Jamaica Plain resident Lisa Rosinsky has been selected as the newest recipient of the Associates of the Boston Public Library Writer-in-Residence fellowship.
Rosinsky was selected as the 2016-2017 winner by a panel of judges, including authors, young-adult book editors and librarians. The judges read materials in a blind judging process, and selected Rosinsky based on the strength of her proposed young-adult novel.
"My next book (the one I'm writing during my residency) is tentatively titled 'Robin & Mariana,' and it's a queer, modern-day Robin Hood retelling that is also a road trip novel," said Rosinsky to Jamaica Plain News. "Robin is a slam poet and she lives in Baltimore; Mariana is a high-school dropout in Berkeley. They meet online, fall in love, and run away from home to meet each other in the very middle of the country. It's a story about privilege, social justice, and survival; it's also about crime, poetry, and love."
Created in 2004, the Associates of the Boston Public Library Writer-in-Residence fellowship provides financial support and a writing space to an emerging author. The writer-in-residence then has to complete one literary work for children or young adults within a nine-month period. Rosinsky, like all writers-in-residence, receives a $20,000 stipend and is provided with a private office in the Boston Public Library’s Central Library during their residency.
Previous writers-in-residence have published, or are in the process of publishing, 26 books. This includes several books written at the Boston Public Library, including Hannah Barnaby’s "Wonder Show," Elaine Dimopoulos’ "Material Girls," Annie Hartnett’s "Rabbit Cake" (being published in May 2017), and Natalie Anderson's "City of Saints and Thieves" (being published in spring 2017).
For Rosinsky having an office at the main public library will work out well. "The Boston Public Library in Copley Square was actually my favorite place to write even before the residency -- I had a standing Friday afternoon writing date with a friend there. We'd both bring our computers and sit quietly together and write, either in the courtyard or up on the second level at the windows overlooking Boylston Street, lost in our own little worlds," said Rosinsky. "That was where I finished edits on my first novel "Inevitable & Only," which is forthcoming from Boyds Mills Press in spring 2018 -- and also where I wrote my application for the residency! Now, I'm incredibly grateful to call the Boston Public Library my official home-away-from-home for the next year as I work on my Robin Hood manuscript."
Rosinsky said she's had the idea for the story for a while, "...but it will require a daunting amount of research, so until this year I hadn't made time to focus on it. I thought putting the application together would at least force me to sit down and write out a synopsis and research plan."
Rosinsky’s stories have been published in Highlights and Cricket, and her poetry appears in Prairie Schooner, Measure, Hunger Mountain, 32 Poems, and other journals.
The application and guidelines for the 2017-2018 fellowship will be posted online in early 2017 at www.writer-in-residence.org.