SAFTA Announces Winners of Spring Residency Fellowships

The Sundress Academy for the Arts (SAFTA) is pleased to announce Giorgia Sage, Blake Planty, Ashley Taylor, Katie Willa Bell, and Caitlin Myers as the winners of their five spring residency scholarships. These residencies are designed to give artists time and space to complete their creative projects in a quiet and productive environment.

Winners of the Lambda Literary Fellowships
for LGBTQIA+ Writers


Giorgia Sage is a writer, graphic designer, mover, and maker born and raised in San Francisco, California. Their work looks towards different physical, mental, and temporal scales of intimacy between people, places, and things. It attempts to perform experimental excavations of communities and their contexts in order to create more sustainable and compassionate ecologies of care. They graduated from Wesleyan University with Honors in Studio Art and returned to SF to live and work alongside many plants and a tail-less cat. Their work has been previously published in the MOTIF Anthology Series, Sugar Mule, and The Found Poetry Review, among others.

Blake Planty is a trans-masculine writer from Texas. He’s interested in metamorphosis, our bodies, living online, trauma, and the intersection of the rural and urban. His work is in DREGINALD, Waxwing Magazine, The Fanzine, Heavy Feather Review, Tenderness Lit, Foglifter Journal, and many more. He’s currently working on zines and a novel. He studied Literary Arts at Brown University, where he wrote a thesis about fighting cyborgs.

Winners of the Melissa Grunow Fellowships
for Women & Nonbinary Writers


Ashley Taylor is a Louisville, KY poet who curates, promotes, and designs inclusive programing of creative writing and performance arts for emerging and student writers. She is an early education teacher at Jewish Community Center and MFA candidate at Spalding University. She holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Louisville, where she served as graduate editor of Miracle Monocle and writing instructor of College Composition and Introduction to Creative Writing. She is the founder of Louisville reading series River City Revue, author of the chaplet Metamorphosis of Narcissus (Damaged Goods Press, 2019), and current facilitator of UofL’s LGBTQ Creative Writing Group.

Katie Willa Bell is a poet born and raised in Central Pennsylvania. She holds a degree in English from the University of Mary Washington. Most days she can be found training dogs for work in a school-based therapy dog program or on a less-traveled path in the woods.

Winner of the Kristi Larkin Havens Fellowship for
Outstanding Service to the Community


Caitlin Myers is a writer, environmental educator, and community worker who currently splits her time between Whitesburg, Kentucky, and Knoxville, Tennessee. Caitlin writes on politics, social movements, and life as a stranger in Appalachia, and her work has appeared in Scalawag, Current Affairs, Commune, and 100 Days in Appalachia. When not reporting on regional issues, Caitlin writes fiction and performance pieces that meditate on identity, memory, history, and monsters. Her work has appeared onstage in collaboration with Tiger Lily Theatre, Cattywampus Puppet Council, the Good Guy Collective, and the Dramatists’s Guild.  You can find her at @stopitkatie on Instagram and Twitter.

The Sundress Academy for the Arts (SAFTA) is an artists’ residency that hosts workshops, retreats, and residencies for writers, actors, filmmakers, and visual artists. All are guided by experienced, professional instructors from a variety of creative disciplines who are dedicated to cultivating the arts in East Tennessee.

SAFTA is now taking applications for summer residencies!

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