Featuring work by Edward Shen

When I first proposed the Workshop Series to NCF, I was incredibly excited to share writing’s ability to examine and to heal with the PD community, especially during as harrowing a time as the COVID-19 pandemic. That hasn’t changed, but this unforgettable summer, what truly astounded me was how much our members taught me. Through classes, conversations, and correspondences, this talented and unique group of people went from being my students to friends, and even mentors! Getting to know them—their hobbies, their stories, their quiet thoughts about the tree outside their window—and building lasting friendships has been the highlight of my year. It’s always a treat to receive an email from a member, be it an insight about teaching, something that had happened that day, or a poem they wrote. These were what kept me going while burning the midnight oil to hammer out a week’s presentation, and it always felt worth it when the class was in full swing. I’ll forever be thankful for this opportunity to teach and to learn.

A special thanks to Kristen, for her trust and help in getting this program off the ground. Additionally, hearing our members’ heartwarming feedback and encouragement was an absolute delight, and I can’t thank her enough for making the compilation possible! I’d also like to thank Linda and Ellen; their support has been invaluable throughout this summer! Last but not least, Mr. Mike Bell was a great inspiration, to me personally and for this program, and delivered an invaluable presentation on the philosophy and action of writing—all from across the Atlantic!

I look forward to continuing this program, and I eagerly look forward to seeing everybody again!

-Edward Shen