These kind reflections are the voices of some of the participants and co-facilitators in my creative writing classes (please note these and the testimonials at the bottom of each page of this site are not the voices of people in recovery).
“I have taught alongside Marni Norwich for the past seven years, primarily in recovery centres. Marni not only brings a wealth of knowledge to her classes but a spirit and empathy which allows room for people to express their innermost voices without hesitation. Marni creates this wonderful space consistently. Her dedication to her work shows in her preparation, her interaction and her follow-up. I recommend Marni’s classes for anyone wanting to add an extra tool to their healing kit. ”
Bonnie Nish MA, Arts Education
Pandora’s Collective Outreach Society
“Promoting The Arts That Inspire The World To Take Notice Of Itself”
“Marn Norwich honours both the creative and recovery processes in her work as a facilitator. She first creates a safe space among the group. As they warm to the experience, she provides insight into the creative process so that participants begin to trust and experiment with the tool of writing.
“As her classes progress, she offers powerful literary examples that touch on key themes in recovery and healing. She is wise in how she paces classes so participants who opt to do so may gradually delve deeper and comfortably into their personal histories.
“Marn has mastered the ability to hold a safe space when participants choose to share raw and painful experiences. She offers them a way to emotionally process the negative into heartfelt poems and prose and provides warm feedback that demonstrates the power in sharing their truths.
“Over the two years that I co-facilitated writing classes with Marn at Pacifica Treatment Centre, her quiet power as a facilitator led to many participants’ personal breakthroughs.”
Lindsay G. Kwan, Vancouver, BC
Writing, Editing & Communications
Editor, Art Coordinator & Director, Room Magazine
“I have had the great pleasure of co-facilitating writing workshops with Marn Norwich at Pacifica several times over the past year and half.
“Marn’s calming energy peppered with her humour and brilliant passion for the literary make her as much a teacher to me as she is a colleague.
“I am in awe of her ability to engage the participants and guide them gently and knowledgeably on a journey of healing through written expression.
“On several occasions during the break in our sessions, participants have approached Marn in gratitude for her work.”
Taslim Jaffer, Surrey BC
“In 2012, I had the pleasure to facilitate a writing workshop with Marni Norwich at the Vancouver Public Library. Marni employs a refreshingly unique and effective method for teaching creative writing.
“Her workshop was based on themes reflected in a number of the poems from her collection, Wildflowers at my Doorstep, including ”the body” and “women who inspire.” Throughout the workshop she read these poems as gateways to the writing exercises she presented. In this way, the reading and the writing were interspersed. Marni also provided guided visualization exercises and, most importantly, an opportunity for the participants to share their writing with the group.
“As a librarian I value diversity, access for all, innovation, and creativity. Marni’s strength lies in her capacity to put these values to practice. Marni has the innate ability to inspire anyone — even those with no previous writing experience — to not only tap into their creative conscience, but to feel confident enough to write “on the spot” and share their writing with a group. I was particularly overjoyed to see some of our regular patrons, many of whom are socially and economically disenfranchised, feel welcome and actively participate n this inclusive workshop. Marni’s open teaching methods and her individual warmth removed any barriers that would prevent anyone from feeling they are not capable of writing. Marni’s workshop was, truly, in concert with the mission and values of the Vancouver Public Library, as she created a free place for everyone to discover and share their creative ideas.
“Marni Norwich’s natural ability to create a supportive environment conducive for creative writing is simply unparalleled!”
Caroline Crowe, Librarian, Vancouver Public Library
“I attended Marni’s writing workshop at the Library Square in September 2011. Her techniques on how to slow down and sink into one’s writing were insightful and rewarding but that is not what made her class so special. What is unique about Marni is the level of safety she inspires. There is always this dread, at least for me, in sharing one’s work in front of a crowd. Marni holds the space in such a way that it is easy to get up and read, in fact, desirous to do so. She treats each piece of work as sacred—you feel honoured to have shared. I highly recommend Marni in helping to bring out your most creative aspects.”
“You are an inspiration as a writer. I love your amazing creativity that was displayed in the handouts and pieces you shared with us. When we have a facilitator like you, no matter if our first language is not English, we as writers become stimulated to create!…I love your stories and your warm approach to giving us feedback.”
“I can tell you that your time with us has made an impact. Team members are taking greater care with emails, making an effort to be warmer in tones, supporting and reflecting back to each other.
I have never seen a training with such lasting impact! Thanks again for taking such great care to respond to our needs.”
Astarte Sands, Vancouver, BC
Volunteer Resources Coordinator
“In her workshops, Marni Norwich creates a safe and supportive environment for participants of all writing abilities to explore their creativity. Her facilitation style is empowering and inclusive. I came away from this workshop with the courage to share my writing, and a greater sense of inspiration for my creative work. Marni has a gift for inspiring the creative process and helping participants delve deeper into their writing. Her many years of experience as a facilitator and a writer were evident in the way she held a gentle and powerful space for us as a group.”
Catherine Wilcox, M.Ed., Management Consultant
“In 2011, I participated in a writing workshop led by Marni Norwich, a gifted writer and teacher. Marni structured the workshop around themes found in her book of poetry, Wildflowers at My Doorstep. An inventive instructor who is as attuned to her audience as she is to her material, she used these themes to invite reflection and as beginning points for writing exercises. In an atmosphere of warmth, intelligence, and acceptance, participants wrote and shared their work. Without hesitation I recommend Marni as a choice writing workshop instructor.”
Morgan Chojnacki, Writer
“Marni’s writing genius comes from some deep connection to The Goddess. It is practical, spare, incisive, grounded and always uplifting. Her spoken word pulls us with the imperative, Listen, and is impossible not to.”
Dave Dumaresq, Vancouver playwright
Just wanted to tell you, I thought the class was wonderful 🙂I wish I didn’t have to miss so much, but you made it easy for me to still get the information. I loved your energy and teaching style, I think you made everyone feel comfortable to share and participate in the class exercises. I will definitely continue to recommend your course to people I know.”
Megan Barker, Vancouver, BC
“I really appreciated Marni’s warm encouragement and the supportive culture she created in the classroom. Seeing as a few of us were quite insecure about our writing it helped to foster a healthy environment. Her presentation of topics was enthusiastic and creative.”
Leslie Kennah, Vancouver, BC