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[Virtual] 2023 Emerging Voices: The Final Reading

Join us in celebrating the 2023 Emerging Voices Fellows who will read together as the culmination of their fellowship.


Fellows: Vera Blossom, Zen Ren, Jassmine Parks, Layli Shirani, Lucy Zhou, Denise Rhone, Kristen Yoo Shim, D’mani Thomas, Arianne Elena Payne, JJ Xiao, Joy Mckinley, Lindsay Ferguson.

Mentors: Tanaïs, Lillian Li, Fatimah Asghar, Lidia Yuknavitch, Anelise Chen, Ingrid Rojas Contreras, Meng Jin, Jasmine Mans, Airea D. Matthews, Lisa Ko, Alechia Dow, Deesha Philyaw.

The Emerging Voices Fellowship provides a virtual five-month immersive mentorship program for early-career writers from communities that are traditionally underrepresented in the publishing world. The program is committed to cultivating the careers of Black writers, and serves writers who identify as Indigenous, persons of color, LGBTQ+, immigrants, writers with disabilities, and those living outside of urban centers. Through curated one-on-one mentorship and introductions to editors, agents, and publishers, in addition to workshops on editing, marketing, and creating a platform, the five-month fellowship nurtures creative community, provides a professional skill-set, and demystifies the path to publication—with the ultimate goal of diversifying the publishing and media industries.

The Emerging Voices Fellowship grew out of PEN America Los Angeles’s forum “Writing the Immigrant Experience,” held at the Los Angeles Central Library in March 1994, which explored the experiences of first- and second-generation immigrant writers. In 1996, PEN America Los Angeles initiated Emerging Voices as a mentorship program designed to provide professional resources to writers seeking financial and creative support to pursue their craft professionally. Virtually accessible programs and an expanded cohort of fellows will further the goal of diversifying the publishing and media industries by enabling participation from writers across the country.

This program is made possible by the generous support of The Yvonne & Michael Marsh Family Foundation.