Writing through Trauma to Truth

Your teacher: Shawna Ayoub Ainslie

Shawna Ayoub Ainslie is an essayist, fiction writer, poet, editor and writing coach. Some of her work has been published in The Manifest-StationRole Reboot[wherever]The Huffington Post, The Oxford Review and Exit 7.  To date, she has helped establish three growing publications including The Relationship Blogger where she is working to bring diversity into the existing conversation of relationships and mental health.

Shawna’s writing explores the intersections of race, place and survivorship. She writes with honesty about her own experience in order to transform pain. As a coach, Shawna supports writers at all levels (including those who have never written before) in transmuting trauma to joy using the page.

She has an MFA in Creative Writing from Indiana University. In her adopted hometown of Bloomington, IN, she teaches local workshops and retreats on trauma writing and craft as part of her business, Survive Your Story. She also hosts an online interactive community and safe space for artists and survivors on Facebook called #LinkYourLife Connection.

In every venue, Shawna seeks to establish and support safe spaces where personal growth can take place. Her truest belief is compassion, and she finds joy in helping others extend it to themselves and out into the world, especially through the written word.

Shawna Ayoub Ainslie has dedicated an enormous part of her writing life to the safety and inclusion of both aspiring and established writers in literary spaces. I’m thrilled to welcome her to the Center to take over this course, which was at least partially inspired by her commitment to trauma survivors, and to offer her part 2, Recovery through Craft. – Stacia Fleegal

Shawna’s blog





“Writing is an avenue to wellness that I believe everyone should have access to.” – Shawna Ayoub Ainslie

Learn more about Shawna’s philosophy on teaching writing.