Learn how to write your invisible illness story—and you could get a Health.com byline.

By Christina Oehler
February 25, 2020

When you suffer from an invisible illness, dealing with the illness part is only half the battle. The other half is explaining to doctors, family members, coworkers, and friends what you’re going through and how you deal. Anyone with an invisible illness knows how difficult this is—so finding a way to communicate your experiences is crucial. That’s where Harper Spero and Ruthie Ackerman come in. 

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Spero, the host of the podcast Made Visible, and Ackerman, a writer and teacher, are teaming up to host a six-week virtual invisible illness writing workshop. The workshop, which will begin March 18, will help people with an invisible illness learn how to write about their condition and express the way it affects their life. Students will learn how to craft personal narratives that allow them to tell their story and share it with the world. 

The workshop will meet over Zoom and include edits and feedback from Ackerman and fellow students. Ackerman, an award-winning journalist and former deputy editor at ForbesWomen, recently published an essay in New York Times’ Modern Love column, where she shared her experience struggling with fertility and freezing her eggs. 

Spero's Made Visible podcast features people who have an invisible illness and aims to make them feel seen and heard. She will work with workshop participants to help them raise awareness about their condition through writing. Spero’s story of her own invisible illness was featured on Health.com. She's also shared it with People, Parade, Bustle, Forbes, Well+Good, and more. 

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The workshops will take place at 12 p.m. EST for six consecutive Wednesdays from March 18 to April 22, and the cost is $900 per person. At the end of the six-week course, Health.com editors will choose one piece to publish as part of our ongoing 'Life Interrupted: Living With an Invisible Illness' series. The author of the winning piece will get a byline and $150 for their work.

Learn more about the workshop and how to sign up here

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