Pedro Mir Symposium Recap

Last month’s Pedro Mir Symposium was a great success! In case you missed it, we have videos of all three panels—Mir in the Dominican Context (with Ginetta Candelario, Zaida Corniel, and Silvio Torres-Saillant), Approaches to Mir (with David Cortés-Caban, Roberto Márquez, and Dan-el Padilla Peralta), and Mir in Translation (Jonathan Cohen, Sintia Molina, and Rosa Mirna Sánchez)—as well as Silvio Torres-Saillant’s keynote speech.

What might not be captured as clearly in the videos was what it felt like to be at Word Up over the course of the two days of the Symposium. We heard scholars and writers talk about the work and life of a poet whose generous and expansive spirit was alive in their very exchanges. Audience members and participants alike commented on how Pedro Mir himself would have appreciated the boundary-breaking conversation taking place between academic scholars and people familiar with Mir’s work from outside the academy. To those less familiar with Mir’s work, his forceful, poignant words against domination, even in the face of real danger, read in Spanish and English, felt like a timely and helpful reminder. Older poets from the neighborhood and across the water in the Bronx recited his verse from memory and told stories about being his student, more than once being moved to tears. The conversation flowed bilingually, and our team of interpreters on-site provided translation for those with headsets.

We couldn’t be happier about how everything turned out, and we are so grateful to you all for being a part of making it happen. An extra shout-out to Greg Hernandez for recording all of Saturday’s video footage, and to Melissa and Kevin Guzmán for lending the extra chairs from Small Idea—especially those red ones for our speakers!—for the weekend. Thanks as well to the Word Up Collective as always, to the Dominican Writers Association, Alianza Dominican Cultural Center, and to Cabot Creamery, Fetzer Wines, and Coogan’s Restaurant for donations of cheese, wine, and bottled water throughout the weekend.

The Symposium was directly in line with the kind of programming we are committed to at Word Up—engaging, open, relevant, and wrapped in words. In fact, some of our Spanish-language events this month and next came out of conversations over wine and cheese between Symposium panels—check these and more out on our events calendar. Hope to see you soon at the shop!


November 17- Business of Art

Through this professional development workshop, artists of all genres and of all stages in their careers will learn important insights about the evolving business of art. In order to bring their art businesses to new levels, artists must develop new skills and knowledge or perfect them. If you’re not constantly learning and growing, then you’ll always be stuck in the same place. Learning new techniques or perfecting old ones is as important as understanding that the best professional practices are crucial if you want to make your living as an artist and be successful at it. You want to make educated decisions about your art practice.

During this professional development workshop, you can learn everything from developing your curriculum, maximizing the impact of your CV, Statement and Bio, the right strategies to base your artist’s career on and erasing some of the guesswork that comes from being an artist and entrepreneur, outlining various methods on building your brand and marketing strategies, knowing your worth : pricing for profit, time management, finance, tax tips and legal issues for creatives to protect their businesses and craft.
This workshop is especially geared towards helping artists gain the resources and connections they need to be successful self-employed artists.

For more information and tickets:

   Business of Art                                                                                                         Saturday, November 17, 2018                                                                                 1:30- 4:30 pm                                                                                                                  Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria                             2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.                                                                  New York NY 10032

November 9th-Word in the Heights Teen Open Mic

Word in the Heights is a teen open mic for spoken word artists, singers, rappers, and others who want to share their voices and talents. Sign up to perform or come and enjoy a night of performances and music, by youth, for youth.

RSVP for FREE pizza to

Get a chance to win a gift card. To enter:
1. Like, Share & Follow our IG & Facebook page @wordintheheights
2. Attend the Open Mic event

Winner will be announced at the show and must be present in order to receive the gift card!

This Launchpad Arts Collective event is funded in part by Poets & Writers with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, as well as by Citizens Committee for New York City. 

   Word in the Heights Teen Open Mic                                                                     Friday, November 9, 2018                                                                                         6–8pm                                                                                                                  Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria                             2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.                                                                  New York NY 10032

November 2nd- Living Room Sessions Open Mic

Calling all writers, rappers, musicians, orators, dancers, and artists of all kinds! Join us for the monthly Living Room Sessions Open Mic—first Fridays of the month. Presented by Verdadero Entertainment (Jason Rosario), Washington Heights Artist Movement (Lethy Liriano), and Know Ideas. All ages and persuasions, gather to share, learn, and experience together.

¡Se hace un llamado a todos los escritores, raperos, músicos, oradores, bailarines y artistas de todo tipo! Unanse a nuestro micrófono abierto—cada primer viernes de mes. Esta es una colaboración entre Verdadero Entertainment (Jason Rosario), WHAM (Lethy Liriano), y Know Ideas. Individuos de todas edades y persuasiones pueden juntarse a compartir, aprender y vivir una experiencia en grupo.

 Living Room Sessions Open Mic                                                                          Friday,  November 2, 2018                                                                                   5:30–8:30pm                                                                                                       Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria                             2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.                                                                  New York NY 10032

October 31- Pumpkin Tales

Get ready for Halloween with Pumpkin Tales, with storyteller Rachael Harrington. These not-so-scary stories will have kids listening, moving, and playing through tales full of pumpkins, scarecrows, cats, and more! This program is great for ages 2-4 accompanied by caregivers.

Pumpkin Tales                                                                                                  Wednesday, October 31, 2018                                                                                   11:30am–12:10pm                                                                                                       Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria                             2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.                                                                  New York NY 10032