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Igniting the Creative Fire

Wildfire Writing

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Christi Krug

Author, Writing Coach, Owner, Wildfire Writing

I dare create, helping others do the same.

I seek to learn about the creative process so that I can guide you in your potential as an artist, writer, or literary artist. I coach writers around the world via Skype or over coffee, in small groups, and also in larger settings, inspiring audiences in the hundreds.

I write poetCK_0036ry, fantasy, children’s novels, literary fiction, memoir, autobiographical fiction, a smattering of horror, inspiration, self-help . . . and you might want to check back, because next week it could be different.

I doodle, paint, hike, practice yoga, and explore. I love journaling, healthful living, fairy tales, spiritual practice, my family, and the outdoors.

I’m all about listening for the story, whether in my dreaming chair or in a business office, helping authors, entrepreneurs, and larger-ranging companies by listening to their stories. I provide copywriting and editing services, always striving to be positive, personal, and authentic.

Additionally, I edit books for authors, working with clients across the country, offering top-notch technical skills while connecting to the bigger picture: for me, that means inspiring and developing the writer creatively.

I’m constantly nudging myself over hurdles of self-criticism and fear of failure, while empowering others to rise above their roadblocks. I believe in breaking out of the ordinary, expanding out of known, safe realms, and busting critical thoughts.

I’m always trying something new—whether or not I think people will get it. I’d rather reach for the quirky, innovative, and untried rather than “do what I’m good at” over and over again.

I help people rediscover a zest for living by guiding them into a realm of play, where they can inhabit the moment. By listening, I teach each writer to listen to her own ideas and discover her own voice.

I believe in falling in love with the creative process and letting go of fear of the outcome, so that you can trust your wildest ideas, finding freedom and joy in the now, expressing who you really are.

I establish a supportive yet carefree environment where you can belly-laugh, scream, weep, and whisper with your creative voice—and know that everyone around you is loving what you have to say. I create groups where people discover their best self—a self that listens and believes in others. As one writer said, “Christi attracts good, encouraging people. I always feel safe in her class.”

I’m known for encouraging beginners and giving them a strong foundation, and also providing in-depth tutoring for those advancing in the skills of fiction, creative nonfiction, and memoir.

I have a special gift with sensitive types who have been shut off or wounded, through childhood trauma, or perhaps by simply ignoring their own talents. As the once-invisible child in my family of origin, I am able to guide people into being seen and heard—sometimes for the first time in their lives.

Let’s Explore Creativity.

Discover a New Approach

Kindling offers prompts on the creative life. A Fire by Night is a spiritual approach to creativity

THE ART OF INKLING

The creative process happens along the border of an unknown country.

Coaching

Helping Creators Find Confidence

Working with a writing coach builds a foundation under your dreams. You can move toward authorship goals with a sense of purpose.

I’m known for imparting delight and confidence in the creative process. Your ideas will be validated. You’ll find affirmation for your one-of-a-kind talents and voice.

You’ll have a cheerleader and guide as well as expertise and accountability.

Are you a public speaker with self-published books who can’t get herself to write the next one?  Are you a nonprofit director who procrastinates writing grants until it’s almost too late? Or, it might be you’ve always wanted to explore your storytelling side. Deep down you’ve longed to write a romance, mystery, how-to book or memoir.

We’ll pay attention to your vision. You’ll be immersed in a unique coaching process, meeting weekly or bi-weekly, paying close attention to the ways your talents are unfolding. You’ll gain enormous growth and receive regular doses of the life-changing encouragement I’m known for.

What clients are saying . . .
  • Christi has seen me through writing my first novel from beginning to end, from getting past putting the first word on the page to final editing – and is now shepherding me through the process of getting published.  She is a master of the art of offering encouraging criticsm.  I can’t imagine writing without her.

    Susan Harding
  • Thanks for making life more fun.

    Patty
  • Thank you so much for the honesty, encouragement and great coaching in general. 

    Tricia
  • Thank you so much for being there for me. I could not make this progress without you cheering me on! 

    Steffanie
  • You have helped me get off center with this project, so already you are a success as my coach. I am out of my ‘stuckness!’ Thank you! 

    Jeff
  •  
I look forward to hearing from you about your writing struggles, challenges and dreams.
(360) 213-6989 or EMAIL 

WILDWRITING

A practice that will teach you to say anything you like.

