Gazillion Voices– An All-Adoptee Led Online Magazine

While there are lots of articles, magazines, and policies about adoption, most are written by adoptive parents or adoption agencies. Very few are written by adoptees. Well, that’s all about to change.

Gazillion Voices will be the first All Adoptee Led publication addressing adoption issues from an adoptee-centric perspective. They’ve assembled an astonishing group of (US and international) adoptee writers, artists, academics, chefs, musicians, actors, researchers, change agents, activists, iconoclasts, and more. It’s gonna be great.

Its roots are in the Land of Gazillion Adoptees blog, and its branches are now looking for a little green.  The Kickstarter campaign launched today. Your donation will be well-placed. The magazine launches in August–I can’t wait.

Full disclosure:  My daughter Aselefech–the one who wrote the most viewed post on my blog ever–will be a contributing columnist. I will also be writing an article for a fall issue.

Poetry Slam: Love and Loss

Rachel Rostad

I like poetry slams: the visceral energy, the passion, the manipulation of language. I admire those who are spoken word artists, because of the courage they show serving up their intimate thoughts in public.

Rachel Rostad is a freshman at Macalester College, and a member of their poetry slam team. She’s also a Korean adoptee. In this video, she delivers Adoption from the heart.

I heard about this video via two prominent game-changers in adoption thinking. Both are worth reading and contemplating: The Lost Daughters (a writing collaborative of women adopted as children, US and internationally) and Land of Gazillion Adoptees (adoptee-centric, highlighting experiences/expertise of adoptees in Minnesota and around the world). Be sure to check them out.

Art of Adoption-Playwrights and Poets

There’s a growing movement in the art world of compelling plays, poetry, painting and more by adopted persons. It’s well worth paying attention to, because of its visceral power, its humor and sorrow, its tender subtlety and its blunt hard-edged honesty. I’ve had the privilege to get to know some amazing adoptee artists: performers, poets, playwrights, and more, who are creating a wide range of art based on their experiences of adoption. Some address adoption directly; for others, it’s an influence, unescapable, sometimes companionable.

Here are a few artists well worth following. I’ll be featuring more in the near future, and would welcome additions and suggestions.


I saw Sun-mee Chomet and Katie Hae Leo in their amazing plays, The Origin(s) Project. Both are Korean adoptees. Each is a powerful writer and performer.

Ungrateful Daughter: One Black Girl’s Story of being adopted by a White Family… that aren’t Celebrities.  Lisa Marie Rollins is the writer/performer of the play, as well the founder of Adopted and Fostered Adults of the African Diaspora.

Marissa Lichwick wrote and performed in Yellow Dress: A Solo Show, based on her journey as a 7-year-old Korean adoptee through adulthood.

Poets/Spoken Word Artists:

Michele Leavitt, US adoptee, author of the chapbook The Glass Transition.

Lee Herrick, Korean adoptee, writer of The Many Miles From Desire, and Gardening Secrets of the Dead.

Lemn Sissay, British-Ethiopian adoptee (and only person in the world named Lemn Sissay) Poet, playwright, author of Rebel Without Applause, and Morning Breaks in the Elevator.

Alaska-based Christy NaMee Eriksen, poet, organizer, educator, Korean adoptee. Be sure to click on her Friends for wonderful additional resources.