Curious explorations to the center of my heart. Deeper reflections than I imagined myself capable of. Pulling on a single thread of an idea until delightful wisdom, stories or healing gifts appear magically on the other end.
This is what it’s like working with Opal on my memoir. Yes, she understands and shares the craft of writing. She’s a master(ess) at detecting the innate gifts of a writer and helping to hone the writer’s voice. She inspires me to get started, start over, or let something steep for a while. She sits with me through the natural states of frustration, celebration, enthusiasm or disappointment and holds them with equal attention and care to discover what’s happening under the surface.
But behind all this, what Opal is really offering is gentle, gifted soul guidance. She encourages me to dig down to the ground of my being following my unscripted and uncensored imagination where I discover fresh richness, healing that’s been just out of our reach and clarity around the most painful and exquisite experiences of my life. Unattached herself to formulaic writing, she helps me stay curious about what my voice sounds like and what brings me the greatest joy to put on the page. With her support, I find myself writing not just with my mind, but from my entire body, mind and soul.
-Keri Mangis, Spiritual Teacher & Writer
Opal had a gentle but deeply effective way of showing me that my vision for my work is beautiful and that I have all the tools and resources I need to make it happen.
Using her keen intuition, soft heart, and generous ears, Opal integrated her years of experience as a poet and teacher with her healing abilities. The result? I now have a plan, the confidence to carry it out and a fantastic writer and editor to return to for advice when I need it. I feel a new sense of confidence and support after years of difficult emotions around giving birth to creative projects.
-Britt Johnsen, Writer, brittjohnsen.com
My session with Opal reminded me a great deal of my undergraduate days when I fell deeply in love with poetry for the first time. I would walk from campus to apartment, the class I had just taken echoing in my ears, each step beating me further and further in love, anxious to get home to write.
I felt that again, this afternoon, that thrill of my mind expanding, those firework-explosions, struck sparks. Opal opened me up to solutions I hadn't even realized yet were problems--and by this, I mean the ability to envision the progression of the writing process, to suss out method and journey and writer's intentions, and to help the poet encounter the tools to produce stronger, more meaningful work. Opal is a kind of writing-doula, one I am honored and indebted to. I will return to her services again and again, whenever I find myself in need of any kind of loosening, disembarkation, or other poetic freedom.
-Molly Sutton Kiefer, author of Nestuary & co-editor of Tinderbox Poetry Journal
I felt like Opal was my poetry therapist.
I wanted to talk about what inspires me to write and how to feel more motivated to produce work, and we talked about ways that would enable me to write more often and feel more productive during the times I set aside to write. Coming in, I didn't know what to expect, but leaving, I felt motivated and excited to work!
-Brett Elizabeth Jenkins, author of Ether/Ore & The Angry Grammarian, co-editor of Tinderbox Poetry Journal