Next Thursday, Word Up will be hosting a reading with contributors to the book Breaking Ground: Anthology of Puerto Rican Women Writers in New York 1980–2012. Readers include editor Myrna Nieves, Sandra María Esteves, Sandra A. García Betancourt, Ana López-Betancourt, María Mar, Nancy Mercado, Madeline Millán, and Corazón Tierra.
This bilingual anthology presents the wide spectrum of poetry, poetic prose and fiction produced from 1980-2012 by Puerto Rican women writers in New York, often reflecting the human efforts to live with dignity and hope, and the complexities of a migration process.
Sandra María Esteves is a poet, visual artist, educator and producer. One of the founders of the Nuyorican Literary Movement, her many books include Tropical Rain: A Bilingual Downpour (1984) and Bluestown Mockingbird Mambo (1990). Awards include The Edgar Allan Poe Literary Award (2002) and the NEA Master Artist Award from Pregones Theater (2010).
Sandra A. García-Betancourt is a poet, writer and arts activist. She authored a book of poetry, Ombligo de luna (1992) and a plaquet, Memorias y Olvidos. She served as Manager for the Nuyorican Poets Cafe and was Public Relations Manager for EL Diario La Prensa. She is now the Executive Director and CEO of the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance (NoMAA).
Ana López-Betancourt is a poet, theater worker, educator who has lived in New York since adolescence. She co-published the bilingual book Tripartita: Earth, Dreams and Powers (1990) with Myrna Nieves and Maritza Arrastía. She was nominated as Poet in the Schools by the American PEN and Woman of the Year Award by El Diario La Prensa.
María Mar is a writer, performer, visual artist and shaman. She was a co-founder of popular theater groups in Puerto Rico and founder and director of Ecuelecuá (1986-1991) in NY. Her poems have been published in literary magazines. Her theatre work was featured in the series “The Americas” in PBS, Channel 13 (1992). Her work/projects can be viewed at mariamar.com.
Nancy Mercado is a writer and educator. The author of the poetry book It Concerns the Madness (2000), she served as an editor of the literary magazine LONG SHOT. She was a Contributing Editor for Letras Femeninas;editor of, if the world were mine, a children’s anthology; and guest editor for phat’tude magazine. She has written and directed 7 plays.
Madeline Millán is a writer and cultural activist. Two of her six poetry books are De toros y estrellas (2004) and Leche/Milk (2008). She edited Nights of Cornelia (2008), an anthology of contemporary writers; and coordinated bilingual poetry readings at “Cornelia’s Street Café” in New York. Madeline received the National Poetry Award of Puerto Rico in 2009.
Myrna Nieves is a writer and educator. A founding member of Boricua College, she was director for twenty years of its Winter Poetry Series. Her books include: Libreta de sueños (narraciones), Viaje a la lluvia, poemas and El Caribe: paraíso y paradoja. The editor/co-editor of four other books, she received the Literary Award of the PEN Club of Puerto Rico in 1998.
Corazón Tierra is a dancer, writer, magazine editor and expert in personal growth. Her poetic prose was published in the anthology Ana y su anorexia (2005). She has read and performed her work in Spain and was featured in television in Seville (2002). She is co-founder of the company ShamansDance, and was Health and Food Editor of Siempre Mujer Magazine (USA).