The Conversation


Our Alums do amazing things!

2015 TATIP Graduate Nabila Lovelace co-founded The Conversation with fellow contemporary poet Aziza Barnes with the idea in mind for Black folk to contend with their Blackness in relationship to a particular land. The Conversation began… as a conversation on a porch in New Orleans and has grown into so much more. 

What is The Conversation?

The Conversation a multi-media company who specializes in organizing readings, hosting workshops & craft talks, and will host a week long fellowship program in the American South. Their purpose is rooted in the bridging of conversations between interregional blackness & discussing what a black mecca can look like in the United States. Central to The Conversation is documenting contemporary POC relationships to the American South, reformatting the literary conference model, engaging with Southern communities of young writers and the reclamation of land.

The 2016 Conversation Literary Festival will take place over three days in October, bringing 18 POC writers through the heartland of Mississippi, Alabama and Louisana for a series of readings and craft talks culminating in a two day festival in New Orleans. 

The founders have launched an eight-part poetry and interview series at the Rumpus called “The Conversation” with the purpose of “carving out space for Black Americans to contend with their Blackness [and] its infinite permutations in the South.” The inaugural installment features poems and interviews from Cortney Lamar Charleston and Danez Smith, and the second installment features work from Desiree Bailey and Sean DesVignes.

Recently, The Conversation kicked off a mini New York tour in order to fundraise for the October events. On Sunday, August 7th, four fellows read along side four emerging writers at the Dead Rabbits Reading Series in the Upper East Side. 

Desiree Bailey

Cortney Lamar Charleston

The day after the upper east side reading, The Conversation moved to Greenlight Bookstore in Brooklyn for a reading with four new fellows.  

The Conversation is gearing up for their October southern tour and you can help fund a documentary to be made about this historic event by donating here

See more about the The Conversation and the 2016 Fellows at their website

Click here for more information about CWP’s Teaching Artist Training & Internship Program (TATIP).