Classes & Workshops

Wildfire Writing Master Class begins October 1 & 2

Wednesday evenings, 6 pm: October 1, October 15, November 5, November 19, 2014
Thursday mornings, 9:30 am: October 2-30, 2014

Wildfire Master Class is a private class with two options: Wednesday evenings and Thursday mornings in Vancouver, Washington. Currently the morning class is full. Invitation only. Do drop me a note if you think this is right for you and you want to dig deeper into the critique process with a novel, memoir, or series of stories or essays.

Stories in the Body: Movement and Creative Writing

Sunday, October 5, 2014

 Our latest integration of writing and movement involves the beauty of dance without the pressure of performance. October’s workshop will teach you to find your inner rhythm and hear what your soul is longing to tell you as you move, listen, pause, breathe, and find inner inspiration allowing words to flow onto paper.

From the moment you first waded into the ocean to the time you rode your bike without training wheels, to your first kiss – all the stories you have lived and imagined remain beneath your skin.

Jenna Abernathy, Journey Dance Apprentice, and Christi Krug, Writing Coach, are teaming up to bring you this beautiful collaboration, Stories In the Body, a workshop of movement along with creative writing.

You’ll tap into your inner creator as you physically, emotionally, and creatively integrate the stories of your life.

Our unique combination of accessing the body as well as the mind and creativity will shake loose your unique creative process, speaking to the person you are today.

Wonder-Stories-in-the-Body-1024x658We’re excited about moving and listening with you, and watching your stories unfold!

Date: Sunday, October 5

Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Place: Headwaters Theatre, upstairs studio, 55 NE Farragut #9, Portland OR 97211

Prep: wear comfortable clothes; bring notebook & paper

Cost: $50

Register below or find out more at Rouse Portland




Burn Wild

Begin or continue the journey of finding your creative voice in a group coaching atmosphere.

What it is: a freeing, lavish, intensive, playful, outrageous, relaxed and focused process which burns down to the ground all the forces which have blocked your writing and creating.

This process teaches you to break free from premature critical thinking in the creative process, so that you can move ahead with writing and creating. You can drop in, but it is recommended that you join for the entire month.

We’ve been laying a foundation for you to know yourself creatively. You’ll overcome those nagging thoughts that have frozen your abilities in the past. You’ll discover tools of language, art, and creative thinking that will unleash your most creative self and your wildest ideas. What you thought impossible for you will become possible.

  • Class Dates: Tuesdays in October beginning October 7
  • Times: 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
  • Place: TaborSpace, Library, 5441 SE Belmont St., Portland 97215

Wildfire Wednesday Reading Series – free

Wednesday, September 24, 6 – 8 pm

Cascade Park Community Library: 600 NE 136th Ave, Vancouver, WA 98684

Open Mic for writers to share work in a supportive, vibrant community.  Refreshments, laughter. Join us!

Wildfire Writing at Clark College – starts October 9

Thursday evenings at the Columbia Tech Center Campus in Vancouver, Washington.

This class is like a yoga session for the soul. It’s a process you can engage in repeatedly. Many students have taken this course four, five, or six times, and it is a delight to have seasoned as well as beginning writers exploring together. We experiment with fiction, nonfiction, memoir writing, and a smattering of poetry.

For further adventures in fiction and poetry, there is Wildfire Writing II. You can combine I and II for a discount. Each class immerses you in creativity and helps you connect with “the Dream Kid” while offering fresh, new writing exercises and methods you’ve never tried before. We bring new ideas and perspectives to the table every week. Even I don’t know exactly how the stories and collaborations will play out during our time together–and this adds to the adventure and synergy. You can check out the class and watch the video. Take a look at Wildfire Writing at Clark College.

Willamette Writers Con 2014: Slashing Procrastination

Sunday, August 3, 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Free worksheets here. I’ve been doing research on this workshop for most of my life! Seriously excited about the innovative, inspirational, effective techniques I’ve discovered for breaking free from procrastination and becoming proud of your achievements.

Wildfire Writing – Independent Options

Wildfire Master Class  Dig deeper into the critique process with a novel, memoir, or series of stories or essays.

Wildfire Wednesday Gatherings are a chance for you to share your work in a positive environment at public open mic readings at Cascade Park Community Library. We meet the last Wednesday evening of every month, often with guest authors and inspiring speakers.

Coaching beginning and intermediate writers is what I dedicate myself to doing two to three days a week, via Skype and phone and live meetings. My clients hail from many parts of the world.I offer first-time author support, help overcoming writer’s block, guidance in writing difficult memories, expertise in developing novels, and many other things. I’d love to hear about what you’re working on or hoping to start. My mission is to help you flourish creatively.

