R292. Better Later? Success and the Late Blooming Woman Author

B114, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Thursday, March 28, 2019
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


Women who come to writing and publishing later in life face a landscape tainted with sexism and ageism. How do women, particularly women of color, LGBTQ, or with disabilities, who first publish after 50, favorably negotiate such a landscape? Do we define success differently than younger writers? How does success in earlier careers affect our aspirations as writers? Finally, how does intersectionality further trouble this mix?


Ellen Meeropol is the author of three novels, Kinship of Clover, On Hurricane Island and House Arrest. She holds an MFA from the Stonecoast Program at the University of Southern Maine. She serves as Board President of Straw Dog Writers Guild.

Cynthia Bond is a New York Times Best-Selling Author. Her debut novel Ruby was an Oprah Book Club selection and was short-listed for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and the Baileys Prize. A PEN Rosenthal Fellow, she teaches writing to at-risk youth. 

Sandra Gail Lambert's books include A Certain Loneliness: A Memoir and a novel, The River's Memory. She is a 2018 NEA Creative Writing Fellow, and the co-editor of the anthology Older Queer Voices: The Intimacy of Survival. Lambert has participated as a mentor in AWP's Writer to Writer Program.

Sheila L. Carter-Jones is author of the book Three Birds Deep and the chapbooks Blackberry Cobbler Song and Crooked Star Dream Book. She is a fellow of Cave Canem, Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop and a Walter Dakin Fellow of the 2015 Sewanee Writer’s Conference. She is currently pursuing a MFA.

Celeste Gainey is the author of the poetry collection, The Gaffer, and the chapbook, In the land of speculation & seismography. The first woman admitted to the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees as a gaffer, she has spent many years working with light in film and architecture.


March 27–30, 2019
Portland, OR

Oregon Convention Center