Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Literary Venture for Isabella House

Isabella House—situated on the grounds of Isabella Geriatric Center in upper Manhattan—offers independent living for individuals 62 and older. The people who live in Isabella House bring a variety of rich personal experiences and talents to this innovative environment. 

Keeping up with this vital and enterprising community keeps everyone young. One of the attributes of life at Isabella House is a willingness to provide programs and opportunities that meet the ever growing interests of our residents. For example, a number of residents enjoy creative writing classes; some truly committed souls have volunteered to use their literary talents to develop the first Isabella House magazine, titled All in Our Family. It is a new and exciting venture undertaken by four residents who make up the editorial board. They are assisted by Angela Menghraj (Consultant).

Who are the editors?

·         Louise Alexander brings her extensive experience as an educator and nurse. She also produced a community publication, The Beacon Magazine, for the Castle Hill Senior Center in the Bronx.
·         Elaine Grabel is a poet and writer. She has worked in publishing for many years at John Wiley and Sons, and Doubleday. As a judge for the North Eastern Job Corps, Elaine evaluated essays of participants for the annual competition for ten years.  
·         William Hamilton is a former editor of and contributor to the Jane Austen Society of North America Newsletter. He was a teacher in adult education with concentration on writing.
·         Donald Lortie has an extensive background in computer technology. He has participated in a number of writing classes and workshops in Isabella. He also is an essayist with special expertise in scientific topics.

The first thing the board did was to announce the upcoming magazine to House residents, and then solicit contributions from those who enjoy writing. So, in addition to each board member submitting articles, poems and essays, other residents enthusiastically began to contribute their own work. The editorial board will continue to encourage residents to share stories from their lives, their poetry, reflections and anything else that suits their fancy.

Isabella House Magazine will publish its first quarterly issue in the coming weeks. Isabella House residents continue to be engaged in refreshing and life affirming activities in which they use their rich array of talents. After all, there is so much life in individuals of all ages.

Isabella House Magazine will be posted on our Facebook page at and our website when completed. If you have any questions, you may call Angela Menghraj, 212-342-9389.