Write A House
— a non-profit established to refurbish and fill three houses in a neighborhood north of Hamtramck with writers — has announced the Brooklyn-based poet Casey Rocheteau
as its first winner. According to a press release, Rocheteau plans to move to Detroit this November.
In addition to being a poet, Rocheteau is a writer, historian, and performance artist. She has released a book, Knocked Up On Yes
, in 2012, and her second collection, The Dozen
, is due in March 2016. Rocheteau can be found online at caseyrocheteau.org
and on Twitter @CaseyRocheteau
“I am elated to have been chosen!” Rocheteau said in the release. “Being granted with this opportunity to take root in a city so rich with history, creativity and tenacity is truly an honor. I look forward to exploring Detroit and getting to know its literary community.”
Billy Collins, a former U.S. poet laureate and one of Write a House's judges, praised Rocheteau's poetry. "These are witty but deeply serious poems," he said. "The poet uses straightforward language and clear syntax to address some of the more frightening aspects of racism.”
The press release says that hundreds of talented writers — working in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry — applied in the first round of applications in 2014. Metro Times
editor-in-chief Valerie Vande Panne was announced as a finalist in August
"It's an honor and a privilege to be considered for such a gift, and to be included with such an amazing group of literary minds," says Vande Panne. "I am thankful to be a part of such a bright community! Congratulations to poet Casey Rocheteau."
A welcome party for Rocheteau will be held on Friday, Sept. 19 at the Public Pool
gallery in Hamtramck. The event will also spotlight South African author Lauren Beukes' new novel, Broken Monsters
, which is set in Detroit.
Write A House will open a new round of applications in early 2015.