Book Pavilion: ReadAbility at Pac Rim


Book Pavilion
Monday, October 9, 2017 to Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Start Time: 

8:00 AM

End Time: 

9:00 PM
The Modern Honolulu

Special Events: Book Pavilion

The first-ever literary showcase at Pac Rim brings together writers, artists and readers to celebrate storytelling, literacy and the creative spirit. Book Pavilion is a curated engagement of illuminating conversations at the intersections of disability, diversity and wordcraft. In an intimate salon-style setting, story lovers will explore recent writing from award-winning, bestselling and emerging voices in fiction and nonfiction alike. Our lineup features author presentations; comic book panels; readings; oral storytelling and storytelling through visual art and film; script and memoir writing workshops; and much more. Stories inspire and empower people of all abilities to share their visions and to use narrative to spark enlightened change. Book Pavilion is a parley to explore storytelling ideas, but it's also a classroom to exchange pragmatic instruction. Through supportive "How To" workshops, conference-goers will learn the essentials of the expressive arts and enhance their chances of publication.

We hope you have fun!

Laura Blum and Charmaine Crockett, Book Pavilion curators


10:30 am – 11:30 am, The Modern Honolulu

Documentary Scriptwriting: Not an Oxymoron

Bradley Jackson (Library)

Crafting your story is an essential part of making a film, even a non-fiction one. Score bankable tips at this insight-jammed workshop with an award-winning filmmaker who will dissect specific solutions to narrative challenges and offer strategies for writing and planning a doc. Questions welcome.


Using the latest research, real-world examples and a new theory of healthy development, Dr. Travis’s book The Healing Power of Hip Hop explains Hip Hop culture's ongoing role in helping Black youths to live long, healthy and productive lives. In this session the author will connect research about Hip Hop's influences with examples of its practice and applied value, and identify education, physical and mental health and afterschool settings as key to promoting health and well-being.

Raphael Travis’s research, practice and consultancy work emphasizes positive youth development over the life-course, resilience and civic engagement. He is the author of The Healing Power of Hip Hop and co-author of Break Free: Be True. Be You.


11:50 am – 12:50 pm, The Modern Honolulu

What’s Your Story? A Masterclass on Memoir

Jessica Fechtor (Library)


Jessica Fechtor is an author, blogger and PhD candidate in Jewish Literature at Harvard University, where she has received numerous awards for her research and teaching. Her bestselling memoir Stir: My Broken Brain and the Meals That Brought Me Home won the 2015 Living Now Book Award and drew critical acclaim including The Wall Street Journal, and The Forward, among other outlets. Fechtor writes the popular food blog Sweet Amandine, and her writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and Tablet. 

Finally, a Sport for Us: A Reading from the First Book on Power Soccer—the First Competitive Team Sport for Motorized Wheelchair Users

Michael Jeffress (Studio 1)


Murderous villain, inspiring hero, pitiable victim, vulnerable cypher -- stereotypes of people with cognitive and intellectual impairment have long plagued our flickering screens. Yet in recent years progress has been made in the popular media and in the culture at large. In our exploration we will consider current ads and movies that impart a sense of personal agency, emotional nuance and dimensionality to characters with limited mental functioning. How can casting choices, collaborative storytelling approaches and critical contextualizations help create accurate images of these lives? From cinematography to lighting to costume design, in what ways does the visual strategy credibly capture both limitation and empowerment? Glimpse what goes into making realistic representations of people with cognitive/intellectual disability that can change public attitudes and foster meaningful inclusion.


Tom di Maria has served as Director of Creative Growth Art Center since 2000. He has developed partnerships with museums, galleries and international design companies to help bring Creative Growth's artists with disabilities fully into the contemporary art world. He speaks around the world about the Center’s major artists and their relationship to both Outsider Art and contemporary culture. Prior to his current position, he served as Assistant Director of the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive at UC Berkeley. He received his MFA from the Maryland Institute, College of Art, in Baltimore, and a BFA from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Supporting Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities and Mental Illness

Sherri Melrose (Studio 1)


David Luxtong serves as Chief Science Officer at In 2015, he formed Luxton Labs LLC. Dr. Luxton is the editor of Artificial Intelligence in Behavioral and Mental Healthcare (Elsevier/Academic Press, 2016) and the co-author of A Practicioner’s Guide to Telemental Health (American Psychological Association Books, 2016).

