The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Writer discusses art during NE luncheon

By Frankie Farrar-Helm/entertainment editor

Artist-writer Shay Youngblood will present Open Book, a luncheon event 12:30-2 p.m. Feb. 23 in NSTU Center Corner.

Sponsored by the NE art department, Youngblood will speak to students about the creative process as well as her work and life.

NE art associate professor Cynthia Hurt said she met Youngblood through an art professor at the University of North Texas and thought, with Youngblood’s experience in writing and art, she would be great to bring to the college.

“What can students learn from Shay?” Hurt asked. “Creativity, the creative process, living a creative life, being open to new ideas and new forms of communication … the list goes on.”

The Georgia-born writer received her master’s in creative writing from Brown University and has taught creative writing to faculty and graduate students at New York University, the University of Mississippi and Texas A&M University. She is a recipient of numerous grants and awards.

Youngblood has written many novels and published plays that have been widely produced. Shakin’ the Mess Outta Misery is currently showing for the second time at Jubilee Theatre in Fort Worth.

As her inspiration for the play, she wrote her collection of short fiction stories titled, Big Mama Stories, as a celebration of the women who raised her in southern Georgia, Youngblood said.

“A ‘big mama’ is a woman who has influenced you in a positive way, sharing her knowledge about things you need to know to survive in the world,” she said. “I wrote Shakin’ the Mess Outta of Misery based on those stories as a way to keep the women alive.”

Youngblood said her painting came out of a time when she couldn’t write.

“I was living in New York City on Sept. 11 and was traumatized by that. For a while, I couldn’t see the point in continuing to be a writer,” she said. “Painting led me back to writing. My talk Open Book will address the importance of literature, language and the arts.”

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