Stonecoast Voices: Meredith MacEachern

Introduction

This story is a component of my third-semester project for the Stonecoast MFA program. The full project—Voices From the Monster’s Belly—deals with the unique potential of oral storytelling to address trauma and agency for both individuals and communities. Though I also conducted research and held interviews with storytellers, elders, and historians, I felt it was important to put my research into practice. Oral storytelling has been an important part of my life and my recovery from my own trauma.

 

“The Monster Skinned” was initially composed without any form of written record or prompting. I recorded and transcribed it to address minor errors and streamline the time, and this version was the final, re-recorded one. It contains a number of images and ideas that have formed my personal mythology over the years and are often mirrored in my writing.

 

Oral storytelling can forge connections between tellers and listeners, is a great cathartic tool, and allows individuals and communities power over their own narratives. Though this, as a recording, does not completely reproduce that potential, I hope it begins to demonstrate the value of oral storytelling as a creative medium.

A special thank you to my mentor, Indigo Moor, for all his help with this project.

Meredith MacEachern

Meredith MacEachern has been writing since before she could physically hold a pen. After a childhood spent traveling with her archaeologist parents, she earned a BA with Honours from Acadia University in Nova Scotia, where her work appeared in Estuary and The Athenaeum. She is currently working on her MFA in Creative Writing through the Stonecoast program.

Meredith primarily writes novels and long fiction, though she occasionally dabbles in poetry. She also enjoys studying languages, particularly Inuktitut and Vamé, in what little spare time she can muster.