≡ Menu

Pilgrimage of Desire


What happens if you neglect your creativity for too long? You can stumble into depression.

As a young adult, I longed to make my mark on the world as a writer. But after university, I got sidetracked by all the demands of ordinary life.

Soon I joined the ranks of the walking depressed: working, volunteering, and looking after my family, all while profoundly unhappy.

I found the path out of depression by following my desires—to write, to travel, to become a mother and a creativity coach. Eventually I left ordinary life behind. My husband quit his job and we sold our house and headed out on an open-ended trip around the world with our kids, aged five and three.

My travel memoir, Pilgrimage of Desire, is a story of recovery and adventure, interspersed with coaching questions and exercises that help readers take their own steps toward happiness.

From a honeymoon in Newfoundland, through two adoption trips to China, and on a year-long sojourn in Malaysia and Holland, come along with me on a heroine’s journey to joyful creativity.

Available now in ebook format. Print and audiobook coming in 2015.

Buy Pilgrimage of Desire from your favourite ebook retailer


Free download
Flow Exercises from Pilgrimage of Desire (PDF)

“Trying to craft a meaningful life and wanting someone’s story to accompany you? Read this book. Alison is an extraordinary writer and thinker – her prose and her insights have me reading and rereading her words. This is Eat, Pray, Love for real life. I adore this book!”

Jennifer Louden, best-selling author of The Woman’s Comfort Book and personal growth teacher

“This book resonated deeply, especially the part where Alison realizes that to be free from depression she has to keep creating because creating is a way for creators to maintain meaning in life. When we stop creating we lose our way. I love how Alison intertwines the stories of her life with advice and practical exercises for artists to get back on track. This book is thoughtful, helpful and inspirational!”
Laurie Gough, author of Kite Strings of the Southern Cross and Kiss the Sunset Pig

“Alison Gresik knows the agonies of being a creative person blocked from pursuing her deepest desires. She’s encountered all the demons: self doubt, guilt, depression, plus the confounding demands of ordinary life – earning money, caring for children – while trying to find time to write.

But she also knows triumph, having pulled herself out of the depths, quit a job, sold almost everything she owned and embarked on a writer’s “pilgrimage” that took her halfway across the world. Oh, and before setting out on that adventure, she and her husband adopted two children from China.

Her memoir/self help book chronicles the ups and downs of her inner and outer journeys with insight, honesty and humour. It’s a book to give heart, as well as practical tips, to those who seek to affirm their own creative yearnings. An engaging read as well, it inspires leaps of faith and saying yes to wild dreams.”
Gabriella Goliger, author of Song of Ascent and Girl Unwrapped




Campaign video for Indiegogo fundraiser in May 2012