What would you do if a sudden diagnosis of a significant disease entered your life when you were only in your forties? Is there anyone among us who hasn’t wondered?
A great new track at this year’s Writers Festival is on Sunday, August 19th at 2:30 pm when Robyn Michele Levy and Kim Clark take the stage at Rockwood with host/moderator Sheryl MacKay to talk about their personal waterloos and what the diagnosis provoked – in the best sense of the word – in terms of creativity and self-expression.
Billed as ‘New Voices’, Robyn and Kim show us the path to great achievement and purpose even in the midst of dealing with a life crisis that leaves the middling ‘mid-life’ varieties most of us grapple with very much rightly reduced in proportion.
Robyn was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s disease AND breast cancer. Can you imagine? Out of this epoch comes the memoir, Most of Me: Surviving My Medical Meltdown. I am the daughter of a man recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s so this one hits especially close to home, and the description of her book as ‘sad, funny, no-punches-pulled account of her life since the dual diagnoses’ is a big draw for me, since in our household humour is one of our first-line defenses against all manner of calamities. The novel has been nominated for a Leacock Medal for Humour.
Kim Clark has battled against the steadily encroaching advance of progressive Multiple Sclerosis with aplomb and great tenacity, going back to school at age 41 – with four children – to gain her BA in creative writing. Now an accomplished poet and writer, she will be introducing her novel Attemptations, a collection of fiction, and is a former Coastie, now living in Nanaimo just across the Salish Sea.
Tickets are available by calling 1-800-565-9631/604-885-9631 or by purchasing online at http://www.writersfestival.ca/guestinfo.html.