FCIC Cancer Insights Lecture

Life After Cancer

Stories building resilience


Tuesday 1 July 2014, 6pm for a 6.15pm start


Join us for a special evening lecture with co-host Cancer Voices SA that will explore the mechanisms and therapeutic benefits of writing as a form of self-expression and a tool for healing after cancer. Chaired by Prof Bogda Koczwara, Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer and Julie Marker, Cancer Voices SA.

Narrative matters: exploring cancer stories online with Marie Ennis-O'Connor, Health Blogger and Patient Advocate

Marie will address how storytelling can help us articulate and understand ourselves and the world around us and how this can impact the cancer journey. Many cancer survivors are turning online to find a sense of connection and self-construct through the medium of blogging. This is not only therapeutic for the writer; it is for the reader too.  As more stories are shared, the online community becomes enriched and empowered by a growing narrative of diversity. For clinicians, care providers, and researchers these narratives provide rich insights into the lived experience of cancer and offer the possibility of improving the patient experience in more meaningful ways. 

Use of expressive writing in cancer with Prof Tracey Wade, Dean, School of Psychology, Flinders University

During her presentation Professor Wade will examine the long history of research findings relating to the benefits of expressive writing across different areas of functioning and the ways in which writing has been used for people with cancer.  She will summarise recent research which suggests that this form of expression can be helpful for psychological adjustment and resilience and explore how some forms of personality styles may not benefit from this type of writing. Possible mechanisms of action will also be discussed, with some suggestions as to alternative ways to enhance emotional adjustment after cancer. 

'You can make a fresh start' - a writer's perspective with David Chapple, Writing Development Manager, SA Writers Centre

Getting started with writing can often be the hardest step. David will offer suggestions and insights into writing your story, and ways to get the help and encouragement you need. He has been working with patients at Calvary and Flinders Medical Centre as Writer in Residence through the Arts in Health program, using poetry to help them tell their stories.




Venue: Function Centre, Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer, Flinders Medical Centre campus.


The following videos of the evening are courtesy of Cancer Voices SA and Eric Browne.