In the third of her series of conversations about creativity, Linda chats with three writers in her Muskoka Writers' Circle, Cathy Olliffe-Webster, Dawn Huddlestone, and Paula Boon.

Singer Songwriter Linda McLean wrote and produced her acoustic CD, Snow Mountain River, in her Mandolin Records studio. In keeping with the home made nature of the CD, she made the covers from paper recycled from lyric and journal notes.

In the second in her series of conversations about creativity, Linda talks with yoga teacher and Ayervedic healer, Allie Chisolme-Smith at her studio, Ahimsa Wellness Centre, on Main St. in Huntsville, Ontario, Canada. With her sister Jocelyn, Allie has created a welcoming space for people of all ages to learn. practice, and thrive.

In the first in her series of conversations about creativity, Linda visits the studio of visual artist Beverley Hawksley. The discussion covers Beverley's views about creativity, the process, inspiration and the relationship of the artist with the outside world. Beverley's co-op student, Leah Amosow, is working on a painting in the studio at the time, and shares her experiences as an emerging artist.

Let Your Passion be Your Guide

If you're like me, you've been fascinated and inspired by music your entire life, and you've had a burning desire to share your songs with everyone who would listen. You also began to believe somewhere along the way, you had no right to stand up and take your longing seriously. Your over-riding negative core thoughts included; 'Who do you think you are? How dare you want to write and sing your own songs.'; and 'There are already enough songs is the world, and it doesn't need you clogging up the airwaves.' These and a multitude of other such powerfully self-defeating thoughts have kept you from taking your creative passion seriously, long enough ...

Linda's Simple Body Scan Meditation for Relaxation and Readiness: You can do this exercise any time, any place, you want to tune in and/or relax. Feeling afraid to begin that painting? Worried no words will come when you show up at the page? A simple body scan can bring you back into the present and help you get past your loud brain. It's a brilliant skill that never fails to bring me back to the here and now ...

Creative Challenge: Recall an extraordinary moment in your life. See it in your minds eye. Remember as many of the details as you can. Write the details down noting all you remember about, what you see, smell, taste, and touch around you, what you were feeling, emotionally, physically, details of more objects.

The more details the better. Write them all down. Now look at your list and wait for the response. What do you want to create with these details? First impulse. Painting? Song? Dance? Sculpture? Photograph? Poem? New garden plot? Breathe. Begin.

Have fun. Send us your results to so we can post them on our site.

Linda McLean hosts a late-summer songwriting weekend with James Gordon and Katherine Wheatley.
Participants create musical memories surrounded by the misty hills and blazing sunrises of Northern Muskoka.
Music: Linda McLean; Beauty. Intro: Jules Massenet; Meditation.

Listen to a preview of Linda's new song Kind Hands!

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