F224. My Brother, My Antagonist: Memoirists on Developing Family Members as Characters

B116, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Friday, March 29, 2019
1:30 pm to 2:45 pm


Complex family relationships drive many writers to memoir, but translating those relationships to the page vividly, fairly, and sensitively can be just as complex. This panel of memoirists shares stories, craft tips, and frank advice about the tough, tricky, and surprising process of turning their closest family members into rich, fully-dimensional characters, and what happened to those relationships once they did.



Mike Scalise's memoir, The Brand New Catastrophe, won the Christopher Doheny Award from the Center for Fiction. He's an 826DC advisory board member, and has received fellowships from Bread Loaf, Yaddo, Ucross, and was the Philip Roth Writer In Residence at Bucknell University.

Jennifer Hope Choi is the recipient of the Carson McCullers Center Fellowship and the BuzzFeed Emerging Writer’s Fellowship. Her work has appeared in Best American Travel Writing 2018, VQR, Guernica, The American Scholar, The Atlantic, Lucky Peach, and elsewhere. She is working on a memoir.

Justin St. Germain is the author of the memoir Son of a Gun. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Tin House, Barrelhouse, Hobart, The Best of the West anthology, and elsewhere. He attended the University of Arizona and was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. He teaches at Oregon State University.

T Kira Madden is an APIA writer living in New York City. She has received fellowships from The MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, and Hedgebrook, and serves as the founding Editor-in-chief of No Tokens, a journal of literature and art. Her memoir is forthcoming.

Allie Rowbottom holds a PhD in Creative Writing and Literature from the University of Houston and an MFA from CalArts. She is the author of Jell-O Girls: A Family History, a memoir of motherhood, mother-loss, and Jell-O.


March 4–7, 2020
San Antonio, TX

Henry B. González Convention Center