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8/6 #CripLit Twitter Chat: Writing Disability


Image description: graphic with a yellow background with black text that reads: #CripLit Twitter Chat, Writing Disability, August 6, 2017, 4 pm Pacific, 7 pm Eastern, Hosts @Nicolaz and @DisVisibility. On the left is an illustration of an open book in black. On the right is an illustration of a laptop with a screen and keyboard.
Image description: graphic with a yellow background with black text that reads: #CripLit Twitter Chat, Writing Disability, August 6, 2017, 4 pm Pacific, 7 pm Eastern, Hosts @Nicolaz and @DisVisibility. On the left is an illustration of an open book in black. On the right is an illustration of a laptop with a screen and keyboard.


You are invited to the ninth #CripLit chat co-hosted by novelist Nicola Griffith and Alice Wong of the Disability Visibility Project®.

We’re both writers of fiction and nonfiction. We’re both readers. We want to talk about the experience of writing about and from being disabled—how it feels, what we love, what we hate. We want to talk about all kinds of writing: fiction and drama, poetry and creative non-fiction, journalism and personal essays. We’re interested in why we want to write about or from the perspective of disabled characters, or perhaps why we need to. We want to look at the kind of narratives we’ve seen a lot—Cure narratives, Pity narratives, Outcast narratives—and the kind we might sometimes write ourselves: Wish Fulfilment, Coming Out, Triumph, Norming narratives. What are they? What are some examples of each? What’s good about them? What’s bad? Why do we want/do not want to write them? How can we learn to do it better?

Additional Links

Towards an Intersectional queer crip syllabus, by Tovah Leibowitz, Autostraddle, May 23, 2016

Writing without pity, Out of the Binders, April 4, 2015

Stylish Negotiations, Emily K. Michael, Brevity, July 14, 2017

How to Write About Your Disability, by Rebecca Swanson, The Rumpus, June 28, 2017

How to Participate

Follow @DisVisibility and @nicolaz on Twitter for updates.

When it’s time, search #CripLit on Twitter for the series of live tweets under the ‘Latest’ tab for the full conversation.

If you might be overwhelmed by the volume of tweets and only want to see the chat’s questions so you can respond to them, check @DisVisibility’s account. Each question will tweeted 6-8 minutes apart.

Check out this explanation of how to participate in a twitter chat by Ruti Regan:

Check out this captioned #ASL explanation of how to participate in a chat by @behearddc

Introductory Tweets and Questions for 8/6 Chat


Welcome to the #CripLit chat on Writing Disability. This chat is co-hosted by @nicolaz & @disvisibility. Please remember to use the #CripLit hashtag when you tweet.

If you respond to a question such as Q1, your tweet should follow this format: “A1 [your message] #CripLit”

Q1 Roll call! Please introduce yourself and share any links to your work or anything else about yourself. #CripLit

Q2 Do you write about disability? What kind of #criplit stories do you write?  

Q3 What are the joys/challenges (physical, emotional, mental/intellectual) of writing disability? #CripLit

Q4 What are some disability narratives: Cure, Outcast, Pity, Triumph, Wish Fulfilment, Coming Out? Which do you love/hate? #CripLit

Q5  What kind of stories are missing? How do we expand disability narratives? How do we get more #CripLit on shelves and screens?

Q6 What’s your approach to writing about disability? #CripLit

Q7 Should disabled writers write only stories with disabled characters, or about disability issues? #CripLit

Q8 Are you ever tempted to tone down the disability in your work in order to be ‘more publishable/marketable’? #CripLit

Q9 Do you see parallels between #CripLit narratives and those of other marginalised groups: #ownvoices stuff by queer, POC, immigrants, etc?

Q10 Would you want to take a class/workshop for crip writers? What would it be like? Are there any you’d recommend? #CripLit

Thank you for joining our #CripLit chat. Please continue the conversation!

A Storify will be up tomorrow. Check the #CripLit hashtag. Feel free to contact @DisVisibility @nicolaz with any ideas/feedback 

4 thoughts on “8/6 #CripLit Twitter Chat: Writing Disability Leave a comment

  1. Hi, My name is Jina Bazzar. I’m an aspiring author and i am blind. My question is, Twitter and i aren’t friends, too many images and the assisstive software i use makes it a little confusing for me, but i’d like to participate. I wonder, if i write nothing about disability or people with disability, does it matter? Here’s an example of my writing:
    When i started this blog, i wanted to attract people with disabilities to talk about the difficulties they find to achieve their goals, but so far, i haven’t found any. The ones i’ve approached haven’t replied, and no one has approached me of their own. I understand it’s hard fora person with disability to step away from their comfort zone, i am one of those people as well.

    • Hi Jina,
      Are there writing groups you can join? I actually know a lot of blind folks who are really active on all forms of social media such as Twitter and Facebook. I find social media, while still inaccessible and difficult for many, to be extremely helpful in finding people so I don’t feel so alone. There are definitely groups you can join on Facebook if that is not as inaccessible for you. Also, don’t give up on finding the right assistive technology that’s right for you.

      Take care,

      • Hi Alice,
        i have a facebook account. i’m not much active, however, like i said, too many photos. still, facebook gives me a vague description of the photos i.e, one person, a tree, a child etc… mostly i use it to get in touch with my friends from abroad. i haven’t joined any blind community, no, i haven’t found them yet, but to be honest, i haven’t been actively searching. currently i’m looking for individuals, as it’s easier to connectwhen you aren’t taling to a group but a person at a time. I’ve reached out to afew, but i’m still waiting for a response.

      • I typically don’t accept Friend requests on Facebook with people I don’t know but I approve anyone who wants to join the DVP Facebook group. Even though you may not be comfortable in a group, you’re more than welcome to just read the posts. How much you want to engage is up to you!

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