A smiling, fair-haired woman faces the camera, leaning on her hand to the right of the frame, a dark background behind her.

Melbourne author Sian Prior is running Writing for Well-Being workshops in several public libraries in Victoria (example here) and is keen to offer her services to libraries more broadly.

Psychological research has shown that expressive writing – in particular writing about yourself – can enhance your mood, improve your physical health, lift your grades and even boost your memory. Writing helps us focus and organize our thoughts around emotional upheavals and health setbacks.

As part of a Doctorate in Creative Writing, Sian wrote a book called Shy: A Memoir (Text Publishing, 2014) in which she explored the shame and distress she’d experienced dealing with chronic social anxiety, and the grief she felt following the traumatic end of a long-term relationship. The experience of putting these feelings into words had a profoundly therapeutic effect on Sian. Her most recent book, Childless: a story of freedom and longing (short-listed for The Age Book of the Year 2022) involved a similar process of using writing for emotional healing. Sian is passionate about sharing the knowledge she has gained during this cathartic process.

She has been running Writing for Wellbeing (also called Writing as Therapy) workshops for seven years, both online and in person, for libraries, community groups and The School of Life.

Sian’s aim is to encourage participants to develop regular life-writing practices to help them cope with the emotional and physical challenges they will inevitably confront in their lives. No previous writing experience is required.

For more information on Sian’s course, see here.


  • The therapeutic benefits of expressive writing
  • Finding the ‘story’ in your ‘situation’
  • Developing emotional literacy
  • Gratitude journals and hope journals
  • Writing as catharsis
  • Writing the ‘dialogical self’

Option One

  • Duration: 120 minutes (Introduction to Writing for Wellbeing workshop)
  • Requirements: Whiteboard and whiteboard markers.
  • Cost: $600

 Option Two

  • Duration: Four x 120 minute workshops (Four-part Writing for Wellbeing workshop series)
  • Requirements: Whiteboard and whiteboard markers.
  • Cost: $2400

 Public libraries interested in booking one or more of Sian’s courses are encouraged to contact Booked Out: https://bookedout.com.au/contact-us/ (03) 9824 0177

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