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Writers House Pittsburgh

A year-long residency for writers -- supporting true stories and addressing housing instability in an unpredictable time.

$1,435
pledged of$26,000 goal
8
60Days Left
Fund it
Campaign Ends on October 5, 2020

Project Description

 

Writers House Pittsburgh is a long-term residency for both emerging and established writers, and a community space for literary organizations and individuals across the Rust Belt and Appalachia. As we launch, in September 2020, the Writers House will support four year-long writers-in-residence.

 

Writers-in-Residence

We currently envision this as a physical home and support community for writers focused on telling true stories with a broad interpretation -- from memoir and literary journalism, graphic and visual essays to documentary and protest poetry, experimental forms and, in some cases, novels and screenplays that are deeply researched and/or tackle critical issues.

There couldn’t be a more important time to support nonfiction storytelling.

We’re open to writers who may not have formal writing education or who may be emerging as a writer later in life. We seek writers for whom a year of housing stability and creative community would alter their life for the better, or would offer them an opportunity to recalibrate and/or launch more confidently. This includes all writers affected by the economic downturn caused by COVID. We’re also open to journalists who may have been recently affected by newsroom cuts, who’d like to work on a book or transition to freelancing. We seek to offer residencies to writers who are often poorly served by MFA communities and literary/media organizations, including writers of color and those identifying as LGBTQIA+. Each resident will have a living and writing space of their own, be paired with a mentor appropriate for their work and goals, and will have teaching or public programming opportunities via the House.

Applications for these residencies are now open and will close on July 29th. All US residents are eligible to apply. We especially encourage those who currently reside in the Rust Belt and/or Appalachia, particularly those who call Pittsburgh home, to apply.

You can find our residency application here, as well as information regarding our application review team.

A Community Space for Writers

Ultimately, post-COVID, the House will also be a community space for workshops and literary events. We hope to safely take these steps during the summer of 2021. Until then, we will be hosting some online classes and events, and partnering with local libraries and organizations to host safe programming or public arts projects.

Although we have so many great literary organizations and groups in the region, most are brick-and-mortarless, and may lack productive space to meet and write. The House will offer deeply subsidized memberships or fully-funded sponsorships to groups, organizations, and writing educators for use of workshop and gathering space. We are particularly eager to offer writer-teachers the space and support they may need to host workshops.

Writers-in-Residence will have the opportunity to host workshops and organize programming. Eventually, we will establish a community writers-in-residence program that will allow for established local writers to offer free office hours and mentorship to community members.

 

The House

The house is located in the Edgewood neighborhood of Pittsburgh in a home dating around 1900. It’s considered a Pittsburgh Victorian, a big brick box with stunning woodwork, stained glass windows, and tall plaster walls. This three-story residence is truly special and currently undergoing renovations in preparation for our first four residents. We’re doing most of the work ourselves and recruiting assistance from other writers with handy skills (all at a safe distance and masked). You can follow that exciting transformation on Instagram!

 

A Listening Tour

In our first year, the Writers House team, including residents, will take part in a (virtual or safely distanced) listening tour with community members, organization leaders, library and school administrators, booksellers and writers, publishers and artists, and others to hear more about their goals, needs, and partnership interests. In doing so, we will better understand the larger landscape in which we reside and identify the most appropriate partnerships, programming, public art projects, and uses for our community space. Our 2020-2021 residents will have the unique opportunity to participate in this process and help propose / design future opportunities in the house and post-COVID local programming / opportunities. These decisions will all be grounded in our desire to serve the community at large, support nonfiction storytelling across the city and region, and bridge some of the divides we see in Pittsburgh’s current literary landscape. 

 

Your Support

In this three-month campaign, we’re seeking the seed-funding necessary to offer fully-funded, year-long residencies to four writers and the time to establish the House’s long-term community programming and opportunities. Our campaign goal is $26,000 – the baseline cost for four residents. This is $6500 per writer.

If we surpass our goal, additional funding will go toward the following:

  • stipends for mentors working with writers-in-residence ($2000 each)
  • additional fellowship support for residents (up to $5000 each)
  • the establishment of and stipends for community-based writing fellows who would 1) serve the community by offering free monthly “office hours” (in person or virtual) to writers in the region seeking support and/or 2) complete a neighborhood-focused public arts project in Pittsburgh. ($5000 each)

 

Special Thanks for your Support

Between the start of our campaign and its close on October 1st, we will add new donor gifts to our crowd-funding each week – from signed books and essay/manuscript reviews to admission for donor-only, virtual workshops or conversations with a range of published authors across the country and more! New donor gifts will be updated here, within our campaign, and highlighted on our Instagram account.

