Our Souths: Curating Spaces Against BIPOC & LGBTQIA+ Erasure

Room 2504AB, Kansas City Convention Center, Level 2
Friday, February 9, 2024
9:00 am to 10:15 am


As various states continue to pass restrictive and bigoted laws, the South is an increasingly hostile landscape for writers, particularly for queer and BIPOC writers. Writer-run reading series can help sustain these communities, serving as hubs for fellowship, creativity, and connection. Reading series organizers from across the American South will discuss the challenges and rewards of hosting live reading events and offer practical advice for those seeking to grow and develop a series.

Outline & Supplemental Documents




Dorsey Craft's debut collection Plunder (Bauhan 2020), won the 2019 May Sarton New Hampshire Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Blackbird, Cincinnati Review, Copper Nickel, Pleiades, and elsewhere. She is assistant poetry editor for Agni and co-organizer of Dreamboat Reading Series.

Kai Coggin (she/her) is the inaugural Poet Laureate of Hot Springs, Arizona, a master naturalist and K–12 teaching artist, and the author of four collections. A queer woman of color, she was awarded the 2021 Governor’s Arts Award and voted “Best Poet in Arkansas” by the Arkansas Times. Coggin hosts Wednesday Night Poetry.

Jessica Q. Stark is the author of Buffalo Girl (BOA Editions, 2023), Savage Pageant (Birds, LLC, 2020) and four poetry chapbooks, including Innanet (The Offending Adam, 2021). She is a poetry editor at AGNI and is an assistant professor of creative writing at the University of North Florida.

Erin Hoover is the author of two poetry collections, Barnburner (Elixir, 2018) and No Spare People (Black Lawrence, 2023). She teaches creative writing and courses in editing and publishing at Tennessee Tech University and hosts Sawmill Poetry, an in-person monthly reading series.

Sebastián H. Páramo's debut collection, Portrait of Us Burning, is forthcoming from Northwestern University's Curbstone imprint. He is the founding editor of The Boiler and poetry editor for Deep Vellum. He is a visiting assistant professor of English at Austin College in Sherman, Texas.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center