It’s a Wonderful Life: Writing Resistance & Radical Self-Care

Host/Sponsor: 
NY Writers Coalition
Room: 
3.80
Timeslot: 
SATURDAY June 3rd Session 2: 12:00pm - 1:50pm
Abstract: 
What might the radical new world look like without us in it? A world without social justice warriors is not an option. As much as we work to value and preserve the lives and rights of others, it’s time we explore another strategy of defense in our organized resistance: self-preservation. In this session, participants from all backgrounds and experiences are invited to engage NY Writers Coalition’s community of writers and activists in a panel discussion of radical self-care. Here, we’ll share contemplative writing prompts and tap into centering exercises – physically, emotionally, spiritually – to aid and sustain us on our path to a radical new world. Join us as we locate ourselves, our stories, and our futures.
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker First Name: 
Rose
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Last Name: 
Gorman
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Affiliation: 
NY Writers Coalition
Chair/First Facilitator/Speaker Biography: 
Rose Gorman is a writer and Program Director at NY Writers Coalition, a community-based writing and social justice organization in Brooklyn, NY. She is also the incoming fellow of The Tuxedo Project, a non-profit focused on revitalizing the neighborhood around 7124 Tuxedo Street in Detroit, MI. Her writing has appeared in The Bridge, Paste Magazine, and elsewhere. In 2012 she was recognized as one of 30 Women Making a Difference by re:gender (formerly the National Council for Research on Women). Over the past 10 years, Rose has facilitated numerous writing groups for youth and adults, including formerly homeless veterans, recent immigrants, incarcerated men at Rikers Correctional Facility, LGBTQ+ homeless youth and elders, and young girls of color. She also serves as a Fiction Reader for Apogee Journal, an art and literary publication that engages with identity politics, such as race, gender, sexuality, class, ability, and intersectional identities. Learn more about her projects at thetuxedoproject.com.
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator First Name: 
Maritza
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Last Name: 
Arrastia
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Affiliation: 
NY Writers Coalition
Speaker 1/Second Facilitator Biography: 
Maritza Arrastia is a Cuban-Puerto Rican worker-writer of fiction, poetry, and screenplays. She is the author of the novel Exile and was recently included in the anthology Breaking Ground. Maritza has received fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts in screenwriting, playwriting, and fiction. Her current projects include a novel called Todos, a collection of microcuentos, and poetry. Maritza has been with NY Writers Coalition since 2014 and co-leads creative writing workshops in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. For Maritza, writing is liberation art, and she is committed to bringing writing into her work as an educator and social justice activist. You can read Maritza’s writing at thewritingroom.org.
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator First Name: 
Elena
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Last Name: 
Schwolsky
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Affiliation: 
NY Writers Coalition
Speaker 2/Third Facilitator Biography: 
Elena Schwolsky is a lifelong writer and social activist who joined NY Writers Coalition in 2014. She co-leads a creative writing workshop for young women at a homeless shelter in Sunset Park, Brooklyn and leads the Thursday workshop for seniors at the 14th Street Y. Elena’s writing is informed by more than 30 years of work as a nurse and community health educator, including 10 years as a pediatric AIDS nurse during the height of the epidemic. Her essays and stories have appeared in the American Journal of Nursing, The Veteran, and the anthologies Storied Dishes: What Our Recipes Say about Who We Are and Reflections on Nursing: 80 Inspiring Stories on the Art and Science of Nursing.
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator First Name: 
Sára
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Last Name: 
Abdullah
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Affiliation: 
NY Writers Coalition, Earth Seed Holistic
Speaker 3/Fourth Facilitator Biography: 
Sára Abdullah, an indigenous SWANA/Pin@y, non-binary femme Muslima descended from nomadic dreamweavers, kitchen witches, tricksters, and storytellers. She honors those who came before and those who gather with her through a life’s work in plant medicine, healing, magic, writing, and nurturing the creative spirit in herself and others. As a poet, storyteller, cultural organizer, and healing artist, she is committed to uplifting radical tenderness, (re)membering embodied knowledge, and building collective liberation. Her community and healing offerings can be found at earthseedholistic.com
Panel/Workshop Organizer First Name: 
Rose
Panel/Workshop Organizer Last Name: 
Gorman
Panel/Workshop Organizer Affiliation: 
NY Writers Coalition
 

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