Thursday, January 22, 2009

Opportunity of a Lifetime for Writers and Artists

Kathy Coudle King

Call for Applications—Deadline February 20, 2009

In 2009, the International Writing Program (IWP), in cooperation with
the Chinese Writers' Association, is commencing a pilot exchange
project, the Life of Discovery (LOD), between writers and artists
from the United States and from the minority ethnic communities in
the western regions of the People's Republic of China. Five American
and five Chinese writers and artists, all aged 25-40, will be invited
to join two senior artists, one from each country, in a series of
collaborative, bilingual projects, conducted first in Western China
(over the course of sixteen days in mid-May, 2009) and continued and
elaborated upon in the US (five to seven days at the end of
September, 2009).

Knowledge of Chinese is not required for American participants, nor
English for Chinese participants.

LOD is sponsored through grant funds provided by the Bureau of
Educational and Cultural Affairs of the US State Department. These
will cover all relevant expenses for the US participants: round-trip
international travel to China and travel within China, domestic
travel in the US, lodging, per diem for meals, work materials, visa
costs, health insurance, translation and interpreting.

For more details on the exchange, the dates and proposed locations,
go to

The IWP invites applications from

· Early-career writers of fiction, poetry
, drama, screenplays, literary translation, and/or non-fiction, who
have at least one published (or contracted) volume.

· Artists from other disciplines, including time-based media,
music, dance, or the visual arts.

Applications will be judged on a number of criteria, including
creative merit, interest in cross-cultural activity, and the ability
to contribute to a diverse and long-term exchange with Chinese
counterparts of minority status.

Applications may be hardcopy or electronic and should include:

A1. Writing sample (no more than 15 pages; may be a photocopy or scan
of published work); or

A2. Portfolio of artwork. Digital portfolios should be readable on a PC.

Limit time-based or web-based work to a total of 10 minutes. Provide
concise instructions for viewing/listening to time-based or web-based
work. These instructions are especially important for reviewing
web-based material that the reviewers might otherwise browse
randomly. No more than 10 minutes of material will be reviewed.
Include a typed, numbered list that identifies each image or
time-based piece by title, date, medium, size, and other appropriate

Provide a self-addressed mailer and sufficient postage for return of
all materials.

B. Resumé

C. Project proposal (300-600 words)

D. Statement confirming ability to travel in remote and rural areas.

The resumé should include any experience relevant to LOD (such as
international travel or grants, volunteer work, other exch
anges, etc.), in addition to artistic credentials and professional

The project proposal should describe, in concrete terms, a proposed
collaboration between some or all of the participants in the 2009 LOD
project. It should take into consideration all of the following:

· Twelve writers and artists of different genres and
disciplines will be present.

· There will be a heavy reliance on interpreting and translation.

· The periods spent face-to-face (10-12 days in China, 5-7
days in the US) will occur four months apart. That interval may also
be included in your proposal.

If you have participated in a similar collaborative effort in the
past, we recommend including this in your proposal for illustrative
purposes. While the IWP has experience in creative collaboration, we
welcome new ideas.

Please send applications, by post or email, to

Tammy Petro

International Writing Program

Shambaugh House

430 N. Clinton

Iowa City, IA 52245

319-335-3817 (replace (at) with @)

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