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Melissa Carroll is a writer and yoga instructor who believes in the power of being present. Based in Tampa, she guides more than 200 students every week at the largest yoga class in Florida. Melissa leads yoga and creative writing retreats all over the world, and teaches creative writing at the University of Tampa. Melissa is the author of the chapbook The Karma Machine, and her work has appeared in many literary journals and magazines. Discover more at MelissaCarrollYoga.com. Cheryl Strayed is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller WILD, the New York Times bestseller TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS, and the novel TORCH. WILD was chosen by Oprah Winfrey as her first selection for Oprah's Book Club 2.0. Strayed's award-winning writing has appeared in THE BEST AMERICAN ESSAYS, the New York Times Magazine, the Washington Post Magazine, Vogue, Salon, The Missouri Review, The Sun, Tin House, The Rumpus--where she wrote the popular "Dear Sugar" advice column--and elsewhere. Her books have been translated into more than thirty languages around the world. The movie adaptation of WILD will be released by Fox Searchlight in December 2014. The film is directed by Jean-Marc Vallee and stars Reese Witherspoon, with a screenplay by Nick Hornby. Strayed holds an MFA in fiction writing from Syracuse University and a bachelor's degree from the University of Minnesota. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and their two children.
"Perhaps that's the reason I admire the essays in this collection so deeply. Like shavasana, they seem to be one thing--writers on the subject of yoga--but really they're another: profound examinations of what it means to be human. In these essays there are funny stories, sad stories, moving stories, and real stories. In sharing their experiences with us, each of these writers have tapped into the universal questions that we're confronted with when we get ourselves down on the mat. Questions about humility and determination. Simplicity and acceptance. About moving forward, doing the work, and most of all, receiving with equanimity what comes next on breath at a time." --Cheryl Strayed, author of #1 New York Times Bestseller Wild "Carroll, a Florida-based yoga teacher and creative writing professor, compiles essays from noted writers including Neal Pollack, Dinty W. Moore, and Claire Dederer, asking each to reflect on what millions of Americans--themselves included--are searching for in yoga practice, and what they are finding. Yoga helped one writer cope with her mother's Alzheimer's disease; another found self-worth through the challenges of being a 375-pound yoga student; yet another gained new perspective on the notion of "stillness" in a busy world." --Publishers Weekly "A beautiful, hilarious, touching account of why we love yoga." --Brian Leaf, author of Misadventures of a Parenting Yogi "Going Om is the literary equivalent of dropping in on class to find all your favorite yoga writers packed in there on their mats. Just like our bodies, every essay here is wildly unique--some are graceful, some are sexy, a few might make you cry--the only constant being the diverse ways these writer's lives interact with their practice." --Benjamin Lorr, author of Hell-Bent: Obsession, Pain, and the Search for Something Like Transcendence in Competitive Yoga "A wonderful collection of essays that illustrate the power and promise of yoga on and off the mat." --Gary Halperin, author of Feel Better Now Meditation and Feel Better Now: Essays on Yoga, Meditation, Mindfulness, and Love "One of our favorite guests, offering much food for thought on the path to inner wisdom." --Sedona Talk Radio