COMMUNITY READ: Where You Come From: A Writing Workshop

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Allowed Ages: 16 and up

Program Description

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Where are you from? Where have you been? How does your own personal story of journey or stability inform your sense of yourself? How does that story mesh with your natal family? How does your story come together with your current family or intimate circle? What is the meaning of our environment in our sense of self?

Throughout The Prince of Los Cocuyos, Richard Blanco explores the way in which stories of origins and home both feed and complicate identity. Conceived in Cuba, born in Spain, and growing up in New York, then Miami, he lays bare his own continual confrontations with the mythology, nostalgia, and genuine pull of the idea of a “true” identity. Along the way he finds many rough edges that can’t be sanded down to fit into any particular mold or stereotype of national or cultural belonging.

How can you explore, through writing, your own journey through space and identity? In this workshop, we will use exercises that help us, as writers, to find narrative entry points through our own confrontations with the limitations and challenges of ideas of identity. This workshop is for people wanting to write memoir or fiction informed by personal history, or those who simply want to discover something new about themselves through the act of writing.

Participants should bring paper and a writing implement, curiosity, and a willingness to dig deep into their closest-held ideas of themselves. We will talk, do some warm up exercises, write from prompts, and share our new work. Ages 16+.