Gina Mazza - Word Provocateur | Creative Alchemist
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“I come from
[a childhood] where I would put every condiment imaginable on my cheeseburger just so I could feel more full. There’s value in that struggle.”

— NFL superstar Troy Polamalu







“Doctors like me, we are the deviants of the culture, the ones who won’t lie down and take our [anti-psychotic drug] Risperdal.”

— author and
Cherokee shaman
Lewis Mehl-Madrona, MD







“I blurted out, ‘Why are you so happy?’ and Helen Keller said in her syncopated voice: ‘My child! It is because I live each day as if it were my last! Life is so full of glory!’ Was she damaged? Of course. Was she damaged? Not at all.”

— renowned futurist
Jean Houston, PhD







“I can see it now: my daughter, circa age 30, lying on a psychiatrist's couch, being told: ‘It appears that you suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder brought on by an acute period of parental deception between the formative ages of birth and 6, from which you've developed a psychological propensity to believe that all men—particularly those bearing gifts—are merely a figment of your imagination’.”

— from “Bad Santa”



global | local | print | online

I believe in the power of story: to inspire, to inform, to edify, to beguile, to dispute, to include, to catalyze, to heal. My work as a freelance journalist is to encourage compassion, open-mindedness and an unrelenting fascination for life through the prism of story-shaped communication.

Personal growth. Health and wellness. Mind-body fitness. Integrative medicine. Green living. Science and religion. Creativity and consciousness. Human potential. These are my journalistic focus areas, with a proclivity towards reporting on the good works of New Thought pioneers, as well as everyday people of extraordinary faith who help us envision a beautiful future.

As an internationally published journalist, I write for hire at a variety of print and online magazines and news wire services. And I’m on the mastheads of several publications as editor and contributing writer. Have the scoop on a bit of provocative news on the above or any other subject matter? Send me a lead and I’ll scope it out.

A Taste of My Work

Movers and Shakers
'Burgh native Gretchen Berg has been building a career in TV in Los Angeles, and now she has added executive producer of the hospital drama “Mercy” to her résumé.
In case you’re wondering: No, the new hospital drama “Mercy” (Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on NBC) is not based on the exploits of UPMC Mercy’s medical staff, but that doesn’t make its connection to Pittsburgh DOA

The Mane Man
NFL superstar Troy Polamalu reflects on faith, football and fatherhood.
On this sunny So-Cal day, Steelers safety Troy Polamalu graciously postpones his morning workout to ruminate about not just football — but life, and what’s most important in it
Pittsburgh Magazine

Six Questions with Lewis Mehl-Madrona, MD
Often controversial MD continues his quest to revision medicine by integrating modern science with ancient Native American healing.
Call him Coyote. Call him a shaman. Call him the sweat-lodge doc. Call him anything but conventional
Pittsburgh Magazine

Interview with David R. Hawkins, MD, PhD, Pioneer in Consciousness Studies
Hawkin’s latest (and last) book offers clinically proven self-healing methods that can result in complete recovery from any disease.
Talk about knowing one’s dharma: from the time he was a young lad, David Hawkins has had a string of mystical experiences that compelled him to devote his life to nothing less than the upliftment of mankind
Holistic Networker (reprint)

Uncovering Our Possible Selves
A lyrical interview with world renowned mythologist Jean Houston, PhD.
If ever I doubted the power of believing in what psychologist, scholar and human potential guru Jean Houston calls “a passion for the possible,” she disavowed me at once of such doubt with a simple request. “Run a scale for me,” she asks

The Link Between Trauma and Kindness
An interview with best-selling author Joan Borysenko, PhD.
By her own facetious definition, Joan Borysenko is momentarily in the bardo of her worst nightmare. Hundreds of conference attendees await her scholarly wisdom on the language of the heart, and her PowerPoint just went kaput
Planet Lightworker (reprint)

Recreational Music Making Study Gives New Meaning to “Gene Expression”
Study on human genomes is music to the ears of anyone wishing to live with good health.
Can playing a musical instrument in any context — novice to virtuoso, rattle to Stradavarius—change our DNA?
Pittsburgh Magazine

“Soup Lady” Ladles Out Love
A steaming bowl of nutritious, delicious soup on a crisp autumn day is the ultimate in comfort food—especially when that soup is homemade with love
Beaver County Senior News

The Vertical Game of Football
An up-close and personal interview with Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu on his inner spiritual life.
It starts with heat: nearly a hundred degrees on the practice field at St. Vincent’s College in Latrobe. The sun blares. Sweat rolls as the Black and Gold swelters through another workout in week one of training camp. Mercifully, the bull horn shrieks
Point of Light Magazine

Stand By Me (book review)
A holistic handbook for animals, their people and the lives they share together.
With Americans spending a record $29.5 billion on their pets last year, it appears that our priorities have gone to the dogs—and cats. But I beg to differ

Care Managers are Good Safety Net
As a film and stage actor who worked with legends like Ava Gardner and Gene Kelly, Benjamin Tatar was accustomed to traveling around the world independently
Pittsburgh Senior News

My love of dance has led me to write about it. In fact, I can’t seem to stop intermingling these two passions. Some day, I will dance about writing (and post the video here).

Dance Alloy: Forging Contemporary Dance and Theatre
Beth Corning, Dance Alloy’s Artistic Director, shares her vision of building a modern repertory touring company that showcases great choreographers.
I didn’t come to hear the Dance Alloy’s new artistic director wax rhapsodic about the ethereal nature of dance. (I’ll leave that to the dance critics.) My quest was for a vividly sketched reality check about the rigors of working as a professional dancer, especially in a pop culture prone to TV, videogames and computer screens
Point of Light Magazine

Hindu Goddess in Human Form
Dancer/choreographer Sreyashi Dey embodies the wisdom and tradition behind Odissi, a classical Indian dance style originally performed in second century BC as a sacred ritual.
If the elegant goddesses depicted in the great, ancient temples of India could break free of their stone internment and leap into being, what form would their human expressions take?
Ballet-Dance Magazine

Life as Dance: How Our Passions Help Us Stay on pointe
An essay about choreographing a live of personal relevance.
Up the marble staircase I skipped to the third floor of the Jenkins Arcade, straight into Jean Ralph’s Theatrical Shoppe. I was 11 and on the verge of an event that any young dancer anticipates with fervor: being fitted for my first pair of pointe shoes
Point of Light Magazine

Simply because I find life a-musing, I enjoy humor writing and ruminating on the incredible lightness of being human.

Bad Santa
Mom worries about long-term effects of well-intentioned lie.
This could be the year I finally confess to my children that I've been the co-conspirator of an elaborate, well-intentioned scheme to deceive them since birth. I fear being found out because it means the end of Christmas innocence for my daughter, 11, and son, 9. But I must come clean and tell them: There is no Santa Claus
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A Mind to Mow
One regular grass cutter finds time on the tractor steers her to creative meditation.
To heck with psychotherapists, self-help books and spa vacations. Who has time? I’ve found a low-cost, non-fat way to get in touch with my soul while checking a chore off my “to do” list. Meet my lawn tractor
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Pruning Guide for Writers
Editing one’s own writing can be challenging. Learn how this writer was able to see the forest through the trees of editing her manuscript.
Tim arrives at my front door, chain saw in tow, just as the sun ascends the ancient black walnut tree in the backyard
Writer’s Journal

Word Dance
A brief musing on the joy of working with words.
I can do this, I can lay down power with my pen like the jet stream rolls a windstorm across the Great Plains