Write Flash About Caregiving

In October, I will be offering a class on writing about caring for our aging parents. Thank you to the Crow Collective for this opportunity to gather, read, and write about caregiving! Stay tuned for registration information by signing up for the Crow Collective list and/or mine!

As the caregiver for my mom, I’ve found joy, sadness, and meaning in flexing roles as child and caretaker. It can be a bittersweet experience to watch the people who raised us age or ail, and often it brings child and parent closer together or farther apart. Writing becomes an essential tool for understanding this transformative period in life. This workshop is for those experiencing that role reversal, for people caring for someone who once helped raise them but now needs help themselves. That person can be a parent, a grandparent, an aunt or uncle, a partner, or a friend. Flash fiction and nonfiction authors have shown time and again that there’s resonance in the literary short form. This session will help you unlock the ability to write about caretaking in 1,000 words or less. We’ll read flash on the topic, discuss flash memoir techniques, and work on prompts together. You’ll come away with new stories on the topic and a connection to other writers with similar experiences.

Date October 1, Saturday: 8 AM PDT / 11 AM EDT / 4 PM BST / 8:30 PM IST

Registration: Want to register? Sign up for the mailing list and you’ll be notified when registration opens in September.

Reading List: Our Aging Parents

Artists, journalists, researchers, and caretakers tackle the issue of caring for our aging parents in their work. Here are just a handful of links to some of that reading and watching. This list is regularly updated as a part of the Caring for Our Aging Parents anthology project.

Research, Data & In the News

Caring for aging parents, sick spouses is keeping millions out of work,” by Abha Bhattarai in The Washington Post

The staggering, exhausting, invisible costs of caring for America’s elderly,” by Anne Helen Petersen in Vox

Who will take care of America’s caregivers?” by Michelle Cottle in The New York Times

Caregiving in the U.S. 2020” from AARP

Pew Research Center’s exploration of The Sandwich Generation, middle aged parents “sandwiched” between caring for aging parents and kids

As COVID-19 rages, millennials make up growing share of ‘sandwich generation’ caring for kids and parents,” by Paul Davidson in USA Today

Funny/Wry

David Sedaris writes about his dad in The New Yorker’s “Happy Go Lucky”

Kirsten Johnson documents her dad’s decline into dementia in the Netflix film “Dick Johnson is Dead.” Read about it or watch here.

Cartoonist Emily Flake’s “How to Deal with an Aging Parent” in The Nib

Other Essays

Caregiving two generations almost cost me my career,” by Laura Zigman in The New York Times