A SINGLE STORY -- WEEKLY PICKS (AUGUST 8-14)

MUST LISTEN

INTERVIEWS

KRYS LEE

KRYS LEE

  • A Language Is a Window: An Interview with Krys Lee [Words Without Borders] 
  • Unadorned and Free: An Interview with Issue 07 Contributor Naomi Extra [Apogee]
  • Interviews with Camille Rankine, Ocean Vuong, Saeed Jones, Wendy Xu, and others [Dive Dapper] 

WHAT WE’RE READING

  • On The Politics of Europe’s New Literary Stars [LitHub]
  • The Poet Kevin Young Is Named New Director of Schomburg Center [The New York Times]
  • Oprah’s book club pick: ‘The Underground Railroad,’ by Colson Whitehead [The Washington Post]
  • Starz Developing ‘Pussy Valley’ Series From Playwright Katori Hall [Shadow and Act]
  •  Writer James Alan McPherson, Winner Of Pulitzer, MacArthur And Guggenheim, Dies At 72 [NPR]
  • Exploring the books of #BlackLivesMatter [Melville House]

THINGS TO DO

 

 

 

 

A SINGLE STORY -- WeeKLY PICKS (AUGUST 1-7)

WHAT WE’RE READING

ESTHER LOU WEITHERS

ESTHER LOU WEITHERS

  • Fox Writers Intensive Fellowship Goes To Ester Lou Weithers [Deadline]
  • John Cho, Sulu of ‘Star Trek Beyond,’ Navigates a Beckoning Universe [The New York Times]
  • Afrolatin@ Theatre Series: Interview with Playwright and Actress Krysta Gonzalez [ Black Girl, Latin World]
  • Yaa Gyasi And Hsu Hsu Talk About Writing [The Fader]
  • Anti-Black Racism in Speculative Fiction [Medium]

THINGS TO DO

  • Khrys Lee (How I Became a North Korean) in conversation with Jessie Chaffee (editor at Words Without Borders) at Greenlight Bookstore [August 4, at 7:30pm] 
  • Poets of The Conversation (Camonghne Felix, Thiahera Nurse, Jose Olivarez, and Paul Tran) at Brooklyn Bridge Park [August 8, at 7pm]
  • Book Launch: Teju Cole (Known and Strange Things) in conversation with Amitava Kumar at St. Joseph’s College [August 9, at 7:30pm]
  • Register for Kweli Journal’s “Art of the Short Story Workshop” [Sept. 10 – Oct. 22]

OPPORTUNITIES

  • Pen America announced its current employment opportunities [career page] 
  • The Bronx Museum opens applications for its 2017 Artist in the Marketplace Program [AIM page
  • LMCC announces grant opportunities for art educators based in New York [grant page]

 

A SINGLE STORY SPOTLIGHT -- SUMMER RETREATS

Writing is often a solitary effort. Typically, we're hunkered down in front of a computer at home. If we do manage to get fresh air, it's usually at a cafe or library. That's why writers' retreats are a great way to break from routine and share your craft with other writers in a new environment. Some retreats also offer mentorship opportunities with master writers. 

A Single Story has highlighted several summer writers' retreats you might be interested in. Want to get away but don't want to travel too far? The Pink Door Writers' Retreat and Kimbilio [Fiction] are holding retreats stateside (Rochester, New York and Taos, New Mexico). For those looking to travel out-of-country, The Drawing Room Project is looking for participants to join them in St. Andrew, Jamaica, and Farafina Trust invites participants to join them in Lagos, Nigeria.

For more details and deadlines, check out the following:

 

THE PINK DOOR WRITERS RETREAT

INFO: The Pink Door Women’s Writing Retreat is exclusively for writers of color. It serves to promote community and dialogue for writers currently excluded from the dominant cultural narrative; it actively seeks to bring Black women, women of color, trans women and gender non-conforming writers / activists / scholars / rebels and regional voices into exchange and engagement with each other to provide a space for mentorship and exploration of ideas while building an active and informed literary community.  

 The retreat will be held in Rochester, New York from July 27-30, 2016.

APPLICATIONS DUE: April 15, 2016

thepinkdoorwomenswritingretreat.tumblr.com/

 

2016 KIMBILIO [FICTION] SUMMER RETREAT

INFO: Kimbilio [Fiction], a community of writers and scholars committed to developing, empowering and sustaining fiction writers from the African diaspora, is currently accepting applications for their summer retreat, which will be held at SMU Campus in Taos, New Mexico from July 17-23, 2016.

FEES: Tuition is covered by Kimbilio [Fiction] and there is no application fee, however, participants are responsible for their own transportation to/from the retreat as well as a fee that partially covers the costs for room and board with the amount varying by size of the chosen accommodation. Should one get accepted, a $200 deposit is due by May 15 to secure a spot at the summer retreat. 

DEADLINE: April 15, 2016 (for applications)

kimbiliosubmissions.submittable.com/submit

 

THE DRP 3rd ANNUAL WRITERS’ RETREAT: CONVERSATIONS IN THE HEART OF ST. ANDREW

The Drawing Room Project

INFO: The DRP Writers’ Retreat (in St. Andrew, Jamaica from May 27 – 29) supports writers in the genre of poetry. A series of workshops will be led by Jamaican master writer Edward Baugh (author of Black Sand, winner of the Guyana Prize for Literature Caribbean Awards Best Book of Poetry 2016 and Gold Musgrave Medalist, 2014). During this intense 3-day program, groups are kept small to encourage conversations, and the environment is relaxed enough that participants may approach the mentor to elaborate on workshop comments during social time.

