About

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”                                                                                                      Thomas Mann

Hello. MyAbout image name is Urszula Humienik and I am a broccoli addict. Welcome.

I’ve wanted to be a writer since the age of 11. I’ve taken a roundabout way of getting there, but I am here to say I am finally calling myself a writer.

I’m still learning. I’m still in the process of figuring out what steps I need to take. It’s exciting being in the midst of things. Sometimes it feels like I’m lost, and in those moments I’ve learned it’s best to slow down, take a look around, listen to myself, and just be. When I don’t struggle with the uncomfortable – sometimes scary – moments, when I don’t fight them and allow them to be (without judgment on my end), wonderful things I hadn’t expected happen. I’ve learned that the uncomfortable moments are signposts leading me in the right direction.

You can read about why I write here. To read my personal manifesto, click here.

Currently, when I’m not writing posts for this blog, poems or short stories, I am working on my WIP novel, called Native Landscapes. I’m on draft two, and that’s all I’m going to say about that.

I grew up in Chicago, a beautiful but tough city I love. Chicago is a great place to be a writer. There are so many personalities and characters, so many wonderful neighborhoods. And although Chicago will always have a special place in my heart, in 2006 I decided to follow my dream and move to Poland. I wrote about that here.

In primary school, I was the top student in my grade. Nerd, teacher’s pet is what I got called most often. I spent many years after that trying to get people to like me, trying to be popular, hating myself in the process. My main concern now is living my truth, being authentic to me. Who cares if people like me. I have to like myself. This blog is about me living my truth. It is about being fearless despite doubts and fears. It’s about opening up and being honest in ways I have never done before. I want you to also live your truth, be fearless, open and honest. It’s tough, but we can do it together.

I wrote a letter to my younger nerd self. Read it here and then write one to your younger self.

Confessions of a broccoli addict is my personal blog where I share my writing (poetry and short stories mostly), writing process, things I’ve read, writing prompts, my inspirations, and random thoughts. I am using this space as a way to experiment and improve. This blog, just like me, is a work in progress and I hope it will inspire you.

Join me on this journey of self-discovery. Follow me. Write to me. Comment. Subscribe.

Not sure where to go from here? Why not start at the beginning, the story of this blog that is. You can click on any of the links I’ve added throughout this text, just click on anything in red.

Want to read a short story? I recommend “The Edacious Mrs. Rose” to start.

Want to read my attempt at being funny? Click here.

Want something serious? Read my reflections on impermanence and grief, or this post on life and writing, the dark side of compassion or the practice of compassion. I wrote those last two as part of the #1000Speak movement.

Are you a writer in need of some writing advice or inspiration? Read: 7 effective ways to boost creativity, on the benefits of reading old work, Are you skipping this vital step in your writing?, my 17 writing resources, and if you’re ready for it, 31 writing residencies.

Want to get in touch? Email me at uhumienik (at) gmail.com

Some other things about me:

