Today will be a writing day for me.

A white one one thanks to the day long snowfall mother nature sent us Torontonians yesterday.

I love snow, and so I’m hoping to also find some time to pop over to High Park for a snow shoe, but other than that, and perhaps a walk to some local shops for groceries, I plan to spend the day exactly as I am right now . . . wearing my comfiest sweat pants, snuggled up in my favourite green chair, tap, tap tapping the keys on my laptop.

Last night I was at a holiday party and for the briefest of moments, in between YouTube music video selections, the movie “Into the Wild” came on TV. I loved this movie when I first saw it. Even more so the soundtrack. Not to knock the work he’s done with Pearl Jam, but for me this soundtrack is some of Eddie Vedder’s best work.

So in love was I with this music when I first acquired it in the fall of 2008 that I chose to make it the soundtrack for a writing project I was tackling at the time.

This is something I do sometimes . . . pick an album or artist to listen to almost exclusively as I work my way through a big project.

That fall it was a Memorandum to Cabinet (a document providing advice to Cabinet Ministers on a policy or funding initiative) that my colleagues and I were asked to produce in three weeks as opposed to the usual three month time frame.

As one of the main pens who had only helped to write one such document previously, I needed all the tricks I could think of to keep me focused and inspired as I tackled this challenge. Listening to Eddie’s awesome tracks on repeat . . . thinking about big journeys and the peace that nature so often brings me . . . this was the thread that kept me going one day to the next. One rewrite to the other.

So today, as I attempt to wrap up a project I’ve been working on off and on for the past few weeks, I have decided I need some audible energy to help me write my way to the finish line.

I’ve been getting back in touch with the music of my teens and early twenties lately. A trend my good friend MW tapped into when she gave me one of the most thoughtful gifts (and cards) I’ve received in a while this week.


Building community has been a big theme for me this year. In particular once I hit my “one year of living in Toronto” milestone in June and realized I wasn’t feeling quite as connected in my new home as I wanted to feel.

My friendship with MW has been a big part of what’s helped me to bridge that gap. We share a love of deep soulful chats about dreaming big and taking risks, an understanding of what it’s like to have spent much of your twenties in a long term relationship only to hit your 30s single and a little bit overwhelmed by the prospect of dating again, and a love of kick ass 90s feminist music icons who once inspired us to think we could do and be anything we wanted to be.

So, in honour of this friendship, my feminist community, and my need to channel my 20ish year old self who thought she could be anything . . . my audible energy for today’s snowy writing day:

The incomparable Ms. Ani DiFranco.