Putting pen to paper at Featherstone

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Seniors from Island schools met with resident writers at Featherstone for a brief writing activity and discussion.

For the second year in a row, Featherstone Center for the Arts and the Slough Farm Foundation teamed up to bring historically underrepresented writers to Martha’s Vineyard for a weeklong residency, according to a press release from Featherstone.

Last year, Featherstone hosted three queer identifying writers: Shira Erlichman, Angel Nafis, and Esper Gaspardi. This year, four Black resident writers stayed at the Slough Farm House to work on individual writing projects. Two of the writers are local folks who split their time between the Vineyard and New York or Boston, and another two are off-Island writers coming from Pittsburgh, Pa., and Vermont. 

A group of Martha’s Vineyard Public Charter School and Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School seniors recently gathered with resident writers on the porch outside the Francine Kelly Gallery at Featherstone and discussed their various paths to writing, what inspired their work, and then gave students a prompt and ten minutes to write. Students could choose to write a letter to their body, a fictional character, a famous person, their past self, or an ancestor. Both groups wrote using the prompt, then shared their work. 

“We are so grateful to Slough Farm for partnering with us on this important offering for these writers and our Island community. We are also very grateful to the Martha’s Vineyard Community Foundation for their support,” the release from Featherstone states.