Yoga & Writing Workshop with Jessica Reidy & Elissa Lewis

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Photo by Victor Pachas

April 3rd is the first monthly Yoga and Writing Workshop, The Bridge Between Writing & Yoga, with me and Elissa Lewis at Sacred Sounds Yoga in lovely Greenwich Village, NYC! Come stretch, meditate, write, and explore with us on first Sunday of every month, 1:30-4:00 PM.

Register here: http://www.sacredsoundsyoga.com/workshops/

Our description from the website–

8201840972_babf8b525b_mThis monthly workshop, held on the first Sunday of every month, conjures the bridge between yoga and writing. Yoga and meditation practice peels back the layers of experience, allowing you to note the movements of the mind and body. This kind of mindfulness roots you to the present and returns you to your authentic voice. As writers, we must know our own voices first in order to know the voices of our characters and speakers.Transcendentalists, Surrealists, Beats, and many other writing collectives all used meditation, dreams, and/or other states of altered consciousness to support their creative work. Expect to be taken on a journey.

Elissa, artist and 500-hour certified yoga teacher, will guide you using yin and restorative yoga, using gravity to unwind tension in the deep muscles. She will interrupt your daily routine through mindfulness meditation and breathwork. Jessica, writing professor, 200-hour certified Kripalu yoga teacher, and Romani (‘Gypsy’) tarot/palm reader and healer, will stir you to write from that place of enriched-awareness, using writing exercises to help you navigate the action of a piece, sensory details, cliche-shattering metaphor, and character/speaker development.

This workshop is intended for all writers and yogis from all backgrounds and levels of experience, from playwrights to sci-fi enthusiasts, feminist poets to romance novelists, memoirists to academics– we welcome everyone. We only ask that you come with an open heart and an open mind. We are fostering a community of mutual respect and a safe space to share the words you create in class and an opportunity to receive constructive feedback from your instructors and peers.

Cost: $30 in advance / $35 on day of

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Join me for Nomadic Press’ Difficult Poetry Reading 3/23

Nomadic Press is hosting a very cool “Difficult Poetry” Reading at the Christopher Stout Gallery in NYC, and I’m honored to be among these difficult poets. I’ll be reading some work on the subject of Romani women’s experiences. Come join us, talk tough, and then kick back in a beautiful place!

Here’s the event invite, and our event description:

Four kick-ass poets will explore difficult topics through the power of words surrounded by subversive art at Christopher Stout Gallery, New York. We invite you to come, listen, think and discuss. Wine will be served.

Nomadic Press supports and provides venues for artwork across all media and disciplines by both emerging and established artists. Nomadic Press’s goal is to guide writers and artists through a supportive and connective process and to offer each artist the opportunity to have his or her work(s) presented in carefully edited and curated publications and events. We strive to juxtapose myriad voices and visions in ways that are surprising and complementary.

Christopher Stout Gallery, New York is a contemporary art gallery in East Williamsburg showing subversive and difficult work by New York City artists. We delight in serving as a platform for discourse on work that is challenging to authority paradigms, feminist, queer, anti-establishment, hyper-aggressive, mystic, and/or joyously sexual.

STEPHANIE VALENTE

Stephanie Valente lives in Brooklyn, NY. She is a Young Adult novelist, short fiction writer, poet, editor, content & social media strategist. In short, she wears many hats. Especially if they have feathers. She is the Founder & Chief Editor of Alt Bride, Fashion Editor at Greenpointers, Associate Editor at Yes, Poetry, and Social Media Manager & Columnist at Luna Luna Magazine.

Some of her writing has appeared in Bust Magazine, Electric Cereal, Prick of the Spindle, The 22 Magazine, Danse Macabre, Uphook Press, Literary Orphans, Nano Fiction, and more.

She has provided content strategy, copy, blogging, editing, & social media for per’fekt cosmetics, Anna Sui, Agent Provocateur, Patricia Field, Hue, Montagne Jeunesse, Bust Magazine, Kensie, Web100, Oasap, Quiz, Popsugar, among others.

In her spare time, Stephanie volunteers with rescue dogs and animal shelters.

