Barbara Waldern


Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada and a graduate of Burnaby Central Senior High School and Simon Fraser University, having studied English lit, French, Spanish, applied linguistics, social policy and anthropology.Has been an ESL instructor, a public service employee, and finally an education researcher before going to teach English in South Korea in 2007. Waldern has always been involved in community and anti-imperialist activism, and is an advocate and network coordinator for teachers working abroad today. Likes languages, films, music, art, nature, walking and general physical recreation. Although writing poetry on and off for much longer, and with many academic publications and presentations, she's been dedicated to writing fiction and nonfiction prose since 2008. Today, my novel called "Take Care" can be found in the special collections of the Simon Fraser University Library, and hard copies of my short stores (creative non-fiction) are on the shelves of the SFU and Vancouver Public Library Main Branch, not to mention the library at my workplace, Busan University of Foreign Studies.

Smashwords Interview

How do you approach cover design?
I like it to be my own creation using something from my own experience, so photos that I've taken, or photos of something very familiar to me, make good cover images.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
I don't follow the trends and I ignore the best sellers, unless some who influences me makes a high recommendation. I read small simple novels when travelling or trying to fall asleep, like facile mysteries or romances because heavier and more engrossing stories distract me from keeping track of my itinerary or wake me up. I like reading short biographies but I'm not keen on reading self-written memoirs. I like alternative political or historical research and discussion. I often engage in book swaps, and love it when I come across a gem. Once in a while I make a trip to a book store, but that's dangerous because I might never leave and if I do, it'll be with empty wallet and arms full. Regarding great novels, I guess I more in favour of contemporary ones these days, because I used to read nothing but 18th and 19th or early 20th century stuff. I got behind in following recent works. There are many fabulous Canadian writers, I'm proud to say, but I'll read novels from anywhere in English, French or Spanish.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Barbara Waldern online

Where to buy in print


Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 24,590. Language: English. Published: January 29, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
This is a collection of twisted tales. Enjoy! What happens may not be what you expect.
A Year of Living Positively-Volume 4
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 65,650. Language: English. Published: December 20, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Personal Growth / Success, Nonfiction » Philosophy » Social
This is the last volume of an entire collection of daily autobiographical blogs written to develop a positive thinking approach to my life that I want to share. I wrote every day for a whole year to reflect on my daily activities and problems from a positive thinking. I have also been developing what it means. I came up with a strategy to develop and maintain positive thinking in daily life.
A Klutz's Confessions
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 20,320. Language: English. Published: December 6, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Humor and satire, Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Anxieties & Phobias
This is a humorous auto-biographical account of some of my own klutzy behavior. Beginning just after April Fool's Day this year, I pledged to write a few confessions giving accounts of daily hang-ups to make you giggle and see the humor in day-to-day anxieties and frustrations. Together, let's chuckle at our own silliness and feel better.
A Year of Living Positively-Volume 3
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 43,300. Language: English. Published: August 30, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Woman biographies, Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Counseling / career development
This is a collection of daily autobiographical blog posts on the theme of living positively.Starting the day after my last birthday, I have written blogs for 240 days straight so far. My goal of is to complete 365 posts. In Volume 3, I extend a study journal writing with positive thinking to consider processes of collaboration. Communication, community and problem solving require collaboration.
A Year of Living Positively-Volume 2
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 44,610. Language: English. Published: June 17, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs, Nonfiction » Education and Study Guides » Experimental methods
This is a collection of daily autobiographical blog posts on the theme of living positively.Starting the day after my last birthday, I have written blogs for 180 days straight so far. My goal of is to complete 365 posts. In this volume, I concentrate on a study of the medium I have chosen, which is a kind of journal writing.
A Year of Living Positively, Volume 1
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 86,660. Language: English. Published: April 12, 2014. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Teachers & educators, Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Healthy aging
This is a collection of daily autobiographical blog posts on the theme of living positively.Starting the day after my last birthday, I have written for 120 days straight of blogging so far. My goal of is to complete 365 posts. Through this process of reporting and reflecting, I have begun to develop my own concept of positive thinking and arrived at eight steps to live positively.
Take Care
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 77,260. Language: Canadian English. Published: May 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Fiona Daniel lives alone studying while working as a live-in apartment caretaker Vancouver, BC's West End. One day, the body of a wealthy man’s nephew is found discarded behind a building she tends. Her drab life is catapulted into excitement as the murder plot thickens against the background of corporate scandal and political conflict. As the mystery unravels, her life evolves.
Ice Age
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 47,960. Language: Canadian English. Published: July 23, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Inspirational, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Family
Fiction. This short novel would be suitable for readers aged 12 and older. Feeling cold and detached, members of the McLaren family cross paths with some inspiring people and find a way to face challenges and refresh life. A grandmother's 70th birthday celebration thaws out their lives.
On the Move
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 5,370. Language: Canadian English. Published: July 19, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Canadian Poetry, Fiction » Poetry » Themes & motifs
This is a collection of some of my most recent poems written from 2007 to 2010 published in 2012, a period of great transition in my life. It includes the four poems created for my first novel, Camelia in Winter. They cover a range of topics and themes but mostly address personal struggle in a sea of change.The January, 2014 version, includes some political poems on the theme of displacement.
Camelia in Winter
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 109,620. Language: Canadian English. Published: July 19, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Historical, Fiction » Cultural & ethnic themes » Cultural interest, general
(Fiction). Novel about love and adventure on a Canadian artist's teaching stint in South Korea. While exploring Korea, past and present, she learns more about herself. She ends up settling questions of her own identity and relationships.
Impressing Heaven
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 33,750. Language: Canadian English. Published: July 18, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama, Nonfiction » Career Guides » Education
This is a collection of short stories based on real conversations with real young adult learners of English in South Korea from 2007 to 2010. You might call it creative non-fiction. As these individuals relayed their life situations and dilemmas to me, I imagined the unfolding drama of struggling with identity, negotiating global English, and making career decisions, putting myself in their shoes.

