Tag Archives: Author Talks

Hebe Uhart’s “The Scent of Buenos Aires”: A conversation with translator Maureen Shaughnessy & Eva Gasteazoro at Word Up

A remarkable traveler and observer, Hebe Uhart pays close attention to the way people speak, how they move, and how they remain still. Considered to be one of the greatest contemporary Argentine writers, Uhart won the Manuel Rojas Iberian-American Award for literature in 2017. The Scent of Buenos Aires is the first collection of Uhart’s to be published in English, and Maureen Shaughnessy’s translation perfectly captures Uhart’s extraordinary world, one dappled with iridescent ivy and the small epiphanies of ordinary souls.

At this event at Word Up, Maureen will be in conversation with fellow translator Eva Gasteazoro, a writer and performance artist, translator, and teacher, originally from Nicaragua.

Reading & Signing: Renée Watson & Ellen Hagan’s “WATCH US RISE” at Word Up

Join Renée Watson and Ellen Hagan for a reading, conversation, and signing of their co-written young adult novel Watch Us Rise—a book that features the Word Up Teen Open Mic!

“This stunning book is the story I’ve been waiting for my whole life; where girls rise up to claim their space with joy and power.” –Laurie Halse Anderson, New York Times–bestselling and award-winning author of Speak

“An extraordinary story of two indomitable spirits.” –Brendan Kiely, New York Times–bestselling co-author of All-American Boys and Tradition

“Timely, thought-provoking, and powerful.” –Julie Murphy, New York Times–bestselling author of Dumplin’

Jasmine and Chelsea are best friends on a mission–they’re sick of the way women are treated even at their progressive NYC high school, so they decide to start a Women’s Rights Club. They post their work online–poems, essays, videos of Chelsea performing her poetry, and Jasmine’s response to the racial microaggressions she experiences–and soon they go viral. But with such positive support, the club is also targeted by trolls. When things escalate in real life, the principal shuts the club down. Not willing to be silenced, Jasmine and Chelsea will risk everything for their voices–and those of other young women–to be heard.


These two dynamic, creative young women stand up and speak out in a novel that features their compelling art and poetry along with powerful personal journeys that will inspire readers and budding poets, feminists, and activists.

Renée Watson is a New York Times–bestselling author, educator, and activist. Her young adult novel, Piecing Me Together (Bloomsbury, 2017) received a Coretta Scott King Award and Newbery Honor. Her children’s picture books and novels for teens—which include Some Places More Than OthersBetty Before XHarlem’s Little Blackbird, and A Place Where Hurricanes Happen—have received several awards and international recognition. In the summer of 2016, Renée launched I, Too, Arts Collective, a nonprofit committed to nurturing underrepresented voices in the creative arts. She launched the #LangstonsLegacy Campaign to raise funds to lease the Harlem brownstone where Langston Hughes lived and created during the last twenty years of his life. Her hope is to preserve the legacy of Langston Hughes and build on it by providing programming for emerging writers. Renée grew up in Portland, Oregon and currently lives in New York City.

Ellen Hagan is a writer, performer, educator, author of two poetry collections—Crowned and Hemisphere—and co-author of Watch Us Rise, a YA collaboration with Renée Watson from Bloomsbury. She is the recipient of the 2013 NoMAA Creative Arts Grant and received grants from the Kentucky Foundation for Women and the Kentucky Governor’s School for the Arts. Ellen is the Director of the Poetry & Theatre Departments at the DreamYard Project and directs their International Poetry Exchange Program with Japan, South Korea and the Philippines. She co-leads the Alice Hoffman Young Writer’s Retreat at Adelphi University. A proud Kentucky writer, Ellen is a member of the Affrilachian Poets, Conjure Women, and is co-founder of the girlstory collective. She lives with her husband and daughters in New York City.ē

Reading: Egli Colón Stephens & Natalia Harris at Word Up Bookstore

Join Word Up, in collaboration with Dominican Writers Association, for a reading of Unbroken—a hope-filled story of a mother and a daughter, and their unwavering grip for life. Grounded in their faith, together they battle a life-threatening disease that would forever change the course of their lives. In this chronicle you will hear these warriors’ roar, holding on to life and God’s promises. Dr. Egli Colón Stephens digs into memory weaving stories of her cultura, familia, and tradiciones that armed her with the tools to survive the challenges of life. Instinctually, she began to write about the journey God had brought her from, and a decade later, here it is. Like life, which is not linear, this story takes many shifts and unexpected turns. Facing the biggest challenge to date, through her daughter’s life challenge, Egli learns what it means to be courageous, resilient and relentless while leaning on her community for prayers. Their story has over 53,000 views on Telemundo and over 32,000 visits on their CaringBridge blog. They have also been featured on NBC News Latino, Daily News, The Morning Show in Australia, Vivala, ABC News, DNAinfo, Women’s Health, Us Weekly and Vogue.


Egli Colón Stephens, Ed.D., is a woman of deep faith committed to social justice and transformative education. She has been an inner-city educator for about twenty years and currently teaches Sociology at Bronx Community College and Dominican History at Borough of Manhattan Community College. She is also a Certified Holistic Life Coach and a consultant. Dr. Colón Stephens has been a distinguished human rights guest speaker at many institutions, including the United Nations, Fordham University, Universidad Panamericana de Aguas Calientes in Mexico to name a few. She is passionate about Latino literature and writing. Her writings have been published on NBC News Latino, My LifeStyle Magazine, Mamás Latinas and a brief article-critique on the Oprah Magazine. She has also been featured in Super Canal 33, The Observer, La Jornada, The New York Times, Fitness Magazine, SemiPerm Connections and Life Coach Network Radio. www.eglicolonstephens.com

Natalia Harris is a college student, professional model, cancer survivor and body positive image activist. She has had major health setbacks which have all led to a pivotal moment for a significant comeback. Ms. Harris has participated in New York Fashion Week at Lincoln Center and has been featured in Vogue, Elle, Glamour (Hungary), Women’s Health and Cosmopolitan magazines, The Morning Show in Australia, Telemundo’s Un Nuevo Día, Refinery 29. She has been featured in music videos and commercials, and on billboards and a few episodes of Project Runway. Natalia is determined and crystal clear about spreading a message of hope to the world. Although she loves fashion and modeling, her life’s purpose is to use it as a platform to heal humanity. www.iamnataliaharris.com