LRC Memoir Course: Routes to Meaning in Johannesburg!

The Life Righting Collective (LRC), founded by Dawn Garisch, is offering a memoir course in Joahnnesburg at the end of the month. Dawn will be facilitating the course:

We all have a story to tell from our own lives about how we became who we are. Stories about the way we were born, or about how someone helped us. About how we got ill or overcame a terrible loss.

Stories about how someone we loved to hurt us, or how a political or spiritual circumstance almost broke us. Stories about how we were bullied, about how an accident changed the course of our lives, or about how we were able to make a difference in someone else’s life. These stories are often invisible to others. They might still influence the way we think and feel in ways we don’t fully understand.

Writing about your own life can help you connect with the story you are living, and it can help to heal or manage the effects of trauma. It is a powerful way for us to communicate and to grow compassion for ourselves and for each other. 

During this course we will find refreshing approaches to assist us in putting our personal stories down on the page.

Beginner writers are welcome!

DATES: Saturday 30 April – Monday 2 May 2022
TIME: 9 – 2 pm daily
VENUE: Family Life Centre, 1 Cardigan Road, Parkwood, Johannesburg
FEE: R3 000 
FACILITATOR: Dawn Garisch

If you are keen on joining this course please make your bookings via admin@liferighting.com  and kindly forward to anyone you feel might be interested.

Remember, for our health and safety, all LRC in-person courses will be conducted in strict compliance with current Covid-19 rules and procedures.

We look forward to having you on the course! 

With thanks from the LRC team.

LRC

A note from Dawn: People who cannot afford the full course fee, please get in touch with the organisers (contact details above) and they will try to accommodate you.

BOILING A FROG SLOWLY by Cathy Park Kelly launched at Love Books

There must be a thing like book launch envy, because I am definitely experiencing it. Boiling a Frog Slowly by Cathy Park Kelly was launched at the beautiful Love Books last night, and I really, really wish I could have been there. Cathy was in conversation with the fabulous Joburg author, Pamela Power.

This is what Pamela had to say about the launch:

During all of this, I had to prepare for the launch of Boiling a Frog SlowlyCathy Park Kelly’s Memoir published by Karavan Press about “love gone wrong”. It was FANTASTIC and more than a little emotional to be book-launching at Love Books after two years, and it was very exciting to meet Cathy in the flesh as we have only met online. The launch was packed and I saw a couple of familiar faces, including Nicola Cloete who is a former student of mine from WITS (and is now very fancy and much degreed), and her husband who is a former student of Cathy’s (nothing like meeting former students to make you feel seriously MATURE).

The book sold like hotcakes which is always lovely to see, and Cathy has organised for a book box where you can buy an extra copy of the book which then goes to organisations that deal with the survivors of GBV like Kwanele and POWA which I think is WONDERFUL. There are some copies left at Love Books, including signed copies, so hurry up if you want one for yourself or you want to contribute to the book box because I think they will sell out fast.

Authors Sue Nyathi and Gail Schimmel were both at the launch, Gail reminded me that it was exactly five years ago that we launched Delilah Now Trending at Love Books. Shocking that it’s taken me so long to get another book out (and a quarter of a book at that) but I guess it’s been a rather busy five years. Sue, who was Cathy’s editor on the anthology When Secrets Become Stories also got to meet Cathy IRL for the first time which was rather special.

The Week That Was – Go.See.Do. South Africa

Thank you, Love Books, Pamela, and all who attended (lucky yous!). And thank you, Cathy, for your brave and beautiful book.

Cathy Park Kelly & Penny Haw at Liberty Books, 10 March 2022

When Christy Weyer of Liberty Books read Penny Haw’s novel, The Wilderness Between Us, and Cathy Park Kelly’s memoir, Boiling a Frog Slowly, she immediately saw the fascinating connection between the two books and offered to host an event with the authors. It’s happening at the bookshop on the 10th of March and you will not want to miss it!

“I’ve been fangirling about Cathy Park Kelly’s Boiling a Frog Slowly all the way down to my tippy toes and am delighted to announce that Cathy will be visiting Liberty on Thursday 10 March to discuss her heart-breaking, soul-healing, truth-telling and life-affirming memoir!
Cathy will be joined by another wonderful wordsmith who delves with sensitivity & acuity into women’s interior lives and relationships,” says Christy. “The Wilderness Between Us places a group of old friends on a hiking trail in the Tsitstikamma, puts them under pressure and then meticulously examines the fault-lines, fallout and freedom to find and fortify truer, stronger selves. With its emotional acuity and focus on relationships and resilience, The Wilderness Between Us resonates with Cathy Park Kelly’s Boiling a Frog Slowly, and I’m delighted to announce that Penny and Cathy will both be at Liberty Books on Thursday 10 March to discuss their beautiful books!”

