Brattleboro Literary Festival Brattleboro Literary Festival

Author Panel

Thursday, October 14, 2021

- EDT
Poetry, Identity, and Coming of Age
Diana Whitney
Diana Whitney
You Don’t Have to be Everything
Joy Ladin
Joy Ladin
Book of Anna
Lynn Melnick
Lynn Melnick
Landscape with Sex and Violence

Diana Whitney’s inclusive anthology for teen girls, You Don’t Have to Be Everything: Poems for Girls Becoming Themselves, was released by Workman Publishing to critical acclaim and became a YA bestseller.The poems in this collection speak candidly about rage, shame, desire, depression, sexual violence, body image, self-love, gender identity, and much more.

In this virtual event, four poets from the anthology—Leslie Marie Aguilar, Joy Ladin, Lynn Melnick and editor Diana Whitney— read their own poems and talk about the project. They’ll discuss how poetry has been a path for self-discovery and self-acceptance of their younger, and now adult, selves; how poems can facilitate empathy for self and others; and the important role poetry plays in allowing us to re-imagine and re-write our identities and stories.

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Friday, October 15, 2021

- EDT
A Creative Force
Kia Corthron
Kia Corthron
Moon and the Mars
Shanta Lee Gander
Shanta Lee Gander
GHETTOCLAUSTROPHOBIA
Farah Jasmine Griffin
Farah Jasmine Griffin
Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature
Bernice L. McFadden
Bernice L. McFadden
Praise Song for the Butterflies

The creative process has long been explored through time, but what does creativity look like through an intersectional lens?  Join us for this conversation with authors Farah Jasmine Griffin, Bernice McFadden, Kia Corthron, as they embark on a conversation with author and artist Shanta Lee Gander.  The conversation will be exploring what creativity means within a moment we are all recognizing as another Black Renaissance for Black creativity.

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Saturday, October 16, 2021

- EDT
Write Action Spotlight

Spotlight Reading features writers from The Brattleboro area who have published a book within the past year (allowing for Covid, this year within the past two years).

Within this group are both first published and much published writers. We are proud of the vibrant community of writers that are a part of Write Action.

Featuring Ed Burke, Sarah Cooperellis, Terry Hauptman, Toni Ortner, Shiva Shankaran and Lynn Valente. Moderated by Andy Burrows.


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- EDT
Another World: Poetry and Art by Young People from The Poetry Studio.
Ann Gengarelly
Ann Gengarelly
Another World
Tony Gengarelly
Tony Gengarelly
Art on the Spectrum: A Guide for Mentoring and Marketing Artists with ASD
Chard deNiord
Chard deNiord
In My Unknowing

Another World is an extraordinary book that features poetry and art by young people  (ages 5 to 17) from The Poetry Studio. Founded in 1995 by Ann Gengarelly, The Poetry Studio is indeed “another world” that inspires imagination and discovery. The students’ poems, in original and exceptional ways, invite us to remember the creative spirit and the importance of meeting with that part of oneself that is so often neglected. 

Chard deNiord is the  former Vermont Poet Laureate. deNiord is the author of seven poetry collections include In My Unknowing, Interstate, Speaking in Turn: a collaboration with Tony Sanders; The Double Truth, Night Mowing,  Sharp Golden Thorn, and Asleep in the Fire. DeNiord has also authored two books of  interviews with renowned American poets,  Sad Friends, Drowned Lovers, Stapled Songs: Reflections and Conversations with Twentieth Century American Poets and I Would Lie To You If I Could.

According to prize winning poet/professor, Bruce Smith “The students’ poems. . . are cracks in the construction, cures for the hurt, color for the bleakness, and challenges to the system.  These poems of love and rage are counter forces to unfeeling and silence.  They are maps to be consulted when navigating the world. . .”  Naomi Shihab Nye, Young People’s Poet Laureate for 2019-2022, has also commented:   These students' poems and art are so beautiful and refreshing - they ring of truth in a time of lies. We need them.

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Sunday, October 17, 2021

- EDT
Are We Having a Moment? Writing poetry in the time of the pandemic and poetry’s resurgence in the culture
Vijay Seshadri
Vijay Seshadri
That Was Now, This Is Then
Shanta Lee Gander
Shanta Lee Gander
GHETTOCLAUSTROPHOBIA
Diana Whitney
Diana Whitney
You Don’t Have to be Everything
Chard deNiord
Chard deNiord
In My Unknowing

Poetry has famously flourished in times of crisis—including pandemics past—thanks to poets and writers galvanized by suffering and confusion, from Boccacio’s Decameron in the 14th century to Jack London’s The Scarlet Plague in 1912 to Camus’ 1947 The Plague to Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera in 1985. And certainly the electrifying effect of Amanda Gorman’s reading at the Presidential Inauguration on Jan. 20. Within hours of delivering her poem, the young poet went viral, and in a single day Gorman attracted more than two million Instagram followers. 

Poetry has enjoyed phenomenal success the last few years…from the rise of youth poets to online audiences. Poets Shanta Lee Gander, Jane Hirshfield, Vijay Seshadri, and Diana Whitney will discuss resurgence and how the pandemic has affected their writing. Moderated by Chard deNiord, this panel promises to be lively and illuminating.

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- EDT
Print Town Panel

Join area writers as they share stories from Print Town: Brattleboro’s Legacy of Words, a 297-page, richly illustrated book written by 32 local authors, edited by longtime W.W. Norton editor Michael Fleming with a forward by Dummerston’s Tom Bodett.

Five people who contributed significantly to the book will speak about the process of how it came about: John Hooper, Mike Fleming, Rolf Parker-Houghton, Andy Burrows, and Arlene Distler. Moderated by Olga Peterson. 


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- EDT
Panel-Why Black Books Matter
W. Ralph Eubanks
W. Ralph Eubanks
A Place Like Mississippi
Farah Jasmine Griffin
Farah Jasmine Griffin
Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature
Glory Edim
Glory Edim
Well-Read Black Girl
Jason Broughton
Jason Broughton
Library of Congress

In her new book, Read Until You Understand,  Farah Jasmine Griffin asks these questions. What might engagement with literature written by Black Americans teach us about the US and its quest for democracy? What might it teach us about the fullest blossoming of our own humanity? Led by Jason Broughton (Director of the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, Library of Congress), panelists Farah Jasmine Griffin(Read until You Understand), W. Ralph Eubanks(A Place Like Mississippi), and Glory Edim (Well-Read Black Girl) will reflect on these questions and why black books matter to everyone.

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