 

Our Team

Maggie Messitt is Co-Founder and the Executive Director of Writers House Pittsburgh. Messitt is a journalist, editor and social entrepreneur who has spent 20 years working inside under-covered communities in South Africa and the American Midwest. In South Africa, she was the editor/publisher of an award-winning community newspaper and the founding director of a nonprofit training women journalists inside the former apartheid-era homelands of Lebowa and Gazankulu. She is the author of The Rainy Season, a work of narrative and immersion journalism, long listed for the 2016 Sunday Times Alan Paton Award. 

Messitt has edited the work of writers ranging from students to Pulitzer and Orange Prize winners, and managed editorial projects for the BBC, POV Documentary Films, Wisconsin Public Television, and others. She has taught writing in newsrooms and conferences, traditional university settings, alternative arts communities, and prison classrooms. She was the 2015 Scholar-in-Residence at Bowers Writers House (Elizabethtown College), 2015 Kenyon Review Peter Taylor Fellow, 2016 Clayton B. Ofstad Endowed Writer-in-Residence (Truman State University), and the Creative Nonfiction Judge for the 2017 Oregon Literary Fellowships (Literary Arts). 

More recently, Messitt was the National Director of Report for America, a national service program addressing critical coverage gaps in newsrooms & communities across the country. During this time, she grew the program from 3 journalists in Appalachia to 60 journalists in 50 newsrooms across the country and established the foundation for an expansion to 250 journalists in 2020. 

Messitt is currently a Mellon Fellow in Narrative Journalism at Denison University and core faculty in the Creative Nonfiction MFA program at Goucher College.

 

Kevin Haworth is Co-Founder and an Advisory Committee Member of Writers House Pittsburgh. Haworth is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing and the author of five books: the novel The Discontinuity of Small Things; the essay collections Famous Drownings in Literary History and Far Out All My Life; a collection of essays about writing, Lit From Within: Contemporary Masters on the Art and Craft of Writing, co-edited with Dinty W. Moore; and most recently, the Eisner-nominated Rutu Modan: War, Love, and Secrets, a book-length study of Israel’s most famous comics artist.

Winner of the Goldberg Prize for Jewish Outstanding Debut Fiction and first runner-up for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Haworth has been awarded residencies at Headlands Center for the Arts, Vermont Studio Center, Ledig International Writers House, and Grin City. 

Formerly the Executive Editor of Ohio University Press & Swallow Press, he has taught at Arizona State University, Antioch Writers Workshop, 826 Michigan, Ohio University, Tel Aviv University, and Carlow University. He now teaches writing and literature at Carnegie Mellon University and lives in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood with his family.

 

Advisory Committee

We’re currently establishing an advisory committee of writers, librarians, and others with the aim of including a balance of team members based in Pittsburgh and across the country with an emphasis on the Rust Belt and Appalachia.

 

Our Status

We’re currently securing fiscal sponsorship for grant-writing and fundraising purposes and will eventually establish our own 501c3.

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

When will workshops and events begin at the Writers House?

We wont be hosting anything in-person until it's safe both for participants and residents. We suspect this won't happen until Summer of 2021 at the earliest. However, we'll be hosting online workshops -- many of which will be announced and serve as donor rewards throughout this fundraising campaign. Keep checking back here and our Instagram account, to learn about any workshops. We'll also share new virtual workshop opportunities and events online. However, our focus in this first year is to house four residents, support their growth as writers and offer them housing stability during an unstable time.

How will our residents safely move to the House during COVID?

All incoming residents will be tested for COVID prior to their move-in date. We'll work with every resident to make sure this transition is as smooth and stress-free as possible.

When will residents move into the House?

We'll be flexible about move-in dates, but we'll be announcing selected residents in early August and moving residents into the house as early as early September. We hope all residents are in the house by late October.

I'm a writer / editor / educator, and I'd like to donate a book, my services, or teach a workshop in support of this campaign. How can I do this?

Fill out this form and we'll get back to you ASAP!

Who should I talk to about sponsoring a single resident?

Thank you!  Email us at writershousepgh@gmail.com and we'll be in touch.

We'd like to be part of the Writers House team's Listening Tour. Who should we connect with?

Thank you!  Email us at writershousepgh@gmail.com be in touch.

Who should I email with questions regarding the residency? 

Email us at writershousepgh@gmail.com and we'll be in touch.

