NYC LATINA WRITERS GROUP
The NYC Latina Writers Group established 2006 by Alicia Anabel Santos and currently has an active membership of over 820 writers. For fourteen years it has been an organization that supports Latina Writers from New York, however, there are members from across the United States and internationally. The NYCLWG was established for Latinas and women of color in need of a place of their own, where their stories could be born and their voices heard. It is a professional network for seasoned and emerging writers. This writers organization is a safe space for writers of all genres. The NYCLWG is supported by many women of color groups and writing organizations. The NYCLWG offers writing workshops, monthly writer circles, and daily writing prompts. It hosts several readings and performances throughout the year. All aspiring, emerging and published writers are welcome! All NYCLWG events and workshops are open to Latinx and WOC. NYCLWG is a space for womyn writers (female, womyn identified and non-binary) we are a safe and inclusive space!
THE LADIES OF NYCLWG
Sonia Alejandra Rodriguez
Sonia Alejandra Rodriguez is an Assistant Professor of English at LaGuardia Community College in NYC. She is an immigrant of Juarez, Mexico and raised in Cicero, IL. Her work has been published in Huizache: The Magazine of Latino Literature, Hispanecdotes, Everyday Fiction, Acentos Review, Newtown Literary, and So to Speak A Feminist Journal of Language and Art.
My mother feared removal and separation from her children long before Trump became president. I crossed the Mexico-U.S. border with her and my younger sister in 1992. We walked from Juarez, Mexico, to El Paso, Texas, and boarded a plane to Chicago where my father, already a permanent resident, met us. We were stopped at the airport in El Paso. Officers handcuffed my mother and separated her from my sister and me. At 5 years old, I sat in a black plastic chair, with my 4-year-old sister crying on my lap, waiting for my mother to return. The men interrogating her harassed her with questions about her family and made comments about her appearance.
Years later, as we sat around my mother’s kitchen table in Cicero, Illinois, she remembered that the officers tried to convince her to go back. “Me decian que que bonita soy,” they told her. A woman as beautiful as her should have no problem making a better life for herself in Mexico. At 23 years old, my mother had already heard her share of promises from no-good men — including from my father, who was the reason for the journey in the first place. If I had been thinking only of myself, my mother said to me, I would’ve stayed in Mexico.
“Tengo que pensar en el futuro de mis hijas,” she responded when the men asked why she was willing to risk it all. Her daughters’ future is why she left her mother and siblings in Mexico and why she believes she endured many years of mistreatment from my father. -continue reading
Yoseli Castillo Fuertes
Yoseli Castillo Fuertes, born in the Dominican Republic in 1972, migrated to the United States at 16. She holds a BA in Psychology and an MA in Spanish Literature. She is a bilingual-afro-dominican-latina-lesbian poet-activist-teacher-aunt. She is a Cave Canem alumnus and her poems and short stories have appeared in various anthologies in New York, Buenos Aires, Madrid and Santo Domingo. She has published the poetry collection De eso sí se habla/Of That, I Speak.
De eso sí se habla / Of That, I Speak es un poemario bilingüe que abarca más de 20 años. La colección es una provocadora invitación a un dialogo comprometedor; a una conversación que incita al cambio, a la reflexión, a retar las normas políticas, sociales, sexuales, económicas a las que por ser mujeres estamos sujetas. De eso sí se habla / Of That, I Speak habla de temas que la cultura hispana/latina prefiere esconder para no aceptar la realidad, por lo tanto, estos poemas enfrentan al/la lector(a) con ella. To purchase book: DE ESO SI SE HABLA
Los Congresos (short story) by Yoseli Castillo Fuertes, “Desobedientes. Experiencias y reflexiones sobre poliamor, relaciones abiertas y sexo casual entre lesbianas latinoamericanas,”
El Reecuentro (short story), the Builder and other poems by Yoseli Castillo Fuertes, Divagaciones bajo la luna : voces e imagenes de lesbianas dominicanas
I love your handwriting
Your cursive moves
The roundness of your As
The slickness of your S
The shape your full written name makes on the page.
I love your firm mark
The tracks you leave behind
On the following pages of your journal
And on my life.
I love your pen
The one I can’t touch
The one I just follow with my gaze and admire
The way it flows and dances to create
And how I know this is the way to your true self.
I love your long hands
How erratically they thrive
They run to catch up with the stories living in your head
In your ancestral mother’s place
In the brown bodies of boys and girls learning to dodge the bullet
Learning to create a safe space for and by themselves.
I love your words
Both of chaos and strengths
They speak to all of struggles and victories won on the day by day.
I love the image you portray
The one lingering on people’s face
The one that transforms a room into a safe space
The one that empowers and inspires by virtue of self.
Sydney Valerio is a creative non-fiction mixed genre writer and performer. She daylights as an educator & moonlights as a writer, translator, editor, content creator, and organizer. In 2016 she wrote and performed “Matters", a one woman show. Her poetry is in several anthologies. A 2019 BRIO Award winning poet & a 2020 VOLCANISTA, she is currently working on her first book as an MFA student at The City College of New York.
J. F. Seary is a Nuyorican poet and actor. Her performance career began at Binghamton University. Since then, she has performed at the Nuyorican Poets Café, the Bowery Poetry Club, and Le Poisson Rouge. She has performed in American cities such as NYC, Chicago, Philadelphia, L.A., Grand Rapids, and Orlando. She has also performed in London, U.K. and San Juan, P.R. In addition, she has toured colleges across the country with her solo poetry show and with Kraal Charles Medias HerStory. J.F. Seary has performed in both classical and contemporary theatrical productions including; Shakespeare's King Lear, A Midsummer Night's Dream and As You Like It. Contemporary plays include Vivisection, In The Cypher, Soledad Speaks, and Latin Lives. Recently, she completed a limited engagement of Black Latina Production's Of Mothers and Men. She recently concluded working on Necromancer (tv series) and 13th Avenue (tv series). J.F. Seary currently a co-creator/writer on the webseries The New York Effect. She is humbled by all of these incredible experiences in performance. For more information or bookings: www.jfseary.webs.com.
Cindy M. Bautista-Thomas, LCSW, is the cofounder of Velocity Visions, Inc. She is also an Associate Director of Field Education at CSSW where she coordinates internships in schools, coordinates the Reduced Residency Program, as well as the annual field placement fair. She also teaches the Seminar for Field Instruction and Chairs the Annual School Social Work Conference at Columbia School of Social Work. She has over 20 years of social work experience in private child welfare and early intervention agencies, public schools, higher education and research.
Angela "Angy" Abreu is a Dominican-American mom, writer and community organizer. Angy firmly believes that “if it does not exist then you must create it.” In 2015, feeling dismissed as a Dominican American writer in many literary spaces, she decided to create the Dominican Writers Association a 501 c3 non-profit organization solely dedicated to highlighting content that not only promotes the works of Dominican Writers but also provides them with the tools and resources necessary for their development. Angy is the Creative Director of Dominican Writers and along with the Board manages and creates content that serves the Dominican Writers population.
Nancy A. Ruffin is a 4x award winning writer and transformation coach committed to empowering individuals to discover their purpose and live their best lives. She has authored and published four books. Her essays and articles have been featured in various print and online publications, including, but not limited to The Huffington Post and Latin Trends Magazine. In March 2018, Nancy was also featured in Latina Magazine for the transformative work she does with her annual strategic visioning workshops.