The Lambda Literary Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices was established in 2007 and is the first of its kind ever offered to LGBTQ writers: a one-week intensive immersion in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, genre fiction and playwriting. On Sunday, September 30th, we’ll be featuring five New York-based writers of colors who bring their eclectic mix of work and energy to Wendy’s Subway.

Mariam Bazeed is an Egyptian immigrant living in a rent-stabilized apartment in Brooklyn. They have an MFA in Fiction from Hunter College. In addition to being an alliteration-leaning writer of prose, poetry, plays, and personal essays, Mariam is a performance artist and singer. They are a current fellow at the Center for Fiction, and were awarded fellowships from the Asian American Writers Workshop, the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics at NYU, and tLambda Literary. Mariam’s first play, Peace Camp Org, a queer anti-Zionist musical comedy about summer camp, was staged at La Mama Theater, NYC (2017); the Arcola Theatre, London (2018); and the Wild Project, NYC (2018); and will be published in an anthology by Oberon Books, UK, in 2019. Mariam has been awarded artist residencies at Hedgebrook, the Marble House Project, and the Millay colony. When not writing, Mariam runs a monthly world-music salon, and is a slow student of Arabic music.

Michael Shayan is an Iranian-American Jewish playwright based in New York. His work has recently been presented & developed at La MaMa (dir. John Michael DiResta), The Lark (dir. Lisa Rothe), Dixon Place’s queer HOT! Festival (dir. Ellie Heyman), and Lambda Literary as part of the 2017 Playwriting Fellowship. He studied playwriting at Harvard, where he worked with mentors Sam Marks, Liz Duffy Adams and Robert Scanlan. He was the youngest elected Board Member at the queer New Conservatory Theater Center in San Francisco, and is a proud member of the Dramatists Guild.

Ludmila Leiva is a queer, mixed Latinx writer and illustrator based in Brooklyn. Through her writing and art, she explores diasporic identity as it intersects with gender, trauma, and sexuality. Her written and visual works have previously appeared in Wired, Lit Hub, Slate, Broadly, and more. She is currently working on her first book.

Ry Szelong is a playwright/performer/director+ originally from the Bay Area, CA. He’s a 2018 Fellow with University Settlement’s Performance Project and a SPACE @ Ryder Farm Greenhouse Residency Finalist. His own work has been presented at Nuyoricans Poets Cafe, INTAR’s Steep Salons, Triskelion Arts, Ars Nova ANT Fest, Dixon Place HOT Festival, and on Governor’s Island as a 2017 Public Works Department Resident Artist. BFA from NYU Tisch: Playwrights Horizons Theater School,where he is an alumni TA and mentor.

Catherine Chen is the author of the chapbook Manifesto, or: Hysteria (Big Lucks), forthcoming June 2019. Their work has appeared in Slate, Hobart, Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Mask Magazine, among others. A cast member of the Poetry Brothel, they are currently at work on their first full-length collection of poems.

Come support queer writers of color at 7 pm Sunday September 30th at Wendy’s Subway in Bushwick. Wendy’s Subway is located at 379 Bushwick Avenue. Take the L train to Montrose or Morgan / J or M to Flushing.

Lambda Literary nurtures and advocates for LGBTQ writers, elevating the impact of their words to create community, preserve our legacies, and affirm the value of our stories and our lives.

Wendy’s Subway is a non-profit library and writing space located in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Wendy’s Subway is operated by its membership of poets, curators, novelists, artists, and critics with an interest in hybrid forms and cross-disciplinary discourse.

Bring your friends, bring your lovers, bring your plants!!! Wendy’s Subway will be selling beer at this event.


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