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Conversations and Connections DC 2020: Practical Advice on... has ended
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Saturday, April 18 • TBA
Writing Through Trauma

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Nearly all of us have experienced some form of trauma—whether it be personal, historical, or communal—from oppression, abuse, war, mental illness, loss, or disease, among other causes. While there are many methods available to help us cope with trauma, this session will explore how and why writers mine their pain, examine it up close, reflect on it, and write about it—as well as why they may sometimes choose NOT to put their traumatic experiences into writing. The process of telling our stories can offer healing and even transformation, but often, in a society keen on denial and erasure, there is power in writing our stories and owning them. We are saying, wait a minute, this thing happened. This workshop has less to do with personal healing or transformation and more with identifying which stories we have that “need” to be told and how best to tell them. We will explore various means of representing personal, historical, and communal trauma, from more expected genres like lyric poetry and memoir to less autobiographical approaches including fictionalized narratives, persona poems, and the personal academic.

Panelists will briefly discuss how they identified the traumas they needed to write about and read from their own work, followed by allow ample time for attendees to discuss their own experience with writing around trauma. We will also offer exercises for exploring traumatic experiences.



Speakers
avatar for Kirsten Porter

Kirsten Porter

Kirsten Porter is a freelance editor, poet, professor, and guest lecturer. She earned an MFA in creative writing from George Mason University. Porter has taught creative writing, composition, and literature studies at Marymount University. Her poetry and teachings focus on women... Read More →


Saturday April 18, 2020 TBA