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Meet our writer-in-residence

Alinah Azadeh a writer, artist and cultural activist and the inaugural Writer-in-Residence at Seven Sisters Country Park and the Sussex Heritage Coast.

Alinah Azadeh, the Seven Sisters writer-in-residence

She is also creative lead on We See You Now (WSYN) a landscape and literature project dedicated to evoking the trans-global heritage and connections of this iconic coastal area, through new stories and poetry, across digital, live and print platforms.

Since 2020, We See You Now has hosted over 30 emerging and established writers of Black, Asian, Middle-Eastern, Latino and mixed-race global heritage to come into direct, collective experience of the landscape and each other, through writing and walking retreats and groups.

They use the rich metaphors and immersive experience of this spectacular and shifting coastline to explore migration legacies, belonging, deep time, climate change and justice, biodiversity, and renewal – and to imagine together more equitable futures.

Public-facing project highlights:

  • The Colour of Chalk, a podcast series featuring walk and talk ‘in conversation’ pieces between Alinah and invited writers, activists and ecologists. Available now.
  • An audio anthology of new, spoken word performances by Alinah and a selection of writers across the landscape and online. (Launch date to be confirmed)
  • A self-access WSYN Writing and Walking guide around Seven Sisters Country Park by Alinah, WSYN writers and renowned novelists Leone Ross and Umi Sinha. An opportunity for visitors and groups to take up a notebook and pen and to create and share their own response to the landscape (Launch date to be confirmed)
  • Additional workshops and live events will be announced shortly

Alinah Azadeh and We See You Now are funded by South Downs National Park Authority & Arts Council England through a major project grant 2021-22. Writer Retreats are produced by Writing our Legacy. Partner support also includes New Writing South and ONCA.

Alinah’s Work

  • We See You Now (Prologue): The original audio story by Alinah Azadeh inspired by a walk from Birling Gap towards Cuckmere, which led to the We See You Now project.
  • The Hidden Valley: Performed as part of BBC 3 The Essay ‘Into the Wild’ season, reflecting a walk from the edge of the South Downs to the sea.
  • The Colour of Chalk: A Podcast series featuring walk and talk ‘in conversation’ pieces with writers, activists and ecologists.

Project Partners and Supporters

  • Writing Our Legacy CIC: Established in 2012, Writing Our Legacy is an arts and heritage organisation that enables Black, Asian and ethnically diverse people from the south east to tell their story through writing and the creative arts.
  • New Writing South : A Brighton-based, key non-profit organisation for writers living and working in South-East England, it supports and encourages new, emerging and established writers from diverse communities. Alinah has been mentored and supported by them for the last 4 years.
The first writers retreat at Seven Sisters