Debut Edition!

Over the last 11 years, the InsideOut Literary Arts Project has nourished and published countless young writers. InsideOut inspired The City Wide Poets group and sponsors poetry slams and similar events around the city. All in all, a pretty impressive resume for a non-profit.

Terry M. Blackhawk, PhD. started InsideOut after being approached by Bob Shaye from the Four Friends Foundation. A native Detroiter, Shaye was looking for a way to give back to the community, and found in Blackhawk, an author and former teacher, just the right person for this unique program. Originally, InsideOut sponsored writers to teach creative writing in five inner city schools. Today InsideOut reaches out to 25 elementary, middle, and high schools in the city, each publishing an anthology at the end of the year. Students learn every detail of the publishing process, right down to the Graphic Design of the cover.

Program Director Robert Fanning orchestrates the school anthology publishing and trains resident writers, usually college students with an interest in the creative process. Supported by a talented and hard working staff of artists, writers, graphic designers, and office administrators, Fanning heads up special events for the program.

Amid paying office rent and salaries, InsideOut manages to publish and print 350 anthologies per school. Where do they get the money for all of this? Local businesses and foundations-The Skillman Foundation, Ford Motor Company Fund, Bank One, and the Four Friends Foundation, to name a few-all found the project worthy of sponsorship.

With strong community support the InsideOut Literary Arts Project has thrived over the last decade and will continue to inspire writers in the years to come.

— Eric Novack, Editor

You can learn more about InsideOut at

And starting this month, is proud to collaborate with the folks at InsideOut Literary Arts Project to bring a new feature to these pages …. Kid Lit!

April's Selections:

I See the Music

by Ms. LePere's Fifth Grade Class
Detroit Open School

Teacher: Ms. Mindy LaPere
InsideOut Writer-in-Residence: Suzanne Scarfone

Sad (Arrested) Pumpkin

by Shaela Burt
Bagley Elementary School

InsideOut Writer-in-Residence: Zilka Joseph
Teacher: Ms. Lynette Anderson

What Is Death?

by Deneshea Richey, Grade 9
Cass Technical High School

Teacher: Ms. Ebony Thomas
Writer-in-Residence: Jack Collom

All Poems appear courtesy of InsideOut Literary Arts Project. "I see the Music" appears in Volume 4 of "The World Through Our Eyes" the literary magazine of Detroit Open School. "Sad (Arrested)Pumpkin" appears in Volume 5 of "The Color of Our Voices" the literary magazine of Bagley Elementary School. "What Is Death?" appears in "Ambiance" the literary magazine of Cass Technical High School.

To purchase a copy of any of the books listed above, or to see more InsideOut publications, visit

© 2002