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Voices of New Writers

Our Words iconEverywhere you see this picture of the hands around a book, it means that you can see the words – thoughts, feelings, opinions, stories, poems – of new writers. Many are learners in community programs, and many are having their writing published for the first time!

You can open them all from here too:

New Beginnings

New Beginnings- Writings by Vancouver Island Women

These stories by new writers talk about hard times they have had, and how they took control of their lives. Some give you ideas about what to do.

Being Nicer to Me

Every year, Bread and Roses (a group of literacy supporters in Toronto, Canada) holds a writing contest for women literacy learners. Started in celebration of International Women’s Day, the contest’s themes always deal with women’s issues. The 2008 theme was “I’m going to be nicer to me”, giving learners a chance to talk about how we can be better to ourselves while learning, and stop putting ourselves down.
These are the winners: Bread and Roses writing

Deborah Brown’s Being Nicer and Lindsay Potter’s Being Nicer to Yourself

Two literacy learners – from The Learning Centre and Mimico Adult Centre (TDSB) – share their ways of treating themselves better when they feel bad.

Barb Taylor’s My Friend and I

A new writer from Regent Park Learning Centre in Toronto talks about what a big help it is when friends learn together.


Systemic Violence

Learners from Parkdale Project Read in Toronto talk about how poverty and racism affect learning.

I’m a Survivor Not a Victim

An Ojibway First Nations woman talks about the road she has been down. This is a difficult story of childhood violence and its impacts on her life, ending with words of encouragement from this new writer who is now 51 years old.


The Importance of Writing

A writer’s group at Parkdale Project Read in Toronto did work on the topic of the importance of creative writing – and found that it was a powerful way of addressing violence in their lives.

Glory House video - Finding Voice

Women from Glory House Recovery Home, Long Island, New York speak and read their writing out loud in a video documenting a literacy class where they were able to reflect on their lives.

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Cause you to space out Or act out Escape into your mind Become silent Lose your hopes and dreams Feel bad, stupid, wrong, don't belong Or just not good enough Or going to school