07/11/2020
Monetary Contribution
$200
diana hume george
07/10/2020
SURPRISE: Let us select a book for you!
$50
Rachel Rohr
07/08/2020
Monetary Contribution
$100
Karen Schubert
07/07/2020
A small THANK YOU.
$25
Meryl and John Guerrero
07/07/2020
Monetary Contribution
$180
Kathy Konyar
07/07/2020
Monetary Contribution
$200
Jenny Malatras
07/07/2020
Monetary Contribution
$180
Ben Hinerfeld
07/07/2020
Monetary Contribution
$500
Monetary Contribution

This allows you to make a monetary contribution at an amount of your choosing. Just because you care...

Although, you're not selecting a specific reward, we'll be sending you a big thank you!

6 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
A small THANK YOU.

A note from our team and a small dash of swag will find its way to your mailbox. A small thank you for your generosity.

149 Left
1 Supporter
Select this reward
50.00 USD
SURPRISE: Let us select a book for you!

Each week, we'll add new donor rewards to our list of possibilities. Instead of selecting a book from the list available here on the day you decide to donate, let us make the selection for you. It'll be a surprise literary adventure in your mailbox!

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1 Supporter
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50.00 USD
NINE YEARS UNDER by Sheri Booker

A signed copy of Sheri Booker's debut memoir Nine Years Under: Coming of Agee in an Inner-City Funeral Home.

Sheri Booker was only fifteen when she started working at Wylie Funeral Home in West Baltimore. She had no idea her summer job would become nine years of immersion into a hidden world. Reeling from the death of her beloved great aunt, Sheri found comfort in the funeral home and soon had the run of the place. With AIDS and gang violence threatening to wipe out a generation of black men, Wylie was never short on business. 
 
As families came together to bury one of their own, Booker was privy to their most intimate moments of grief and despair. But along with the sadness, Booker encountered moments of dark humor: brawls between mistresses and widows, and car crashes at McDonald’s with dead bodies in tow. While she never got over her terror of the embalming room, Booker learned to expect the unexpected and to never, ever cry. Nine Years Under offers readers an unbelievable glimpse into an industry in the backdrop of all our lives.

Sheri J. Booker is an award winning author, educator, and poet and television consultant. She is the author of Nine Years Under: Coming of Age in an Inner City Funeral Home, winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author. She’s been featured in the NY Times, Essence Magazine, Washington Post, Baltimore Magazine, NPR and TVOne. In 2014, she graced the cover of the Baltimore Sun’s 50 Women to Watch Issue. A 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominee in the category of nonfiction, Booker lives in her hometown of Baltimore and teaches at Morgan State University.

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50.00 USD
CITIZEN REPORTERS by Stephanie Gorton

A signed copy of Stephanie Gorton's debut book of narrative nonfiction, Citizen Reporters: S.S. McClure, Ida Tarbell, and the Magazine that Rewrote America.

Tracing McClure’s from its meteoric rise to its spectacularly swift and dramatic combustion, Citizen Reporters is a thrillingly told, deeply researched biography of a powerhouse magazine that forever changed American life. It’s also a timely case study that demonstrates the crucial importance of journalists who are unafraid to speak truth to power.

“In an era newly-conscious of journalism driven by exposing wrongdoing, Citizen Reporters stands as an essential read of America’s long history with reporting on urgent matters of social justice.” — Eliza Griswold, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Amity and Prosperity

Stephanie Gorton has written for The New Yorker, the Smithsonian, Los Angeles Review of Books, The Toast, The Millions, and other publications. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh and Goucher College’s MFA program in Creative Nonfiction, she lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with her family.

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50.00 USD
COFFEE by Dinah Lenney

A signed copy of Dinah Lenney's Coffee, part of the Object Lessons series.

Coffee--it's the thing that gets us through, and over, and around. The thing--the beverage, the break, the ritual--we choose to slow ourselves down or speed ourselves up. The excuse to pause; the reason to meet; the charge we who drink it allow ourselves in lieu of something stronger or scarier. Coffee goes to lifestyle, and character, and sensibility: where do we buy it, how do we brew it, how strong can we take it, how often, how hot, how cold? How does coffee remind us, stir us, comfort us? 

But Coffee is about more than coffee: it's a personal history and a promise to self; in her confrontation with the hours (with time--big picture, little picture), Dinah Lenney faces head-on the challenges of growing older and carrying on.  

