Diana Whitney writes across the genres in Vermont with a focus on feminism, motherhood, and sexuality. As the longtime poetry critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, she featured women poets and LGBTQ voices in her column. Her first book, Wanting It, became an indie bestseller and won the Rubery Book Award in poetry. Her essays and criticism have appeared in the New York Times, Glamour, The Washington Post, Longreads, The Rumpus, and many more. Her new poetry anthology for teen girls, You Don’t Have to Be Everything: Poems for Girls Becoming Themselves, was released in April to critical acclaim and became a YA bestseller.
Denise Massar writes about motherhood, adoption, racism, inequality, and anything else she can’t stop thinking about. Her essays have been published in RAISE Magazine, TODAY Parenting, An Injustice! Magazine, and she is a recurring guest blogger on Jane Friedman's Blog. Her essay, "Bad Juju," is an excerpt from her memoir in progress, MATCHED: An Adoptive Mom’s Journey Through the 'Not for Social Media' Side of Adoption. She lives with her three kids in Orange County, California. Follow her on Twitter @denisemassar, Instagram @denisemassar, and visit her website at http://denisemassar.org.
Jennifer Samson-Acker is a freelance writer and has spent time during her father’s cancer diagnosis interviewing and writing profiles on patients living with rare blood cancers. She has taught English and yoga and holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and Secondary Education from Moravian College Bethlehem, PA and a Masters in Teaching English from the University of New Hampshire. Jennifer lives in Nazareth, PA with her husband and two daughters. Anne Leibovitz’s quote, “If it makes you cry, it goes in the show.” hangs above her desk.
Laura Pierson is a mom and educator in Houston, Texas. Originally from the Seattle area, she is a graduate of the University of Washington and Teachers College, Columbia University. She has had the opportunity to work with students at the elementary, middle, and high school level, and is currently focused on learning from the two little humans in her own home.
Jessica Bacal directs The Narratives Project at Smith College and lives with her family in Northampton, MA. Her new book is called The Rejection That Changed My Life (Penguin Random House).
Holly Jean is an environmentalist by trade who turned to writing when the colic of her first born brought her to the brink of collapse. Writing became the buoy she clung to for self-recognition and resulted in her memoir 17 & 17 years: An International Journey of Finding Community and Coming Home. Primarily set in Paris, Portugal and Barcelona, Holly explores the exhausting, thrilling, messy and adventure filled discovery that love, coming of age and motherhood demands. Find her at http://www.believeinbecause.com
Rachel is a queer teacher, writer, organizer, healer, partner, friend, and mama, living in Chicago. Her writing, mostly essays and memoir, is fueled by her commitment to justice and her desire to understand what makes us fully human. Her work has appeared in multiple venues, including Guernica, Yes! Magazine, Pigeon Pages, Schools: Studies in Education, Organizing Upgrade, and the anthology Nasty Women and Bad Hombres: Historical Reflections on the 2016 Presidential Election. She loves living in big cities, is calmest near the water, and thrives when in community with other troublemakers and shapeshifters.