Jamie’s 16 month review: consolation-compensation

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going”.


I published 32 newsletters and 82 Blogs…

Jamie winterI’m doing an interview tonight about being a woman artist in Chicago for a future book. Thinking about the things I have done since losing my mentor, editor and dearest friend Susan to suicide last October.  I miss her tremendously. She’d be so pleased about Chuy Garcia being in the Chicago mayoral run-off.   She worked for this city for 20 years and knew all about the shenanigans that go on here.  I console myself when I think of her by telling myself she’d be proud that she taught me so much and I kept going.

Say what you want about the value of not-for-profits and their empowering of the artist, my experience is so-so.  There is no civic accountability or follow through for the gifted creatives in our fair city.  As a free-lancer, I don’t get worker’s comp or sick days when I: have a bike accident, get bit by a dog, have racing blood pressure, or lose my best friend. In the face of immense grief and quirky physical ailments, I rely on my wits, strong genes, and… the talents of a solid group of artists who are there for each other in ways an outsider would never be able to grasp. And yet, I welcome the outsider-in, and find a place for people here at Roots and where I can.  This statement would seem boastful, if it weren’t true.  Even I am struck by this…

As I saw this morning when I reviewed the timeframe from Oct 2013 – Feb 2015.
I worked with and support over 120 artists – performers, writers and visual artists!  I conceived, directed, produced 4 original programs, produced 2 major projects: End of Life/Afterlife, and Winter-Rising, conceived and produced a Michigan artist retreat with HotHouse, co-produced a year-long program series at St. John’s Church including a four-day arts festival, hosted 9 salons in my home, presented 5 master speakers: a food tasting, 2 workshops and  2 talks, produced the five hour RootsFest music festival, fostered Roots monthly women’s salon into its 4th year, produced 2 new CDs: WinterSongs and Michael Smith’s Selfish Giant, worked with 7 clients on projects: consulted on 2 new books and one audio book, booked Michael Smith over 50 concerts, 4 workshops all over the country, am developing 2 artist’s one-person shows, edited resumes and lots of promo copy,  hosted 2 fundraisers including a sold-out Roots member night, gave 2 presentations for Celtic Women International, performed a sold-out Songs of a Catholic Childhood at the Irish Heritage Center,  learned a dozen new songs, wrote an article on my work history for Chicago Arts Journal.  Published 32 newsletters and 82 Blogs. (BTW, Susun told me you get more attention if you use stats/data in all your reports).


And became a Grandmother to Olive Beatrix Broz
born January 12, 2015




  1. At the time I did not realize that Susan had passed away & End of life/Afterlife series was therapeutic, however it resonated w. profound meaning for all of us who had lost people.
    Giving up sugar & salt is tough. Exercising is most challenging for me. Way to go. Best of luck.
    We are so blessed w. our children. It is a “raison d’etre” for many of us. I find that friends w.out children lack meaning in life.
    Take care & thanks for sharing. I know I miss alot not being on facebook. What a cutie Olive is! Welcome to life again. See you soon.

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