Coffee is part of Object Lessons, a series of short, beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things.  Object Lessons is published in partnership with an essay series in The Atlantic

Dinah Lenney has played countless roles on stage and television, among them Murphy Brown’s Secretary number three, Eileen/Abraham on The Sarah Connor Chronicles, a nun with a gun on Sons of AnarchyER’s no-nonsense Nurse ShirleyShakespeare’s Queen Gertrude (in Hamlet), and also his Lady Macbeth (of course).  She’s a graduate of Yale, where she didn’t study theater, the Neighborhood Playhouse, where she did, and the Bennington Writing Seminars, where she presently serves as a member of the core faculty in nonfiction. Dinah’s taught writing and acting in schools all over the country, and co-wrote Acting for Young Actors with director Mary Lou Belli. The author of two memoirs, The Object Parade and Bigger than Life (excerpted for the “Lives” column in The New York Times Magazine), Dinah served as a long-time nonfiction editor for the Los Angeles Review of Books, and co-edited Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction with the late Judith Kitchen. Her latest book, Coffeewas published in Bloomsbury’s Object Lessons series. Dinah lives (reads, writes, grinds, brews—in a Chemex, by the way) with her husband in Echo Park.

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50.00 USD
MIRACLE MARKS by Purvi Shah

A signed copy of Purvi Shah's second collection of poetry, Miracle Marks.

In her second full-length poetry collection, Miracle Marks, activist Purvi Shah investigates gender inequity and American racism through Hindu iconography and philosophy. In these searing, revelatory poems, Shah reminds us that surviving birth as an infant girl is miraculous -- as such, every girl is a miracle mark. And because education is often denied to girls, writing by women is a miracle. Through sound energy and white space, these poems chart multiple realities, including the miracles of women's labors and survivals. This collection spurs dialogue across communities and lights a way for brown girls and women who relish in spirit, intellect, politics, and justice. Catch a glimpse of the collection with two poems recently published by PEN.

Purvi Shah inspires change as a nonprofit consultant and writer. During the tenth anniversary of 9/11, she directed Together We Are New York, a community-based poetry project to highlight Asian American voices and experiences. Her first poetry collection, Terrain Tracks, won the Many Voices Project prize, and her chaplet, Dark Lip of the Beloved: Sound Your Fiery God-Praise, explores women and being. She currently serves as a board member of The Poetry Project in New York. Her favorite art practices are her sparkly eyeshadow and raucous laughter.

 

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50.00 USD
SUBDUCTION by Kristen Millares Young

A signed copy of Kristen Millares Young's debut novel Subduction, a Paris Review staff pick! 

Fleeing the shattered remains of her marriage and treachery by her sister, a Latina anthropologist named Claudia takes refuge in Neah Bay, a Native whaling village on the jagged Pacific coast. Claudia yearns to lose herself to the songs of the tribe and the secrets of a spirited hoarder named Maggie. Instead, she stumbles into Maggie’s son Peter, who, spurred by his mother’s failing memory, has returned seeking answers to his father’s murder. Claudia helps Peter’s family convey a legacy long delayed by that death, but her presence, echoing centuries of fraught contact with indigenous peoples, brings lasting change and real damage. 

Through the brutal and ardent collision of these two outsiders, Subduction portrays not only their strange allegiance after grievous losses but also their shared hope to find community on the Makah Indian Reservation. An intimate tale of stunning betrayals, Subduction bears witness to the power of stories to disrupt – and to heal.

Kristen Millares Young is a Cuban-American novelist, investigative journalist, and co-founder of Investigate West. She currently freelances from the Pacific Northwest for the Washington Post, the Guardian and the New York Times. Kristen was the only non-staffer on the Pulitzer Prize winning team that produced "SnowFall: Avalanche at Tunnel Creek" for the New York Times. Her personal essays have been anthologized in Latina Outsiders: Remaking Latina Identity and Pie & Whiskey: Writers Under the Influence of Butter and Booze, a NYTimes New & Notable. Young was a 2010 multimedia reporting fellow at the University of California, Berkeley and a 2010-2012 GO-MAP Fellow at the University of Washington, where she earned her MFA. Her debut novel SUBDUCTION is a lyric retelling of the troubled history of encounter in the Americas. Young is currently the Writer-in-Residence at Hugo House in Seattle.

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150.00 USD
Essay / Chapter Review with Sheri Booker

An essay or chapter review | Valid from 08/01/2020 - 12/31/2020.

Sheri Booker was only fifteen when she started working at Wylie Funeral Home in West Baltimore. She had no idea her summer job would become nine years of immersion into a hidden world. Reeling from the death of her beloved great aunt, Sheri found comfort in the funeral home and soon had the run of the place. With AIDS and gang violence threatening to wipe out a generation of black men, Wylie was never short on business. 
 
As families came together to bury one of their own, Booker was privy to their most intimate moments of grief and despair. But along with the sadness, Booker encountered moments of dark humor: brawls between mistresses and widows, and car crashes at McDonald’s with dead bodies in tow. While she never got over her terror of the embalming room, Booker learned to expect the unexpected and to never, ever cry. Nine Years Under offers readers an unbelievable glimpse into an industry in the backdrop of all our lives.

