First-Person Narratives of Mental Illness

Do You Want to Tell Your Story?

First-Person Narratives of Mental Illness: A Five-Week Creative Writing Workshop

In this free workshop, explore the reasons for and value in sharing your first-person experience of mental illness. We’ll work in three genres – fiction, poetry, and nonfiction – to help you find and develop your voice. Our workshop will involve writing and sharing your drafts with peers as well as reading examples to inspire us.

We’ll follow the workshop with a virtual reading and the publication of a chapbook so more people can share your story. You’ll receive a small honorarium for contributing your work to the book! Attendance at all five sessions as well as the reading are required to participate.

Apply by completing this brief questionnaire and submitting a one-page writing sample by August 18 at 8pm. 10 participants will be chosen and notified by August 25. All participants will be required to do a public reading after the workshop.

Workshop dates:

  • September 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
  • 7:30-9pm

The workshop will be lead by Cynthia-Marie Marmo O’Brien, whose work on faith, imagination, and depression was cited as notable by Best American Essays. She has taught at universities in the United States and Europe and her work has appeared in America, Booklist, Bellevue Literary Review, Killing the Buddha, Kirkus, Narratively, and others.

This project is made possible by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.