Posts By: Barbara Lehtiniemi

Barbara Lehtiniemi

Barbara Lehtiniemi is a writer and photographer from Ontario. She’s a graduate of Athabasca University, having completed her Bachelor of General Studies degree in 2018.

A regular contributor to The Voice Magazine since 2013, Barbara is an occasional contributor to other publications including Maclean’s and MC2. Barbara writes in several genres, including non-fiction, fiction, and poetry. She’s grateful to The Voice Magazine for providing the opportunity to explore an array of topics and writing styles, and she remains dreadfully sorry for those awful haikus.

Barbara has a fondness for travel, used bookstores, everyday absurdities, and oversized wine glasses. Originally from urban Southwestern Ontario, she now lives on a windswept rural road in Eastern Ontario with her indulgent and supportive husband, Leo.

You can follow Barbara on Twitter @theregoesbarb, or contact her at

Take the Wheel when your Life Skids Out of Control

The only thing constant is change. Greek philosopher Heraclitus uttered those words 2500 years ago. And nothing has changed. If change is a constant in our lives, why do we resist it? Why do we wring our hands, gnash our teeth, and bemoan our fate? It’s not just because we’ve been yanked out of our… Read more »

No-No to NaNo

Thousands of writers, and would-be writers, get seduced each year by NaNoWriMo. November 1 brings the opening day of National Novel Writing Month, in which writers are challenged to complete a 50,000-page novel in 30 days. Committing to writing an average of 1667 words per day over the course of the month, so the theory… Read more »

Welcome to the AU Library, Part 3

The final of a three-part series on the AU Library. See parts one and two. The AU Library’s core service is to support “students in AU courses by collecting online, print, and audiovisual resources in subject areas taught at the university, and making these available to the AU community.” Additionally, the library’s staff provide assistance… Read more »

Welcome to the AU Library, Part 2

Last week’s article introduced the AU Library and its website. Check out the new look! The library’s new website was launched October 15 and has the same URL: Using a university library for research requires some creative search strategies, according to Elaine Fabbro, Acting Director of Library Services at Athabasca University’s library. Students need… Read more »

Welcome to the AU Library, Part 1

“The only thing you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.” – Albert Einstein If there’s one thing you absolutely have to know about the AU Library, It’s that they welcome questions. “Students who ask questions will be more successful,” says Elaine Fabbro, Acting Director, Library Services. At the AU Library, there’s… Read more »

The Library’s Greatly Exaggerated Death

Those who say that nobody uses the public library anymore annoy those of us who do. Contrary to persistent laments on the imminent demise of libraries, Canada’s 22,000 library branches are alive and well—and thriving. Libraries, like other public institutions, have had to change to serve the public’s shifting needs, but they continue to be… Read more »

What Mensa’s Got For AU Students

Last week’s article introduced Mensa Canada, the high IQ society. This week, we look at Mensa from the AU student’s perspective. What’s in it for us? For those who qualify, Mensa provides a rewarding social network that extends beyond Canada’s borders. People with Mensa-qualifying IQ?an IQ that falls in the top 2% of the general… Read more »

Mensa Mind – Have You Got One?

At a Mensa event, you could be rubbing shoulders with an archaeologist, a Hollywood screenwriter, or an international spy. Mensa, the high IQ society, attracts such a diverse range of people from every walk of life, you can join and give up reading novels for excitement. You meet “the most amazing people with amazing experiences,”… Read more »

My Home is My Campus

When Athabasca University (@AthabascaU) tweeted on September 2, “Many of you have been back to school for a few hours now…how’s it going?” I was tempted to reply, “It’s going great! I’m taking the day off.” My latest AU course started September 1, but I didn’t. While the majority of Canadian university students trundled off… Read more »

Setting the Stage for Study

You’ve got your AU course materials. You’ve got a plan. Now if you could just teleport everyone else off your planet, you could get some studying done! Your roommate is gabbing on the phone; your kids are fighting?again?over who started it; your spouse has decided that now is a good time to talk about household… Read more »