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Town Hall Seattle: Arts & Culture Series

Town Hall’s Arts & Culture series elevates the voices of local artists while bringing world-renowned cultural icons to Seattle audiences. The series celebrates music, photography, sculpture, philosophy, heritage, and traditions around the world that enrich our lives.

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Dec 13, 2020

The COVID-19 crisis has led to a moment of grief, isolation, and uncertainty that is nearly unprecedented in recent memory. How are we changing as a result, both as individuals and a society? In response to the pandemic, author and editor Jennifer Haupt rallied 90 authors, her publisher, and other business partners to explore the impact in Alone Together: Love, Grief, and Comfort in the Time of COVID-19, all proceeds of which benefit the Book Industry Charitable Fund.

Haupt joined us in conversation with three contributors to Alone Together: Lidia Yuknavitch, Claudia Castro Luna, and Amber Flame. They shared readings from the book, and engaged in a panel discussion moderated by KUOW’s Zaki Hamid to explore the importance of creativity and resistance in this moment. For anyone who has been feeling the isolation keenly, we invite you to this conversation as a lifeline for negotiating how to connect and thrive during this time.

Jennifer Haupt is the editor/curator of Alone Together. Haupt’s essays and articles have been published in O: The Oprah Magazine, Parenting, The Rumpus,, and many other publications. She also curates the popular Psychology Today blog, “One True Thing,” a collection of essays and interviews for authors and readers. She is the author of In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills, and is currently working on her second novel and a creative nonfiction book. She lives in Seattle, and teaches at Hugo House and elsewhere.

Amber Flame is a writer, composer, and performer, whose work has garnered artistic merit residencies with Hedgebrook, Vermont Studio Center, and more. Flame served as the 2017-2019 poetry writer-in-residence at Hugo House, and is a queer Black single mama just one magic trick away from growing her unicorn horn.

Claudia Castro Luna is the Washington State Poet Laureate (2018-2021), Seattle’s first Civic Poet (2015-2017), an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellow, and author of This City; One River, A Thousand Voices; and Pushcart-nominated Killing Marias.

Lidia Yuknavitch is the author of the memoir The Chronology of Water and the novels The Small Backs of Children, Dora: A Headcase, and The Book of Joan.

Zaki Hamid (moderator) is Director of Community Engagement at KUOW. He is an Arab immigrant from Jordan, in the US since 1994 and in Seattle since 2003. Before KUOW, he was the program director at Humanities Washington. He teaches classes on film and mass media at Everett Community College.

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