virtual event; open to the public and all mentees & mentors
Our stories help define our world, and the world around us. When we share our stories we learn about us, and we realize that we are all more alike than different.
Janis Kearney began researching the Queen of Gospel, Mahalia Jackson, after a dinner party 15 years ago in Chicago that took place in Ms. Jackson’s home shortly after her death. Through interviews, songs, and accounts from those who knew her, Janis then crafted the story of Mahalia Jackson with compassion, respect, and love.
Join us for an evening of discovery as we celebrate Janis Kearney’s new book Only on Sundays: Mahalia Jackson’s Long Journey. We’ll hear about the care and curiosity needed to write historical nonfiction from a creative lens and practice finding the spectacular figures in our own lives with writing prompts.
Janis F. Kearney is President and Founder of Writing our World Publishing, and a 501C3 Nonprofit, Celebrate! Maya Project. She is an author, book publisher, and writing instructor, born to southeast Arkansas cotton sharecroppers. She graduated from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville with a B.A. in Journalism, minoring in English. She served nine years as a project manager and public affairs director for Arkansas state government. She served briefly as managing editor for civil rights legend Daisy L. Bates’ historic Arkansas State Press Newspaper, before purchasing and becoming publisher of the newspaper in 1988, upon Bates’ retirement. In 1995, Janis became the first ever personal diarist to a president, serving in the William J. Clinton presidency for 6 years. She began her writing journey in 2001 and has written and published over 17 books. She founded the Celebrate! Maya Project after Dr. Maya Angelou’s death in 2014. The organization serves youth and small communities in Arkansas, using Maya Angelou’s life and legacy as a blueprint for helping youth lift their voices for good, and making a difference in their communities.
all mentees, all mentors, program alum and the public