Join Elissa Washuta as she discusses her new collection of personal essays, White Magic, with author and assistant professor of English, Nick White. In White Magic, Washuta reflects on the cheap facsimiles of Native spiritual tools and occult trends, “starter witch kits” of sage, rose quartz, and tarot cards packaged together in paper and plastic; she writes openly about a decade of abuse, addiction, PTSD, and heavy-duty drug treatment for a misdiagnosis of bipolar disorder and how she felt drawn to the real spirits and powers her dispossessed and discarded ancestors knew, while she undertook necessary work to find love and meaning. A Native woman, she explores land, heartbreak, and colonization, about life without the escape hatch of intoxication, and about how she became a powerful witch. Washuta and White will discuss White Magic with time for attendee questions.
Elissa Washuta is a member of the Cowlitz Indian Tribe and a nonfiction writer. She is the author of My Body Is a Book of Rules and Starvation Mode. With Theresa Warburton, she is co-editor of the anthology Shapes of Native Nonfiction: Collected Essays by Contemporary Writers. She has received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Creative Capital, Artist Trust, 4Culture, and Potlatch Fund. Washuta is an assistant professor of creative writing at The Ohio State University.
Nick White, originally from Mississippi, is the author of the novel How to Survive a Summer (Blue Rider/Penguin, 2017) and the story collection Sweet and Low. He is an Assistant Professor of English at The Ohio State University's MFA Program in Creative Writing. His short stories, poems, and essays have appeared in a variety of places, including The Kenyon Review, Guernica, Catapult, The Hopkins Review, Indiana Review, The Literary Review, Lit Hub, and elsewhere. He is currently at work on a new novel.