Overleaf Nature Books & Memoirs

FREEDOM TO READ WEEK was started by the Freedom of Expression Committee of the Book and Periodical Council of Canada, and is promoted annually at public library branches. Public libraries -- where information and recreational reading is available for free to all members of the public -- are a hallmark of a democratic nation. Freedom to Read Week reminds us of books banned in the past -- Catcher In the Rye, To Kill a Mockingbird, Ulysses, Lady Chatterly's Lover, and so on -- and these bans seem quaint to us now. The new danger to diversity of views is the stifling of the right to write freely on ideological subjects.

 The ideologically based chill on free speech on university ampuses is preventing some people from expressing views, others from reading what they choose, and everyone from being treated as an adult. Words like "trigger", "bullying", "colonialist", and "racist" have been co-opted by the Supervising Class, and the university campus, which should by definition be a safe place for a universe of ideas, is being infantilized. Ironically, during this very Freedom to Read Week, Acadia University has acted against a psychology professor whose views challenge the identity politics of the moment. An colleague opposed to his right to express an opinion uses the word "extremist" to describe those who defend free speech. Does anti-free-speech extremism exist as well?

One response to the Supervising Class is the flight of writers to social media (a.k.a. antisocial media), but that hasn't proven a tasteful replacement for the civility of the "agora". The independent self-publisher is the other person who gets books to a public who can choose either to read or not read them -- a decision which should lie only with the individual. The other side of freedom to read is the freedom not to read, and we can all avail ourselves of that. What we can't do, if we value intellectual choice, is tell others what to read or say, be they journalists, professors, novelists or politicians. Free-lance writers and independent self-publishers (the reincarnation of the original printers of pamphlets, poems and novels in 17th and 18th century Britain, who invented "free speech") may be the best hope for the future, because these writers are the least supervised and controlled.

We have learned that freedom of expression must be re-protected in every generation. Every dictatorship in modern history has started by stifling free speech, and some group always wants to trigger censorship, often for what they consider the best of reasons. The insidious virus of self-censorship sometimes prepares the ground (we all want to play nicely), and we must guard against that by insisting on our right to think outside the "moment".

New Ninshu Press chapbook looks at hate speech, Holocaust denial, press censorship, jailed writers,  blasphemy laws, international governance of the internet, and related issues of interest to writers and readers:

   Snapshots of the lives and careers of over 40 accomplished women from the past, who worked in civil rights, education, literature, art, theology and the sciences, women who started the movements and compiled the knowledge that created the world we know.
   The field of women’s studies analyzes the andro-centrism that has erected barriers against women at many junctures in history, but Julian asks whether too much focus on what women have been prevented from doing leaves young people ignorant of what they have done. Too many assume that in past eras women were silent, under-educated and excluded. In fact many reached levels of skill and scholarship unheard of among today’s students. They inspired their contemporaries and inspire ourselves with writings, paintings and horticulture, and steered governments and politicians via associations, committees, salons, institutes and myriad other channels of influence.
     Do you know the names of the women who created the National Trust (UK), Kew Gardens, the Planned Parenthood Federation, the Battersea Dogs Home, Cruelty-Free International, the Cottage Garden style and Arts & Crafts movement, the poem on the Statue of Liberty, Kenya's Greenbelt Movement, Japan's Omoto religion, the Christian Science Monitor, the Gaia Theory? Who co-discovered the structure of the DNA molecule, nuclear fission, the Augur effect in physics, and instigated "sustainable development", or the Nobel Peace Prize? Nor do most school students. Women Who Made the World is a short, accessible handbook that helps fill the knowledge gap.

More detail at: https://www.peninsulanewsreview.com/entertainment/readers-corner-saanich-author-delves-into-the-lives-of-notable-women/

Women Who Made the World is available from overleaf2011@hotmail.com for $15 plus $2 for delivery (local to Victoria BC) or postage. Also available at various shops in Victoria and Vancouver Island. PDF file available for $10.
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Welcome to Overleaf Memoirs Service (Qualicum Beach, BC) --

Sign up for help with LIFE WRITING and autobiography

Learn how (and why) to produce your memoirs whether for yourself, friends and colleagues
 or for family and descendants. Explore how you fit into the shared history of us all. Learn how to organize materials and documents, shape your narrative, find printers or e-publishers.
Barbara Julian, Memoirs Coach, has degrees in History and Library/Information Science, and long experience as a free-lance writer
20.00 per hour, first consultation free
(Getting To Know You)
For more information email Sandra: overleaf2011@hotmail.com

S.B. Julian is a free-lance writer, playwright and book reviewer, former librarian and present book-addict. She has independently published several books and booklets (issued by NINSHU PRESS, see list below) collaborated with others on anthologies, and worked with seniors on Memoirs Projects at several local retirement residences.

"You have helped create a family keep-sake ... it's been a pleasure working with you." (Ian H., 2015)
"Memoir writing has been an interesting experience." (Mary Nemes, Victoria, 2014)
"Recording our history is important, helps relate the past to the present -- to understand Canada's unique position in history." (Helen, Parkwood Place -- teacher)
"Thank you for doing memoirs with Sandringham residents." (Colleen and Gert, May 2015)

 Overleaf Memoirs helped produce Betty Hearn's story Betty Out and About, which is rich in information about Victoria going back to the 1930's and the War years, the burgeoning 1960's arts scene in Vancouver, retirement on a Gulf Island and more ...


Journal of a year of walking Bowker Creek through all the seasons and three municipalities (Saanich, Victoria, Oak Bay), looking at landscape and wildlife, history and ecology. Bowker formed during receding Ice Ages and has flowed through a wild, then a rural, now an urban environment. It fills many needs for its admirers and habitu├ęs, who visit both above ground and underground (about 60% of its length being in tunnels). The author tells how she overcomes fear of "the underworld" by venturing into Bowker's tunnels, and continues to learn from the birds and beasts above-ground. Follow on www.twitter.com/BowkerWalking 

Look for Walking Bowker at local shops, or order through overleaf2011@hotmail.com 
$10.00, 60 pages, illustrated.

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NINSHU PRESS and OVERLEAF BOOKS  present books on history, nature, eco-spirituality and mind-body subjects: 

Women Who Made the World, by S. B. Julian. nonfiction (history) pbk, ill., 97 pages, 15.00

Walking Bowker: Befriending an Urban Creek, by S. B. Julian, pbk, ill., 64 pages, 10.00

Childhood Pastorale: Children, Nature, and the Preservation of Landscape, by S. B. Julian. pbk, ill., 14.95

Tales and Trails: Living With Urban Deer, Various Authors: a short collection of stories of relationships with local deer, chapbook, ill.,20 pages, 2014, 3.95 

Poultry Pets In the Garden: Raising Backyard Chickens, an informative step-by-step handbook, 32 pages, pbk, ill., 5.95

Meadows, Mounds and Meanders: Sacred Sites of Victoria, an anthology of nature prose and poetry by eight local authors, pbk, ill., 9.95

Anima Mundi: Seeking God the Mother, a creative visualization and eco-spirituality workbook for private or workshop use, coilbound, ill., 9.95