F245. Extraordinary Journeys: Women Writers On and Off the Trail

Oregon Ballroom 203, Oregon Convention Center, Level 2
Friday, March 29, 2019
1:30 pm to 2:45 pm


Nothing shapes a narrative like a journey, and no form of travel allows as much detail to be absorbed as a walk. The trail itself can serve as a subject and narrative device, but also as a conduit for reflecting on issues such as racism, sexism, environmental justice, trauma, addiction, and healing. This panel brings together four women walkers, hikers, and roamers of urban and wild places to talk about how following a trail and laying down a narrative can intersect to serve a higher purpose.



Jennifer Sahn is executive editor of Pacific Standard. Stories she has edited have won the National Magazine Award, O. Henry Prize, and Pushcart Prize, among others, have been frequently selected for the Longreads Top Five, and have been widely reprinted in the Best American Series anthologies.

Rahawa Haile is an Eritrean American writer. In Open Country, her memoir about thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, explores what it means to move through America and the world as a black woman and is forthcoming.

Kathryn Miles is the author of four books, including Quakeland (Dutton 2017). Her writing has appeared in publications including Best American Essays, Boston Globe, The New York Times, Outside, Popular Mechanics, and Time. She serves as writer-in-residence at Green Mountain College.

Cheryl Strayed is the bestselling author of the memoir Wild, the novel Torch, and the nonfiction collections Tiny Beautiful Things and Brave Enough. Her essays have appeared in The Best American Essays, the New York Times, Vogue, The Sun, Tin House, the Missouri Review, and elsewhere.

Joan Naviyuk Kane is the author of six books and chapbooks of poetry and prose, for which she has received a Whiting Writer’s Award, the Donald Hall Prize, and other awards. A 2018 Guggenheim Fellow in Poetry, she teaches in the low-res MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center