Amtrak residency program open for new class of writers

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WASHINGTON – The Amtrak Residency program is again looking for writers who want to hit the rails and experience the best of what cross-country train travel has to offer. The #AmtrakResidency program is accepting applications through Jan. 11.

The application process consists of two questions, as well as the opportunity to provide up to a 20-page writing sample. Amtrak will select 24 writers to participate in the program with the help from a panel of judges.

"At Amtrak, we have been honored to play a small part in the stories created by our first 24 residents," says Julia Quinn, Amtrak's director of public relations. "We want to build on the success of the initial launch of the program in 2014 by selecting another group of writers for the Amtrak Residency program and offering them the chance to travel across the country by train."

During the past year, a diverse group of 24 residents has crisscrossed the country on various routes such as the California Zephyr, Coast Starlight, and Empire Builder. An idea sparked by customers, the residency offered writers the chance to experience amazing scenery, an environment that fosters engaging connections and the opportunity to explore and find inspiration from the diversity of landscapes America has to offer.

Amtrak Resident Lindsay Moran traveled on the Sunset Limited from Los Angeles to New Orleans.

"Weeks out of the routine and responsibilities of being a mom, and my multiple other 'jobs,' did enable me to finally put some words down on an idea that's been brewing in my head for a long time," Moran wrote about her trip. "I feel like I got my writer-ly groove back; so much so that I'm thinking about making one long-distance train trip an annual solo event."

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