Gettin’ Her Creativity On
Annette Januzzi Wick came to writing, following the cancer diagnosis of her first husband. After his death, she penned a memoir, I’ll Be in the Car: One Woman’s Story of Love, Loss and Healing. Years of caregiving had forced so much inside. “When I finally started writing, I learned what I thought and felt again. Writing had asked me to look at my experiences on paper, essentially compelling me to heal.”
Fifteen years later, embarking on a new adventure with her second husband, Annette has repurposed her writing. As a writer, teacher and blogger, she considers herself an introducer in the community, as she meets new and long-time contributors and connects one another to their larger purpose through writing and creativity.
Why She Connects
Annette has developed writing circles for individuals with Alzheimer’s, young adults with development disabilities and men in transition from homelessness to homes. As a connector for Women Writing for (a) Change, a creative writing center for women who want to explore their words in community, she produces a number of writing and poetry-related events: Women Poets in the Courtyard, a monthly poetry reading by four women and workshops for Cincinnati’s Books by the Banks festival, held every October.
Her blog, Find You in the Sun, a daughter’s journey with a mother and her memory, has been well received by the Alzheimer’s community through online publications. “Those who have loved ones with dementia can read this, and say, ‘Yep, that’s me too. ‘ I want my readers to be moved, I want them to know what they are up against. I want them to know how to love themselves in the most difficult of circumstances, when the person you are caring for no longer knows to love you back.”
This blog, Gettin’ My City On, is based on her experience of moving to inner city from the suburbs, and sliding on the scale from conservative to compassionate. “I’m not, by nature, a political person, but once you’re living in proximity to poverty, once you are side by side in the grocery store with a mother who pulls the generic chicken broth off the shelf, and while you stand there, holding your can of Swanson’s broth, you can’t help but take stock of your policy leanings. How did white flight originate, what is holding back others from home ownership, employment. I tutor a group of young, African-American students after school. I see so much potential and yet wonder, how many of them will have the opportunity to rise. I never thought that, when I tutored at my kid’s school in the suburbs.”
Why She Loves
In her personal writing, Annette has been awarded for her poetry and published in many local venues. She was also nominated as Cincinnati’s Best Local Author in 2015 and 2016. In the community, Annette is an ardent fan of Cincinnati’s public market, Historic Findlay Market, and for four years, has been a selection member of Impact 100, a women’s grant-making organization. While hailing from Cleveland and still pining for her hometown teams, she also cheers for the Bengals and Reds and Cincinnati’s newest team, FC Cincinnati.
Annette lives with her most loyal supporters, husband, Mark, and dog, Enzo, while traveling the U.S. to visit her children in such far-flung locations as New Orleans and Eugene, Oregon. “I use my voice more creatively now, many times via social media and photos, to showcase the best of the Cincinnati. But I am using the words to shine a light on more nuanced pieces of the puzzle of urban living.”
More information on Annette’s blogs, events and appearances can be found by visiting www.annettejanuzziwick.com.
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