lisa is the creator of FIT4MOM®. She is a mom on a mission to raise healthy moms so that they can raise healthy kids in a healthy world. She is the author of Lean Mommy, creator of the Mama Wants Her Body Back DVDs, and host of the Motivating Mom podcast.
Nancy is a professional certified life coach, business coach, and fitness consultant who supports others in cultivating and expressing their deepest inner potential. She delights in the richness of life through the beauty of nature, yoga, meditation, and the appreciation of people and their inherent greatness. She can be reached through her website at
Jen is a traveler, writer, tour leader, event organizer, and specialist in travel to India. She believes in the big picture of life and the important piece we each contribute to its mysterious, beautiful puzzle. Founder and creator of Big Picture Travel and India Travel Coach, Jen believes strongly that travel can help us connect with ourselves and each other in positive, life-changing ways. Find her at or
Tom is Associate Professor of Geoscience at Northland College, Ashland, WI (B.S., St. Lawrence University; M.S., University of MN; Ph.D., University of DE). He enjoys researching the Mellen Gabbro local bedrock. “The setting in the beautiful Lake Superior region is also valuable. I was attracted to my field of study by the amazing stories recorded in rocks and Earth’s history. I enjoy bicycling, canoeing, and cross-country skiing.”
When Dana first led her elementary school in the Pledge of Allegiance, it was clear she was destined to use a microphone. Dana is an award-winning TV journalist currently working for Atlanta’s Fox 5 I-Team. Her investigations helped shut down shady businesses and con men. Her Emmy Award-winning probe exposed failures in Georgia’s child welfare system and helped change state laws. She lives in Atlanta with her husband and daughter. danafowlebiz (at) outlook (dot) com.
Darlene is a writing and creativity coach who helps people navigate their writing journey and produce powerful work. She enjoys working with people who have undergone a radical life transformation and want to create art from that experience. A professional writer and editor for over 25 years (training materials and books), her creative nonfiction (mostly memoir) appears in Times They Were A-Changing: Women Remember the ‘60s & ‘70s and in Fault Zone anthologies.
Rob is a poet/activist from the shore of Lake Superior and has been published in various journals, magazines, and anthologies, as well as having published four volumes of poetry. He considers himself a citizen of forests, streams, his garden, and tends to write on themes of nature, place, the human condition, and the vanishing wilderness. Rob is 70% water.
Leslie holds a Masters degree in mass communication, authored Create the Life You Crave, co-authored Guerrilla Marketing on the Frontlines and Love Stories of the Bay, offers journaling workshops, and received a Bronze Award for feature article writing from the National Council of Marketing & Public Relations. She journals and blogs from the road in her tiny teardrop camper (having created the “life she craved!”) and is working on a second book.
Rage is a former farmer, baker, and doula, who earned her MFA degree from Emerson College. She was a finalist in the Hurston-Wright College Writers Contest and a Showcase Poet in the Fall 2014 issue of The Aurorean. Her poems have appeared in Fifth Wednesday, Mom Egg Review, Really System, and Riding Light, as well as other journals. Her work has also been anthologized in Other Tongues: Mixed Race Women Speak Out.
Stuart is founder of Book Architecture, a firm of independent editors based in Providence ( Book Architecture’s clients have reached the best-seller list in fiction and non-fiction. His first book Blueprint Your Bestseller (Penguin/Perigee), was named a 2013 best book about writing by The Writer magazine. His second book, Book Architecture: How to Plot and Outline Without Using a Formula, was released in 2015.
Kayce is an artist of being alive. Her passions include (but are not limited to) writing, speaking, lifestyle coaching, and SoulStrolling™ around the world. Her 2012 non-fiction book, As I Lay Pondering: daily invitations to live a transformed life, is a lyrical, lucid treasure inviting readers to new awakenings throughout the year. Look for her debut novel, Blue, in Fall 2015. Learn about Kayce and her offerings at
Bob retired in 2014 following a 32-year career serving in the Wisconsin Legislature. Throughout his service in the Assembly and State Senate he focused on children, education, natural resources, and health. He loves the outdoors and is an amateur photographer. He lives with his wife, a former teacher in Poplar WI, 20 miles from Lake Superior.
Amy has called northern WI home since kindergarten. She considers Lake Superior a great blessing and guiding force in her life. Amy creates primarily with photography, jewelry, and photographically-based mixed media, but more and more often, words are finding their way into her work. Contact her at tumbleheartstudio (at) gmail (dot) com.
Maggie Kazel KAZEL, MAGGIE
Maggie works with Rural AIDS Action Network in Duluth, MN. Juggling art, activism, and motherhood, she lives by the words of writer Grace Paley: “Art is too long, and life is too short!” Some of her works are published in Thunderbird Review, Sinister Wisdom, Holy Cow! Press, and in the Sibling Rivalry Press anthology entitled, This Assignment Is So Gay.
Eileen is a writer who lives in the Chicago area with her husband and daughter and has two stepchildren in college. She finds inspiration in the challenges and blessings of daily life and is currently writing a novel.