The program culminates in a poetry reading, where participants and the mentor present their work to the local community. The local community in turn will exhibit craft and art of significant cultural worth.

Objectives:

  • Support writers in the creative process with time to develop their skills and create new work.
  • Create mentoring opportunities in which persons are encouraged by established Jamaican writers to pursue a career in the literary arts.
  • Expose persons to traditional and indigenous practices that will be documented and / or re-imaged as personal histories.
  • Explore the themes and motifs of the Caribbean.
  • Share quality literature using new and traditional mediums.
  • Produce a high quality literary event that reaches Jamaicans in rural communities

Writers of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. The DRP does not discriminate against anyone on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, marital status, ancestry, disability, HIV status, or veteran status. They encourage internationalism and welcome writers from around the world.

No previous publication is required; however, writers must demonstrate exceptional skill. The program is in English, and, therefore, writers are expected to be fluent in the language.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES: Writers are asked to submit a sample of their work, a brief bio and a personal statement todrawingroomproject@gmail.com

FEES: A fee is required to cover housing, program, meals and transfer. For more information, please contact the email address provided above.

 

2016 FARAFINA TRUST CREATIVE WRITING WORKSHOP

INFO: Organized by its creative director, award-winning writer Chimamanda Adichie, Farafina Trust will be holding a creative writing workshop in Lagos, Nigeria from June 21 – July 1, 2016. The Caine-Prize winning writer Binyavanga Wainaina, Aslak Sira Myhre and others will teach the workshop alongside Adichie.

The workshop will take the form of a class and participants will be assigned a wide range of reading and writing exercises. The aim of the workshop is to improve the craft of published and unpublished writers and encourage them by bringing different perspectives to the art of storytelling.

DEADLINE: May 20, 2016

farafinabooks.wordpress.com/2016/04/08/2016-farafina-trust-creative-writing-workshop/

 

WATCH: A Conversation with Chris Jackson

Chris Jackson, a leading editor in the publishing industry and recent subject of a New York Times profile, recently sat down with WNYC’s Rebecca Carroll to discuss his career trajectory, what it took to bring Ta-Nehisi Coates’ award-winning masterpiece Between the World and Me to bookshelves, and the role race often plays in publishing and crafting literature.

In addition to Coates, Jackson has also worked to bring the works of celebrity chef Eddie Huang, Jay-Z and MK Asante to mass audiences.

You can watch the entire conversation below:

Well Read Black Girl at Housing Works Bookstore

Camille Rankine

Camille Rankine

On a chilly night in late February, Well Read Black Girl - a digital platform that amplifies the voices of black women in literature - presented "Reimagining the Literary Canon," an evening of readings by an eclectic group of poets, fiction writers and essayists at Housing Works in SoHo.

Hosted by Well Read Black Girl herself, Glory Edim, the event explored various themes including home in distant lands, ancestry, and hyphenated identities. Camille Rankine recited poetry about her genealogy and “occupying that weird space” as a first generation American of Jamaican descent. Bsrat Mezghebe’s work centered on Eritrea, and Nicole Dennis-Benn read an excerpt from her forthcoming debut novel “Here Comes The Sun,” which explored skin bleaching in Jamaica.

Other work recalled the sexualization and brutalization of black women’s bodies. Writer Ashley Ford's searing personal essay about her changing pubescent figure and the shame projected on her by the men in her community was inspiring and relatable, and Diamond Sharp read a timely poem called “Black Lady Lazarus” about the death of Sandra Bland and a slew of other black women whose lives were stolen at the hands of police.

The night was also complete with odes to #blackgirlmagic of the past and present. Ms. Sharp dedicated a poem to Lorraine Hansbery and Jenna Wortham read a draft of afro-futurist fiction inspired by Willow Smith. Other featured readers included Morgan Parker, Nicole Sealey, and Kyla Marshall

For more information on Well Read Black Girl, please visit wellreadblackgirl.com


Welcome to A Single Story!

A Single Story is a new website that seeks to champion diverse voices in literature, poetry, television, film and theater by aggregating and spotlighting opportunities for writers of color.

We are living in a seminal moment; are present at a time when the national conversation, despite the efforts of many, is centered on inclusion. The call for diversity has permeated every industry – from Hollywood to Silicon Valley, from art museums to publishing houses – and marginalized voices are saying “no more.” We deserve our spot at the table. Our voices will be heard.

A Single Story wants to echo those voices. It was created in response to the need for people of color to have ownership of their stories and the dangers that arise when others frame our narratives on our behalf.

In the last year alone, a conservative playwright developed a play that tried to validate the injustice that took place in Ferguson; a white poet pretended to be Asian as "a strategy" to get published; and stage veteran Tonya Pinkins stepped down from the lead role in Mother Courage to pen a scathing and necessary missive titled “Who Loses, Who Thrives When White Creatives Tell Black Stories?”

The upside? There are many opportunities available for writers of color and A Single Story will share them with you through posts about contests, fellowships, and workshops, event listings and a resource page that lists magazines, journals, organizations and programs that are dedicated to working with writers of color. Another goal this year is to build a community of writers through social gatherings and readings, so please stay tuned.

I began by telling you that the site was a labor or love. It is also a collaborative effort. I want to personally thank everyone who submitted opportunities. Please bookmark and share A Single Story with your friends, your writing groups, and through social media. And feel free to submit any opportunities you come across.

Let’s work together to bring accuracy and authenticity to the stories that shape our lives!

XoXo,

Camille Ortiz