What people are saying . . .
  • Christi Krug’s class was one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself. She allowed me the freedom to just move my hand across the page and find my voice.

    Cheryl
  • I want to thank for your positiveness each day and for encouraging writers to stick with the task of telling their stories. —Desiree 

    Desiree
  • Your Wildfire Writing class was a wonderful introduction into the world of writing for me. Thank you. Your teaching style and the atmosphere of acceptance free of judgment and condemnation is wonderful. I delighted in arriving each Thursday evening to write and to listen as authors shared their pieces. I miss being in your class and hope to rejoin you in the fall.  Your class is a gift to be shared with all who seek to challenge the author within.

    Val S.
  • I now know that I can write, that I must write. The idea that I have nothing to write about, or that I can’t write, is patently false. What I need to write is my shame, fear, and anger.

    Becky
  • Who knew what lay dormant inside? Thank you for the awakening.

    Robin
  • I am especially touched by your sharing your personal stories which helps all of us to feel more confident about accessing and sharing our own personal remembrances.  It seems authenticity often requires taking that risk–at least for me. I loved hearing your story last night about the little girl who fell in love with the people in her young life who validated her.  It says so much.  Thank you.

    Bonnie H.
  • I will take your class again because of your wonderful talent.  I believe in my own talent now, thanks to you. 

    Jewel
  • Thank you again for your positive and uplifting pushes to engage me with my writing. The last few weeks have been very healing for me. Having the freedom to just write and spill out my heart has been wonderful. I was having a hard time enjoying writing and now, I long for the times I can soak myself in it. I attached a few prompts to share with you. Thank you for reading and for your encouragement!

    Beth
  • This has made me believe in myself. I see the greatness in all of us – risk takers.

    Carlene
  • Christi Krug’s classes changed my life. She helped me return to my creative path, the one that I allowed to be blocked by all the things I was taught I had to do. You know all those grown up and responsible things. She gave me permission to play, experiment, and create.  

    Val W.
  • “Christi Krug’s writing classes changed my life.” There’s no other way to put it than this because it’s true for me as well!

    Edee
  • Christi, I loved your book.  It has had its first read, but now I will start again with a pen.  There are so many good ideas to re-start that fire.  My daughter encourages people to jump start their creative side, so I am going to give her a copy for her office.  I have also had an inquiry from a friend in D.C.  My poet friend loved her copy. I have such respect for people who have talent but even more for those who inspire others to seek their own.  You have given a gift which all of us can re-open whenever we need a fresh spark.

    Arvy
  • You get to dream, be inspired, be young, be old, be wild! You get to remember how to play again! Thank you!

    Rolf
  • September 7, 2013, marked my one-year anniversary for publishing my writing. I think the biggest thing I learned in your classes was that I didn’t have to be profound, or even serious, in my writing—that it could and should be fun. Once you freed me to be silly, I’m afraid there was no stopping me.  The other very important thing was to just do it (where the speed writing came in very handy). I just finished my fifth book in the Imogene Museum cozy mystery series, and for the past six months writing has been supporting me. I was laid off three years ago in October, but now I can say with confidence that I am a writer, and it’s a job I will never want to retire from.  

    Jerusha Jones, author of the Imogene Museum mystery series
  • Thank you Christi for making me (and everyone) always feel welcome. No wonder there was such a crowd! 

    Diane
  • I can’t believe what you have done for me. I’m so excited, at times I feel I’m about to jump out of my skin. 

    Mary
  • Thanks for helping me recognize my critic. The fun is really coming back! 

    Patricia
  • I’m pretty critical of myself. But I’m honoring myself by allowing myself to learn the craft that calls to me. And I get to enjoy the freedom of childhood, the wonder, the joy – all of it, fully and completely.  

    Melody
  • I can’t tell you how much this class has meant to me! I’m getting ideas now, all day long. 

    Val W.
  • You have opened up a whole new world for me.

    Deborah
  • I’ve learned that I have to tell my husband, “This is now my time for writing.” 

    Harriet
  • The class, taught by Wildfire Writing’s founder, Christi Krug, was so much fun that all of the members of our group attended it twice (that’s when the group formed, but we weren’t ChaCheeJam yet,) and a couple of us attended thrice. 

    ChaCheeJam Writing Community (www.readchacheemcham.com)
  • Christi opened me to writing from the first class and I haven’t been able to stop since. Her undying enthusiasm for my message and her week after week encouragement to “unpack” each of my painful stories has kept me going. “Your writing is meant to be shared,” she kept saying. And then she became my editor.