BRIAN SHEFFIELD

Brian Sheffield is a poet from California currently living in Brooklyn. Brian’s life is one of constant movement and his poetry attempts to capture, confront, and gain a better understanding of the personal and political implications of said movement. He is always attempting to grow into a better and loving global citizen and, in order to do so, finds that he must question and combat his own privilege along with the prescribed roles of everybody he meets. He studied poetry, literature, and radical philosophy in California while teaching Creative Writing, Critical Thinking, and marginal writing in various public and private schools and universities. He is the author of several self-produced chapbooks, including [UNTITLED], S I N ( G ) , and Songs From Heaven’s Crooked Teeth. He has been published or featured in many local, national, and international magazines and journals — most recently, the Outcryer, Before Passing by Great Weather for MEDIA, Palabras Luminosas, and two issues by NYSAI Press.

QUINTON COUNTS

Quinton is originally from North Carolina and raised in Harlem. He’s a poet, rapper, performer and artist of various types. He often goes by the name of Que Cee or by my company name, WolfSet Productions. His influence comes from many people and things, including rappers like Jay-Z, Eminem, Peedi Crakk, Pre-record deal 50 Cent, Mos Def, Kanye West, Graph, Cam’Ron, and many of my friends whom are artists.

JESSICA REIDY

Jessica Reidy worked on her MFA in Fiction at Florida State University and holds a B.A. from Hollins University. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net, and has appeared in Narrative Magazine as Short Story of the Week, The Los Angeles Review, The Missouri Review, and other journals. She’s the Acquisitions Editor for VIDA: Women in the Literary Arts, Art Editor for The Southeast Review, Visiting Professor for the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop retreats, Outreach Editor for Quail Bell Magazine, and works as an adjunct professor and a freelance editor and writer. She also teaches yoga and works her Romani (Gypsy) family trades, fortune telling, energy healing, and dancing. Jessica is currently writing her first novel set in post-WWII Paris about Coco Charbonneau, the half-Romani burlesque dancer and fortune teller of Zenith Circus, who becomes a Nazi hunter. Visit her online at www.jessicareidy.com.

Miguel Ángel Vargas translates my VIDA list of “20 ‘Gypsy’ Women You Should Be Reading” to Spanish for Bitácora Gitana!

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My great-great grandmother, Mathilde Von Thiele

I’m so excited to introduce you to Miguel Ángel Vargas, Romani theatre producer, politician, translator, and all-around power house. He started this blog, Bitácora Gitana http://www.gitanos.org/bitacoragitana/, featuring Romani authors, artists, professionals, and community organizers, and I’m so honored that he decided to translate my essay “Twenty ‘Gypsy’ Women You Should Be Reading” into Spanish for the site, and just in time for International Women’s Day. The essay first appeared in VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, in English, and details Romani literacy and authorship, my own journey through story telling, and the work and accomplishments of twenty outstanding Romani women writers. So here’s another way to celebrate international women today– read a gitana!

VIDA’s 33 Life-Changing Books for International Women’s Day in Lit Hub (guess mine!)

I’m so excited to share this Lit Hub piece that the volunteers of VIDA collaboratively concocted in honor of International Women’s Day. http://lithub.com/33-life-changing-books-in-honor-of-international-womens-day/ Read and celebrate!

Here’s mine!

roads-of-roma-coverRoads of the Roma: an Anthology of Gypsy Writers by Ian Hancock, Siobhan Dowd, Rajko Đurić, eds.

Jessica Reidy, Web Acquisitions Editor: Though I didn’t discover this book until grad school—on my own steam—it changed my life: before this anthology, I didn’t know that women like me could write. I discovered Romani writers Papusza, Luminița Mihai Cioabă, Mariella Mehr, Paola Schöpf, Margita Reiznerová, and more, which led me to writing and teaching poetry, fiction, and non-fiction about my heritage and culture.

I’m a Montessori School Art Teacher! & many other things!

I’m an adjunct professor teaching writing classes at LIM College; a yoga teacher, fortune teller, & energy healer at Family of Light Holistic Center; yoga & writing workshop teacher with Elissa Lewis at Sacred Sounds Yoga; art model; Romani dancer; freelance editor & writer; and now I’m an art teacher at Windmill Montessori School. Phew! Eventually I’ll finish my novel too.

I had too much fun dressing the part for my first day. There was also a cardigan with black and white hearts involved. We made Tibetan mandalas today, and for my demo a few weeks ago, we made Patrins, a Romani (Gypsy) trail marker.

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