Writing-wise, in her drinking days, Louisa P. wrote stories about oddball characters alienated by a conformist world and published them in literary journals like Northwest Review, Bellingham Review, and Calyx — one of them winning the Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction. Un/fortunately, sobriety has made her too dang happy for melancholy fiction, and she has yet to find an upbeat approach. With a BA from Vassar and an MA in Creative Writing from the U. of Washington, she has taught composition, literature, and writing pedagogy at the U. of Washington, Evergreen State College, and several community colleges, as well as having directed the UW’s English Department Writing Center for five years. She currently edits dissertations and teaches all forms of writing one-to-one.
Life-wise, Louisa has 26 years clean and sober; she works an active program of meetings, stepwork, and service in AA and Al-Anon that has endowed her with a loving family both humongous and diverse. In addition to repeatedly summiting glaciered volcanoes (Rainier, Baker, Adams, Glacier Peak & St. Helens), she enjoys long distance (100 mile +) through-hikes in the Cascades, Rockies, and Sierra Nevada, having recently finished the Washington portion of the Pacific Crest Trail by soloing a rugged 127-mile section in August 2018. In 2011, she bicycled from Seattle to San Francisco. She’s also an advanced-intermediate ballet dancer, a vegetarian with backyard chickens, and mom to an 19-year-old son.
Finally, as a Near Death Experiencer, she regularly attends meetings of the International Association of Near Death Studies in Seattle, where she was featured as a presenter in 2012 and 2018, in addition to speaking at the IANDS annual conference in September, 2018, where she presented her story of crossing over and the series of paranormal after-effects she has experienced since.
Her addiction memoir, A Spiritual Evolution (here on Amazon), is told with the humor and wisdom of hindsight yet interspersed with raw suffering from the author’s diary. It shares Louisa’s alcoholic story in narrative detail, beginning with the self-harming disorder she developed growing up in an alcoholic home and following the desperate pursuit of okayness through drinking and infatuation that led her to hit bottom at 34. Finally willing to listen, she learned how working the 12 steps could enable her to tap an inner resource that has led her through subsequent upheavals and losses toward happiness. Woven through is the account of her Near Death Experience and its continuing aftereffects that, for Louisa, have erased all doubt of an active and spirit world powered by an indescribably infinite Love.
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