Does time really heal all wounds? Is the role of the storyteller to be a time carrier? When history holds so much trauma, can Black characters have the freedom to time travel?

In this panelshop (a panel & workshop hybrid), we will approach time and craft through a Black Indigenous lens. We will not only explore reconstructions and deconstructions of time, but put ideas in motion during a generative session.

The panelshop will include a 45-minute panel discussion, and then we will break out into workshop groups.

Participants will get to work with two of the four panelists.

3 Earth hours (1pm-4pm EST/ 10am-1pm PST)

About Voodoonauts: Voodoonauts is a grassroots Afrofuturist collective for Black SFF writers. Voodoonauts was founded by two MFA students, Yvette Lisa Ndlovu and Shingai Njeri Kagunda, and the cocoa-founders, Hugh “H.D.” Hunter and LP Kindred, in response to the under-representation and isolation of Black speculative fiction writers in the SFF landscape. Voodoonauts is a community space and generative writing workshop. The inaugural summer workshop included a cohort of 25 writers at varying stages of their careers.

Workshops

Hugh “H.D.” Hunter’s voyage is No time to mourn. No time at all.

Time is said to be the healer of all wounds. In a world rife with Black pain, this serves as an important remembrance for coping. In a linear time construct, distance from painful experiences provides comfort, growth, and solace. But what about for those of us and our characters who experience a multiplicity of timelines simultaneously? What shapes do processing, healing, and accountability take in a lived experience where all time (or at least perspective of time) is concurrent? I say, come find out. Let’s explore together.

Inspirations: Akwaeke Emezi’s The Death of Vivek Oji, Watchmen HBO, Audre Lorde, Marvel MCU

Category: Craft, Character

Yvette Lisa Ndlovu’s sojourn will be Body Time vs. Mechanical Time: Craft through a Black Indigenous Lens.

In Western countries, daily life is clock-bound. This attempt to calibrate and commodify time is inevitably linked to productivity and capitalism. Because “time means money,” every moment is dictated to us by a mechanical object on our arms or in our pockets. So, what can Black Indigenous conceptualizations teach the writer about time and about craft? In this breakout session, we will interrogate the philosophies behind “African Time” and “Body Time” and construct a pathway towards productivity-free craft.

Shingai Njeri Kagunda’s expedition is The Storyteller as Time Carrier.

Most black narrative structures descend from an oral storytelling tradition where stories were histories and memories carried and performed by the storyteller. What does it mean to literally hold time in the words we share? We carry those who left before us on our tongues, & as Afrofuturists, we imagine and project ourselves onto a future that is irrevocably tied to the past. For storytellers to be more open to time moving through us in uncanny ways, there must be an understanding that we are merely vessels. But time is a heavy thing to carry, & we must not forget how carrying joy is also carrying trauma, & carrying beauty is carrying pain, & the human body is a tiny fragile thing that makes us wary of the toll time-carrying takes.

In this workshop we will delve into constructing worlds haunted by the question: Does time tell our story, or do we tell time’s story?

Inspired by: Undone (Amazon), The Deep (Rivers Solomon), John Mbinti on African time.

LP Kindred’s pilgrimage is Black to the Future: The Perils of African and Diasporic Time Travel.

Michael J. Fox made time travel look fun in the ’80s and ’90s. Traveling to the past, accidentally seducing his mother, empowering his father, ensuring the birth of himself and his siblings, and generally changing his status in life… he also taught Black People Rock & Roll.

He draws inspiration from the works of Octavia Butler, Nisi Shawl, and Steven Barnes as jumping off points for imagining better yesterdays, todays, and tomorrows for Black People via temporal pilgrimage, timeline alteration, visiting alternate realities, personal chronokinesis, and trauma as time travel.

Voodoonauts Alumni:

There are nine scholarship spots reserved for Voodoonauts alumni. These will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis. Alumni, please reserve your ticket before November 22. Any unclaimed tickets will be released on November 23 for general registration and/or other scholarship recipients.


This workshop is available to anyone aged 18 or older for a $55 fee.

Unless otherwise stated, all times listed are US Pacific Time.

We offer a limited number of scholarships for each class to Black and Indigenous writers and writers from other marginalized backgrounds on a first come, first served basis. Please email us at workshop@clarionwest.org with a one-paragraph statement about your scholarship interest and need. Please include the name of the class you would like to apply the scholarship to.

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