Get Lit-Words Ignite Founder Diane Luby Lane - Visionary Poet, Writer, Educator, Actress
The award-winning literary activist, educator, actress, poet, author and the founder and executive director of Get Lit-Words Ignite on how she brought classic poetry to the street and street poetry to the classroom to start a literary revolution for teens that’s changing lives and reaching hundreds of millions on YouTube.
Diane Luby Lane is an award-winning literary activist, educator, actress, poet, author and the founder and executive director of Get Lit–Words Ignite, an LA-based arts education nonprofit that brings classic poetry to the street and street poetry into the classrooms to empower new generations in literature, self-expression and performing arts. By engaging teens in great works of literature, in-school and beyond, teens engage in their own futures and unearth their potential. In 2012 Lane created the now annual Classic Slam, the largest youth classic poetry festival in the nation. Lane’s Lit Kit, a standards based, in-school curriculum, has been adopted by schools throughout the U.S. and internationally.
But that’s just part of her story. She is an actress with numerous commercial, TV and film credits and the author of the award-winning Get Lit Rising, published by Simon & Schuster and Words of Women, published by Samuel French. She is also the co-writer and co-producer of DANTE, an original adaptation of Dante’s Inferno, which stars Get Lit Poets. She was the playwright and star of the one-woman show Deep Sea Diving which she toured with Chicano poet and author Jimmy Santiago Baca. Diane is a TedX speaker, a graduate of the Annenberg Foundation’s Alchemy + Leadership Program, a Southern California Leadership Network Fellow and served on L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Poet Laureate Committee and she is a recipient of the Presidential Lifetime Volunteer Service Award.
Diane has changed the lives of hundreds of thousand of kids and reached hundreds of millions more through the power of poetry and storytelling. The biggest things that jumped out to me in our conversation were Diane’s total lack of fear of failure, her refusal to be complacent when things have been going well in her life and her willingness to follow her gut and keep trying things that seemed impossible. Progress is not a linear path and success is rarely what it seems. As you’ll hear, sometimes it even involves being a modeling talent scout in a Florida shopping mall.
What Diane has done with Get Lit is hugely impressive. But as I learned from her, its success was anything but a foregone conclusion and it has its origins in thousands of hours of hard work and knocking on doors until she overcame the skepticism she encountered and someone gave her a chance to get the program started.
Learn more about Diane at www.dianelubylane.com and find her on Instagram and Twitter @dianelubylane. For more info on Get Lit, visit www.getlit.org and follow them on Instagram and Twitter @getlitpoet.