We are so excited to host Elle Luna and Susie Herrick on The Hivery stage at the March 13th Hivery Circle to launch their new book, YOUR STORY IS YOUR POWER: Free Your Feminine Voice. We sat down with Elle and Susie in advance of this special event to hear more about their collaboration and to get a sneak preview of their upcoming book.
We love the idea for your book! Where did it come from?
Susie: For me, the idea came years ago after having an interaction with my father that changed my perspective on how I should work with my internal world and my internalized misogyny. I wanted to get my dad to stop criticizing my mom, but every time I thought about saying something I realized that there was an underlying feeling of getting killed for standing out. It didn’t make sense until I did some research and learned that some of my ancestors were in the Salem witch trials. There was a transmission process of terror that had gone through generations.
Wow, that is fascinating. How did you approach your father?
Susie: I was having a phone conversation with him and he was arguing with my mother about how she hadn’t involved him in planning her birthday party, telling her she was betraying the marriage. It was at that moment that I knew something was wrong. I told him how I felt, we argued and I hung up on him—something I’d never done. I then wrote him an email telling him it was time to stop speaking and treating my mother that way and to start aligning with women.
He took it well, shared it with friends, sent me flowers, and emailed me back. It was the first time I saw what it meant to work internally and effect the external. I had an unconscious misogyny that I had been working at for a long time at that point. It ended up turning into my book Aphrodite Emerges: The Journey That Changed My Life – And Changed My Father’s Too, which came out in 2017. Elle illustrated it, which was magic.
Elle, what was it about the topic of freeing your feminine voice that resonated with you?
Elle: Right after the Women’s March in early 2017, my editor from Workman Publishing [the publisher who released Elle’s bestseller The Crossroads of Should and Must] reached out. She’d seen Susie’s book and asked if we wanted to do a book that would build on everything happening since Trump was elected. We started working on this new book in spring 2017 and finished it in early October. It was really fast.
I became passionate about this work because of the work that was rising to the surface in my internal world. Susie and I talk a lot about the moment we discovered internalized cultural misogyny. For me, it was my internal voice that pointed me to this. I used to call it my inner critic, but after a while I was starting to realize that it wasn’t just a critic—it was hateful and it was commenting on my femininity.
The more I worked with that voice, the better I felt. It was all about bringing awareness.
Why do you think the topic of freeing the feminine voice is so important right now?
Elle: I think things are coming up to the surface right now—the #MeToo movement, the election. In the book, we write about why feminine power is the best way forward. Women have so many natural strengths and gifts. Everything from the innate ability to create beautiful spaces, to stepping forward to protect the natural world, to coming together to solve enormous problems facing our planet.
Susie: I look at the proliferation of beauty that has come from Elle alone—what she has put out in the universe—and it has to do with her ability to look at herself and put out what is raw and what is true. I think there is a need for that right now. Women have an innate way of collecting together and coming up with exquisite things. I think the time is now to step into that power.
Elle Luna is a designer, painter, and writer, and the author of The Crossroads of Should and Must. She facilitates the global art movement #The100DayProject, and has previously worked as a designer at IDEO and with teams on apps and websites, including Medium, Mailbox, and Uber. Ms. Luna speaks to groups around the world and lives in San Francisco and online at elleluna.com and on Instagram at @elleluna.
Susie Herrick is a licensed psychotherapist, Enneagram teacher, mediator, trainer, consultant, and writer. She has taught, coached, and mentored more than two thousand graduate students in counseling psychology over the past 25 years. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Limited signed copies of YOUR STORY IS YOUR POWER: Free Your Feminine Voice will be available for purchase for $17.95 at the end of the March 13th Hivery Circle.
Please feel free to come alone and mingle with your Hivery community or bring a friend. ALL ARE WELCOME at this beautiful celebration of courage and The Power of She: United We Thrive! As seats are limited, advance online registration is required.