    Mary DeYon, author of What Does Love Have to Do With It?
  • Thanks for helping me recognize that my critic existed and was really holding me back. 

    Patricia
  • To have a voice, to hear my own thoughts, to learn about what makes me happy to build the fire within myself and to be comfortable with who I am and what I feel. 

    Jill
  • You have freed my mind to reach beyond what I thought were my limits. 

    Laurie
  • The exercises are fun-filled adventures and everyone has a story and a gift we can enjoy.  

    Dave
  • Thank you, Christi, for all the feedback. You truly have a gift for encouraging writers. You have helped me be released from the self-restriction of “what-ifs” and “not todays” that have plagued me. 

    Beth
  • Thanks for your kindness the other night . . . great evening you planned for us, full of gifts and encouragements. Love your invitation to write, (create), or in my case re-up. 

    Steve

PASSIONATE DISCIPLINE

Cultivate the discipline while inviting the passion.

Writing & Editing Services

Helping people and companies discover and express who they are

I offer professional writing and editing services in addition to teaching workshops, coaching writers, and developing my own creative projects.

I serve authors, companies, and small businesses with:

  • Developmental editing
  • Book consultations
  • Copy editing
  • Blogging
  • Content creation

Clients include entrepreneurs, insurance networks, therapists, universities, travel sites, and more. I’m known for helping people and companies discover and express who they are.

I’d love to hear your vision and chat about your needs. (360)213-6989(360) 213-6989 or EMAIL 

TAKING DOWN DR. CODGER

Combating the subtle way your critic takes control.

Books

Burn Wild

6-Burn-Wild-front-Cover

A book about finding your creative power.

“There’s a creative fire inside you ready to happen. You can’t see it or touch it, but sometimes you feel it.”

A quarter century ago, as a blocked and frustrated writer, I stumbled on a method that transformed my process and put me on the road to becoming a freelance writer . . . and later, an artist, presenter, and creative adventurer.My insights led me to design “Wildfire Writing,” a class which for the past 16 years has helped writers and artists find boldness and freedom.

I’ve revealed these principles in Burn Wild: A Writer’s Guide to Creative Breakthrough.

Burn Wild: A Writer’s Guide to Creative Breakthrough is rich with inspiration, exercises, and a novel approach to your creativity. Available at Powell’s, Amazon, and other booksellers, in paperback and e-book.

Download two free chapters.

You Don't See the Ghost at First

xtra small Cover image - You Don't See the Ghost at First_Page_1
You Don’t See the Ghost at First is my chapbook of autobiographical poems and flash prose poems. You can get a copy the old fashioned way by sending an email to christikrug@yahoo.com.

Brave on the Page

brave-on-the-page-final-cover-smallerBrave on the Page is a delightful Portland-centric collection of essays and interviews about the writing process. I’m proud to be a part of this award-winning book available from Forest Avenue Press.

BOOK REVIEWS

Christi Krug’s voice is wonderful in these pages and it is easy to enjoy her intimate and conversational style throughout the book. She says early on in the book: “Read the chapters in any order. Write in this book.

You don’t have to wait until you take a vacation, retire, win the lottery,  or stumble on a block of free time: start now…”

And I took her suggestion seriously. . .

What I love about this book is how you can turn to any section and be both inspired to write and given a specific writing “spark.” This is a “feel good” book, but it’s also a book that will get you to write. What’s not to love about that? I will use this book when inspiring other writers that I mentor.

by Yuvi Zalkow

As a writing-book junkie, I was thrilled to receive a review copy of Christi Krug’s Burn Wild. Books like Steven King’s On Writing and Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird are full of amazing insight and advice, but none of that will do a writer a lick of good until she actually sits down and writes.

If you want to write but are daunted by getting started, you will find help here. This is a book that reminds you writing is creative and should be fun. It encourages you to make mud pies and gives you tools for overcoming your fear of getting your hands dirty.

If you, like me, enjoy a dry, academic style, this book may strike you as a bit sparkly-rainbow.It is unapologetically a “feel-good” book, as cheerfully acknowledged by the author in the introduction. When I took Christi Krug’s Wildfire Writing class, it felt hokey and uncomfortable at first, but no matter–I was inspired anyway. Classroom exercises (which have become “sparks” in the book) inspired short pieces which I later grew brave enough to submit and see published.

