R149. The Art of the Uncomfortable Conversation: Editing Memoir and Personal Essay

Ballroom A, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Thursday, March 8, 2018
10:30 am to 11:45 am


Memoir and personal essay strive for honest portrayals and explorations of (often uncomfortable) emotions and experiences. A narrator persona adds a polite distance, but editors of personal nonfiction must often ask writers personal questions—about sex/sexuality, illness, abuse, trauma—that in other contexts might be unthinkably rude. Editors from litmags and glossies will share lessons learned and offer best practices for navigating the editor/writer relationship with tact and empathy.


Hattie Fletcher is the managing editor of Creative Nonfiction magazine and the editor of True Story magazine. She has been a coordinating editor for the Best Creative Nonfiction series and is coeditor, with Lee Gutkind, of True Stories, Well Told: From the First 20 Years of Creative Nonfiction.

Anjali Enjeti's essays, articles, and criticism have appeared in Longreads, Vice, NPR, Atlanta Journal Constitution, The Star Tribune, NBC, and Pacific Standard. She is a board member of the National Book Critics Circle and teaches nonfiction at the Etowah Valley MFA program at Reinhardt University.

Lisa Factora-Borchers is a writer and Editorial Director at Bitch Media. She is also the editor of Dear Sister: Letters from Survivors of Sexual Assault. Her work is widely published and has been anthologized in Verses for Yolanda: A Storm of Filipino Poets and Revolutionary Mothering.

Jennifer Niesslein is the editor of the web magazine Full Grown People. She also cofounded Brain, Child magazine and coedited it before she and her partner sold the magazine in 2012. Niesslein is the author of one memoir and the editor of two FGP anthologies.

Kelly Grey Carlisle's essays have appeared in Ploughshares, New England Review, The Rumpus, The Sun, and others. Her memoir, We Are All Shipwrecks, is available from Sourcebooks. She is an associate professor of English at Trinity University and edits the nonfiction journal 1966.


March 7–10, 2018
Tampa, FL

Tampa Convention Center & Marriott Tampa Waterside