Tomorrow at the annual Collingswood Book Festival in New Jersey, the Disability Literature Consortium will be setting up its booth with books representing the work of over 50 writers with disabilities or who write about disability. The range of books that will be appearing there is impressive: poetry, fiction, memoir, disability studies, Deaf culture, and LGBT focused work.
The Dis Lit Constortium represents the work of small literary journals who focus on disability-related writing: Kaleidoscope, Breath & Shadow, Wordgathering, Pentimento, Intima, and Deaf Poets’ Society. It is also heavily indebted to the work of writer Sean Mahoney and of the many writers who donated their work to help get the consortium of the ground for its inaugural appearance at AWP in Los Angeles this year.
While the AWP experience was a success, offering many writers and educators the chance to see the wealth of material available to them from disability literature, the Collingswood Book Festival offers the opportunity for a different audience. Those attending the festival are primarily readers, not necessarily writers or educators themselves. This brings all who are involved in disability literature one step closer to our ultimate goal – to get the work of the outstanding writers that we represent into the general public.
The Collingswood festival will be running rain (likely!) or shine. Those who live in the Philadelphia or Delaware Valley area should drop in to see what we are up to.