More about Michael Williams, PhD
Co-Editor of Therapeutic Storytelling
"A good story is medicine to my bones." Abraham Lincoln
During a career that has spanned more than 30 years, Michael's work has taken him from the underground mines of Northern Ontario in Canada to the towers of academia in Scotland. After emerging from the mines in the early 70s, he went on to study Child Care Work and began counselling adolescents in care. In 1983 he returned to University to study English Literature, graduating in 1988 with an MA, before heading off for Scotland to begin a PhD and a teaching career that spanned more than 15 years as a university lecturer and tutor as well as an English teacher at the Rudolf Steiner School of Edinburgh. In 2001 he earned an Advanced Diploma in Local History from Oxford University. Throughout his teaching career, Michael has come to appreciate the stories of ordinary as well as extraordinary people. He especially enjoys encouraging others to tell their story.
About eight years ago, Michael began to train more formally as a storyteller and in 2005 left full-time teaching to work as a self-employed storyteller and education consultant. His work has focused on therapeutic storytelling, peace education work and teacher professional development. In addition to being an Adviser and Assessor on the General Teaching Council of Scotland's Chartered Teacher programme, Michael is also a network member of the Scottish Storytelling Centre and member of the Edinburgh-based 'Dirty Rascals', a storytelling group interested in the therapeutic and healing power of stories and storytelling. His repertoire includes contemporary and traditional tales from around the world with a particular focus on Native American tales, Canadian folktales, and stories and songs from Appalachia, the Wild West and the folk tradition. He particularly enjoys sharing stories and songs of peace and non-conflict drawn from a variety of cultures, suitable for all ages.
Michael’s singing and storytelling have taken him into schools, hospitals, care centres, village halls, churches, community centres, libraries, living rooms and around campfires. He’s facilitated numerous storytelling and creative writing workshops and trainings for toddlers, adolescents and teachers. He's also recorded a CD of sing-a-long songs for the young-at-heart. In April 2009 Michael participated in the 'Healing Words' programme at Emerson College and travelled to the Holy Land for several weeks to work alongside Arabs and Jews who use storytelling and peacemaking skills to bridge conflict. Today, Michael coaches those interested in becoming storytellers or improving their storytelling skills and continues to develop his interests in therapeutic storytelling.
Visit his website: www.rjmwilliams.co.uk
About Norma-Jean Strickland
Assistant Editor of Therapeutic Storytelling
Norma-Jean Strickland has studied writing and storytelling with several noted authors and is a published ghostwriter for an Emmy Award-winning PBS television celebrity. Her earliest professional experiences were in classical music including solo performances with orchestras, as well as teaching and serving as Music Director throughout Southern California where she lived for over 30 years. Norma-Jean was also in radio as an on-air host and producer, which was how her professional writing and storytelling career began.
Norma-Jean has also been on the spiritual path for as long as she can remember and has studied most of the world’s religions for many years. She has attended countless workshops and seminars in a quest to more completely understand the complexities and fragility of human nature, as well as to uncover her own true Self. She is inherently joyful and her enthusiasm is contagious. Her writing focuses on the child inside each of us that calls forth innocent wonder at the inexhaustible richness of life. Her mission is to delight and bring joy, love and healing to the human heart through music, story and play.
Her first book, BITE-SIZED PRAYERS: Non-Denominational Morsels to Feed Your Soul, was published via Hay House in late October of 2011. Please visit the website: www.bite-sizedprayers.com.
Visit her on Twitter: njstrickland
Visit her Facebook page for BITE-SIZED PRAYERS: Non-Denominational Morsels to Feed Your Soul: www.facebook.com/BiteSizedPrayers
Visit her website for BITE-SIZED PRAYERS: www.bite-sizedprayers.com
Visit her on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/norma-jean-strickland/7/8a1/bb
Join Norma-Jean on Cosmic Cake Radio
Goodyear, Arizona USA