Barbara Waldern's tag cloud

aboriginal heritage canada    aging    alienation    artist story    autobiography    biography memoirs    blogging as a path to self knowledge    blogging for creatives    blogging success    camelias in winter    career development assistance    career transitions    change    communication and collaboration    communication process    communication relationships    creative writing    creativity coaching    displacement    education    education and learning    everyone    expat life    family    fear and fortune    global education    goals and goals setting    housing crisis    humor and lifes lessons    humor and self help    humor and situations    identity    ironies of life    journal writing    journal writing and self improvement    klutziness    korean culture    korean occupation    learning and journal writing    learning english    leisure reading    lifestyle change    migrants    migration    motivation    multiculturalism    mundane    mystery action adventure romance    mystery detective    positive thinking    positive thinking and decision making    positive thinking for yourself    repatriation    selfimprovement    social change    south korea    struggle    tales for everyone    teaching approaches    teaching english    teaching english abroad    thinking and creativity    thinking for yourself guide    vancouver bc    western canada   

Smashwords book reviews by Barbara Waldern

  • Of Concrete and Glass on July 04, 2015

    Just had a quit first read through the collection of poems, "Of Concrete and Glass" and enjoyed it. The collection well demonstrates the two sides to the common experience of living in Vancouver: the casual, bright and easygoing perspective countered by the grey rainy day perspective of doubt, mourning and fear. The nature poems bare a simplicity that exudes freshness, easy on the symbolism but full of marvel. The first poem, "Maple Leaf", stood out for me because of a subtle political slant, given its role as a national representation. What does it represent these days?" is the poet's question. As for the second part, it is heavier and wordier. I liked "The Doppledanger" and the final one about the dead poet the best. As for the message of the latter, I can relate. That fate and role of the poet is what I used to fear, causing me to avoid practicing and developing my own poetry for a long time. I am looking forward to rereading this collection, and downloading some more of Caitlin Mccoll's writing.
  • The Dark and Shadowy Places on July 05, 2015

    I just read through a few of the short stories in the collection entitled, "Dark and Shadowy Places." Sorry to say, it did not work for me. Whereas I thought the poetry book, "Of Concrete and Glass" was successful, these flash fiction stories did not. I read a few and was not interested in reading any more because there is no plot to the first few. The author chooses to set it up but take us nowhere. She shows us great imagination in coming up with all these diverse scenarios, but fails to serve us the entree so leaves us starving. We have to go to another buffet, I'm afraid. Character portrayal is lacking, though the setting and circumstances are adequate. However, we are left dangling at the beginning of a story, which we would have to finish for ourselves. I appreciate the art of leaving some pages open, and breaking off unexpectedly so that readers must guess an aspect to the ending, but that does not mean that plot is neglected and no solution to a dilemma or problem arrived at.
  • I Wanna be Happy on July 05, 2015

    Thanks, RVM. This is a simply written self-help booklet on how to get more out of life and feel better. It is very accessible for readers of a wide range of literacy levels, walks of life and interests. Although it has a Christian bias, it would be readily digestible for people of any or no particular religion. I was curious about it because I have been researching and writing about positive thinking myself. In fact, I made a note about it for my optimism blog. A lot of work has gone into making it light and attractive, creating a flow, and restating the main points carefully. The formatting could be cleaned up and the many sentences starting with but and so could be too (coordinating conjunctions-well, I teach English!). It thus comes across as a well thought out and planned text, rather than a superficial slap-dash effort. The author's sincerity and goodwill shines through. It is helpful and worthwhile to read this book.