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admin 02.06.2014

The city of Detroit is, as the world knows, facing a lot of problems, one of which is thousands upon thousands of abandoned vacant homes, many badly in need of repair. Write A House founder, author Toby Barlow, told the Los Angeles Times, “I actually grew up at a writer’s colony, Blue Mountain Center, smack dab in the middle of the Adirondack Mountains.
In a press release, she noted, “In the past three years, I’ve seen incredible progress, but there is still much room for more in the literary arts. As a start, Write A House purchased three houses badly in need of repair in a neighborhood just north of Hamtramck in Detroit. Even so, Barlow admitted that “One of our concerns going in was that maybe there weren’t any writers who would be interested in this. According to the Huffington Post, Write A House will accept applications from working, ‘low-income’ writers in the spring, who will be asked to send in writing samples as well as a letter of intent.

Writers from anywhere in the world are encouraged to apply; if they are accepted, they will have to commit to live in Detroit for at least two years, where they will lease the house from the nonprofit for a small payment just to cover taxes and insurance. If all goes well, the goal is for the project to have a new set of houses in a different neighborhood the next year, and then another the year after that. About the AuthorDennis AbramsDennis Abrams is a contributing editor for Publishing Perspectives, responsible for news, children's publishing and media.
But a new nonprofit group, Write A House, has a solution: fix them up and give them to deserving writers, making, in effect, residents of writers in residence. The Huffington Post reported that she relocated to Detroit from New York just three years ago in order to start the site’s Detroit blog.
The population there is a mix of Bangladeshis and African Americans, and while artists such as the well-known Powerhouse Project are nearby, it is an area suffering from the same high vacancy rates as much of the city.

After all, Detroit gets more than its fair share of bad press.” Even so, within 24 hours of the project’s launch, more than 200 interested writers contacted the organization to learn more.
The judges will include the former National Poet Laureate Billy Collins, poet Major Jackson, writer and filmmaker Dream Hampton, as well as Sean McDonald, editor at Farrar, Straus & Giroux. He's also a restaurant critic, literary blogger, and the author of "The Play's The Thing," a complete YA guide to the plays of William Shakespeare published by Pentian, as well as more than 30 YA biographies and histories for Chelsea House publishers.

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