The Center for Fiction Presents Kim Coleman Foote on Coleman Hill with Sarah Jessica Parker and Mecca Jamilah Sullivan
Tuesday, 7:00 pm EDT September 5, 2023
The Center for Fiction
Auditorium seating for this event has sold out. Choose Overflow Seating above to view the livestream in our second-floor Members Lounge and jump to the head of the signing line after the event.
Join us in celebrating the launch of the second book from Sarah Jessica Parker’s new imprint, SJP Lit, Coleman Hill, the debut novel from our 2018 Emerging Writer Fellow Kim Coleman Foote. With Coleman Hill (longlisted for our 2023 First Novel Prize), Foote blends fact, fiction, and myth into a striking biomythography—a term coined by the late Audre Lorde—about two families’ journeys as they flee the racism and poverty of the post-Civil War South for the North in 1916. Foote is joined in conversation by renowned actress Sarah Jessica Parker and 2011 Emerging Writer Fellow Mecca Jamilah Sullivan (Big Girl). The panelists will discuss engaging with the personal within the historical, the process of writing the biomythography, and the complexity of familial relationships in the face of multi-generational trauma.
After the conversation, Foote will sign and personalize books.
Kim Coleman Foote
Kim Coleman Foote
Kim Coleman Foote was born and raised in New Jersey, where she started writing fiction at the age of seven(ish). A recent fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, she has received additional fellowships from the NEA, NYFA, Bread Loaf, Phillips Exeter Academy, The Center for Fiction, and Fulbright, and residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell, and Hedgebrook, among others. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The Best American Short Stories 2022, the Rumpus, Prairie Schooner, the Missouri Review, the Literary Review, Kweli, and Obsidian. Coleman Hill is her first book.
Photo Credit: Sara Abbaspour
Sarah Jessica Parker
Sarah Jessica Parker
Award-winning actor, entrepreneur, producer, designer Sarah Jessica Parker is the publisher of SJP Lit. Founded in 2022 in partnership with Zando, SJP Lit is a book imprint that publishes thought-provoking, inclusive, and big-hearted stories, including A Quitter’s Paradise, the inaugural title by Elysha Chang, and Coleman Hill by Kim Coleman Foote. An avid, lifelong reader, Parker also served as Editorial Director of SJP for Hogarth, where she published the New York Times bestseller A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza in 2018. Parker has additionally served as the American Library Association’s Honorary Book Club Central Chair, a board member of United for Libraries, and on the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities under the Obama Administration.
Photo Credit: Andrew Day
Mecca Jamilah Sullivan
Mecca Jamilah Sullivan
Mecca Jamilah Sullivan is the author of the novel Big Girl, The Poetics of Difference, and Blue Talk and Love, winner of the Judith A. Markowitz Award from Lambda Literary. Sullivan is an associate professor of English at Georgetown University. A native of Harlem, she lives in Washington, D.C.
Photo Credit: Kathryn Raines
By Kim Coleman Foote
Published by SJP Lit
In 1916, during the early days of the Great Migration, Celia Coleman and Lucy Grimes flee the racism and poverty of their homes in the post-Civil War South for the “Promised Land” of Vauxhall, New Jersey. But the North possesses its own challenges and bigotries that will shape the fates of the women and their families over the next seventy years. Told through the voices of nine family members—their perspectives at once harmonious and contradictory—Coleman Hill is a penetrating multigenerational debut.
Within ten years of arriving in Vauxhall, both Celia and Lucy’s husbands are dead, and they turn to one another for support in raising their children far from home. Lucy’s gentleness sets Celia at ease, and Celia lends Lucy her fire when her friend wants to cower. Encouraged by their mothers’ friendship, their children’s lives become enmeshed as well. As the children grow into adolescence, two are caught in an impulsive act of impropriety, and Celia and Lucy find themselves at irreconcilable odds over who’s to blame. The ensuing fallout has dire consequences that reverberate through the next two generations of their families.
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