Amber Flame is a writer, composer and performer, whose work has garnered artistic merit residencies with Hedgebrook, The Watering Hole, Vermont Studio Center, and Yefe Nof. Flame’s original work has been published in diverse arenas, including Winter Tangerine, The Dialogist, Split This Rock, Black Heart Magazine, Sundress Publications, FreezeRay, Redivider Journal and more. A 2016 Pushcart Prize nominee, Jack Straw Writer and recipient of the CityArtist grant from Seattle’s Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, Amber Flame’s first full-length poetry collection, Ordinary Cruelty, was recently published through Write Bloody Press. Flame joins the Hugo House in Seattle as the 2017 poetry Writer-in-Residence, and is a queer Black single mama just one magic trick away from growing her unicorn horn.
Anastacia-Renee Tolbert is a queer super-shero of color moonlighting as a writer, performance artist and creative writing workshop facilitator. She has received awards and fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, VONA, Jacks Straw, Ragdale and Artist Trust Edge program. Her Chapbook 26, recently published by Dancing Girl Press, is an abbreviated alphabet expression of the lower and uppercase lives of women and girls. A Pushcart nominee (2015), her poetry, fiction & nonfiction have been published or is forthcoming in Duende, Blackberry, Bone Bouquet, Crab Creek Review, Dismantle and many others.
Recently Tolbert has been expanding her creative repertoire into the field of visual art, and has exhibited her painting and photography surrounding the body as a polarized place of both the private and political. She lives in Seattle with her two teenaged sons and runs the Performance Studies Department at the Seattle Girl’s School. This year she has begun a yearlong theatrical mixed-media project in collaboration with the Project Room, 9 Ounces: A One Woman Show. Lately she’s been obsessed with the body & the stories (true & not true) it holds.
Joshunda Sanders is a Bronx native, the author of four books and a sought-after public speaker. Her work has appeared in the Bellevue Literary Review, Salon, Publishers Weekly, Bitch, Gawker, Kirkus Reviews, on NPR and in dozens of anthologies, newspapers, magazines, websites, textbooks and encyclopedias.
She gave a TED talk in 2013, the same year she presented at South by Southwest Interactive. She has written: Single & Happy: The Party of Ones, How Racism and Sexism Killed Traditional Media: Why the Future of Journalism Depends on Women and People of Color , the novella, All City and a memoir, The Beautiful Darkness: A Handbook for Orphans. She lives in New York City.
Shannon Y. Humphrey
Attorney and Author Shannon Humphrey writes science fiction featuring heroic women and minorities. In 2013, Shannon released her first young adult fiction novel Hope Defined. As a fiction author, she was a Hedgebrook resident in 2018. She will re-publish the Hope series in 2019, as well as her new series Skin Trials.
A graduate of the University of Arkansas, she was also a trial attorney, who fought for poor families across Los Angeles. She now writes as an appellate attorney who challenges unfair treatment of poor people in the courts.
Shannon has been a public servant and active in politics since her years of growing up in Little Rock, Arkansas. She served as President of University of Arkansas’s Black Students Association, sat on the U of A Chancellor’s Advisory Committee, and after college, worked as a Legislative Correspondent and scheduler on Capitol Hill for former Congressman Vic Snyder.
Shannon was the 40th President of Black Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles, and her focus throughout her tenure was police relations in the community and underprivileged youth. She served on the National Bar Association’s Police Brutality Committee, writing press releases informing the NBA membership of police injustices around the nation. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and is an alumna of Los Angeles African-American Women’s Public Policy Institute (LAAAWPPI). She has also been selected as the National Bar Association’s Top 40 Advocates Under 40 in the Nation.