About Sheri Booker | Booker is an award winning author, educator, and poet and television consultant. She is the author of Nine Years Under: Coming of Age in an Inner City Funeral Home, winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author. She’s been featured in the NY Times, Essence Magazine, Washington Post, Baltimore Magazine, NPR and TVOne. In 2014, she graced the cover of the Baltimore Sun’s 50 Women to Watch Issue. A 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominee in the category of nonfiction, Booker lives in her hometown of Baltimore and teaches at Morgan State University.

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150.00 USD
Essay/Chapter Review w/Stephanie Gorton

An essay or chapter review by narrative nonfiction author and editor Stephanie Gorton.

Stephanie Gorton has written for The New Yorker, the Smithsonian, Los Angeles Review of Books, The Toast, The Millions, and other publications. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh and Goucher College’s MFA program in Creative Nonfiction, she lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with her family.

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150.00 USD
Essay Review with Kelly Sundberg

Essay Review | Valid from 08/01/2020 - 12/31/2020.

About Kelly Sundberg | Sundberg is an assistant professor in creative writing at Ashland University and author of the memoir Goodbye, Sweet Girl.

Sundberg's essays have appeared in Guernica, Gulf CoastThe RumpusDenver QuarterlySlice, and others. Her essay “It Will Look Like a Sunset” was selected for inclusion in The Best American Essays 2015, and other essays have been listed as notables in the same series.  She has a PhD in creative nonfiction from Ohio University and has been the recipient of fellowships or grants from Vermont Studio Center, A Room of Her Own Foundation, Dickinson House, and the National Endowment for the Arts. 

In Goodbye, Sweet Girl: A Story of Domestic Violence and Survival, Kelly Sundberg tells the story of how she ended up in an abusive marriage, why she stayed for as long as she did, and why she eventually left. Along the way, she looked to her childhood in Salmon, Idaho, a small, isolated mountain community, which like her marriage, was a place of deep contradictions, and a place of magical beauty riven by secret brutality. Goodbye, Sweet Girl is a story of trauma, but it’s also a story of love, community, and hope.

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200.00 USD
Workshop: Art of Time with Kevin Haworth

 

The Art of Time | This online workshop is capped at 5 participants.

Workshop Description |  Without the passage of time, there is no story. But there are many ways to organize, steer, and structure time in essays and memoirs. How do you write an essay that covers one hour? One day? Twenty years? How do you handle flashbacks, or multiple timelines? During this course, you will learn many of the ways that a writer can conceptualize the time frame of a story, manage time, or even slow or speed up time to suit the story you want to tell. Writing prompts, readings, and discussion will help you become more skilled in using time and structure. 

Workshop Date | The date for this half-day workshop will be determined based on participant availability. This will include four-hours of teaching time with breaks for exercises so, overall, this is a six-hour workshop. Once all five participants have been identified, Haworth will survey the group with a range of availability.

About Kevin Haworth | Haworth is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing and the author of five books: the novel The Discontinuity of Small Things; the essay collections Famous Drownings in Literary History and Far Out All My Life; a collection of essays about writing, Lit From Within: Contemporary Masters on the Art and Craft of Writing, co-edited with Dinty W. Moore; and most recently, the Eisner-nominated Rutu Modan: War, Love, and Secrets, a book-length study of Israel’s most famous comics artist.

Formerly the Executive Editor of Ohio University Press & Swallow Press, he has taught at Arizona State University, Ohio University, Tel Aviv University, and Carlow University. He now teaches writing and literature at Carnegie Mellon University and lives the Squirrel Hill neighborhood with his family.

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1,000.00 USD
MS & Revision Reviews with Kevin Haworth

Fiction or Nonfiction Manuscript Review & Revision Review | Valid from 08/01/2020 to 07/31/2021.

This is a three-step process: Haworth will read your fiction or nonfiction manuscript and send written feedback in the form of an editorial letter (a Zoom call is optional at this stage). Within 6-months, Haworth will accept and review a revised copy of your manuscript. He will share his feedback with you over Zoom.

About Kevin Haworth | Haworth is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing and the author of five books: the novel The Discontinuity of Small Things; the essay collections Famous Drownings in Literary History and Far Out All My Life; a collection of essays about writing, Lit From Within: Contemporary Masters on the Art and Craft of Writing, co-edited with Dinty W. Moore; and most recently, the Eisner-nominated Rutu Modan: War, Love, and Secrets, a book-length study of Israel’s most famous comics artist.

Formerly the Executive Editor of Ohio University Press & Swallow Press, he has taught at Arizona State University, Ohio University, Tel Aviv University, and Carlow University. He now teaches writing and literature at Carnegie Mellon University and lives the Squirrel Hill neighborhood with his family.

