I have an interview today with educator, counselor, and poet, Sally Naylor as she celebrates the release of her second book Rogue Nirvana — Beyond Woo-Woo: Create the Life You Love. If you’ve ever wondered if this is all there is or wondered what’s missing in your life’s journey, this book offers a comedic yet laser-focused excursion into how societal norms, self-help, and new age spirituality do not often offer you relief. After battles with chronic fatigue, cancer, and widowhood, Naylor sought, synthesize, and now shares in this field guide, her belief that you too can construct your own personal Nirvana.
Naylor, daughter of a highly decorated WWII combat veteran, FBI agent, and
lawyer, and a sweet, stay-at-home, religious, southern belle mother, roamed the
world growing up as an “Air Force Brat”. This gypsy was raised with and
confused by both the sword and the cross. A series of crises later in life:
chronic fatigue, widowhood, breast cancer, in addition to a new love affair,
motivated her to engage in this rogue romp to Nirvana as she sorts through the
impossible expectations of her conventional middle class upbringing.
she did attain her own Nirvana but in an unexpected & bizarre manner.
Before she set aside societal conditioning and its inherent promise of Nirvana,
Naylor negotiated and ultimately thrived as an independent school English
teacher and curriculum developer. Naylor’s students have had their work
featured in many publications and have won numerous writing awards. In addition
to teaching creative writing she served as an in-school counselor where she
initiated student peer-to-peer counseling, mediation and AIDS Ed training
programs. As a creative writing teacher and blogger she shares her expertise on
her own aptly named web site: Writing Rogue. She also enjoys life coaching,
speaking, and facilitating workshops.
your current release.
insightful eye for the absurd and her keen sense of humor explore the detours,
dead ends, and fallacies on the road to nirvana.
new literary ground, Naylor combines poetry and prose as she weaves a story of
the paradoxes and frustrations that the imperatives of family, religion, the
educational establishment, and society proffer: the myth that if you only “try
harder” or “are good,” Nirvana awaits.
on Sally Naylor’s double-pronged journey into both new age spirituality and the
mandates of conventional wisdom. Through her laser focus and deeply insightful
humor, you’ll discover where you fit on the Woo-Woo to skeptic’s continuum.
Whatever your position, this book will touch you, all of you: from the
conventional to the seeker, from the artist to the pragmatist, whether bleeding
heart, cynic, Pollyanna or atheist; rest assured, the inspiration for your own
Nirvana lies within this book.
fun and to share my experience with others, for at what point in your own life
did you realize that the teachings of your family, school, religion and
community will not guarantee the Nirvana they promised for following the rules.
At what point did you realize that if you are to attain your Nirvana it will be
a do-it-yourself project?
priority is a book titled The Estrogen
Paradox, then two poetry books, a creative writing text and a pragmatic
series of collaborative essays detailing processes that clear emotional and
mental density which the author developed with five partners titled, Rogue’s Release.
but I didn’t get serious til I was 47.
your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find
time to write?
editing & coach projects constitute full time work, but my hours vary. I
avoid routines. Writing finds me, like breathing. It’s virtually reflexive.
the quirky and desire to showcase and revel in it.
when you grew up?
a judge, politician or professor. Hate to admit it, but there it is.
with the readers?