Inspired by Caitlin Mahoney's empowering, original song of the same name, The Burn The Book Project is an artistic collaboration between women and social movement. The project's goal is to give women a space to tell their stories of overcoming rules, social pressures, and constantly being told what to do, what to think, who to be.

Caitlin and H.I.P. Lit collaborated to showcase the voices of an extraordinary cast of four female writers who each share a unique perspective on overcoming particular societal pressures or expectations that they've had to face. Their essays will be compiled in a sketchbook in the Brooklyn Art Library's archive, where it will be a part of a worldwide community of creative people. All four women also starred in the music video. 

We hope women, and people in general, see the video, read these essays, and want to burn the chapter in their life where they feel stuck, trapped, held back. This whole movement has been incredibly cathartic for us, and witnessing these women own their truth and share their choice to overcome an expectation that was handed to them—well, that courage is contagious.

This is for all of us! Share your stories using #BurnTheBook. 

The Essays


Patricia Park is the author of acclaimed novel Re Jane, a modern-day reimagining of Brontë's Jane Eyre. She has written for The New York Times, Guardian, Salon, and others. She received fellowships from Fulbright, Sewanee, and the Center for Fiction. She is Assistant Professor in the MFA program at American University. 

Read her essay, "Women Should Not Be Smarter Than Their Husbands."


Jenny Williamson is a poet and fiction writer living in Brooklyn. Her work is published in journals including 24cc, East Coast Literary Review, Burningwood Literary Journal, and Vox Poetica. Her poetry chapbook, Collection of Flaws in a Black Dress, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2016. 

Read her essay, "Why I'm Child-Free." 


Hannah Lillith Assadi received her MFA in fiction from the Columbia University School of the Arts. She was raised in Arizona and now lives in Brooklyn. Her novel Sonora was a finalist for the PEN/ Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction.

Read her essay, "Broken By Those Nights."


Kyle Lucia Wu is the Programs and Communications Manager at Kundiman, a nonprofit dedicated to nurturing Asian American literature, and the co-publisher of the literary journal Joyland. She was awarded the Asian American Writers Workshop Margins fellowship in 2017y. She has an MFA in fiction from The New School and teaches at Fordham University. Her work has appeared in Literary Hub, Guernica, Electric Literature, Vol 1 Brooklyn, The Rumpus, and Interview Magazine.

Read her essay, "My Existence Doesn't Require An Explanation."


Caitlin Mahoney is an independent New York City-based singer-songwriter whose voice has been praised as “powerful and soulful - a mix of Adele and Fiona Apple.” Her latest album, “story still left to be told” is an expression of Caitlin’s unmistakeable drive to never lose sight of your hopes and dreams. Caitlin is passionate about female empowerment as well as education and regularly supports She Should Run, She's the First, and Girls Who Code. 

Read her essay, "Communion Song." 


Kat Quinn is an indie-pop songstress based in New York City. Originally hailing from Marblehead, Massachusetts, Quinn found music at a young age with drums, piano, and guitar. But it wasn’t until college when she discovered the piece the tied them all together: writing. She has released three EPs, that got notable outlets such as American SongwriterPopMatters, and Hello Giggles buzzing, and her songs have been featured in film, TV, and ads. 

Read her essay, "Prescribe Me A Problem."

The Music Video

The Event

The Burn The Book premiere kicked off on April 19th, 2018 at The Brooklyn Art Library, where we premiered the essays, the sketchbook and the music video in a live, intimate, and cathartic event. Photos below by Bridget Haggerty. 

The Sketchbook

All six essays along with art by Denise Pereira and photos will be compiled into a Sketchbook as part of The Sketchbook Project, a crowd-sourced library that features 37,078 artists' books contributed by creative people from 135+ countries. It will be viewable at the Brooklyn Art Library. 


Our Partners

A big thank you to our partners: Brooklyn Art LibraryArtery.IsVarious ProjectsSunday Beer CoBerkshire Road Brownies, and CorePowerYoga

Special thanks to Erin Harris, Britt Canty, Kim Perel, Sydney Arroyo, Megan Hanson, Michelle Barchitta, Lance Kuhns, Julian Velez, Baldwin Angeles, Mary VandeRiet, and Jessie Tseng.