R183. Who is “We?”: Invisibility and Representation in the Creative Writing Classroom

A106, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Thursday, March 28, 2019
12:00 pm to 1:15 pm


Everyone's story matters in a classroom. So how does a teacher acknowledge issues of identity, while maintaining a focus on craft, so no story ever feels marginalized. How, by emphasizing craft, can a teacher prevent assumptions about background, privilege, and power to help make every work the brightest expression of itself. A diverse group of writers, students and teachers will navigate these questions and more in the format of a community forum involving the audience, after panelist remarks.



Sequoia Nagamatsu is the author of the story collection, Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone. His stories have appeared in Conjunctions, ZYZZYVA, Black Warrior Review, and Electric Literature, among others. He is an editor of Psychopomp Magazine and an assistant professor at St. Olaf College.

Marie Mutsuki Mockett's memoir, Where the Dead Pause and the Japanese Say Goodbye, examines grief against the backdrop of the 2011 Great East Earthquake in Japan. It was a finalist for the 2016 PEN Open Book Award, 2016 Indies Choice Best Book of Nonfiction and 2016 Northern California Book Award.

Jordan K. Thomas is a black prose writer whose work has appeared in the Kenyon Review, Kweli Journal, The Toast, and elsewhere. He holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from the University of Minnesota.

Andrew Harnish is a PhD candidate in English at the University of North Dakota. He holds an MFA in Fiction from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. His work has been published in NDQ, the Journal of Mennonite Studies, Atticus Review, Disability and Society, and The Rumpus.

Roy G. Guzmán is pursuing a PhD in Cultural Studies & Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota, where they also received an MFA in creative writing. They are a 2017 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellow.


March 4–7, 2020
San Antonio, TX

Henry B. González Convention Center