Po-Bizz vs Po-Comm: The Macondo Foundation


hmm…it seems like no one, not even seth, has answered my question from two posts ago:

so someone tell me why an organization like the ACENTOS FOUNDATION will offer FREE, OPEN TO THE PUBLIC writers’ workshops in the Bronx (with some of the most respected writers around as teachers) and a group of recent alumni from IOWA set up a consulting firm and charge moneys to help young writers?

many of us are privileged in dif ways–we all have certain kinds of access in the lit world that many others dont…so why not help others for free? ALC, why not offer your privileged services for free?

build Po-Comm(unity) and not Po-Bizz(nas)!

i have more to say about AWP & ALC, but for now i want to point everyone to another alternative: THE MACONDO FOUNDATION. recent participant Francisco Aragon has just blogged about the foundation at the letras latinas blog, so check it out.

also, check out the MACONDO website here.

now, i’m not sure how much MACONDO costs (is it just you pay for your flight there?), but there’s a $50 app free to be considered. also, there are some requirements as to who can apply (thus, not open to just anyone):

As an association of socially-engaged writers working to advance creativity, foster generosity, and serve community, the Macondo Foundation seeks generous and compassionate professional writers who view their work and talents as part of a larger task of community-building and non-violent social change. Applicants must fulfill at least TWO of the following requirements:

  • Published 1 or more books of poetry, fiction, or creative non-fiction.
  • Published at least three (3) poems, stories, or works of creative nonfiction in journals or magazines.
  • Be currently enrolled in or have completed an MFA writing workshop.
  • Completed a book-length manuscript.
  • Studied under at least three different writers.

and here’s what goes down:

About the Macondo Workshop
Our annual Macondo Writing Workshop is an exceptionally unique summer gathering of writers working on geographic, cultural, economic, social and spiritual borders. Begun in 1998 by writer Sandra Cisneros and named after the town in Gabriel García Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, the week-long workshop transforms San Antonio, Texas — and more broadly, La Frontera — into a space of intense artistic and cultural creativity. Every summer, the Macondo Workshop meets from the last Sunday in July through the first Sunday in August at the Our Lady of the Lake University campus in San Antonio.

The Macondo Workshop is a master’s level workshop, meaning that participants are expected to be committed and well-seasoned writers capable of reviewing each other’s work with compassionate rigor and vision. Workshops are divided into two categories:

  • The Famosa/o Workshops These workshops are led by different guest writers each year. Application requirements and workshop structure vary from year to year based on the guest writers’ preferences and workshop logistics.
  • The Infamosa/o Workshops These workshops are designed around a particular topic or literary genre.

Generally, afternoons are spent in workshop and evenings are devoted to readings and lectures or forums regarding various artistic, political, and spiritual issues related to writing. In addition, there are several events planned throughout the week to provide participants with many opportunities for quality social interaction.


seek out community, support community, build community–



5 thoughts on “Po-Bizz vs Po-Comm: The Macondo Foundation

  1. Awesome, Craig. So I'ma thinkin – how would you like to co-conduct a seminar for folks of color who want to apply to MFA programs? It could be a joint PAWA/Achiote thing? I think between us two, it could be very informative. Anyway, pls back channel!

  2. i'm in love with the both of you. what a great idea. let me know if i can help in any way.

  3. Eduardo, you're being too modest: share with us the great idea you had/have—the one you shared with me a few AWPs ago. I haven't forgotten it, and now might be the time to articulate it again. Do you remember it? I think it's related to these discussions. Barbara, your idea is brilliant. The group in Houston, Nuestra Palabra, headed by Tony Diaz, has, has had, an initiative that aims to mentor Latino/a writers who want to apply to MFA programs. I don't know the particulars, or if it still exists. But Tony Diaz, who does great work in Houston, and who is a Macondista, would be a good person to talk to.

  4. thanks eduardo! have a great time at breadloaf!

    and yes what is this great idea?!

    & thanks francisco for alerting us to diaz and his work! how awesome!


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