Monday, February 28, 2011

Anastacia Tolbert Poetry Reading Saturday March 5th @ 8:00 pm

Anastacia Tolbert is a multifarious mix of grit, sunshine, alphabet juice & butterflies. She is a writer, performance artist, documentarian, teacher and workshop facilitator.

Anastacia Tolbert is a writer of poetry, prose, plays, and journalism. She is a graduate of the Cave Canem program for African American poets and holds an undergraduate degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. She is currently Resident Writer and 8th Grade Teacher at the Seattle Girls School.

She received a 2004 San Diego Journalism Press Club Award for her article “War Torn.” In 2007, she wrote, co-produced and co-directed GOTBREAST?, a documentary about women and body image. She is a 2010 Hedgebrook Writer in Residence.

She has taught writing, poetry and performance workshops to students of all ages at schools, literary centers, battered women’s shelters, youth camps, and libraries. She has facilitated creative writing workshops for adults at Seattle's Richard Hugo House, the country's third-largest literary center.

Anastacia’s poetry and prose have appeared in many journals and magazines, including Essence, Saltwater Quarterly (April 2011), and San Diego City Beat, as well as in the anthologies, Things Lost, Cave Canem XI,  Alehouse Journal, The Drunken Boat, Reverie, Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Poets & Emcees (which was nominated for the 2007 NAACP Award), and I Woke Up and Put My Crown On: 76 Voices of African American Women. She has performed her poetry in more than fifty venues, including colleges, writers’ conferences, and art museums, and as a featured artist on six radio stations.

Anastacia says of her work:

When I was growing up in the Midwest in the late 70s and 80s, women writers were typically stereotyped as "gifted" but poor, wishful bohemians -- people proud to be labeled writers while suffering from acute cases of “starving artist syndrome.” I distinctly remember a journalism professor telling me in front of an ambitious class of fifty that I would never be able to do anything with my creative writing skills, except maybe copy editing... if I was lucky, and that I should immediately come to the realization that I would never generate income doing creative writing...and no one outside of my family would ever read my work.

Fortunately, I don’t believe in luck and I’ve been an active participant in manifesting my writing goals.

My poetic form uses white space as narrator and seeks to be a drum for feminism, race, sexuality, trauma and grief. My poems often reflect on a succinct moment, using voice or character development as catalysts to tell a story in the progression of stanzas.

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