Becoming a Writer in the Third Chapter of Life

Breakout Session


The empty-nest, post-career, third-stage-of-life offers opportunities to revisit youthful enthusiasms and explore new curiosities. But giving up our former identities can be unsettling, and being a novice after a successful career can be humbling. In this session, we'll define the stages of life, consider how wants and paths-to-purpose change, talk about how to deal with the discomfort of reinvention, and discuss how, free from life's busyness, we have time and perspective to seek self-knowledge, healing, and meaning. As a veteran third-stager, I’ll share the tools I found helpful for navigating this internal journey, writing meaningful stories, and sharing with others.

Key takeaways from this session:

  • Define life stages and note how wants and purpose change
  • Identify early wounds and use tools to journey toward healing
  • Explore the nuts and bolts of being a writer

View Slides [PDF]



  • Carole Duff

    Carole Duff is a veteran teacher, serious flutist, avid naturalist, and creative nonfiction writer. She posts weekly to her long-standing blog Notes from Vanaprastha, and has written for Brevity blog, Mockingbird, Streetlight Magazine, and The Perennial Gen, for which she is a regular contributor. Carole lives in Virginia’s Blue Ridge...