Posts Tagged ‘Emerging Form’

For the last few years, my wonderful friend Christie Aschwanden and I have been co-hosting a podcast on creative process, Emerging Form. We took a short break this summer, but we returned this week with an episode in which we talk about the past year and how creative practice has helped us in a time of uncertainty and trauma. To listen to this episode (episode 70), you can find our podcast on any popular podcast site (spotify, apple podcasts, etc), or herehttps://emergingform.substack.com/p/episode-70-checking-in-one-year-later#details

We are, in specific, responding to a podcast recorded a year ago in which we speak about Christie’s father’s stroke and my son’s death by his own hand. That episode (Episode 50) can be found herehttps://emergingform.substack.com/p/episode-50-creativity-in-times-of#details 

We just found out that that episode, 50, has made Emerging Form a finalist for the International Women’s Podcast Awards. Winners are announced September 29, 2022.

The main episodes are always free. If you become a member you also get bonus content every other week–for instance, this week, I will be doing a bonus episode on using metaphor as tool for meeting grief. 

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Have you listened yet to the podcast I cohost on creative process, Emerging Form?

emerging form

It’s so fun! Every other week, science writer Christie Aschwanden and I take on a new subject, and this week it’s how to tackle subjects that bring up fear, shame, sadness, and anger. Engaging in a creative project can be hard enough when the subject matter is fun. But what about when it’s emotionally taxing, too? In this episode, we talk about many techniques for working with topics that make us uneasy—from changing perspective to creating rituals. Then we talk with Thea Deley, speaker, writer and improviser, and ask her two questions: 1) When do you know you are ready to write about something difficult—what is the role of perspective, and 2) How do you navigate stories that might hurt someone? We are interested in your answers to these questions, too!

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emerging form

It’s a new year, and Christie Aschwanden and I have a whole new season of Emerging Form dropping on January 30. Our podcast is still about creative process, but we have other changes in the works. We will continue releasing regular episodes every other Thursday, but we’re also introducing some new stuff this year. We’ve hired a terrific new audio editor, Rob Dozier, and we’re taking some other steps to ensure that we can continue bringing you Emerging Form on a regular basis.

You can continue to listen to the podcast for free on your favorite podcast app, but now you also have a chance to subscribe to bonus content by signing up for our supporter newsletter. For only a few bucks per month, you can help us keep the lights on. We are offering a special deal to our founding subscribers — 20% off monthly or yearly subscriptions for the next 12 months. Sign up now, to get the discount and new content every Thursday.

If you sign up for the paid newsletter, you’ll also be able to comment on episodes in our substack feed, and take part in discussions here.

We’ve got some fantastic topics and guests lined up in the coming weeks. We’ll be talking about everything from how play can foster creativity to how to handle rejection and how and when to say no. We’ll also share our friendship’s origin story and what it reveals about creativity and friendship.


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What do a poet and a science writer have in common? A podcast on creative process! And in this episode of Emerging Form, Christie Aschwanden and I discuss collaborations–what makes them work, how they go sour, and what to do then! We also discuss whether collaborations need leaders, wemerging formhy listening is an essential skill for working with other creatives, Chinese food, the Jabberwocky, and how spontaneity can enhance a creative collaboration. And then we’ll wrap up our conversation by talking with musician/songwriter/video producer Christine Laskowski who will play our game of two questions. We’ll ask her 1) What makes a good collaboration? And 2) How do you deal with conflicts when they arise in a collaboration? You can weigh in on these questions yourself, either on our website or on our Facebook page. You can find Emerging Form wherever you find podcasts, or on our webpage here.


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A mallard swims

in the beaver pond,

the sunlight makes

green praise of its head


and for an instant

the whole world

revolves around

emerald sheen.


There is little else

that’s green here,

though it is late spring—

but over 10,000 feet


the snow tends to linger.

This is a place where

the mind doesn’t hesitate

to offer its attention


to the sharp scent of trees,

to the snaking trickle of snowmelt,

to the thrill of cold air

in the lungs. And in giving


itself away, the mind

becomes clearer, becomes

a shining and natural thing,

like a mallard wing, like


a tree just before leafing,

like a canyon in which

the lush green world

is just about to emerge.

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emerging form

New Podcast Episode Out Today! CREATIVE HABITS! What can you do to evolve your creativity? How do your practices fuel or sabotage your muse? In this episode of Emerging Form, we talk about creative habits—frequency, accountability, flexibility and more. We’ll cover Rosemerry’s four promises she makes for her daily practice, Christie’s philosophy on not taking yourself too seriously, a new approach for meeting a blank page, the underbellies of bugs and much more. At the end of the program, we invite science writer, artist, knitter and singer Helen Fields to join us in our game of two questions: 1) How do you prioritize time for your creative habit? And 2) When do you know it is time to evolve a habit—how do you know if it’s not serving you anymore?

