Exploring Our Racialized Identities

A life story writing workshop for people of colour

 
 
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Do you identify as a person of colour?

Do you feel like your life stories are often forgotten or misrepresented in the mainstream?

Are you longing to find a place to write and share your own true stories and to encourage other racialized folks to write and share theirs?

This workshop is for people of colour who want to write some of their stories and use writing to explore the many challenges of being racialized. The class will be a mix of writing at home with fun, interactive workbooks and in-class exercises based on themes such as racism, white supremacy, mircoaggressions and intersectionality. We’ll gather weekly to write together, to read our stories, and to give and receive kind, thoughtful and supportive feedback on our work.

The goal of this class is to give space to people of colour to find their writing voices and explore themes that don’t get a lot of attention in predominantly white circles. Beginner and seasoned students very welcome.

Here’s how it works:

This class has two main tools, memoir writing workbooks and in-person workshops at our studio. Workbooks are 25-ish page booklets with a theme to write about, a smattering of ideas about how to start, and a writing tip that you can take or leave. You’ll receive three workbooks, and then you’ll have the time in-between classes to scribble your heart out, before bringing in your work to share as part of the workshop. Our workshops are deliberately kept small (never more than 7 people) to ensure your work gets the time and space it needs. You can expect to leave each workshop session with warm and supportive feedback and conversation to fuel your next steps.

This class is ideal for people who:

  • Identify as Black, Indigenous or a Person of Colour.

  • Want to write about their experiences living in the world as People of Colour.

  • Are excited about exploring themes such as racism, white supremacy and intersectionality in a group.

  • Are motivated by the idea of sharing their writing in a small, supportive group with other People of Colour.

  • Want to integrate writing more deeply into their lives.

  • Love the idea of a set of creative dates with themselves.

  • Thrive in small, cozy groups. (This class will never have more than 7 participants).

You can expect to walk away with:

  • Three finished stories, with lots more pieces started.

  • Writing tools and practices to carry you forward.

  • Writing tricks and warm-ups you can use anytime.

  • Countless ideas about where your writing might go next.

  • A clear sense of the story you want to write and the voice you want to write it in.

  • Creative momentum.

This class won’t be a perfect fit for people who:

  • Don’t want to share their writing with others.

  • Don’t want to talk about their racialized identity.

  • Have already sketched out a manuscript and want to remain very focused on that one project.

  • Think their writing needs a harshly critical environment in order to thrive.

 

Jenna

Details:

Fall 2019

5 Wednesday evenings 7 – 10pm
November 13 – December 11
At the Firefly Studio with Jenna

You can check out our special one-day version of this workshop that we’re running this winter here.

Cost:

The fee for the 5-session class is $425, plus a $15 materials fee. Scholarships are available, and there is one spot available as a barter, for $75 plus 10 hours of work helping with background operations of Firefly, such as cutting up words for our poetry plate, putting up posters and helping to clean up after events. If you’d like this spot, shoot us a line.

When you sign up you’ll be asked for a $290 deposit to confirm your spot, the balance of $150 will be due a week later. You’ll also have the option of breaking your balance into two monthly credit card payments of $75. Note, HST will be added to all costs.

We don’t want money to be a barrier to participation for our classes, but we know it can be. This is especially true for people facing marginalization. We have a small scholarship fund available, allocated for anyone who needs it. Please let us know in your registration form if you’d like to apply. On the other hand if you’re able to contribute to our scholarship fund, click here.

Email us if you’d like to apply for the barter spot, it will be given on a first-come-first-served basis. $100 scholarships are available through the online registration system and will be applied to the balance.

To see our financial and cancellation policies, click here.

 

Ready to take the leap?

Registration is now full.

We’re not sure when we’re running this next but we hope to soon! You can check out our one day version of this workshop here.

You can get a nudge when early workshop registration begins by submitting your email below. Alternately, join our mailing list to keep up to date on all things Firefly.

Questions?

Your answer is probably on this page.

Looking for more options?

Take a peek at our other in-house workshops, our coaching services or our monthly writers care package.


What people are saying:

 
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This class was soul food. It nourished my writing life by offering me a space where I could openly and comfortably express myself as a racialized woman amongst other racialized writers. Those aha moments of feeling in solidarity with one another in the experiences we share as people of colour was priceless. I haven't found a space like this anywhere else in the city. Firefly, that's some magic you've got right there!

Suzanne Fernando
Artist, Librarian, Writer