Girls Write Now’s popular CHAPTERS Reading Series showcases our mentees’ best work as they take their pieces from the page to the stage with confidence and energy that will leave you speechless. Starting in March and concluding in June, this spring’s 2017 CHAPTERS is an experience you’ll relish. Expect an inspiring night filled with diverse stories that are not always heard — and join an exuberant audience in supporting these exciting new writers. Here is the 2017 lineup for keynote speakers, who will kick off each event with a reading and a keynote address. Mark your calendar!
Keynote speakers include:
March 17: Hala Alyan, author of Salt Houses (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/May, 2017)
April 21: Emma Cline, author of The Girls (Random House/June, 2016)
May 19: Emma Straub, author of Modern Lovers (Riverhead/May, 2016)
June 16: Karina Glaser, author of The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Fall 2017)
More about the keynote speakers:
- Hala Alyan is an award-winning Palestinian American poet and clinical psychologist whose work has appeared in numerous journals including The Missouri Review, Prairie Schooner and Colorado Review. She resides in Manhattan. Salt Houses explores “a Palestinian family caught between present and past, between displacement and home.”
“Now, more than ever, the luminous and necessary work of Girls Write Now is essential in encouraging girls and young women to author their own narratives, a form of empowerment that lasts a lifetime.” – Hala Alyan
- Emma Cline, was the winner of The Paris Review’s Plimpton Prize in 2014. She is from California. The Girls is the story of Evie, a woman who is haunted by the summer of 1969, when she was a lonely fourteen-year-old growing up in Northern California. When Emma Cline read Helter Skelter as a teenager she wasn’t interested in Manson but was fascinated by the girls themselves. Girls who looked like people she knew. Cline grew up with four sisters. She describes that time in their house as a never-ending adolescence. Cline knew she wanted to write about young girls as they start to experience power for the first time in their lives, with no real understanding of how to use it or what it means —how that desire to be seen and known makes you vulnerable.
“Girls Write Now is doing deeply important work — young women, now more than ever, must claim their own stories.” — Emma Cline
- Emma Straub is the New York Times-bestselling author of The Vacationers, Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures, and the short story collection Other People We Married. Her fiction and nonfiction have been published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Elle, and Conde Nast Traveler, and she is a contributing writer for Rookie. Straub’s work has been published in fifteen countries. In Modern Lovers, Emma Straub brings the same lovable dysfunction that she brought to the Post Family in The Vacationers, only this time the family is a family of friends. The Millions has likened the novel’s backdrop to a Noah Baumbach film, though Brooklyn Magazine points out that what Straub does with this familiar literary milieu “is smart and fresh, offering new insights into the lives of people all around us.”
“Girls Write Now is electric, filled with more ideas, energy, and power than all the lightbulbs in the Empire State Building. If these girls are the future, which of course they are, the future is glorious.” — Emma Straub, a Girls Write Now Mentor Alum
- Karina Glaser is a former teacher and is currently a contributor to Book Riot. She lives in Harlem, New York City with her husband, two daughters, and assortment of rescued animals. One of her proudest achievements is raising two kids who can’t go anywhere without a book. Her debut novel,The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street, is a sweeping family story that is as lively, diverse, and noisy as any street in Harlem. Reminiscent of The Penderwick series, this beautiful tale is a modern classic in the making that highlights the connections we make and the unexpected turns life can take. The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street will be published in Fall, 2017 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
“Through Girls Write Now, girls are given the most important gift: a courageous voice. Through their stories and writings, the young women in this program become powerful agents for change and transformation in their own lives, their communities, and the broader world.” — Karina Glaser
Last year’s 2016 CHAPTERS keynote speakers included:
- March: Tanwi Nandini Islam’s (Bright Lines) Q&A and keynote address
- April: Mia Alvar’s (In the Country: Stories) Q&A and keynote address
- May: Angela Flournoy’s (The Turner House) Q&A and keynote address
- June: Naomi Jackson’s (The Star Side of Bird Hill) Q&A and keynote address
The Girls Write Now 2017 CHAPTERS Reading Series is sponsored in part by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.