The Aya Collective: 2021 Writing Project
Over the last three years, the Aya Collective (formerly the Kinky Curly Theological Collective) has gathered Black and African women focusing on writing through the lens of spirituality in community. In that time, we have hosted writing workshops, conferences, and otherwise held space for participants to deepen their writing practice.

In 2021, we will be focusing on turning those stories that Black and African women have written over the years into a book. The book will explore some of the themes that KCTC has explored over the last three years. We are inviting all interested Black and African identified women, whether they have formally participated in KCTC or not, to be a part of this collection.

If you are interested, please fill out this brief form below no later than March 1 (Deadline extended to March 10). This form is only designed to help us understand who might be interested in this project; it is not necessary to have a finished writing project at the time of your submission. Those will be due later in the year. If you have any questions, please email

Some of the themes that we have explored are listed below. Proposals should focus on one or more of these themes:

TELLING OUR STORIES, REFRAMING THE META-NARRATIVE: Exploring questions of faith and spirituality  

How has our faith been a source of liberation and resilience? *The importance of centering our experience, expertise, and cultural identity in the practice of spirituality and theology * How do we practice emotional and spiritual wellness as Black and African women * The call out that at times our multiple, intersecting identities have not been embraced by our faith and spiritual traditions

What does spirituality look like for Black women? * What is the difference between religion and spirituality in our own lives? * How does the history of religion as an imperial weapon impact our own religious practices? Our spiritual ones? * How might a liberating spirituality take shape in our own lives and what would it look like?

What is our spiritual and cultural heritage? * What are the stories, ritual, and practices passed down from generation to generation? * How are we remembering those in making our own to sustain our physical and spiritual wellbeing?

UNVEILING THE BLACK WOMAN INSIDE: What it means to be a Black Identified Woman

What is it to be a Black woman? What does Blackness mean and how is it similar or different to what it means to be African? How have our ideas of gender and sexuality impacted the way we understand womanhood? How do we see ourselves in relation to these terms? How are they either confining or liberating? How are we constructing the identity that we want to see reflected in ourselves?

Black women, power, and voice: There is something to be said about agency and voice. Power and strength. The StrongBlackWoman misnomer. How do we use our strength, agency, and voice for ourselves, first and foremost, before we extend it to others? How has the strength been used against us and how do we recover it?

The power of creating community: The healing that occurs within us when we come together. What have we been taught about being in relationship with one another? What keeps us a part? How we live in isolation because of our own trauma and fear? Are we competing against one another? And how do we overcome it? How can we be our biggest source of strength?
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Contact Information, including name, email, and phone. Include any social media handles if relevant.
Have you participated in events with the Aya Collective/the Kinky Curly Theological Collective in the past? If so, which ones?
How did you find out about our 2021 Book project? (select all that apply)
Please provide a brief statement of interest and what your proposed submission will be about.
What type of submission is this?
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What is your working title and proposed theme?
Is this a project that you already have completed or is it one that you will need time to work on?
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You will hear back from us about your proposal by March 15th. Full proposals will be due by July 1. Does this timeline work for you or do you forsee any problems in meeting it?
We will be hosting a few writing sessions between April - July to hold space for Black and African women who are working on their submissions. Are you interested in participating in these sessions (participation is not required to be a part of this project)?
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