The last two days have been amazing in every way. On Thursday, I spent the morning at Cozbi where I posed for a few photographs. It was so much fun for Amilcar (Cozbi’s husband) to take the pictures while Cozbi did art direction. I’ll post some of the shots here next week.
Then, it was off to the Tenement Museum for my Q&A with Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I had never really talked to her before and I didn’t quite know what to expect. I mean, I knew she was brilliant, but I didn’t know she was going to be so, well, cool. We got down to the nitty gritty with the Q&A and many members of this blog community were in the audience. The whole thing was filmed by The Africa Channel, which is on most cable networks. (You have to click that link for the featured video alone!)
We talked about many things including writing as advocacy. She expanded upon “The Danger of A Single Story.” She also spoke moving about her reluctance to embrace the term “black” and why she changed her mind. There were also lighter moments when we talked about process and laughed at ourselves. It was a beautiful evening all around.
Friday was Part II of Chimamandapalooza. She was the headline reader at the final installment of the 2010 Chapters Reading Series, sponsored by Girls Write Now. Chimamanda read “Cell One“, from her new collection The Thing Around Your Neck. She left us all hypnotized with her reading. And then, as always, our amazing teen writers proceeded to steal the show.
Afterwards, Chimamanda was mobbed by the crowd. I watched our girls get their books signed with a little feeling of envy. Lauren Cerand said it best, “I never got to meet anybody this cool when I was a teenager.”
I didn’t either. But that’s the whole point of Girls Write Now– to give the next generation the gift of progress.
Photo taken at B Bar by the fabulous Rachel Eliza Griffiths.