 

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Rewards

Monetary Contribution

This allows you to make a monetary contribution at an amount of your choosing. Just because you care...

Although, you're not selecting a specific reward, we'll be sending you a big thank you!

6 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
A small THANK YOU.

A note from our team and a small dash of swag will find its way to your mailbox. A small thank you for your generosity.

149 Left
1 Supporter
Select this reward
50.00 USD
SURPRISE: Let us select a book for you!

Each week, we'll add new donor rewards to our list of possibilities. Instead of selecting a book from the list available here on the day you decide to donate, let us make the selection for you. It'll be a surprise literary adventure in your mailbox!

19 Left
1 Supporter
Select this reward
50.00 USD
NINE YEARS UNDER by Sheri Booker

A signed copy of Sheri Booker's debut memoir Nine Years Under: Coming of Agee in an Inner-City Funeral Home.

Sheri Booker was only fifteen when she started working at Wylie Funeral Home in West Baltimore. She had no idea her summer job would become nine years of immersion into a hidden world. Reeling from the death of her beloved great aunt, Sheri found comfort in the funeral home and soon had the run of the place. With AIDS and gang violence threatening to wipe out a generation of black men, Wylie was never short on business. 
 
As families came together to bury one of their own, Booker was privy to their most intimate moments of grief and despair. But along with the sadness, Booker encountered moments of dark humor: brawls between mistresses and widows, and car crashes at McDonald’s with dead bodies in tow. While she never got over her terror of the embalming room, Booker learned to expect the unexpected and to never, ever cry. Nine Years Under offers readers an unbelievable glimpse into an industry in the backdrop of all our lives.

Sheri J. Booker is an award winning author, educator, and poet and television consultant. She is the author of Nine Years Under: Coming of Age in an Inner City Funeral Home, winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author. She’s been featured in the NY Times, Essence Magazine, Washington Post, Baltimore Magazine, NPR and TVOne. In 2014, she graced the cover of the Baltimore Sun’s 50 Women to Watch Issue. A 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominee in the category of nonfiction, Booker lives in her hometown of Baltimore and teaches at Morgan State University.

1 Left
0 Supporters
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50.00 USD
CITIZEN REPORTERS by Stephanie Gorton

A signed copy of Stephanie Gorton's debut book of narrative nonfiction, Citizen Reporters: S.S. McClure, Ida Tarbell, and the Magazine that Rewrote America.

Tracing McClure’s from its meteoric rise to its spectacularly swift and dramatic combustion, Citizen Reporters is a thrillingly told, deeply researched biography of a powerhouse magazine that forever changed American life. It’s also a timely case study that demonstrates the crucial importance of journalists who are unafraid to speak truth to power.

“In an era newly-conscious of journalism driven by exposing wrongdoing, Citizen Reporters stands as an essential read of America’s long history with reporting on urgent matters of social justice.” — Eliza Griswold, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Amity and Prosperity

Stephanie Gorton has written for The New Yorker, the Smithsonian, Los Angeles Review of Books, The Toast, The Millions, and other publications. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh and Goucher College’s MFA program in Creative Nonfiction, she lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with her family.

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0 Supporters
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50.00 USD
COFFEE by Dinah Lenney

A signed copy of Dinah Lenney's Coffee, part of the Object Lessons series.

Coffee--it's the thing that gets us through, and over, and around. The thing--the beverage, the break, the ritual--we choose to slow ourselves down or speed ourselves up. The excuse to pause; the reason to meet; the charge we who drink it allow ourselves in lieu of something stronger or scarier. Coffee goes to lifestyle, and character, and sensibility: where do we buy it, how do we brew it, how strong can we take it, how often, how hot, how cold? How does coffee remind us, stir us, comfort us? 

But Coffee is about more than coffee: it's a personal history and a promise to self; in her confrontation with the hours (with time--big picture, little picture), Dinah Lenney faces head-on the challenges of growing older and carrying on.  

Coffee is part of Object Lessons, a series of short, beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things.  Object Lessons is published in partnership with an essay series in The Atlantic

Dinah Lenney has played countless roles on stage and television, among them Murphy Brown’s Secretary number three, Eileen/Abraham on The Sarah Connor Chronicles, a nun with a gun on Sons of AnarchyER’s no-nonsense Nurse ShirleyShakespeare’s Queen Gertrude (in Hamlet), and also his Lady Macbeth (of course).  She’s a graduate of Yale, where she didn’t study theater, the Neighborhood Playhouse, where she did, and the Bennington Writing Seminars, where she presently serves as a member of the core faculty in nonfiction. Dinah’s taught writing and acting in schools all over the country, and co-wrote Acting for Young Actors with director Mary Lou Belli. The author of two memoirs, The Object Parade and Bigger than Life (excerpted for the “Lives” column in The New York Times Magazine), Dinah served as a long-time nonfiction editor for the Los Angeles Review of Books, and co-edited Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction with the late Judith Kitchen. Her latest book, Coffeewas published in Bloomsbury’s Object Lessons series. Dinah lives (reads, writes, grinds, brews—in a Chemex, by the way) with her husband in Echo Park.

