'More Than a Single Story': Celebrating black women writers in the Twin Cities

'More Than a Single Story' event
Writers Pamela Fletcher, Tish Jones, Andrea Jenkins, Mary Moore Easter, Carolyn Holbrook, Lori Young-Williams and Shannon Gibney read from their work and discussed the writing process as part of the series 'More Than a Single Story' at the Loft Literary Center.
Courtesy of Min Enterprises Photography

Writer and teacher Carolyn Holbrook has spent her life supporting the work of other authors.

She created "SASE: The Write Place" to develop new literary talent, and she founded the group "Twin Cities Black Women Writing."

So perhaps it shouldn't come as a surprise that when given a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board for her work, she used the money to once again raise up the voices of other writers in the community.

Holbrook has created a reading series at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis called "More Than a Single Story." Her goal: to break down the stereotyping of black women by celebrating their diverse voices and experiences.

Create a More Connected Minnesota

MPR News is your trusted resource for the news you need. With your support, MPR News brings accessible, courageous journalism and authentic conversation to everyone - free of paywalls and barriers. Your gift makes a difference.

The first of three readings was held on Sept. 27. Seven different poets, essayists and authors — all African-American, all women and all based in the Twin Cities — took part.

In Part One of the audio above, listen to Lori Young Williams, Pamela Fletcher, Holbrook and Andrea Jenkins read from their work.

In Part Two, you will hear Shannon Gibney, Tish Jones and Mary Moore Easter.

The second event in the reading series, held in October, focused on the work of female Caribbean writers living in Minnesota.

The third and final event in the series takes place on Nov. 15, and will feature African women writers. Many of the authors featured in these three reading have work in the anthology, "Blues Vision," published by the Minnesota Historical Society Press.

More details on the final event are available from The Loft Literary Center.