The Impossibly Thin Legs of My Racing Camels: Loving the Life and Writing the Book

Kathy Phillips (Studio 1)


With a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Brown University, Kathy Phillips has published five books and 23 articles including Manipulating Masculinity: War and Gender in Modern British and American Literature (2006 and ppb 2010); This Isn't a Picture I'm Holding: Kuan Yin (2004); Virginia Woolf against Empire (1994); Dying Gods in Twentieth-Century Literature (1990); "Between the Third Sex and the Third Reich: Brecht's Early Plays"; "Jane Harrison and Modernism"; and "Exorcising Faustus from Africa: Wole Soyinka's The Road"; and an article in Asian Women (Summer 2010) about WWII. As a retired emerita professor, Dr. Phillips has been writing non-stop and has merrily published five more books herself, via Create Space on 


3:50 pm – 5:10 pm, The Modern Honolulu

Writing Diverse Characters for TV and the Web

Bradley Jackson (Library)

Got an idea for a TV or web series? To advance it, you'll need a script. Explore the ABC's of television and webisode writing with an award-winning writer/producer whose credits include Crunch Time and who co-wrote Dealt, the opening night selection of the Pac Rim Mini Diversity Film Festival. Bradley will relay creative tales from the writers room: crafting strong protagonists, incorporating humor and using science fiction tropes to tell socially aware stories.

(See Documentary Screenwriting entry for bio.)


Visual Art of Shared Story: Creating Pathways toward a Positive Future

Meleanna Aluli Meyer (Studio 1)

Visual storytelling is a language used in this workshop, where use of an existing mural—Kuʻu ʻAina Aloha, Beloved Hawaiʻi—intends on inspiring participants in their work to visualize the future, 2025. Equal parts visual and oral, our workshop will explore the importance of iconography, setting contextual and historical knowledge as these relate to time and space, and each attendeeʻs orientation to the place they call home.


Amy Coleman, MD, is chief executive officer and founder of Wellsmart and author of the book Discovering Your Own Doctor Within. As a family medicine physician with secondary training in Japanese acupuncture, Dr. Coleman started as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force (USAF). She also established new, creative models of patient care design for the Air Force still employed today. In her work as the youngest and first female commander of the Special Operations Clinic in Ramstein, Germany, she guided global medical missions and was the appointed physician for officers of the highest command positions. Throughout her career, she was chosen as primary physician for USAF F-16 Fighter Squadrons, USAF Special Forces units and U.S. Embassies, as well serving as medical coordinator and physician for NASA Space Shuttle support missions.

3:50 pm – 5:10 pm, The Modern Honolulu


9:30 am – 10:30 am, The Modern Honolulu

Into the Magic Shop: A Conversation with James Doty

James Doty (Library)


James Doty, M.D., FACS, FICS is a clinical professor of neurosurgery at Stanford University and founder and director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, a part of the Stanford Institute of Neuro-Innovation and Translational Neurosciences. He is the New York Times bestselling author of Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart, published by Penguin Random House in 2016 and translated in 19 languages.

Dementia Blog: Writing about Illness

Susan Schultz (Studio 1)


Kathleen Norris is the award-winning poet, writer and author of The New York Times bestsellers The Cloister WalkAcedia & Me: A Marriage, Monks, and a Writer's LifeDakota: A Spiritual GeographyAmazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith; and The Virgin of Bennington. Kathleen has published seven books of poetry. Her first book of poems was entitled Falling Off and was the 1971 winner of the Big Table Younger Poets Award. Soon after, she settled down in her grandparents' home in Lemmon, South Dakota, where she lived with her husband, the poet David Dwyer, for over 25 years. The move was the inspiration for the first of her nonfiction books, the award-winning bestseller Dakota: A Spiritual Geography. It was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and was selected as one of the best books of the year by Library Journal. With Dakota, she creates in the reader an almost hypnotic awareness of being present in her day-to-day life.