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50.00 USD
MIRACLE MARKS by Purvi Shah

A signed copy of Purvi Shah's second collection of poetry, Miracle Marks.

In her second full-length poetry collection, Miracle Marks, activist Purvi Shah investigates gender inequity and American racism through Hindu iconography and philosophy. In these searing, revelatory poems, Shah reminds us that surviving birth as an infant girl is miraculous -- as such, every girl is a miracle mark. And because education is often denied to girls, writing by women is a miracle. Through sound energy and white space, these poems chart multiple realities, including the miracles of women's labors and survivals. This collection spurs dialogue across communities and lights a way for brown girls and women who relish in spirit, intellect, politics, and justice. Catch a glimpse of the collection with two poems recently published by PEN.

Purvi Shah inspires change as a nonprofit consultant and writer. During the tenth anniversary of 9/11, she directed Together We Are New York, a community-based poetry project to highlight Asian American voices and experiences. Her first poetry collection, Terrain Tracks, won the Many Voices Project prize, and her chaplet, Dark Lip of the Beloved: Sound Your Fiery God-Praise, explores women and being. She currently serves as a board member of The Poetry Project in New York. Her favorite art practices are her sparkly eyeshadow and raucous laughter.

 

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50.00 USD
SUBDUCTION by Kristen Millares Young

A signed copy of Kristen Millares Young's debut novel Subduction, a Paris Review staff pick! 

Fleeing the shattered remains of her marriage and treachery by her sister, a Latina anthropologist named Claudia takes refuge in Neah Bay, a Native whaling village on the jagged Pacific coast. Claudia yearns to lose herself to the songs of the tribe and the secrets of a spirited hoarder named Maggie. Instead, she stumbles into Maggie’s son Peter, who, spurred by his mother’s failing memory, has returned seeking answers to his father’s murder. Claudia helps Peter’s family convey a legacy long delayed by that death, but her presence, echoing centuries of fraught contact with indigenous peoples, brings lasting change and real damage. 

Through the brutal and ardent collision of these two outsiders, Subduction portrays not only their strange allegiance after grievous losses but also their shared hope to find community on the Makah Indian Reservation. An intimate tale of stunning betrayals, Subduction bears witness to the power of stories to disrupt – and to heal.

Kristen Millares Young is a Cuban-American novelist, investigative journalist, and co-founder of Investigate West. She currently freelances from the Pacific Northwest for the Washington Post, the Guardian and the New York Times. Kristen was the only non-staffer on the Pulitzer Prize winning team that produced "SnowFall: Avalanche at Tunnel Creek" for the New York Times. Her personal essays have been anthologized in Latina Outsiders: Remaking Latina Identity and Pie & Whiskey: Writers Under the Influence of Butter and Booze, a NYTimes New & Notable. Young was a 2010 multimedia reporting fellow at the University of California, Berkeley and a 2010-2012 GO-MAP Fellow at the University of Washington, where she earned her MFA. Her debut novel SUBDUCTION is a lyric retelling of the troubled history of encounter in the Americas. Young is currently the Writer-in-Residence at Hugo House in Seattle.

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150.00 USD
Essay / Chapter Review with Sheri Booker

An essay or chapter review | Valid from 08/01/2020 - 12/31/2020.

Sheri Booker was only fifteen when she started working at Wylie Funeral Home in West Baltimore. She had no idea her summer job would become nine years of immersion into a hidden world. Reeling from the death of her beloved great aunt, Sheri found comfort in the funeral home and soon had the run of the place. With AIDS and gang violence threatening to wipe out a generation of black men, Wylie was never short on business. 
 
As families came together to bury one of their own, Booker was privy to their most intimate moments of grief and despair. But along with the sadness, Booker encountered moments of dark humor: brawls between mistresses and widows, and car crashes at McDonald’s with dead bodies in tow. While she never got over her terror of the embalming room, Booker learned to expect the unexpected and to never, ever cry. Nine Years Under offers readers an unbelievable glimpse into an industry in the backdrop of all our lives.

