Michele Gierck

In 1999, while working at The Victorian Foundation for Survivors of Torture, Michele suffered a back injury. Life as she had known it disappeared. She was no longer able to work, drive, swim or even sit at the football. With the stripping away of so many certainties around which she had constructed her identity, she began to reflect on who she really was. And what mattered.

Writing she discovered was not only a way of dealing with pain, but an excellent way to reflect. Michele’s first book, 700 Days in El Salvador, a tale of one of her adventures, was published in Australia in 2006.

Her health has improved, and Michele has learnt to live within her limits—joyfully. She is also thankful that through enforced time out she discovered her ability to write. In 2002, she was awarded a mentorship for emerging writers.

Michele’s passion for writing and storytelling could not be quelled. She has become a regular contributor to Eureka Street magazine, and her articles have also appeared in major Australian newspapers and magazines.

700 Days in El Salvador