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Serving as the library’s Writer-in-Residence this year has been one of the greatest honors of my career—and while I’m still hard at work, The Library Foundation began its search for the 2020 literary ambassador. Calling all Cincinnati-area writers: You could be next!

I was wisely counseled early in my career that every writer’s circle—to be healthy, fulfilling, and rounded—should include three types of writers: 1.) Peers on your level, whatever that may be. 2.) Those whose careers have reached a stage you aspire to. And 3.) Beginners who you may help along the way (as someone no doubt once generously helped you).

I’ve found this position to be a wonderful way to enrich all three of these areas. You’ll mentor newer writers during your office hours and in your workshops—where you’ll find you have regulars who are devoted, wonderfully creative people you enjoy getting to know and to cheer for. You’ll reach out to peers to join you on the monthly podcast. And you’ll very likely find yourself on the receiving end of flattering new invitations—to host bestsellers and award-winners onstage at events in town, for instance. Through it all, you’ll be representing a Library system that is truly best in its class—one we can all be proud of.

While the focus of this position is community outreach—to writers and readers alike—make no mistake that this community will have a meaningful impact on you in turn. Starting on day one.

Perusing my bio and thinking you don’t have much in common with me? Don’t be deterred. In fact, that may be a good thing—the library likes to offer something different every year. My four talented predecessors—Kathy Y. Wilson, Jeffrey Hillard, Kurt Dinan, and Emma Carlson Berne are each certainly unique. Children’s writers, poets, essayists …you could be just what the selection committee is looking for. But you won’t know if you don’t try.

Read more about what the job entails and how to apply here. Good luck!

Until next time,
Jessica Strawser
2019 Writer-in-Residence: Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County
Editor-at-Large: Writer's Digest 
Novelist: Almost Missed YouNot That I Could TellForget You Know Me • St. Martin's Press / t @jessicastrawser / f @jessicastrawserauthor

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