Julie Phillips Master Class Recording

Award-winning Amsterdam based author Julie Phillips gave a special master class for us on 16 October 2022, moderated by IWC teacher Karen Kao. The class focussed on her newest book in which she examines the relationship between motherhood and creativity through the lens of multiple female artists like Alice Walker, Doris Lessing and Audre Lorde. In The Baby on the Fire Escape: Creativity, Motherhood, and the Mind-Baby Problem, Julie tackles pre-conceived notions about who is allowed to be an artist.


Jenny and Karen discuss:

  • Must an artist be alone to create?
  • Do all artists need to be “art monsters” in order to succeed?
  • To what extent does the myth of the “perfect” parent / child / lover continue to burden writers today as we navigate ever increasing roles and responsibilities?



Julie Phillips is the winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Hugo Award and the Locus Awards for her biography James Triptree, Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon. Her short form work has appeared in The New Yorker, Ms., The Village Voice and the Dutch daily newspaper Trouw. She is the recipient of a Writing Creative Nonfiction Grant and an alumna of residencies at Hedgebrook and Willapa Bay AIR.

Karen Kao is a teacher with the International Writers’ Collective and is the winner of the 2022 Kenyon Review Short Nonfiction Contest and a nominee for the Pushcart Prize, VERA, and Best of the Net. Her debut novel, The Dancing Girl and the Turtle (Linen Press 2017) is the first of a quartet of historical novels set in Shanghai. Karen’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Kenyon Review, Pleiades Magazine, Hippocampus Magazine, and Tahoma Literary Review, among others.


Copyright © 2022 Julie Phillips & International Writers’ Collective

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International Writers' Collective
International Writers' Collective
Julie Phillips Master Class Recording
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16 November 2022

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