Our mission is to help people create and share the human story
Gemini began in 1992 by two friends, Nan Cuba and Marylyn Croman, who directed reader’s theater productions at local museums, universities and community centers until officially offering a semester of literature and writing classes under the program name of University Without Walls in the fall of 1995. The twelve classes, which served 54 students, were held in Nan’s husband’s law office in the Wells Fargo Bank building on IH-410 and Broadway.
In 1996, classes were moved to the Doté Foundation (women’s resource center), a 1930s two-story house in Laurel Heights/Monte Vista. Gemini Ink was formally chartered as a non-profit in 1997. In 1998, the Writers in Communities program (WIC) was started eventually growing to serve 12 schools, the Cindy Taylor Krier Correctional Treatment Facility, the Ella Austin Community Center, and more. That same year, a two-week summer literary festival was launched, which included a Writer’s Camp for Kids.
In 2002, Rosemary Catacalos was hired as Executive Director, and retiring in 2013. Sheila Black was hired in 2013 and is the current Executive Director. Our mission continues to reflect our commitment to addressing the dynamic needs of San Antonio writers and readers — Gemini Ink helps people create and share the human story.
CWC offers three semesters of fair cost fee-based workshops and also many free literary events, all led by professional writers, scholars, and interdisciplinary artists. All CWC classes and events create a space for serious artistic, intellectual, and community-spirited dialogue outside of the academic context. Accommodating job and family schedules and limited budgets, all CWC classes are eligible for teachers’ continuing education credit, and Gemini Ink works to secure underwriting to provide full and partial scholarships and help ensure the diversity of our classes.
WIC sends professional writers into diverse community settings — such as shelters, schools, neighborhood centers, and detention facilities — to work alongside students of all ages, needs, interests and abilities. WIC writing workshops, — always free to participants — focus on oral traditions, reading, and creative writing, and, because we publish work by each student, represent for many their first acknowledged success with writing. WIC participant numbers have grown some 700% since 2003, reflecting Gemini Ink’s strong emphasis on literarily underserved populations.
Autograph Series presents writers of national and international stature — many of them recipients of major prizes such as the Pulitzer or National Book Award — in free public performance followed by audience Q&A and book signing. Ours is one of the only such series in the nation offered to the public at no cost. Autograph Series is partially supported by a ticketed colloquium luncheon with the visiting writer, also including audience Q&A and book signing. Previous Autograph writers have included Margaret Atwood, Grace Paley, Tim O’Brien, Edward P. Jones, Ha Jin, and Philip Levine.