Boiling a Frog Slowly launched at the Alma Café

There are certain books one wishes would never have to be written, but because our reality is what it is, we can only be grateful to authors like Cathy Park Kelly for facing the darkest corners of our existence and exposing them to the light of understanding and healing. Cathy’s wrenchingly honest and powerful memoir about the abuse she suffered at the hands of a partner, Boiling a Frog Slowly, was launched at The Alma Café last night. The launch was postponed in December because of the fourth wave, but it could finally happen. Family, friends, authors, readers and the resident cat gather at the wonderful venue and celebrated Cathy and her empowering book with Alma’s legendary Cornish pasties and lemon meringue pies. Cathy was in conversation with local writer and editor, Máire Fisher. It was a beautiful evening and once again I applaud Cathy’s courage in bringing this book into the world.

Thank you to everyone who attended, and mountains of gratitude to The Folks at the café for making their space available for literary events and always making us feel so warmly welcomed.

Karavan Press authors at the Adam Small Fees

Cathy Park Kelly, Nancy Richards and Karen Jennings will be participating in the Adam Small Literary Festival in Pniel this year.

SATURDAY, 26 FEBRUARY 2022 
PNIEL MUSEUM TEETUIN

13.45 – 14.15: Cathy Park – Boiling a Frog Slowly: A Memoir of Love Gone Wrong
14.15 – 14.45: Nancy Richards – The Skipper's Daughter
14.45 – 15.15: Karen Jennings – An Island: Longlisted for Booker Prize

Adam Small Fees

Joanne Hichens reviews BOILING A FROG SLOWLY by Cathy Park Kelly for the Sunday Times

‘Boiling a Frog Slowly’ is an intensely personal memoir about escaping abuse

Cathy Park Kelly’s compelling and painstakingly honest book describes the insidiousness of abuse and how hard it is to leave a toxic and violent relationship

Boiling a Frog Slowly is a courageous, emotionally sincere exposé of a romantic relationship that slides into increasingly disdainful and abusive territory, when love indeed goes wrong. It’s about how terribly difficult it is, as a woman, to extricate oneself from a toxic, manipulative relationship in which one is treated with violence and contempt.

Right from the opening scene, which describes violence so extreme that I caught my breath, I was hooked and wanted to know how this could have happened to a woman I know — albeit on the periphery — as professional, caring and compassionate. What led to the point where Cathy was held down by her partner, as he scrawled the words slut, whore and c**t across her breasts with a red Koki pen?

Continue reading: Sunday Times

Joanne Hichens interviews Cathy Park Kelly about her memoir, Boiling a Frog Slowly

Boiling a frog slowly is a courageous exposé of a romantic relationship that slides into increasingly disdainful and abusive territory, when love indeed goes wrong. In this interview, Joanne Hichens chats with Cathy Park Kelly about her experiences and the writing of her memoir.

Boiling a frog slowly, a memoir of emotional and physical abuse at the hands of an early lover and partner, is searing in its honesty. Your story shows how terribly difficult it can be for a woman to extricate herself from a relationship in which she is treated with violence and contempt. What prompted you to write your account of abuse at the hands of your male partner?

It’s what I do – I use my writing to explore my life and pick out threads that shine with truth for me. What I have learned, and what I am coming to trust, as I write more and share my writing more, is that these threads are universal. They are present in many human stories. When it comes to the story of the abusive relationship, I wanted to do two things: make sense of this experience for my own sake, and also make something out of this chapter in my life that I could share with others.

On the first, personal level, I used my writing to make sense of this chapter and to crack through the disbelief I was left with, to dig beneath the feeling of “What the f*ck?” to get at the truth of what it meant. I was weirdly fascinated, as well as confounded, by what I had gone through, so I used my writing to create some sense of order and understanding.

But, on the more universal level, I was driven to write this for the unknown reader out there. I felt that I had learned much and gained many insights, and this hard-earned knowledge burned inside me. It felt alive, like it wanted to be given a voice …

LitNet

Interview with Cathy Park Kelly, author of Boiling a frog slowly

Nancy Richards reviews BOILING A FROG SLOWLY by Cathy Park Kelly for Woman Zone Cape Town

Someone once explained to me the frog in increasingly hot water concept – that he won’t notice till he literally boils to death. I remember being horrified that such an idea could have been put to the test – poor frog, for heaven’s sake.
More shocking though is the thought that such a concept could apply to a human being – but seems it can.  Despite an increasingly hot water relationship, Cathy Park Kelly, hung on in for eight tortuous years with a man she calls here Karl. Her book, a vivid recall of the undermining, violent and over-heated treatment she tolerated, just made me want to weep for her. And lash out at the perp …

Woman Zone Cape Town