Representation of Disability in Children's Books

Tara Weikum (Studio 1)

Thoughtful and compelling representation of disabilities in children’s books has grown and improved over the years. Books like Ann M. Mart’s Rain Reign, Cammie McGovern’s Say What You Will and R. J. Palacio’s Wonder have portrayed a variety of characters with disabilities and their experiences that have resonated with readers. Learn about the different ways authors have successfully captured a voice, a character and a story, resulting in a book that stands out in this market.


Amanda Stevens has a long-standing reputation for successfully bridging fashion and philanthropy. Her extensive professional experience includes procuring millions of dollars in grants for local non-profits, creating successful volunteer programs, working backstage during New York Fashion Week, producing high-profile fashion shows in Hawaii, guest lecturing at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, to being a weekly columnist for Hawaii's largest newspaper. She is currently the executive director at Susan G Komen Hawaii Breast Cancer Foundation, where she is on the front line to help underserved and underinsured women to get the help they need.


1:10 pm – 2:10 pm, The Modern Honolulu

Children's Book Publishing: An Editor’s Perspective

Tara Weikum (Library)

Learn about the children’s book market from a HarperCollins editor who has worked with kids' lit for 20 years. Find out how to research the best home for your book with both literary agents and publishers, and snare expert hacks about how to position your book among the competition. The second half of the workshop will be Q&A.

(See Representation of Disability in Children's Books for bio)

A Primer on the Pathway to Scholarly Writing: Helping Nascent Writers to Unlearn Conditional Habits

Dennis McDougall (Studio 1)


Kat Holmes is a leading expert in inclusive design with hands-on experience in applying it to mass-scale consumer technology. She is the founder of Kata and, complementary ventures that form a platform of people and tools for advancing inclusion in product development and digital experiences. She also advises companies on inclusive design methods that she pioneered as director of Inclusive Design at Microsoft, where she wasis recognized for her thought leadership in reexamining disability and diversity as a source of innovation. In 2017 Holmes was named one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business for 2017. She led the development of Microsoft’s award-winning Inclusive Design toolkit. This toolkit was widely recognized as a radical evolution of design thinking including honors from the Interaction Design Association (IxDA) and Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas.


2:30 pm – 3:30 pm, The Modern Honolulu

Standup Comedy and Disability: Art, Social Activism, or Pure Nonsense (or maybe a bit of all three!)

Nina G and Matthew Mock (Library)


Nina G is the San Francisco Bay Area's favorite female stuttering standup comedian (granted she is the only one). Also a disability activist, storyteller, children's book author and educator, she brings her humor to help people confront and understand social justice issues such as disability, diversity and equity. When Nina isn’t performing at comedy clubs like the San Francisco Punchline or the Laugh Factory, she is playing colleges and presenting as a keynoter to children with disabilities and training professionals. She is part of the comedy troupe The Comedians with Disabilities Act.    Her book Once Upon an Accommodation: A Book about Learning Disabilities helps children and adults advocate for their rights as a person with a disability, and her one-person show Going Beyond Inspirational is a comical exploration about growing up with learning and speech disabilities.


Rewriting the World: Strengthening Diversity through Fiction

Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl (Studio 1)

The 21st century has opened the mystery genre to include a a diversity of detectives and multiple points of reference. As writers we are creating worlds that reflect our understanding of societies and human beings within those societies. As the many parts of the world move steadily toward a multicultural reality, how can we as writers foreshadow a world where mutual respect and understanding strengthens life?


Historian Steven Brown (PhD, University of Oklahoma) is co-founder of the Institute on Disability Culture and a retired professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Center on Disability Studies, where he taught Disability Studies and is currently affiliate faculty. He served as a 2015 Diversity and Inclusion Fellow for the Association of University Centers on Excellence in Disabilities Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit Initiative, and continues to consult with AUCD. Dr. Brown’s books include: Movie Stars and Sensuous Scars: Essays on the Journey from Disability Shame to Disability Pride (2003); Surprised to be Standing: A Spiritual Journey (2011); and Ed Roberts: Wheelchair Genius (2015), a middle grade biography of the late 20th-century disability rights pioneer. He is also a co-editor of the anthology Rethinking Disability: World Perspectives in Culture and Society (2016).


