Here’s Jamerly’s submission following our Audio Slam Poetry dorkshop in December 2013.
“Girls Write Now mentees are talented, serious young women writers. Their wide-ranging work sparkles with wit and passion.” – Alix Kates Shulman, author and guest speaker
Writers don’t usually let you see their work-in-progress. But for us, process is vital: it’s how we learn, how we stretch ourselves, and how we see that story, poem or play through to a beautiful finish. We’re not scared of the red pen along the way.
In our workshops, our mentors and mentees spark their creativity with writing exercises that take them through six genres: fiction, poetry, memoir, journalism, playwriting & screenwriting, and a wild card. After each workshop, they share their work in progress in secure online portfolios for mentors and mentees only.
But every now and then, mentees share the pieces in development, so you too can share in their process. Take a look!
Sometimes an idea rumbles around in your mind for a long time before it finds its form. When Nakissi and I meet from week to week, we talk frequently about the tension between past and future, and those conversations gave her the channel to bring this idea into written form.
I took the meaning of the words “new worlds” quite literally to tell the story of a young girl who had to move an ocean away from her home. This piece was very much inspired by my parents’ immigration experience but I believe that there are universal themes involved such as being courageous enough to explore new worlds, which is also what is needed to write about them.
As we look to the future, my mentor and I have been talking about how our personal histories and experiences with big, inescapable issues like religion shape what happens when we pick up our pens. In this poem, I began to ask some of those questions of myself, and I discovered a new, honest voice that’s truer to me and my own talents.
For their final projects, our Digital Program Mentees (or, affectionately, our “Dorkshoppers”) put their newly acquired Indesign skills to the test. Playing around with typography, layout and graphic design, our girls transformed their favorite written portfolio pieces into stunning digital artwork. Read Iris’s piece to see what happens when writing goes digital!