Beth is the award- winning author of nineteen books, including Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir. She teaches creative nonfiction at Penn, writes a monthly column on the intersection of memory and place for the Philadelphia Inquirer, and reviews regularly for Chicago Tribune. Follow her blog at
Sally has lived near Cornucopia, WI for over 40 years. She co-founded Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua and spent 25 summers as a performer and director. She continues to pursue her theatrical proclivity at StageNorth in Washburn, WI. Her daughter is a teacher and artist in Portland, OR and her son is a musician in Mpls., MN. Recently retired from the WI Department of Public Instruction, she maintains sanity with three cats, a dog, and long beach walks.
Heidi likes to help make the invisible visible — both people and ideas. In administrative work in the Mennonite Church, she suggested that support staff and pastors are equally important. She is currently pondering the art of listening and works as a freelance editor. She lives in Wakarusa, IN, where the jellybeans are as big as the town, in an intentional community with cats, children, and adults. HeidiSeeKing (at) gmail (dot) com.
Kari was born in Harrisonburg, VA, into a family with which she shares a profound and insatiable interest in the world of writing and introspection. She is completing a degree in Spanish at Eastern Mennonite University, with minors in Psychology and English. She experiences writing as a window to the soul and avenue to the ultimate discovery of what makes a person who they are.
Along with the allure of natural science, literature, religious texts, mythology, and philosophy, Robert admits to being under the curious spell of magical realism, and his writing may reflect an inchoate wish to revisit the charmed, hushed, and a bit musty reading rooms of a dimly-remembered British library somewhere in the wildly beating heart of Mexico City, where sweet childhood hours passed in timeless jaunts to exotic lands & fantastic haunts. bluemotmot (at) verizon (dot) net.
Starla, author of Wide Awake. Every Day. Daily Inspiration for Conscious Living, is a writing coach through her company, OutWrite Living. Written words are her primary creative medium, with photographs a close second — both of which she uses to advocate for compassionate living through a practice of seeing the usual and mundane as exquisite and miraculous. Starla lives in Philadelphia with her delightful wife and feline troublemakers. Co-editor of Wide Awake. Every Week.
Jan has worked as a professional singer, actor, director, and playwright for 30 years. Originally from the Twin Cities (MN), Jan taught acting at Northland College (WI) from 2000-05 and was a director and featured performer at Big Top Chautaqua since 1987. As founder and co-owner of StageNorth from 2000-10, Jan was named an official “Wisconsin Treasure” by Governor McCallum for her work as its artistic director. Currently, she’s a vocalist for the Alone Together Jazz Trio.
Elizabeth lives in Ashland, WI and works in the library at Northland College. She is a reader who longs to be a writer and is working on that process.
Maureen feels strongest in nature — especially in the Penokee Hills of WI near Lake Superior — and weakest when trying to figure out individual disasters and abuses and politics that harm people, the land, and water. People who know Maureen best think of her as a storyteller and poet who happened to teach for a long stretch. “My family is beautiful and my friends are great. The WAEW pieces are about these things.”
Emily loves her children and her work, as well as a cocktail with her husband on date nights. Emily has a Master’s degree in Education from Harvard, holds a graduate certificate in Parent Coaching from the PCI at Seattle Pacific University, and completed a postgraduate program entirely dedicated to childhood sleep. As a personal & parent coach, Emily has worked with parents all over the globe. Visit
Ever since she was a kid hand printing a neighborhood newspaper, Anne dreamed of being a writer. An avid reader and retired high school English teacher, she resides in northern WI near her three daughters. Her first novel, Mashkiki Rapids, is set in the aftermath of the Korean War and combines history, small town life, romance, and the questioning of social mores. She is at work on her second book.
Liz received a 2014 Career Opportunity Grant from Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, and with the funds published a 24-page poetry chapbook titled November (—poems). She’s been writing for 20 years. Publication credits include Golden Walkman Magazine, Calyx – A Journal of Art & Literature By Women, Nerve Cowboy as well as the recent anthology Pressure Press Presents. She lives, works, writes near Duluth, MN.
Beth believes that words can change the world and mend its tears. An advocate for women’s equality, she has been featured on NPR, NBC News, Forbes, and The Boston Globe, and in 2014, Governor Deval Patrick appointed her to the MA Women in the Workplace Task Force. Beth is co-founder of InkHouse, a fast-growing PR and content firm. She also supports Boston’s GrubStreet creative writing center where she is a member of the Director’s Circle. Twitter and Medium: @bamonaghan.
Rachel is honored to be a part of this creative project, to sync up with other sojourners also “living the questions.” She recently received her Masters in Five-Element Acupuncture (, and enjoys watching the change of seasons with her sweetheart at their home on a pear orchard in Hood River, OR.
Laura has been in private practice as a Life Leadership Coach since 2006, where she gets to do her most favorite thing: bring people home to the unshakeable, unwavering anchor that is their core selves. She’s been described as a sprightly, wise, funny, nurturing, butt-kicking lover of people and life, and she is often bowled over with gratitude. Laura lives with her husband, dogs, cats, and chickens near Charlotte, NC.
