R133. A Woman's Rites of Passage

E141-142, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Thursday, March 28, 2019
9:00 am to 10:15 am


Periods, bras, babies. Marriage, motherhood, menopause. These are experiences many women go through, yet even in 2018 we belittle such topics as “women’s writing”—not as impressive or idea-centered as a man’s. Women writers in workshops still often feel hesitant to turn in work about these topics for fear they will be seen as less serious. This panel seeks to change that conversation and celebrates the craft of these moments and their value.



Kyoko Mori is the author of three nonfiction books (The Dream of WaterPolite LiesYarn) and four novels (Shizuko's DaughterOne BirdStone FieldTrue ArrowBarn Cat). She teaches creative writing at George Mason University and for the Low-Residency MFA Program at Lesley University.

Rajpreet Heir is a coordinator at TED and a writer based in New York. Her work has appeared in The AtlanticCosmopolitanThe Washington PostThe Normal School, and The New York Times. She has an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from George Mason University and writes about growing up Indian in Indiana.

Emily Heiden is a PhD candidate at University of Cincinnati studying Literary Nonfiction. Her work has appeared in The Washington PostBrevity Magazine, and Literary Hub. She has an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from George Mason University and a Master of Arts in Teaching from The University of Iowa.

Jessie Szalay teaches writing and literature at Salt Lake Community College. Her work has appeared in Gulf Coast, the Jewish Daily Forward, and National Geographic Traveler—Personal Explorer, among other places. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction from George Mason University.

Susanna Vander Vorste is a PhD candidate for literary nonfiction at the University of Cincinnati. Her work examines trauma, Midwestern culture, and the impact of meditation on people's daily lives. Her essays have appeared in StoneboatThe Chariton ReviewThe Lindenwood Review, and The Rumpus.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center