In this two-hour workshop, participants will be using the tools and artifacts of genealogy on display from the Filson’s Connecting the Dots: Exploring Your Family History exhibit as inspiration for writing poems and stories that matter, not only as our own family histories but to others as well. Lynnell Edwards will begin by discussing some representative literary excerpts inspired by the historical record, and then take time to consider objects in the exhibit, such as quilts, jewelry and other personal items, graphic texts such as maps and illustrations, and print-based historical documents like family bibles and marriage records. There will be generous time to begin drafting imaginative responses to the exhibit as well as to discuss strategies for revising work. She will also talk about how to find and use heirlooms and documents from your own family history as inspiration. Writers of all levels are welcome; the primary focus will be on writing poems and fiction.
Lynnell Major Edwards’ most recent work is the chapbook Kings of the Rock and Roll Hot Shop. She is also the author of three collections of poetry, most recently Covet, and also The Farmer’s Daughter and The Highwayman’s Wife. Her short fiction and book reviews have appeared most recently in Connecticut Review, American Book Review, Pleiades, New Madrid, and others. She is Associate Professor of English at Spalding University where she is Associate Program Director for Spalding’s MFA in Creative Writing.
Photo credit: John Nation