top of page
For as long as Marlaina
can remember, her knee-jerk impulse has been
to create through every medium that called her:
art, writing, music, dance, photography, moving images, ceremony, cooking, and fragrance.
Her everyday life as a professional writer, composer, and painter
often intersects with a rich inner life shimmering
with deep mysticism and interest in the
overlapping of science and spirit.
For many years, until March 2023, Marlaina was a regular
national content writer for Natural Awakenings magazine.
With a focus on integrative and holistic medicine, she has interviewed some of the most significant sources in the industry
including Mayo Clinic,
Dr. David Perlmutter, yoga legend Rodney Yee,
celebrity chef Rocco DiSpirito, and neuroscientist and global Transcendental Meditation leader Tony Nader.
Marlaina has also written for Organic Lifestyle Magazine,
Taste for Life, and other publications.
Occasionally, due to magazine editorial protocol,
she has used the pseudonym, Maya Whitman.
She is the author of fifteen books in several genres including
the 1998 OBE memoir Naked Soul (Llewellyn Worldwide),
Multidimensional Aromatherapy, Goddess Consciousness,
and Spiritual Famine in the Age of Plenty.
Marlaina is certified in therapeutic bodywork modalities (650+ hours)
and clinical application of essential oils (250 hours).
As a composer, Marlaina has released 21 albums in the genres of semi-classical piano, world, new age, and ambient vocals under the name WillowWynd. Her diverse work has been featured in
small business promos,
gallery art installations,
meditation videos, and self-help courses.
After decades of balancing creative disciplines and holistic arts, painting with sacred intention
has become her deepest passion
amplified by a life-altering health remission in 2016.
From her corner of the world in the beautiful Lake Wallenpaupack region of Pennsylvania, Marlaina opts out of owning a smartphone and finds great joy in hiking wildlife sanctuaries year-round with her beloved husband, Jos. C. Donato, an author of historical fiction.
Marlaina's greatest influence was her mother Winni, a multi-talented Renaissance woman who independently studied nutrition and managed health food stores in New York City in the 1950s.
From this early foundation, Marlaina continues to live by the belief that healing, art, and spirit are indeed a singular force.
~Her interest in writing was sparked at age 10 when she was chosen to write a weekly 4-H column in the Pike County Dispatch,
a local newspaper in the state of New York
~Marlaina's maternal grandfather, John Troyano,
was a silent film actor with Vitagraph Studios.
~She was named after actress Marlene Dietrich but spells
her name phonetically for correct pronunciation.
~Marlaina enjoyed being a background supporting actor
in Tara Gadomski's inspiring 2019 short film, Signs of Aging
bottom of page