First Generation Creative Writers on Voice, Place, and Belonging

Room 2502A, Kansas City Convention Center, Level 2
Friday, February 9, 2024
1:45 pm to 3:00 pm


Four writers and poets read their original works and discuss the challenges of being first generation college students, all of whom went on to earn advanced degrees and become published authors and professors. Specifically, the panel will present work relating to feelings or notions of being behind and struggling with a sense of belonging, while also finding joy in cultivating their own writerly voices despite these challenges.

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: First_Generation_Writers_on_Voice,_Place,_and_Belonging.pdf



Rachel M. Hanson is the author of The End of Tennessee (University of South Carolina Press, 2024). A former O'Connor Fellow in Nonfiction, she now teaches literature and creative writing at the University of North Carolina Asheville, and is the executive director of the literary nonprofit Punch Bucket Lit.

Diamond Forde is a Tin House and Callaloo fellow whose work has appeared in Ninth Letter, Tupelo Quarterly, The Offing, and more. She is a recipient of the Margaret Walker prize, a finalist for the Georgia Poetry Prize, and her debut book Mother Body was published with Saturnalia Books in Spring 2021.

Danielle Cadena Deulen teaches for the graduate program at Georgia State University and hosts the podcast Lit from the Basement. She has published a memoir and three poetry collections, most recently Desire Museum. She has won a Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing Fellowship and a Pushcart Prize.

Tessa Fontaine


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center