Hospice of Southern Maine announced today that authors Elizabeth Gilbert and Michelle Zauner will be the featured speakers at its 11th annual Thresholds Conference, taking place virtually on Tuesday, May 10 from 1-3:30 p.m.

This year’s conference, titled “Grief is Individual and Universal,” provides an in-depth look at the topic of grief. In addition to the personal remarks of the keynote and guest speakers, HSM will present a short educational segment on grief and share documentary-style video clips featuring its own employees’ insights on grief and loss.

Best known for her 2006 memoir “Eat Pray Love,” which chronicled her journey alone around the world looking for solace after a difficult divorce, EGilbert’s critically acclaimed novels and immensely popular works of nonfiction expand her reader’s understanding of creativity, spirituality, and love. During the conference, she will speak about her experience with hospice during her partner Rayya’s illness and death, share her thoughts on grief, and participate in a Q&A session with the audience.

Zauner’s first book “Crying in H Mart,” a New York Times Best Seller that is currently being adapted for the screen, is an unflinching, powerful memoir about growing up Korean-American, losing her mother, and forging her own identity. Zauner is best known as a singer and guitarist of the indie pop band Japanese Breakfast. She has won acclaim from major music outlets around the world, including two GRAMMY nominations for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album. She will read passages from her book and answer questions from the audience.

“Over the past two years, so many people have become intimately familiar with loss and the grief that accompanies it. While grief is universally recognizable as something we all experience at some point in our lives, it’s also very personal, and each person moves through it in their own unique way,” said Daryl Cady, CEO of Hospice of Southern Maine. “We’re pleased to be able to welcome these renowned speakers as well as our own Hospice of Southern Maine experts to share their stories and wisdom with this year’s audience.”

Tickets for this virtual event are available for $35. For more information about the Thresholds Conference and to register for the event, please visit thresholdshsm.org.

Books from both authors can be purchased through Hospice of Southern Maine’s partnership with Longfellow Books in Portland.

The Rev. Anne L. Hunter, M.D. Memorial Thresholds Conference is an annual community conference on end of life. It is designed to provide the public, healthcare professionals, and caregivers the knowledge and tools we need to understand hospice care and end of life. Now in its 11th year, Thresholds brings people together for honest conversations about end of life.

Hospice of Southern Maine is a non-profit organization with the mission to provide compassion, care, and comfort through end of life. Formed through a collaborative effort among York and Cumberland County leaders and health care providers, Hospice of Southern Maine organized in 2001 and began providing direct patient services in 2004. Today, HSM cares for nearly 2,000 patients annually, at the patient’s home, current care facility, and Gosnell Memorial Hospice House, an 18-suite inpatient facility in Scarborough. HSM admits patients with a variety of diagnoses, including Alzheimer’s; heart, lung, and kidney diseases; stroke; Lou Gehrig’s disease; and cancer. Care is patient-centered with family support and provided by a comprehensive interdisciplinary team of physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, social workers, aides, chaplains, grief counselors, and volunteers. Hospice of Southern Maine is a non-profit 501(c)3, Medicare certified state licensed agency, and the largest independent provider of hospice services in Southern Maine. To learn more, visit http://www.hospiceofsouthernmaine.org.