2:30 pm - 4:30 pm, The Modern Honolulu


Writing for Disability Studies: A Workshop with Journal Editors

Allyson Day, Jay Dolmage & Kim Nielsen (Studio 2)


Journal editors Jay Dolmage (Canadian Journal of Disability Studies), Kim Nielsen and Ally Day (Disablity Studies Quarterly) will share insights about writing for peer review publications drawing from their experience with Disability Studies. Following presenter introductions, the workshop will provide an overview of how journals work with authors from initial submission, through peer review and onto publication. Next the editors will present, in multiple formats, key strategies for writing for peer review. In the second half of the session, participants will move into break-out groups to workshop their own material, guided by the editors. Participants are encouraged to bring an abstract and outline of a current project to workshop.


Jay Dolmage is an associate professor at the University of Waterloo, where he earned the Faculty Outstanding Performance Award in 2013. He is the author of numerous publications, including Disability Rhetoric (Syracuse University Press, 2014), and two books in progress: Academic Ableism, which examines the roots and branches of eugenics in North American higher education; and Disabled Upon Arrival, which examines the rhetorical co-construction of categories of race and disability through turn-of-the-century immigration promotion and restriction. Dr. Dolmage is also the founding editor of the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies. 



In this session, Shawna Yang Ryan will discuss the process of transforming difficult histories into fiction--how to do it and why it matters. Her award-winning historical novel Green Island interwove themes of love, betrayal and family against the backdrop of a changing Taiwan in the 20th century. There will be time for audience questions.



Ngahiraka Mason was the curator of the recent Honolulu Biennial 2017. She is the former indigenous curator at Auckland Art Gallery (NZ) and a writer, educator, historian and trained fine artist. Her career at New Zealand’s most prestigious art museum encompassed developing and acquiring art collections and commissioning site-specific contemporary art. Ngahiraka collaborated with the Noumea Biennial (2000) and the 2nd Auckland Triennial (2004). She has been an advisor to the Asian Society Museum on New Zealand and Pacific art, and contributed writings for the Andy Warhol Museum, Contemporary Commonwealth, National Gallery Victoria, Australia, the 17th Sydney Biennial, Australia and Sakahan, the National Gallery of Canada and for her New Zealand and international exhibitions. Ngahiraka is a community arts advocate, mentor to artists, speaker and Shibori practitioner.



2:30 pm - 4:30 pm, The Modern Honolulu



Writing for Disability Studies: A Workshop with Journal Editors

Allyson Day, Jay Dolmage, Kim Nielsen (Studio 2)

(See Writing for Disability Studies: A Workshop with Journal Editors entry for bios.)


3:50 – 5:10 pm, The Modern Honolulu

Let’s Get Graphic

Roy Chang (moderator), Stacey Hayashi, Christopher Caravalho, Napua Ahina (Ballroom A)




Roy Chang is a two-time Pa'i Award-winning editorial cartoonist for MidWeek, Hawai'i’s most widely read non-daily newspaper. Roy has illustrated Hawaiian books including Cacy & Kiara and the Curse of the Ki`i. He shares a 2005 Po`okela Award for Excellence in Children's Literature, and his self-published comic books include Highball and Pepe. The newest edition of his acclaimed Aloha Pepe comic book series introduces a special team of superhero dogs with disabilities.




 Stacey Hayashi is the founder of the successful PainaGirl family of websites, which includes Hawaiian Wedding Shop. A former software engineer before starting her own companies, Stacey helped pioneer the development of internet-based businesses focused on the manufacturing and distribution of Hawaiian products. Her interest in Japanese American and Hawaii culture led to the development of a multimedia project celebrating the heroism and cultural significance of the 100th Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team and members of the Military Intelligence Service. Her historically accurate 2012 manga Journey of Heroes is internationally acclaimed, and two films that she executive produced screened at the Hawaii International Film Festival.


Photo: Napua Ahina


Napua Ahina has parlayed her 15-year career in graphic design and web development into digital painting. Currently she is coloring Pineapple Man's graphic novel Old School Lock Up and producing comic book material for a mainland publisher in addition to performing collaborative work with the Hawaiian Comic Book Alliance and providing flat colors for an award-winning comic series.