F237. Writing Dementia: How We Give Voice to Fragmentation and Decline

Grand Salon C, Marriott Waterside, Second Floor
Friday, March 9, 2018
3:00 pm to 4:15 pm


Dementia is, among many things, the fragmentation of a life. How does a writer give voice to that fragmentation and to its impact on family members and their stories? What is the challenge of putting into words the disintegration of personality, relationship, and lives? Two poets, an essayist, and a graphic memoirist wrangle with these questions and examine the ways parental dementia has shaped their recent work.


Erin Coughlin Hollowell's latest book, Every Atom, chronicles her mother's dementia. Her first book of poetry is Pause, Traveler. Her poetry has appears in literary magazines. She teaches in the UAA MFA Program and is the Executive Director of Storyknife Writers Retreat.

Brendan Constantine is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently Dementia, My Darling. He currently teaches poetry in Los Angeles, and regularly offers classes to hospitals, foster homes, veterans, and centers for the elderly.

Kate Carroll de Gutes's book, Objects In Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear, won the 2016 Oregon Book Award for creative nonfiction and a 2016 Lambda Literary Award in memoir. Her new book, The Authenticity Experiment: Lessons From the Best & Worst Year of My Life was released in September 2017.

Sarah Leavitt is the author of Tangles: A Story About Alzheimer's, My Mother and Me. Tangles, one of the first book-length comics about dementia, has received international critical acclaim. Sarah teaches comics classes in the creative writing program at the University of British Columbia.

Tina Schumann is author of three poetry collections. Her chapbook Requiem. A Patrimony of Fugues won the 2016 Diode Editions Chapbook Competition. She is editor of the anthology Two-Countries: U.S. Daughters & Sons of Immigrant Parents. Her work has appeared widely since 1999.


March 7–10, 2018
Tampa, FL

Tampa Convention Center & Marriott Tampa Waterside