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International Writing Program (IWP) Between the Lines: Peace and the Writing Experience
The submission deadline for applications is 18:00 (local Georgian time) on March 4, 2022.

Please send an application package including 5 required documents as one email with the subject line “BTL 2022: Peace and the Writing Experience” to TbilisiExchanges@state.gov 

Program dates: July 15 – July 30, 2022 (online)

The U.S Embassy in Tbilisi is pleased to announce the International Writing Program Between the Lines: Peace and the Writing Experience, sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. State Department. Programming partners include the University of Iowa (UI) and Prairie Lights Bookstore. The recruitment of candidates for the BTL: Peace and the Writing Experience is based on an open competition held by the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy, Tbilisi.

BTL: Peace and the Writing Experience will bring together 30 international and 10 U.S.-based students, ages 15-18, for two weeks of intensive BTL summer programming hosted online by the International Writing Program (IWP) and the University of Iowa (UI). The program is open to students from the U.S., Armenia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Georgia, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, the Russian Federation, and Ukraine. Candidates must go through a process of nomination through the U.S. Embassy in their home country.

All programming is conducted in English and includes creative writing workshops, world literature seminars, literary readings and Q&As with visiting authors, youth and mentor conversation sessions, social opportunities for cultural exchange, as well as group and individual writing assignments outside of class. Upon the completion of the program, each participant will receive a certificate (PDF) and IWP will digitally publish the students’ writing as an anthology. The virtual program is free of cost for all selected participants.

Required essays and documents:
The application package includes the following 5 required documents (Microsoft Word or PDF files) provided as separate attachments in one email (do not put the files in zip/rar format). Max file size is 40MB.

  1. International Student Application for BTL 2022: Peace and the Writing Experience (Microsoft Word)
  2. Original creative prose (fiction and/or nonfiction) and/or poetry in English (6-8 pages). Book reports and other academic writing will not be accepted. You may submit one piece or several pieces of creative work to make the 6-8 page requirement. Poems may be single-spaced with multiple poems per page. (Microsoft Word or PDF file)
  3. Prompt #1: Personal statement (3 pages maximum) about how your identity influences you as a creative writer and reader.
    The 2022 Between the Lines session will include a discussion of identity as it relates to creative writing and the life of a writer. Please include your personal response to the following:
    In our daily lives, we navigate many different roles—student, sibling, daughter, son, peer. We negotiate with family, friends, religious groups, as well as class, gender, race, country, and so many other groups, adjusting the way we speak or behave to fit the demands of each encounter. As we move through the day, we work through how and why we occupy each particular role. What do you consider to be the strongest, most central aspects of your identity? What does it mean to you to be a member of (or seen as a member of) a particular group? In what way does your identity influence you as a creative writer and reader? (Microsoft Word or PDF file)
  4. Prompt #2: Describe a time when you had to engage with a new situation, person, or idea that initially felt uncomfortable or strange (400 words maximum).
    Please respond to the following:
    Describe a time in your past when you had to engage with a new situation, person, or idea that initially felt uncomfortable or strange. How did you proceed? If you had the chance, what would you do the same, and what would you do differently? (Microsoft Word or PDF file)
  5. Statement of purpose describing why creative writing is important in your life, and what you hope to learn through our BTL program. (250 words maximum) (Microsoft Word or PDF file)

Please note: The following formatting standards are required for all submitted documents. If not followed, applications may not be considered.

Format: Typed (Microsoft Word or PDF file)
Font type: Times New Roman
Font size: 12 point
Spacing: Double (poems may be single-spaced with multiple poems per page)
Margins: 1 inch on all sides
Header: Include your name, name of piece (Creative Work, Prompt #1, Prompt #2, Statement of Purpose)
Footer: Include page numbers
Citations: If using other people’s words/content, always give them credit

FAQ for International (Non-US) Students