As an editor, I support clients to write various projects — and their storied lives — with creativity and clarity.

As a therapist, I work with individuals who experience difficulties with which they are learning to live and about which they search for meaning. I understand therapy clients as learners striving to make sense of their various situations. I understand therapy to be education-about-the-self within the context of individuals, families, and communities.

As an educator and facilitator, I provide academic, workshop, and conference presentations.


Puerto Rican Canadian María (Mary) Helena Auerbach Rykov is an independent scholar, writing mentor, and editor. She holds a PhD in Adult Education (OISE/UT 2006), an MA in Music Therapy (NYU 1995), and a BA in Psychology and Communications (SFU 1985). As a creative music therapist-researcher, she synthesized theory, practice, and reflexive insight. Having extensive clinical experience with diverse populations from a wide variety of age groups, her work is characterized by integrity, dedication, and commitment to clients, students, research, and to the field of music therapy. She remains available for editing, writing, lectures, teaching, supervision, research collaboration, curriculum design, program development, workshops, and consultation.

Dr. Rykov was a doctoral research scholar (2003–2006) and postdoctoral research fellow (2006–2009) of the Canadian Cancer Society. She currently lives in Toronto. Her poetry, fiction, and non-fiction appears or is forthcoming in literary, academic, and professional venues such as Literary Review of Canada, Crap Orgasm, The Caribbean Writer, Canadian Notes & Queries, Numéro Cinq, The Windsor Review, Carousel, Journal of Health Psychology, Canadian Journal of Music Therapy, Journal of Palliative Care, University Affairs, The Arts and Psychotherapy, Ars Medica, and Pulp Literature. Mary serves as copy editor and proofreader on the Pulp Literature masthead and freelances as a writing mentor and editor in multiple genres.

Her poetry collection, some conditions apply, launched with Inanna Publications in 2020.

When not playing with words or music, Mary is a voracious knitter and an ardent dandelion enthusiast, cyclist, and foodie. Aside from eagle eyes and a quick wit, she lacks any other redeeming qualities or practical skills.


Other past and present activities include:

Intermittent tweets and blog posts;

Instructional best practice guidelines for the Editors Canada (Toronto Branch) Seminars Committee and revision task force lead, Ethical Guidelines for Editing Student Texts, for National Executive Council;

PEN Canada volunteer editor;

English Café support group for the Centre for Immigrant and Community Services;

Key Performance Targets working group of Patients Canada;

Consulting to and with music therapy colleagues and interns;

Community-of-practice website initiation for the Canadian Association for Music Therapy through the Canadian Virtual Hospice ( supported by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer ( with the Advisory Group of Louise Cadrin (Regina), Erin Montgomery (Halifax), Adrienne Pringle (Mississauga), and Valerie Weeks (Vancouver);

Serving as member of the Editorial Review Board of the Journal of the Association for Music & Imagery with previous reviews for the Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, Supportive Care in CancerJournal of Palliative CareMusic and Medicine, Journal of Health Psychology, Voices: World Forum for Music Therapy, and the Sage Handbook of the Arts in Qualitative Social Science Research;

Postsecondary curriculum design for research overview course (qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods) and teaching introduction to psychology, developmental psychology, transcultural health, and introduction to music therapy; and

Produced Gone to SEED, the 2012 reunion of the first alternative high school in North America.