Literary Cleveland to Launch Yearlong Residency Program for Local Emerging Writers

click to enlarge COURTESY LITERARY CLEVELAND
Courtesy Literary Cleveland
The literary arts nonprofit Literary Cleveland announced this week a new yearlong writing residency and mentorship program that will be awarded to six writers every year.

Funded by a grant from the Wolf Family Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the residency will allow two poets, two fiction writers, and two nonfiction writers to pursue a book-length project with help from established writers. It will also allow them to attend Literary Cleveland programs free of charge and take part in professional development opportunities.

The residency is designed specifically for writers who are still waiting to "break through," in the words of the press release. These are writers who have not yet published a book or participated in a university Masters of Fine Arts program. Literary Cleveland noted that while MFA programs and other opportunities exist in Northeast Ohio, they are often out of reach for writers of low or modest incomes. 

"Publishing a book is a breakthrough moment in a writer’s career, a transformational step that suddenly makes available a whole host of opportunities, including teaching, readings, speaking engagements and more," the press release said. "But it is difficult to complete a book-length project without long-term support, encouragement, feedback, mentorship, and resources."

The six writers selected will get to work one-on-one with published authors — including fiction writer Laura Maylene Walter (Body of Stars), nonfiction writer Eliese Colette Goldbach (Rust), and poet Kelly Harris-DeBerry (Freedom Knows My Name) — and, after setting up a work plan, will meet regularly with these mentors for the full year as they pursue their projects. The grantees will ultimately present their work at Literary Cleveland's annual Inkubator Conference. 

Literary Cleveland is encouraging those from historically marginalized communities to apply. The application deadline is June 20, 2022.

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Sam Allard

Sam Allard is the Senior Writer at Scene, in which capacity he covers politics and power and writes about movies when time permits. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and the NEOMFA at Cleveland State. Prior to joining Scene, he was encamped in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on an...
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