About Sheri Booker | Booker is an award winning author, educator, and poet and television consultant. She is the author of Nine Years Under: Coming of Age in an Inner City Funeral Home, winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author. She’s been featured in the NY Times, Essence Magazine, Washington Post, Baltimore Magazine, NPR and TVOne. In 2014, she graced the cover of the Baltimore Sun’s 50 Women to Watch Issue. A 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominee in the category of nonfiction, Booker lives in her hometown of Baltimore and teaches at Morgan State University.

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150.00 USD
Essay/Chapter Review w/Stephanie Gorton

An essay or chapter review by narrative nonfiction author and editor Stephanie Gorton.

Stephanie Gorton has written for The New Yorker, the Smithsonian, Los Angeles Review of Books, The Toast, The Millions, and other publications. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh and Goucher College’s MFA program in Creative Nonfiction, she lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with her family.

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150.00 USD
Essay Review with Kelly Sundberg

Essay Review | Valid from 08/01/2020 - 12/31/2020.

About Kelly Sundberg | Sundberg is an assistant professor in creative writing at Ashland University and author of the memoir Goodbye, Sweet Girl.

Sundberg's essays have appeared in Guernica, Gulf CoastThe RumpusDenver QuarterlySlice, and others. Her essay “It Will Look Like a Sunset” was selected for inclusion in The Best American Essays 2015, and other essays have been listed as notables in the same series.  She has a PhD in creative nonfiction from Ohio University and has been the recipient of fellowships or grants from Vermont Studio Center, A Room of Her Own Foundation, Dickinson House, and the National Endowment for the Arts. 

In Goodbye, Sweet Girl: A Story of Domestic Violence and Survival, Kelly Sundberg tells the story of how she ended up in an abusive marriage, why she stayed for as long as she did, and why she eventually left. Along the way, she looked to her childhood in Salmon, Idaho, a small, isolated mountain community, which like her marriage, was a place of deep contradictions, and a place of magical beauty riven by secret brutality. Goodbye, Sweet Girl is a story of trauma, but it’s also a story of love, community, and hope.

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200.00 USD
Workshop: Art of Time with Kevin Haworth

 

The Art of Time | This online workshop is capped at 5 participants.

Workshop Description |  Without the passage of time, there is no story. But there are many ways to organize, steer, and structure time in essays and memoirs. How do you write an essay that covers one hour? One day? Twenty years? How do you handle flashbacks, or multiple timelines? During this course, you will learn many of the ways that a writer can conceptualize the time frame of a story, manage time, or even slow or speed up time to suit the story you want to tell. Writing prompts, readings, and discussion will help you become more skilled in using time and structure. 

Workshop Date | The date for this half-day workshop will be determined based on participant availability. This will include four-hours of teaching time with breaks for exercises so, overall, this is a six-hour workshop. Once all five participants have been identified, Haworth will survey the group with a range of availability.

About Kevin Haworth | Haworth is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing and the author of five books: the novel The Discontinuity of Small Things; the essay collections Famous Drownings in Literary History and Far Out All My Life; a collection of essays about writing, Lit From Within: Contemporary Masters on the Art and Craft of Writing, co-edited with Dinty W. Moore; and most recently, the Eisner-nominated Rutu Modan: War, Love, and Secrets, a book-length study of Israel’s most famous comics artist.

Formerly the Executive Editor of Ohio University Press & Swallow Press, he has taught at Arizona State University, Ohio University, Tel Aviv University, and Carlow University. He now teaches writing and literature at Carnegie Mellon University and lives the Squirrel Hill neighborhood with his family.

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1,000.00 USD
MS & Revision Reviews with Kevin Haworth

Fiction or Nonfiction Manuscript Review & Revision Review | Valid from 08/01/2020 to 07/31/2021.

This is a three-step process: Haworth will read your fiction or nonfiction manuscript and send written feedback in the form of an editorial letter (a Zoom call is optional at this stage). Within 6-months, Haworth will accept and review a revised copy of your manuscript. He will share his feedback with you over Zoom.

About Kevin Haworth | Haworth is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing and the author of five books: the novel The Discontinuity of Small Things; the essay collections Famous Drownings in Literary History and Far Out All My Life; a collection of essays about writing, Lit From Within: Contemporary Masters on the Art and Craft of Writing, co-edited with Dinty W. Moore; and most recently, the Eisner-nominated Rutu Modan: War, Love, and Secrets, a book-length study of Israel’s most famous comics artist.

Formerly the Executive Editor of Ohio University Press & Swallow Press, he has taught at Arizona State University, Ohio University, Tel Aviv University, and Carlow University. He now teaches writing and literature at Carnegie Mellon University and lives the Squirrel Hill neighborhood with his family.

 

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