Roslyn, author of Snow on Fire and Raving About Sumer – Fussing Abut Winter lives near Lake Superior in a very small Wisconsin town where she is renovating a 100+ year-old storefront for her graphic design and book design activities and for life-in-general. Co-editor of Wide Awake. Every Week. and
Laurie raised four daughters, earned a B.A. with an English major and did advanced work in Library Science. She worked for over 30 years as a librarian for a WI technical college, and later as a communications instructor and PR representative. She has had major roles in several plays: Last Lists of My Mad Mother; Old Ladies Guide to Survival; Song of Survival; A Christmas Memory, and Moon Over Buffalo. Author of The Amarantha Stories and The Cloud Factory.
A retired anthropologist, Howard and his wife of over 50 years reside in Bayfield, WI where he sees Lake Superior and Madeline Island from his office windows. When not writing, he walks family dogs and fills in behind the counter at What Goes ‘Round Quality Used Books.
Ushi is an award-winning poet, designer, and entrepreneur. She is the author of Brave the Unknown (Skywriter Books), her debut collection of poetry, and winner of the Benjamin Franklin Award. She is also co-founder and the Brand Architect at BoominGroup, a company that is reinventing the way people do business, so they can make a livelihood through expressing and offering their unique gifts to the world.Ushi@ or
Lori is an international speaker, mountaineer, adventurer, author, teacher, and global advocate for those living with neurological disorders and disabilities. Lori is the first person with multiple sclerosis to summit Mt. Everest and complete the “Seven Summits” — scaling the highest peak on each continent. Her organization, Empowerment Through Adventure, inspires others to take their own leap of faith and climb beyond their own preconceived limitations.
Ellie, a poet from Duluth, MN, enjoys working on projects with artists of various genres and has collaborated with musicians to produce poetry/music CDs. She co-founded Poetry Harbor, served on the board of Spirit Lake Poetry Series, and remains grateful to the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council for past fellowship support. She has one collection of poems in print, The Dark Honey: New & Used Poems, (Clover Valley Press) and her work is a part of Bound Together Like the Grasses (Clover Valley Press), an anthology with the four other women in her writing group.
Currently in career transition, Miriam has taught, learned from, and advocated for children with ASD (autism spectrum disorder) for the past 13 years. She’s all about a Sunday afternoon piano and fiddle jam session with her dream husband of 35 years, and she loves a thoughtful trek on Sarasota’s beaches, bridges, or rainforest canopy walk, especially when their sons are visiting. Writing is her spiritual oxygen.
From Ashland, WI, Philip taste tests mayonnaise when not studying aeronautics. Hobbies include measuring the front and back rises on his jeans. Currently, he writes five-star ratings for products. He remains concerned his obituary will state no more than his enjoyment of the Packers, playing crazy eights, and he always told you what he thought even if it was not what you wanted to hear. Contact Mr. Sorensen in the Bay City Creek Ravine by shouting, “Hey! You down there?”
Deborah spends her days in an office looking for the humor and stories to be told, while dreaming of the day she can call herself a writer. She is grateful for the opportunity to participate in this project. Deborah lives in Northern, NJ with the love of her life, Jeffery.
Nick has guided fishing parties for 30 years, produced a major documentary about wild rice and the Anishinaabe, written extensively and ran for office, opposing plans for a mine upstream from the Bad River band of Lake Superior Chippewa. “I’m finally beginning to understand Walter ‘Makoonse’ Bresette’s advice to love this land as deeply as the Anishinaabe do and be willing to defend it with my life.” Nick lives in Mellen WI.
Teresa is an avid cook, reader, writer, traveler, and knitter. She acquired her no-nonsense editing skills as an Executive Editor of the William Mitchell Law Review. She is currently at work on a novel and a series of travel essays. When she is not on the road, she lives in Washburn, WI.
Steven was born in Cuba to Mennonite missionaries. Most of his childhood was in Mexico City. Trips to the Aztec pyramids through burning fields, and to the endless flower gardens of Cuernavaca past pulque-drunks staggering down dusty dirt lanes were his lifeline to a world of mystery and wonder. He does his best to distill and crystallize beauty, which in his wanderings leaves a faint trail as it trickles through holes in his pockets.
Mike is Chairman of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa in northern WI. Raised on the Bad River Reservation, Mike learned how hunting, fishing, and harvesting were essential to the Tribe’s cultural and spiritual traditions and why the Tribe’s ceded territory rights were important to protect for this generation and the next.
Barbara is a peace activist, author/publisher, psychic channel, composer, performer, and speaker. She has authored: Guerrilla Publishing, a candid look into building a small publishing company; Imagining Einstein: Essays on M-Theory, World Peace & The Science of Compassion, winner of two 2007 national book awards; and Party of Twelve: The Afterlife Interviews, winner of the 2008 Beach Book Awards for Spirituality.
Liz has been a teacher of English for over 25 years. She is also a director, writer, and performer at StageNorth (Washburn, WI) and Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua (Bayfield, WI) and has written for and performed in the MN Fringe Festival. She and her husband enjoy playing music, winter, and raising their pert-near perfect daughter Emily.