Welcome to Heal My Muse

Your community and personal guide to crafting a sustainable and creatively-fulfilling life.

Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.

–GUSTAVE FLAUBERT

Hi, I’m Megan!

I created Heal My Muse for the dreamers and the doers.

Are you a first-generation creative professional, or longing to becoming one?

We’re the ones who inherited a super-warp-speed work ethic from our parents, who probably worked long hours at tough, shift-work jobs to put us through school. We said thank you — then decided to pursue a creative career that made our frugal-minded elders nervous!

If that’s you, then you probably know what it’s like to live in the tension between practical and pleasurable, which always seem to be at odds. Heal My Muse was created to be an inclusive and illuminating place where those two worlds can coexist.

You can nourish your muse with creative rituals while following orderly routines. You can pursue your wildest dreams with full abandon while building stability into your life.

Through Heal My Muse, my hope is that by writing honestly about my journey with money, creativity and the “hustle” (can we retire that word yet?), my story will serve up the right kind of humor, inspiration and advice to help this new generation of creative professionals thrive with the support of peers and fellow renaissance people.

Trust the messy

“Order” has never been my strong suit. Something tells me you can relate.

Over the last decade, I’ve paved a path toward a creatively fulfilling profession with a good blend of pragmatism, daydreaming and aspiration. Yet after graduating from a master’s program with five-figure student loan debt, it took a few years to get a handle on the “pragmatic” part of that equation. I found myself asking questions like, “How do you make money as a writer?” and “How do you find time to write when you’re working so gosh-darn much?”

It took patience, balance and lots of observation — not to mention plenty of trial and error. But we were never meant to do this all alone, which is why I created Heal My Muse. My mission is to cherish our world’s creatives and create an online community where we can encourage and equip each other by sharing real stories, reflection, inspiration and, of course, practical lessons.

Me in a nutshell:

I went from kindergarten teacher to full-time writer and editor at a major network in under 2 years.

I spent 7 years writing my first novel, and I just finished the first “real” draft (I’m still not happy with it).

I wrote and published a children’s book in 2016 with my friend, and even though we made a few mistakes, it was a fun learning experience!

I’m here to help you embrace your multipotentiality and learn to be celebrated for who you are.

My core beliefs are:

Desire is sacred.

Intuition is intelligence.

Receptivity is magic.

Vulnerability is strength.

Learning is inherently valuable.

Diversity is natural (supremacy is not).

My beliefs in practice look like:

Your muse always deserves healing.

Our relationship to land is fundamental to healing.

True healing comes from self-acceptance.

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The whole saga. . .

 

Megan DeMatteo was born in the late 1980s and grew up somewhere between Western Pennsylvania’s fracking country and the suburban outskirts of Baltimore.

She is a Pushcart-nominated poet, service journalist and editor currently based in so-called New York City. In 2020, she moved to Manhattan amid the coronavirus pandemic to help launch CNBC Select, a new site for credit card recommendations, banking product reviews and go-to advice from financial experts.

Growing up, Megan was a misfit among her practical friends and family members, always dreaming of music and Hollywood. As a kid, she acted out fantastical daydreams and got lost in music, art and make-believe. As a teenager, she channeled her adaptable nature and knack for theatrics into fitting in at school, subconsciously putting what felt like far-flung ideas on the back burner. In college, she declared nursing as her first major (even though she’s not the best with needles), but chose to minor in Spanish after observing the interruption in care that non-English speakers endured at the urgent care clinic she worked at in high school. The language bug bit hard (thankfully), and eventually she devoted herself to wordsmithing after meeting several influential mentors.

Multipassionate, energetic and semi-nomadic by nature, Megan has lived in towns and cities across the U.S. for her entire adulthood, starting with her college years in Southern Appalachia.

Over the past decade, while inching her way towards a career in service journalism, Megan has worked countless odd jobs including nonprofit fundraising, volunteer coordinating, yoga teaching, nannying, river guide shuttling, jet ski renting, restaurant serving and more. Most valuable were her experiences teaching kindergarten. She taught in both Title I schools as well as one of the nation’s most expensive private schools — a stark contrast that, looking back, sparked her interest in writing about money.

In 2018, Megan wrote about her choice to leave the classroom for freelance writing in Business Insider. The story initiated her pivot towards a sustainable writing career. In 2019, Megan wrote about a high-school English project that helped activists persuade Pennsylvania lawmakers to raise the minimum marriage age to 18 (making it one of now five states with a no-exception minimum). The story had personal significance to her, since she was named after her great-grandmother, an Italian immigrant who was married at age 16 in Pennsylvania in 1924.

Megan is currently working on a novel about a contemporary 15-year-old bride from Pennsylvania who yearns for the glitz and adventure of the American West — but doesn’t know exactly what she’s in for.

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