Wednesday, February 8, 2012

International Women's History Month Literary Festival

Looking forward to a March 10th discussion in Baltimore on "the intersection of place, time and culture in literature and in the lives of women" with four amazing women:

Leila Cobo, a Fulbright scholar from Cali, Colombia, novelist, pianist, TV host, and executive editor for Latin content and programming for Billboard. She is considered one of the country's leading experts on Latin music. She is the author of Tell Me Something True. Her second novel, The Second Time We Met (Grand Central Publishing), will be released February 29, 2012. (

Jacqueline Luckett, author of Searching for Tina Turner and the newly published Passing Love (Grand Central Publishing). She participated in the Voices of Our Nations (VONA) writing workshops and, in 2004, formed the Finish Party along with seven other women writers-of-color. (

Bernice L. McFadden, author of seven critically acclaimed novels, including Sugar and Glorious. She is a two-time Hurston/Wright Legacy Award finalist. In her new novel, Gathering of Waters (Akashic Books), McFadden brings her own vision to the story of Emmett Till and the town of Money, Mississippi. (

Linda A. Duggins, moderator from the Hachette Book Group.

More details here

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A Conversation with Sixers Review

Appearing in Sixers Review today, a brief conversation with Goddard MFA graduate, Shokry Eldaly, who will someday be a literary marvel himself when he gets that half-finished novel done. Here is a sneak peek:
"Are you asking what you do when you are asked to conform? You don't. It's very simple. Why would you? Why would any person ever think that another person, or a structure (like publishing, or banking!), or a cultural assumption, knows what you need and who you are better than you do? You are the expert on you, and you have an urgency in your own preoccupations that is important for the rest of us to hear about. Otherwise, you become a bad copy of a character that someone else has made up."
Read the entire interview and take a look at the journal here.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Free in the New Year

What if there was no penalty for being who you are, and no prize either? If you didn’t have to worry about being judged, shunned, made fun of…what would you allow yourself to do? How would you act? What choices could you make? And what if there was no pressure to do the correct thing either: that you must write the bestseller, win the race, get the promotion, wear the most fashionable shoes? No approval, no praise.

Then everything you do every day, every choice you make, would be want you want to do at that moment, what you feel is right. You would be free to take risks. You would be free to play, and to find joy. You would be free to set your own priorities.

You would be free, free, free.

Happy 2012. Have a brilliant new year.