Dale M. Kushner is a Madison-based novelist, poet and column writer for Psychology Today. “My business is telling stories that reveal truths about our vulnerable but amazingly resilient hearts. In both my novel, The Conditions of Love, and my new book of poetry, M, I write about the complex dilemmas we inevitably face in life and how we survive our traumas.” Learn about Dale M. Kushner…
Hometown: Madison, WI
First job: The summer of my sophomore year in high school, I worked in a law office as a “get-the-boss-coffee-and-sharpen-his-pencils” gofer girl. I felt lucky to have that job!
Favorite ways to spend your free time in WI: Discovering new places to hike and making pilgrimages to visit special trees I consider my sacred mates.
Your biggest accomplishment and why: Raising two remarkable daughters. It is an astonishing experience to witness children growing up and becoming their own true individual selves.
The biggest obstacle you overcame: Not following my creative instincts.
Someone who inspires you and why: Without a doubt, Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine. His unstinting courage in responding to the unprovoked Russian invasion illustrates how a person can transform to meet horrendous challenges almost overnight. Zelensky has become a fearless leader of his people as well as a spokesperson for democracy and human rights.
Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: Create a ritual time and space for silence and stillness. No significant creative work can emerge without stilling one’s mind of all the busyness and must-dos that cram our lives.
Favorite quote: “Art is the passing of feeling from one human heart to another.” –Tolstoy
Something someone would be surprised to learn about you: I’m afraid of heights, but with my daughters cheering me on, I once ascended a 40-ft. climbing tower and beat my chest when I reached the top!
What makes someone fabulous: Their smile.