Mirrors & Windows

Mirrors and Windows Fellowship

With its debut in 2018, the Loft is proud to provide a program dedicated to mentoring indigenous writers and writers of color to write picture books, middle grade, and young adult literature. The name is inspired by Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop’s crucial essay, “Mirrors, Windows, and Sliding Glass Doors” (1990).

While books for young readers is a thriving sector in publishing, those that are by or about indigenous people and people of color are significantly underrepresented.

The Loft will offer six-month mentorships to ten to twelve emerging/early-career Minnesota indigenous writers and writers of color who are interested in creating children’s and/or young adult (CYA) books. The group will be mentored by diverse published authors of books for children and young readers.

Mirrors and Windows is made possible by grants from the Jerome Foundation and the Archie D. & Bertha H. Walker Foundation, with additional support provided by Loft members.

COVID-19 Announcement

Due to the pandemic and all the effects it has had on the economy, the Loft made the very difficult decision to temporarily suspend several of our programs, including the Mentor Series and Mirrors and Windows. This was not a decision that was made lightly—the Loft has curated and operated the Mentor Series for over 40 years, and our relatively new Mirrors and Windows filled an immediate need in our literary community. These are unprecedented times, and the Jerome Foundation very generously extended an invitation to its program partners to re-work our budgets in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and shelter-in-place in order to ensure our survival.

The Loft intends these suspensions to be temporary: there will be no Mentor Series nor Mirrors and Windows in 2021. We will be coming up with alternative ways to serve the various communities of writers normally served by these programs in alignment with any shelter-in-place protocols put forth by the state of Minnesota, and we will work toward these programs returning in 2022. 

We understand that this is disappointing. We hope that all can come together and work through these very difficult times as a community, especially when the circumstances seem so dire.

Please continue to visit us at loft.org to see what programs and classes we will continue to offer.

Congratulations 2019–2020 Fellows

The 2019–2020 cohort are: Li Boyd, Ty Chapman, Beverly Cottman, Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra, Katie Hae Leo, Selena Moon, Magdalena Mora, Mai Neng Moua, Siman Nuurali, Cristina Oxtra, Carmen Perez, Isela Xitlali Gómez R.

Honorable mentions are: Hye Kyong Kim, Maitreyi Ray, Romelle Adkins.