Author Archives: beccataylor

Looking inward and forward

When I turned 30 a few years ago, I was surprised to discover that part of me had been slumbering for my entire adult life. Who knew that was possible? I sure didn’t. I lived a full and comfortable life, with a loving husband and supportive family. I'd been able to establish myself in a career, attain an advanced degree, and reach a point where I was giving back by mentoring students in my profession. Hadn't I reached that adult destination I had so often dreamed about in college? So why did it feel like something was missing?

Then I realized that I was nowhere near my destination, I was at the beginning. I was entering some of the best, most productive years of my life. I got married, I had my degrees, I fought for my career, I bought my home. Yes, I accomplished any number of grown-up things, but I was only just learning that I was not done growing up.

So turning 30 became an opportunity to stop doing and start learning, about myself and my world. About that time, I stumbled on a spiritual memoir by Sue Monk Kidd titled, “The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman’s Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine.” It’s hard for me to articulate the impact this book had on me. I wouldn’t say it opened a whole new window for me; rather, it pulled back the drapes to reveal a window I was beginning to suspect was there.

What does that window represent? A new view of myself as a woman. Outside that window, I see a path toward a new enlightenment, a new and profound acceptance of how I fit into the world. As I read Kidd’s book, I was struck by the utter simplicity of the notion that what one woman has experienced has some bearing on the things all women experience. Even though our journeys and destinations aren’t all the same, we can still help each other spot the milestones and appreciate the journey.

Reading about Kidd’s spiritual journey showed me that no story is too small or insignificant. I have loved my Story Circle Network membership because I get to meet all manner of wonderful, courageous, and wise women who inspire me every day. Every single one of them has shown me, without a doubt, that we all have a story to tell. But more than that, we're still writing our stories every single day.

November Story Circle podcast

Join us for an interview with Carol Purroy, SCN member, author,
publisher, and book doctor. We'll also hear Nancy Rigg's story of the

Episode contents:

Interview – 1:09
Song: lee miller by The Endless – 24:41
Story of the Month – 30:18
Farewell – 40:24

Don't forget to let us know what you think of the podcast!
Call our Listener Line (at 641-715-3900, ext 19212) or leave a comment
on our blog and you're entered into a drawing for a lovely writing
goody, courtesy of one of our SCN authors.

This podcast is released under a Creative Commons license. Contributing authors retain all rights to their work. Music in this show was provided by the Podsafe Music Network.

Visit the Story Circle Network Podcast web site

Living a broad life

Welcome to "Telling Herstories: The Broad View," a group blog sponsored by the Story Circle Network. In the interest of full disclosure, I'll admit that I'm an ardent fan of SCN and its mission of encouraging women to tell their life stories. So much so that two years ago I started producing a podcast for SCN and one year ago became a board member. My membership in SCN has been a life-changing experience for me, as I suspect it has for so many women.

That's why I'm so excited today to launch this blog. It's the culmination of over six months of noodling, tweaking, wondering, and working, all to bring together a fantastic mix of women writers who I believe will shape and energize our lifewriting community. At the Stories from the Heart conference in February, I participated in a panel with fellow SCN bloggers Susan Albert, Sharon Lippincott, Pat Flathouse, and Patricia Pando. The panel had such an enthusiastic reception that we vowed to create an SCN blog that would highlight the wonderful talent in our community and encourage new voices to make themselves heard.

Building our lifewriting community is important to me, so I invited members of our online discussion group to name our blog. We intended to call the blog "HerStory," but it was discussion of an article by Meta Wagner that sealed the deal.

Wagner asked, "What ever happened to broads? You know, those larger-than-life women
who swore like sailors, threw back shots of whiskey, sounded like
they'd swallowed whole packs of cigarettes, and aged without apology." The essence of a broad changes with our cultural norms, but we decided we liked the idea of redefining the term "broad" with our own collective notion of a woman who is unapologetic about living an authentic life and telling her story.

We're launching this blog with almost a dozen contributors who will
share their expertise on all matters of lifewriting and creativity. I hope you'll join us every day as we embark on this journey of authentic living and storytelling together. Grab a comfy chair, brew yourself a cup of hot tea, and join us in the circle. And never forget that we all have a story to tell.