Recently, women gathered locally and online to hear of developments and changes to #StrongWomenWrite, the unique literary organization I founded in 2017. Over tea, we discussed what we’ve accomplished, the impact we want to have going forward. And ended with the announcement of the Tea Project – our first effort to meet the needs of women, utilizing writing to deliver a powerful solution. (The write-up Nicole Evelina did, one of our sisters in St. Louis, can be read here.)
The Anthology is the first step of this project. It will pair fictional works of women writers alongside the very real voices of women who’ve experienced trafficking, or have aged out of orphanages, showcasing strength and its more subtle sister, resilience. The anthology will also serve as a vehicle for the next phase of the project, creating spaces for these women to live and work.
YOU ARE NEEDED TO MAKE THIS A REALITY.
This project has three (3) phases: an Anthology, Tea House, and Tiny Home Community.
Part I: Anthology – Story collection begins October 1st. Publication, September 2020.
What: By women, about women. The anthology will feature true stories of women who have escaped trafficking, or left to fend for themselves after aging out of orphanages. And paired with fictional short stories by female authors featuring strong female characters.
Why: To help women reclaim their voice through writing. Provide female authors with a hands-on opportunity for impact, to build relationships, and mentor. Exposure and funding for Part II.
Seeking: 1) Female trafficking survivors, orphans willing to tell their stories. 2) Female authors who would like to contribute their work. 3) Coordinators to serve as Project Liaisons.
Part II: Tea House
What: We have a location in mind for a tea room that will provide the women with a source of income and opportunity to learn a trade/skill. It would be ideal if both the tea room and tiny home (Part III) were located on the same property. But, this will be determined by what Georgia law permits. The tea house will operate as a social business.
Present focus is the Anthology. To become involved, share insight, and for additional info, click here.
September 2019 – Selection of Regional Coordinators and Project Orientation
October 1, 2019 – March 31st, 2020 – Open Submissions
April 2020 – Review and Selection
May 2020 – Notifications of Acceptance. Interviews for True Stories.
June, July – Edit, Compilation, Pre-orders
September – Release Event (Atlanta, St. Louis)
GENERAL SUBMISSION GUIDELINES:
Preference given to #WriteStrongWomen members.
Stories accepted internationally, but must be submitted in English.
SHORT STORY GUIDELINES:
Women Writers only.
No gore or erotica.
Stories must have strong female at center.
Character must ‘win’ whether protagonist or antagonist.
Maximum Word Count: 3,300. No minimum.
First-time female authors welcome.
Photo, short bio, URL if applicable or social media links required.
TRUE STORY GUIDELINES:
Women survivors only.
Stories must be true. We will showcase your strength, not your pain.
Your story, your words. Do not feel pressured to write like a pro.
You may find it is easier to tell your story via creative non-fiction. This is acceptable, but must be noted when submitted.
You must be willing to be photographed (option available to guard privacy).
Maximum Word Count: 2,500.
Photo, URL if applicable required. Social media links for our verification only. Will not be shared.
Submission Details will be posted October 1st.
For now, please share this project by directing other women writers to this page. And if you know women willing to share their stories, please assist with their compilation for October 1st.
This is an ambitious undertaking. But, I strongly believe women have the power to be their own solution. And that when sisters gather, amazing things happen.