the writing life: Christina's books,
links to recent published articles and interviews:
It was the vision of debt-free simplicity that tempted writer Christina
Nealson to swap real estate for wheel estate; days of wanderust journeying
into remote places and then staying put. In the span of six months the
house in Taos NM and 95% of her possessions were kaput as she forsook her
backpack tent and moved into a 35-foot motorhome. What began as the
ultimate travel life dream soon crescendoed into an itinerant life that
turned over the odometer of spiritual revelation.
The geographical map covered British Columbia to the tip of the Baja
Peninsula, crisscrossing the American West. The mystical map was marked
by non-ordinary meetings with moose, gray whales, mountain lions,
dolphins and grizzlies, as the wild mothers showed up with their young in a
purposeful procession of awe.
Nealson’s life as writer, her marriage and the very essence of the wild - her
own and the planet’s - are the questions at the heart of this page-turner.
Colorado Book Award finalist Drive Me Wild -- travel book for the soul.
Wildwords Press, 2012.
Turn in your badge, Jack Kerouac, there’s a new sheriff in town and her name is Christina Nealson.
John Nichols, author of The Milagro Beanfield War
This book's a wild ride, a deep story, a journey that will open your heart and prompt your soul to speak.
Susan Tweit, author of Walking Nature Home
Drive Me Wild made me long for those quiet spots off the beaten path and the beauty of wild places -- a must-read for
the RVer on a spiritual path.
Jaimie Hall Bruzenak, author of RV Traveling Tales: Women's Journeys on the Open Road
Get in, buckle up, shut up and hang on! Reminiscent of Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley and Least Heat Moon’s Blue
Highways, Christina weaves wilderness and personal reflection with the courage of a bruja and the sensibilities of the
Dr. Roger Strachan, Director, Center for Creative Choice and Wilderness Encounter
What people are saying about Drive Me Wild
New Mexico's Sanctuaries, Retreats and Sacred Places
Wildwords Press, 2014
Order Living on the Spine in print or ebook from Amazon .......or
It doesn't matter which way you enter. Within a few minutes of driving into
New Mexico, you can sense that you've entered into a place that really is one
of a kind. Christina Nealson's guide pays tribute to the marvelous variety of
places all over the state that exude a sacred personality. Through her listings,
photos, and tips, she shows us how to experience the magic of many sites in
New Mexico that will spark a sense of wonder about the world you inhabit.
New Mexico's Sanctuaries, Retreats, and Sacred Places is perfect for
organizing road trips to dramatic landscapes, prehistoric sites, local cultural
gems, and the state's most inviting adobe chapels and retreat centers that you
can visit. I like that Nealson expands the definition of "sacred" to include such
wonders as the VLA antenna site, White Sands missile range, and places to
observe hawks, bats, and snow geese in the wild. Her glossary and tips at the
opening of the book will set you in a proper frame of mind for enjoying the
color and calm of these hidden gems across New Mexico. Places that let you
hear what the spirit has to say to you.
Tim Tattan, Executive Producer, "Travel with Rick Steves"
Order New Mexico's Sanctuaries, Retreats and Sacred Places from Amazon
Westcliffe Publishers 2001; Wildwords Press 2014
Living on the Spine:
A Woman's Life in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains
It’s the rare woman who creates the opportunity to discover who she is
outside of others’ expectations. Facing forty, a spiritual vacuum and a
daughter who was college-bound, Nealson moved into the rugged mountains
of Colorado in search of a “different kind of learning.” Untethered from the
roles that defined her - mother, wife and psychotherapist - she endeavored to
live one year alone within the movement of the four seasons. She built a
small, remote cabin and marked the passage of time with the moon and sun as
she melded with landscape and the wild beings who inhabited her terrain. She
stared down bears at midnight and dug her own spring as she carved her
existence with her horse, dog and two feral cats. Ultimately, her one year
pilgrimage turned to five, as savored solitude and sweat delivered her to
revelations about women’s inextricable tie to survival, nature and Eros. Living
on the Spine: a book to behold and be held.
Living on the Spine (Papier-Mache Press, 1997; Earth Tales Press, 2001;
Wildwords Press, 2013)
"It is gentle, gracious and profound." Library Journal
"Christina Nealson is the West's answer to Annie Dillard, yet Nealson's voice is so authentically her own. This is a book of
eloquent witness to questions that cannot be answered, only lived."
Julia Cameron, author of The Artist's Way
"This is a spare and gentle and passionate book, written with much heart and great feelings of love." John Nichols, author
of The Milagro Beanfield War
"If you dare to nourish yourself with a woman's truth, the colors of solitude, and Nature's randy humor, grab this book,
take it home, and go to bed with it. I guarantee satisfaction!"
Susun Weed, author of Healing Wise and Menopausal Years the Wise Woman Way
"Christina's achingly beautiful descriptions bring the Sangre de Cristo landscape to life. Her knife-edged imagery cuts
through pretension ad emotional detachment, leading us into a sumptuous, sometimes violent wilderness."
Stephen R. Jones, author of The Shortgrass Prairie
Drive Me Wild: A Western Odyssey
photos by Christina Nealson
Hear Interviews with Christina:
Courage to Quest