The great American icon—the automobile, has just gone bankrupt. We are reassessing ourselves. Supposedly, this wouldn’t make any difference to writers—we’ve never had money anyway. But recently, a few people have begun wondering about what economy does to craft, instead of economy of craft.
In particular, the First Person Arts Festival is a yearly event in Philadelphia that routinely produces some great work by great new voices. I just recently heard of their new, national competition focused on the recession, and thought that I would pass it along.
The competition is inspired by our hard times (what isn’t), but specifically is inspired by the Works Progress Administration. The WPA sponsored thousands of artists across America, including writers such as Claude McKay, May Swenson, Zora Neale Hurston, John Cheever and others through the Federal Writers Project (for more, read this article, it’s fantastic). Until Uncle Sam starts paying the new crop, firstperson is asking us all to see what we can produce in these hardtimes, and so if you have a little non-fiction writing (or photography, or video producing) in you it’s worth checking out. More information here: http://www.hardtimes.firstpersonarts.org