There are so many underserved population groups who have important messages to share and gripping stories to tell. But they haven’t found their voice and don’t have a platform that enables them to be heard. I plan to change this—one group at a time.
Since early 2011, High School English Teacher Marjie Bowker and I have been working in partnership — combining our writing, teaching, mentoring, publishing and marketing skills to help at-risk teens claim their power by finding their voice and writing their stories. Together we produced We Are Absolutely Not Okay: Fourteen Stories by Teenagers Who are Picking Up the Pieces, a poignant, revealing collection of true personal stories about gang life, depression, cutting, drug addiction and gender identity. Along with spotlighting the serious issues faced by today’s teens, this powerful book reveals how these teenage authors are now moving forward with their lives. Through their stories, they are reaching out to other teens—letting them know that they have the power within to make life better.
Having demonstrated the enormous validation, healing power and bridge building that can result from personal storytelling, we are continuing our teen program. For more information about that program, visit: www.weareabsolutelynotokay.org. I’m also working to expand the mentoring/publishing model to other groups who need to be heard and empowered.
Key Program Components
- Utilize interactive writing prompts and personal mentoring to help underserved communities tell their stories in a compelling, narrative format
- Collaborate with them on a book concept and title
- Show them how to capitalize on the power of electronic and print-on-demand publishing
- Generate ongoing revenue to improve their circumstances
- Spotlight important social issues to foster understanding and dialogue
Interested in learning more about the Mentoring/Publishing Program for Your Organization? Please email me: email@example.com
To get a sense for the life-changing power of our program, click on the blue media links below.