SWO Luncheon Lecture Series: Susan M. Wyler
Luncheon Lectures Series with Susan M. Wyler, Poet, cultural historian and celebrated novelist, speaking on A Life of Writing.
An afternoon conversation with celebrated novelist Susan M. Wyler, who discussed her journey as a traveler and writer. Her latest novel is both a contemporary story, and one that recalls classic tales of the human search for meaning, strength and identity. Readers and writers alike have been inspired by Susan’s stories.
Luncheon Report – SWO held its semi-annual Speakers Luncheon Series honoring Susan M. Wyler on April 25, 2015 in Marin County, California. The event was attended by a great number of interested people.
Mary Granick, LMFT, of the SWO Organizing Committee, welcomed the attendees to the luncheon by sharing information about SWO and the founder, Dr. Nahid Angha. She introduced SWO as a significant forum for all women, with seventeen chapters around the world.
Nancy Carroll, another member of the Organizing Committee, talked about how SWO works in support of Amnesty International. SWO, together with other humanitarian organizations, has devoted time and financial support towards after school programs (Mexico and El Salvador), immunizations (Sub-Saharan Africa), clean water in refugee areas (Ethiopia), and eradicating poverty.
Hamaseh Kianfar, Ed. D. talked about a possible gathering in Egypt of women who have made essential changes in their communities and contributed towards global transformation, as presented in the book: A Force Such as the World Has Never Known. This conference is in its planning stage.
Arife Ellen Hammerle, Ph. D., a member of the SWO Program Committee, introduced the speaker, talked about her contribution to the world of literature, and invited her to the podium.
Observing that the hardest thing to do is “get out of the way,” Susan M. Wyler shared some of her experience as a writer, covering her experience of the productive, exciting times, and also the challenging times. Speaking from her heart, she talked about the difference between writing for herself versus the public, about finding her muses, and her concern when feeling her muses had abandoned her. She has spent much of her life preparing to write novels, having written her first imaginative story at the age of about seven, a time when she also remembers reciting poetry while walking to school. She has written several collections of poetry, and has several unfinished novels. However, it wasn’t until much later in her life that everything came together for Susan to begin finishing a novel, challenging herself to write 1500 words every day for a month. Susan described that for her, each story arises organically, and she also waits, just as the reader will, to find out how the story will end.
Susan talked openly about various challenges a writer faces, such as editing one’s own work, working with one’s publisher and agent, and the frustration that can happen when authors see the cover design chosen for their book. However, she also mentioned that these frustrations can actually be the unexpected connections that can lead to the work being published and appearing on the shelf in bookstores! Alongside her writing, Susan is an accomplished Yoga instructor. The discipline and focus required by Yoga no doubt aids in her patience and clarity when writing. Remaining honest, true to herself, and hopeful, has led Susan to her current writing success and has contributed to her bright and energetic nature.
Following her talk, Susan answered several questions from the audience and then signed books and spoke with attendees. In addition to appreciating our engaging speaker, we all enjoyed a tasty lunch and lively conversation with one another in a beautiful sun-lit setting. We look forward to our next SWO Luncheon Lecture!