  • I’m a mom to a great boy who’s growing faster than I’d like. I have a supportive husband, who I’ve been married to for over 6 years now. It isn’t always easy, but we have fun. We also have the greatest dog in the world, Inka. She is a rescue and a great life teacher. Read my post on how my dog made me a better writer.
  • I’m an alumna of the Young Chicago Authors Saturday writing program. Participation in that program saved my life. I strongly believe in the importance of art and writing in our lives, but particularly its saving power for youth.
  • I have degrees in studio art and art therapy. I rarely use them any more.
  • I have participated in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, which takes place each year in November) 3 times and won 2. You can read how I won NaNoWriMo and my inspirations.
  • I regularly sign up for dance classes even though I can’t coordinate my arm and leg movements. I am the definition of spaz on the dance floor, but I really love dancing. Maybe in another life I’ll be a ballerina.
  • I’m vegan for the animals. I strongly believe in human and animal rights and will speak up for the voiceless (and those silenced by society). I have written about my veganism here and here. Want a great recipe for gluten-free vegan brownies? Click here.
  • I’m a feminist. I’ve never been afraid of that word. I have a certain sentiment for 90’s feminism: riot girl, zines, Lilith Fair.
  • My musical tastes are as varied as they can be. Some composers/musicians/bands I love include: Vivaldi, Rachmaninov, Madonna, Sarah McLachlan, Nirvana, Tchaikovsky, Radiohead, Otis Redding, Miles Davis, Aerosmith, Haydn, Smetana, Zaz, Queen, U2, The Roots, Whitney Houston, The Beatles, Prince, Garbage, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, David Bowie, Bjork, Moby, Robert Johnson and many more. I only truly dislike heavy metal and country.
  • I have a personal record of having read 36 fiction books in a year. One day I hope to break that record by reading 50 or more.
  • I work as a freelance proofreader, editor and translator (from Polish to English), but I have a hard time editing and proofreading my own work. It requires a great distance of time for me to be able to edit and proofread my own work.
  • Even though I’d wanted to be a writer for most of my life, I decided that in order to be a good writer I need lots of different life experiences. That’s why I studied art (I also love art). And it’s also why I have had jobs in various industries:
    • banking (teller, personal banker),
    • fashion (retail sales person, designer’s assistant, accessories designer, garment steamer and model dresser, and even stints as a model),
    • education (I’ve taught English as a Foreign Language, and art therapy at the Medical University of Bialystok),
    • art (studio assistant, gallery assistant and receptionist, curator, and artist residency coordinator),
    • food (part-time sous chef in a gluten-free vegan restaurant).

 

 

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40 thoughts on “About

  1. Greets from a foodie from Belgium! You have a very lovely & cool blog over here! I am not a vegan but do cook, bake & eat vegan 5x/week & I blog about it too! 🙂

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  2. Love the Thomas Mann quote – makes me feel better about my struggles with writing. Also, love the way you seem to approach life. Nice “about” section. I look forward to reading more from you.

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  3. Thank you for the follow. One day I may need you services in connection with a novel I’m writing that has a Polish component – set in London but with flash backs and Polish expats. If you’re interested you can reply here or drop me a mail at Glepard@saqnet.co.uk sometime. Oh and while I’m not vegan I’m with you on broccoli.

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  4. hi, thanks for the follow. Thomas Mann is one of my favourite authors (as a German), even if I’ve distanced myself a little bit from him during the last 10 years (hint: never read an author’s diaries).
    And finally I got to know what NaNoWriMo is. I’ve seen this so often, but I didn’t know exactly what it was.
    But broccoli??? Oh my.

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    • Thank you and thank you for stopping by, Ellie. Your blog is beautiful so I’ll be sure to visit often. Your novel sounds fascinating.

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  6. Hi Ula,
    It’s been great going through the A-Z Challenge with you. I am going to catch up on the posts I missed and I suspect probably do the whole A-Z journey tonight. It’s been interesting reading the whole lot in one go and also to visit my own posts. Sure, of course, I’m writing about the more sensational or newsworthy aspects of my life but I really do come across as being quite out there throughout the challenge. Every day life is not as exciting although never dull. ONce this never-ending rain clears, I’m off to the local Japanese gardens xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

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  8. Thanks Ula for the follow. I’ve never met a broccoli addict before. You’re absolutely right that one needs life experiences to write. And by the way we have your first three experiences in common, except I taught English to uninterested high school students. Romeo and Juliet was not a hit. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’ve working in banking, fashion, and education? What are the odds?! High school students are tough. I was fortunate enough to teach university students and adults. I was one of those English nerds that loved pretty much everything we had to read in high school. I may have been an English teacher’s dream. (I don’t know for sure, I never asked.)
      Thanks for stopping by.

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  11. Hi there Urszula! Did you know that your Gravatar/Avatar/Profile is not linked to your website? So when you like or comment on a post we can’t just click on your profile pic to go straight to your website. I actually wrote a post about this on Sunday on how to fix it if you would like to. 🙂

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    • Thanks for the tip, but please check again because I have my blog site as well as Facebook and Twitter linked up on there, and have had those linked up for a while.

      Liked by 1 person

      • lol! Sorry I was just adding you to a writing list and it wouldn’t let me add you?!? Done now 🙂

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  13. I just wanted to wish you an early Happy New Year. Thank you so much for your words of encouragement this past year. May you find renewed fulfillments in your blogs this New Year and may your blogging families ever increase. Blessings. Roger

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