Girls Write Now (GWN) is the first organization in the United States, and the only one on the East coast, to combine mentoring and writing instruction within the context of all-girl programming. Since 1998, we have given more than 3,500 at-risk girls from New York City’s under-funded public high schools access to a supportive mentoring relationship, a safe space to share ideas, and an intergenerational writing community.
Our rigorous selection process, respect for each relationship’s singularity, and integrated supports have led to rich, revelatory mentee writing across a variety of genres, and to a signal set of accomplishments. We see over 90% retention rates within the year, and return rates for non-seniors of 80%. While half of New York City’s youth fail to complete high school, 100% of GWN’s seniors graduate and move on to college – bringing with them awards, scholarships, a new sense of confidence and new skills. Last April, our mentee class was awarded 27 Gold and Silver Keys from the Scholastic Arts and Writing Awards – more than double last year’s 13 keys – and three National Gold Medals. Girls Write Now has been distinguished by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities as one of the top 15 after-school arts and culture programs in the nation.
Hedgebrook supports visionary women writers whose stories and ideas shape our culture now and for generations to come.
THE ALCHEMY OF TIME & SPACE, SOLITUDE & COMMUNITY
Located on beautiful Whidbey Island near Seattle, Hedgebrook offers one of the few residency programs in the world exclusively dedicated to supporting the creative process of women writers, and bringing their work to the world through innovative public programs.
The gift of time and space in solitude cannot be overestimated. It is essential to a writer’s process and difficult to carve out in daily life. Having her own cottage, with meals provided, enables a writer to give full focus to her work and go deeper into her writing process.
Hedgebrook was founded on Virginia Woolf’s belief that giving a writer a room of her own is the greatest vote of confidence in her voice. What we’ve discovered in the ensuing decades is the power of community: bringing women together is equally important in nurturing and informing their voices, and emboldening them to speak.
At the end of a day of writing, all six residents come down to the farmhouse kitchen and share a meal, their stories, histories, breakthroughs and roadblocks. They give advice and feedback, and challenge each other to take risks. A community forms around the kitchen table, bonds deepen through conversation, and writers leave knowing they are part of the larger Hedgebrook community in the world.
The Afghan Women’s Writing Project is aimed at allowing Afghan women to have a direct voice in the world, not filtered through male relatives or members of the media. The project reaches out to talented and generous women author/teachers here in the United States and engages them, on a volunteer, rotating basis, to teach Afghan women online from Afghanistan. We use women teachers due to cultural sensitivities in Afghanistan. The writing workshops are taught in three secure online classrooms.
Submissions are edited in a back-and-forth process for grammar and clarity, but remain the work of the original author. The goal of the project is to encourage the women to develop their voices and share their stories, something that was not permitted during the years when Afghanistan was Taliban-held.
The AWWP online magazine is a key part of the project. It is intended to instill a sense of pride in these women. It also aims to enlighten our readers about life in Afghanistan and to provide a positive link between Afghans and their readership.
The Afghan Women’s Writing Project began as an idea during novelist Masha Hamilton’s last trip to Afghanistan in November 2008. Her interest in Afghanistan was sparked in the late 1990s during the Taliban period, when she understood it was one of the worst places in the world to be a woman. Masha first visited the country in 2004, and was awed and inspired by the resolute courage of the women she met. When she returned, she saw doors were closing and life was again becoming more difficult, especially for women. She began to fear we could lose access to the voices of Afghan women if we didn’t act soon.
Women's Review of Books provides a unique perspective on today’s literary landscape and features essays and in-depth reviews of new books by and about women. Women's Review of Books is published by the Wellesley Centers for Women at Wellesley College, in collaboration with Old City Publishing in Philadelphia, PA.
Women’s Review of Books (WRB) began publishing in October 1983, with a goal of spreading the news about the scholarship emerging from the then new field of women’s studies and about creative writing—fiction, memoir, poetry—that examined women’s experiences. At the time, it was just about possible for WRB to cover every book that fit under these broad guidelines; and it was not always easy for those interested in such writings to track them down. Mainstream book review publications, newspapers, and even scholarly journals did not cover them; a network of women’s and gay bookstores was just emerging; and of course there was no Internet. Feminist and gay publications came and went and often did not devote much space to book reviews. WRB became essential reading for feminists.
VIDA seeks to explore critical and cultural perceptions of writing by women through meaningful conversation and the exchange of ideas among existing and emerging literary communities.
VIDA was founded in August 2009 to address the need for female writers of literature to engage in conversations regarding the critical reception of women’s creative writing in our current culture.
VIDA’s structure is “grass-roots.” The individuals presently involved in creating VIDA are spread across the country, represent different identities, work from within a range of aesthetics, and share the common goal to create a forum at which all women writers may engage in much longed for conversations about literature being produced by women and its reception by the larger culture.