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Donna Barker

Donna Barker

Photo: Bill Edwards

Donna Barker is a career non-fiction ghostwriter and curriculum creator whose work has won national awards (which other people get to show on their shelves). She has also written award-winning fiction under the penname Danika Bloom.

Donna is the co-founder of The Creative Academy for Writers with her author pals Eileen Cook and Crystal (CJ) Hunt. With Eileen and Crystal, she is the editor of books in the *Creative Academy Guides For Writers* series. 

When she's not wearing her Danika Bloom persona, Donna leads a weekly mastermind group for writers, edits creative non-fiction, and does her best to only put on 'leaving the house clothes' once a week.

Squamish, Sea-to-Sky, Vancouver


Mother Teresa's Advice for Jilted Lovers. Fire Lily Press, 2016
Scrappy Rough Draft: Use Science to Strategically Motivate Yourself & Finish Writing Your Book. The Creative Academy for Writers Press, 2019
First In: A steamy, small-town firefighter romance. Fire Lily Press, 2020
Second Breath: A steamy, opposites attract romance. Fire Lily Press, 2020


Whistler Independent Book Awards, Nominee for Mother Teresa's Advice for Jilted Lovers, 2016
Chanticleer Book Reviews for Mother Teresa's Advice for Jilted Lovers, 2015
Eligible for National Public Readings Program:


Presentation Description

These workshops are highly interactive and have all been presented numerous times at in-person conferences and virtually. The author will donate a copy of her book, Scrappy Rough Draft: Use Science to Strategically Motivate Yourself & Finish Writing Your Book to the school/classroom.

Presentation Length:
45-60 minutes per topic
creative non-fiction & genre fiction
Audience Size:
Workshop Description:


Manifestos have been used by creatives and thought-leaders — which you, as a writer, are! — for centuries (some argue millennia, since the Christian Bible is considered one of the first written manifestos).

In this interactive workshop you’ll examine your motivations as a writer and create your own, personal manifesto. Knowing what's at stake, both when you succeed or if you fail, is just the kind of mindset adjustment that can make all the difference between doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result, and approaching your writing just a little bit differently and being able to finally write, 'The End' on your creative writing project.



Entering your story into contests can give you fabulous feedback on all kinds of important areas about your story that can help boost your confidence and make your story even better. But, if you're still in the editing stage, you may not be ready to enter real contests. So, creating a contest situation just for your book is a perfect solution!

In this workshop you’ll learn how to host your own “contest,” what to look for in your “judges,” tips to make even challenging feedback feel helpful, and be provided with a contest score sheet so that you get concrete and productive reader comments on your work-in-progress.

You can use this information to host in-class writer's contests or simply learn how to be a helpful first reader and provide valuable feedback to your peers.



In Bird by Bird, author Anne Lamott asks us to embrace our 'sh!tty first draft.' It’s good advice and yet so hard for most writers to follow. Our inner editors and inner critics, it seems, have formed a not-so-secret bond and work together to convince us to write polished prose right out of the pen. The result can be self-doubt, writers block, and simply giving up since the stories in our heads are so much better than what we see in our first drafts.

In this interactive workshop you’ll learn several mind tricks (all based in science) to help you embrace and feel great about your NOT sh!tty first draft and come up with a unique-to-you shorthand way to refer to your work-in-progress based on it's genre or qualities of your characters.