Many of the tiny forty-three chapters in the book are focused on circumventing one’s inner critic in order to let the creative self loose. Throughout the book are “sparks,” (writing prompts or other activities) which will help reinforce the ideas. Some may grab you, some may seem less useful. But give them a try. This is a well-written book, but you won’t know how effective it is until you put it into practice. In addition to the suggested exercises, the chapters contain gleanings from many classic writing books and are enriched by personal anecdotes from the writer’s life and the writing lives of her friends and students.

This is a wide-ranging book. The chapter “Fired Up for the Journey” is particularly helpful for new writers. It explains the different stages of the creative process and what we should focus on in each stage. It’s very simple, but reduces confusion and frustration for the writer who’s never taken a project from start to finish before.

Other chapters will stand out to you (or not) according to your personality and writing experience. While a few chapters seemed vague to me, or addressed topics I didn’t connect with, I found most of the book to be useful and thought-provoking. I especially liked the warning to beware the creeper of ambition (guilty), the admonition that “You have no idea how good you are until you give the work your best strength,” and the practical steps for dealing with my personal writing nemesis, procrastination. Burn Wild is the cheerleader I need when I’m cynical or stuck or uninspired.

Best of all, Burn Wild is grounded in the big picture, and reminds us that the important thing is who we are, not what we produce. “Instead of being famous, as I once thought I needed to be,” Krug writes, “I have found a sphere of influence where I can help and encourage.” That’s the kind of writer, and person, I want to be.

–by Gypsy Martin

I am an “adult survivor of childhood writing perfectionism.” What’s that mean? It means that, somehow, some way, while growing up, the need to be right and proper and perfect, “a good kid,” wrecked my ability to partake in the fun, creative process that good writing requires.

I am here to tell you that Christi Krug, the author of this miraculous book, cured my writing perfectionism. This book did for me what years of therapy, some hypnotism, plenty of psychic flogging, and other writing books and writing coaches didn’t do: help me enjoy the writing process again. It changed my professional life. Instead of losing hours of my life stuck in “perfectionistic procrastination” I now daily enjoy the process of writing using Christi’s wildfire writing methods. This book absolutely, unequivocally, changed how I view my writing -and myself and my life. I didn’t know those three were entwined so much until this book spelled it out for me. I owe all that to Christi and Burn Wild.

–by Roberto

“This is a book about living and writing. It offers the courage to do both more creatively,” says the author, and she’s right. Burn Wild is a beautiful book, with flowing prose and enticing ideas, all told in a natural tone of voice that never falters or palls. Fascinating quotes start the chapters. Carefully crafted sparks encourage the creative mind. And wise advice uplifts the soul from its beaten-down, I’m-no-good-at-this conventional misery.

Forget left brain, right brain. What about flesh and spirit, creative and critical, “Dr. Codger and the Dream Kid”–a wonderful concept that’s followed by a clear simple table elucidating the magical differences. The author refers to matches and sparks, wild fire perhaps that first has to be lit and then protected. Then she offers her own shimmering sparks, simple reminders and questions to light your fire.

Oh how easily I relate to the mom, twenty-some years ago, raising toddlers and juggling priorities. How well I remember that incessant guilt about time taken for myself. And how truly I need to be reminded, I have a right to write. Of course, I do write now. I write as if it’s my chocolate treat at the end of a busy day. I look forward to writing but still find it clouded in guilt–like that chocolate treat, imagining it has to somehow turn out badly for me. I tangle myself in Codgerly demands while my Dream Kid wants to play.

This book will be perfect if you wish you had time to write, or paint, or draw ccartoons, or whatever floats your boat. But it offers wonderful inspiration even if you have time and do enjoy those creative arts. It’s a reminder of passion, a call to play, and a welcome warmth of fire with the excitement of the chance to dance.

I write because I love it. That’s why I read too and I really enjoyed this book. Burn Wild is self-help written so pleasingly you’ll not want your reading to end. It’s so convincing and valuable it will stay with you and just might light a fire behind your writing and give your passion pages of expression after all–even if they’re stored in a ratty notebook. And it’s filled with amazingly practical and wise suggestions for the writer’s journey. “Withholding your gift is selfishness,” says the author. And suddenly I realize I really must send off that next submission and “[f]ind the people with whom [my] gift resonates.”

Thank you Christi Krug. I may still never keep a journal, but I love this book!

Disclosure: I was given a free ecopy of this by the author who rightly thought I might enjoy it.

–by Sheila Deeth

YOUR RIGHT TO BE WRONG

If it’s right, do it. Even if you’re doing it wrong.