Detroit nonprofit Write A House announced today that journalist Liana Aghajanian will receive their 2015 "residency", which comes complete with a newly-rehabbed home in Detroit. Founded in 2012, Write A House buys Detroit houses at auction, rehabs them and then gives them away to writers as a way of encouraging literary arts in Detroit. The houses are renovated by groups that train people for building trades, so that every step in the process has some demonstrable benefit for the city.
Aghajanian primarily works abroad, reporting from Kenya, Germany, and the UK, among other places. According to the Detroit Free Press, when the 30-year-old writer received word that she'd won, she was working on a story in Mongolia. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, Marie Claire, Los Angeles Magazine, Al Jazeera America, the Los Angeles Times, The Atlantic.com and Mental Floss.
Last year's Write A House winner, poet Casey Rocheteau, told Curbed she thinks Aghajanian has much to look forward to.
"I'm really excited for her, and the house is gorgeous," Rocheteau said. "I hope she finds her experiences in Detroit to be as amazing as I have."
Write A House co-founder and former Curbed staffer Sarah Cox told the Free Press the program eventually hopes to give away three houses a year. Aghajanian receives keys to her new place, located just north of Hamtramck, tonight at a celebration that also includes author Matt Bell. The event takes place at Aghajanian 's new Detroit abode, 3346 Meade Ave, at 7 pm (doors open at 6).
· Second Write a House winner gets Detroit home [Detroit Free Press]
· Write A House Announces 2015 Finalists [Curbed Detroit]
·Los Angeles midwives aim to end racial disparities at birth [Al Jazeera America]
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·The UK's Tasty War on Grey Squirrels [Mental Floss]
·Write A House [Write A House]
·Casey Rocheteau [Casey Rocheteau]
·Detroit's Write A House Award Ceremony Featuring novelist Matt Bell [Brown Paper Tickets]