You can visit our website and comment here: Emerging Form Episode 7: Creative Habits

Or join the discussion on our Facebook page: Emerging Form Podcast Facebook Page

And please take a moment to rate us on iTunes, it really helps!



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Dear Friends,

If you live nearby, I am offering a free class for mothers this week, and a free 2-hour writing class for anyone, both at Wilkinson Public Library. (info below)

And please listen to the new Emerging Form Podcast, “When is Quitting the Best Thing to Do,” with fabulous guest Pam Houston. If you’ve ever beaten yourself up for quitting a creative project, or if you’re wondering right now if the project you’re working on is really the best fit for you, this episode is right up your alley!




Free Poetry Class on Wednesday for Mothers

Lost in Motherland: Writing to Discover Who We Are(n’t)

Wednesday, April 24

Wilkinson Public Library, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.   FREE

Motherhood changes things Amidst the blessings and the challenges, we transform. Whether your child is in utero, in diapers, in junior high, or an adult long out of the home, and chances are that things have not gone as you expected. Chances are you have frustrations, joys, disappointments, elations. This is not a class for writing about our kids, though. It’s a chance to write about yourself, to explore how mothering has informed who you are.

Mother and poet Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer leads other mothers in this practice of writing, reading and listening. What happens when we ask, “Who am I?” As Ramana Maharshi says, “The purpose of that question is not to find an answer but to dissolve the questioner.” What’s that supposed to mean? Come play.

All mothers welcome—grandmothers, step-mothers, adoptive mothers, mothers-to-be. No previous writing experience necessary. For those who have taken this workshop previously, the material will be all new.



Thursday, April 25

Writing for the Fun of It

Wilkinson Public Library, 6-8 p.m.

Telluride, CO

Join Rosemerry for this free monthly writing group. Writing is such a solitary act, but when we do it together, there’s a fabulous synergy, a juicy energetic charge. Let’s play.  Theme: Generosity. Just show up!




April 26-27

Shared Visions 2, a concert by the Ars Nova Singers

Friday, April 26,  7:30pm – Bethany Lutheran Church, 4500 E. Hampden, Cherry Hills Village

Saturday, April 27, 7:30pm – St. John’s Episcopal Church, 1419 Pine Street, Boulder

The Ars Nova Singers will be performing works by four Colorado composers. Three of the pieces selected will be set to poems written by Rosemerry. One poem was inspired by the artwork of Grace Gee Ajemian will be set to music by Jeff Nytch, another poem was inspired by the art of John Bonath and will be set to music by Paul Fowler. The third was inspired by work by Wewer Keohane and was set to music by Paul Fowler. For more info, http://www.arsnovasingers.org/

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emerging form

Who needs an editor? Everyone. In Episode 5 of Emerging Form, a podcast on creative process, join me and science writer Christie Friesen Aschwanden as we discuss feedback: who to ask, how to ask them, and how to respond to what they say. Also important: at what point in a project do you ask for feedback?

We’ll tackle all these questions, plus we’ll talk about the sinking of the Titanic, how praise can both help and hinder you, eating fire, and as, always, after our discussion we’ll play our game of two questions. Our guest this episode is Andrea Jones-Rooy, a circus performer and stand up comedienne (among other talents). Our questions: 1) How do you get feedback that’s useful? 2) How do you balance being vulnerable and receptive to feedback with being sure of yourself?



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emerging form

In our fourth episode of Emerging Form, a podcast on creative process, my co-host Christie Aschwanden and I explore Getting Started. Ever have a creative project you just couldn’t seem to begin? Ever been stared down by a blank page? In this 28-minute episode, we look at lots of tips for getting started, we discuss working through perfection anxiety, paralysis of analysis, the blank page blues and so much more. Then we interview amazing poet and writing coach Judyth Hill and ask her two burning questions about how to get started. Join us!

Also, check out our back episodes on emerging form, is talent necessary and existential despair.

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emerging form

EMERGING FORM is a weekly podcast about the creative process. Join me and my co-host, New York Times best selling science writer Christie Aschwanden, as we discuss creativity, usually over a glass of wine. Themes for season one include quitting, collaboration and existential despair. Guests for season one include poets and writers as well as a sketch artist, a songwriter, a winemaker and a circus performer. Each episode lasts under 30 minutes. Find out more about the podcast on our website, or listen and subscribe via iTunes or our RSS feed. 

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