April 6, 2018
TRES PIEDRAS – For the seventh year, the Leopold Writing Program will open up Aldo and Estella Leopold’s home, Mi Casita, for month-long residencies and a public presentation in Taos by established and emerging writers in the environmental and ecological fields.
Three writers will come to Mi Casita in May, July and October, respectively, this year. Each will make a presentation at the Harwood Art Museum as part of a community outreach agreement between the Leopold Writing Program and the USDA Forest Service, which owns Mi Casita.
The LWP resident for the month of May will be Matthew Barnes, a land manager who believes wildlife and domestic livestock can co-exist. He calls for “cultivating wildness and whole-systems resilience on ranches and public land,” a philosophy he has put to work as a manager of several ranches in the West and plans to enhance with writing during his residency.
In July, Matthew Jones, an adjunct professor in English in Cincinnati. His focus during the month of July at Mi Casita will be a book of essays. The essays center on Jones’ belief that “scientific observation and literary storytelling can be used as a means of constructing a living record of the relationship between humans and natural spaces.”
In October, Laura Pritchett, a playwright and freelance writer who grew up on a farm in Colorado. During her residency in October, she will work on turning her play, Dirt: A Terra Nova Tradition, into a novel and finding a wider audience for both. Her work ranges all across the Western naturalist spectrum, from “climate change to wolves, from fracking to bears.”
The Aldo and Estella Leopold Residency began in 2012 as an inspiring retreat for writers to reflect and create in the home where Aldo and Estella Leopold first lived as newlyweds in 1912. Residents spend one month at Mi Casita and receive a $500 stipend to help defray travel and living expenses. In exchange, residents give a public presentation of their work in Taos.
The Residency is a New Mexico-based initiative sponsored by the Leopold Writing Program in collaboration with the USDA Forest Service. The Leopold Writing Program builds on Aldo Leopold’s legacy as a writer by inspiring the next generation to participate in the evolution of environmental ethics through the written word. For more information go to LeopoldWritingProgram.org.