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Nicholasa Mohr: 1938—: Writer

Transitioned To Writing

It was Mohr's art agent that expressed the lack and need for a story centered on a young Puerto Rican girl. Mohr reflected back to when she was a young girl and read all those storybooks and reached the same conclusion. Ellen Rudin, editor-in-chief at HarperCollins, offered Mohr a contract to write her first novel, after she had reviewed several stories Mohr had written. Mohr discovered she could reach a larger audience with greater impact through written, opposed to visual, art. As Mohr said to Paul Lauter, editor of The Heath Anthology of American Literature, "The visual art world is very exclusive and expensive … [b]ut when an artist writes a book, it becomes accessible to a wider audience." Still, art was incorporated into her works, which only strengthened her storyline. Mohr's literature was simple and direct, because it was primarily directed towards young adolescents.

Mohr's focus has been directed towards fiction, drama, screenplays, and teleplays. Her writing centered on the experiences and oppression that women faced in the Puerto Rican community in New York City. Her female characters and her themes portray gender barriers, urban poverty, liberation, social struggles, triumphs, and the limiting roles that men try to create for women. Mohr referred to this in The Heath Anthology of American Literature, "I hope there will be more Hispanic writers finding their voices, too, learning to value their own lives as important and valuable to write about." For this reason, Mohr continued to educate and influence the young. In 2001 she lectured at Millersville College, in Millersville, Pennsylvania. Mohr was also the featured speaker at the 2001 Annual Bella Abzug Lecture on Women's Studies, at Hunter College. Her topic included "Reflections of the Big Mango: Growing up Latina in the USA." Mohr also participated in the 2002 Teacher Network Conference, lunch with an author program.

With a 1999 grant from the New York State Council on the Arts, Mohr and the Rubií Theatre Company began to work on the musical adaptation of her novel, Nilda, also cited as an "outstanding book" by the New York Times. Additional plays written by Mohr include, Zoraida, a story adapted from the story collection, Rituals of Survival: A Woman's Portfolio, and I Never Seen My Father, a story adaptation from the collection In Nueva York were performed at INTAR NewWorks Lab in 2000.

Additional topics

Brief BiographiesBiographies: Barbara Barbieri McGrath (1953–) Biography - Personal to Fridtjof Nansen (1861–1930) BiographyNicholasa Mohr: 1938—: Writer Biography - Studied Art, Transitioned To Writing, Continued Writing