Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative (KWBC)
A support center for aspiring Black writers around the state.

Are you a Black writer looking for guidance and opportunity?
Carnegie is offering classes at no charge to Black students in recognition of systemic racism, including in education and publishing, where Carnegie operates. Our goal is to welcome Black Kentucky residents to Carnegie, nurture their development, and remove financial obstacles for as long as needed.

All weekly classes and one-time classes at Carnegie are free to members of the Black Writers Collaborative. *

For more information on the KBWC or to register for a class, contact: Claudia Love Mair, KBWC Coordinator, Claudia@CarnegieCenterLex.org or JC McPherson, KBWC Associate, Jude@CarnegieCenterLex.org.

* Not included free of charge are the Author Academy, the Poetry Gauntlet, the Books in Progress Conference, Writer Mentoring, and Manuscript Review. There is separate financial support available for these programs.

Meet The Staff

KBWC Coordinator

Claudia Love Mair is here to answer any questions you might have about the craft and business of writing. She's a novelist in multiple genres and also a creative nonfiction writer, including Zora and Nicky: A Novel in Black and White, Wounded: A Love Story, and Don’t You Fall Now (her memoir). Claudia Love holds a Masters in Fine Arts in writing from Spalding University, and her passion is to amplify Black voices at all levels.

KBWC Associate

Col. JC McPherson, Kentucky Colonel Goodwill Ambassador, has a background in writing, electricity, and general troubleshooting. A recipient of the 2022-2023 National Leaders of Color Fellowship through South Arts, he is an associate for the Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative, Creative Writing Instructor, and arts administrator. He is a member of the Affrilachian Poets and the author of numerous collections of poetry. He’s also a member of the Society of Baseball Research.

KBWC Affiliated Classes

Writing & Publishing While Black – Fall 2022

Black authors face special challenges in the publishing world, from blatant racism to microaggressions to dealing with the expectations of the publishing business, which is by and large centered in whiteness. Learn how you can succeed in writing and publishing while Black. Panelists: Claudia Love Mair, Crystal Wilkinson, makalani bandele, and Angela Jackson-Brown

This class is offered as a pre-recorded webinar. The link to the video and any accompanying materials will be emailed to you after registering.

Black & Lit Book Club

Black & Lit Book Club – Winter/Spring 2023

The Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative continues the popular Black & Lit Book Club celebrating Black Kentucky writers’ recent books. This book group will be open to KBWC members and anyone who wishes to attend. We will explore issues related to race and discuss the characters’ relationships, family, home life, dreams, and challenges. We’ll also study aspects of their writing, such as word choice, themes, character, plot, and setting. When possible, we will meet with the author during our book group. The KBWC Black & Lit Book Club will meet on the third Thursday of every other month, beginning in January. Sponsored by WUKY, LEXArts, SouthArts, and Kentucky Arts Council. 

Each month, the first 25 registrants receive a free copy of the selected book.
 

upfromsumdirt is a poet, visual artist, and designer based in Lexington, KY. In 2010 he won Kentucky's Al Smith Award for Visual Art, and he has galleried in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, and Tennessee. He is the co-founder of Wild Fig Books in Lexington, and was the co-editor of the journal Mythium. His poetry and art have appeared in African American Review, New Southerner, Tidal Basin Review, About Place Journal, and Connotations Press. DEIFYING A TOTAL DARKNESS, his debut full-length collection of poetry, follows the collection Caul & Response (Argus House/Winged City Press), and three chapbooks (two from Radical Paper Press, and one from Left Handed Juju). His second book, To Emit Teal, was published by Broadstone Publications in 2020.

KBWC Events

Say It Loud 2.0: Louder & Prouder

On November 11, 2022, the KBWC and 91.3 WUKY present the second installment of the Kentucky Black Writers Series, SAY IT LOUD 2.0: LOUDER & PROUDER.  Learn More. 

Past KBWC Events

Say It Loud 2.0: Louder & Prouder

On November 11, 2022, the KBWC and 91.3 WUKY present the second installment of the Kentucky Black Writers Series, SAY IT LOUD 2.0: LOUDER & PROUDER.  Learn More. 

Burn The Mic:
Give Thanks

Join us on November 11, 2022 at the Carnegie Center for Burn The Mic. Open mic kicks off at 7pm and the Featured Speaker, Tina Andry, will perform at 7:30pm. 

Burn The Mic: Halloween

Join us on October 25, 2022 at the Carnegie Center for Burn The Mic. Open mic kicks off at 7pm and the Featured Speaker, Ronald Davis, will perform at 7:30pm. upfromsumdirt is a poet, visual artist, and designer based in Lexington, KY. 

Burn The Mic: End of Summer Slam

Join us on September 2, 2022 at the Carnegie Center for Burn The Mic: End of Summer Slam. Open mic kicks off at 6pm and the Slam will follow soon after. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top 3 performers. 

Burn The Mic

Join us on August 18, 2022 at the Carnegie Center for Burn The Mic, featuring LeTonia Jones. Open mic kicks off at 7pm and the featured artist will speak at 7:45pm. LeTonia A. Jones, MSW, is a death penalty abolitionist, activist, educator, writer, writing facilitator, and newspaper columnist. This fall, she will be co-leading "A Writing Circle for BIPOC Womxn" at the Carnegie Center. 

Juneteenth Slam

Join us on June 18, 2022 at the Carnegie Center for our first-ever Juneteenth Slam presented by the Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative and Brown Owl. Open mic kicks off at 6 pm and the slam will immediately follow. You can win prizes! 

At the Clearing

We gather to grieve. We gather to witness. We gather to remember. On March 12, 2022, please join us at the Carnegie Center for Literacy & Learning to unveil the latest work by Kiptoo Tarus, inspired by the murder of Breonna Taylor and in support of the Kentucky Black Writers Collaborative (KBWC). 

We hope to see you soon at the Carnegie Center, home to the Kentucky Writers Hall of Fame and writers and readers of all levels.

Join Us

251 West Second Street
Lexington, KY 40507

 

(859) 254-4175
info@carnegiecenterlex.org

Monday – Thursday: 10:00am – 7:30pm
Friday: 10:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday: 10:00am – 2:00pm
Sunday: CLOSED

  • homegrown-authors
  • color-purple