Luciana Lopez wrote to tell us, “I greatly appreciate Soapstone’s policy of allowing month-long residencies to be taken in chunks and spread over several years, for those of us who can’t get away for more than a week or two weeks at a time. Over three residencies in 2006, 2007 and 2008, I worked on short stories, creative non-fiction, poetry and even a screenplay. I wrote a lot, felt free to experiment, and grew as a writer. Many of my best pieces originated at Soapstone and would never have been written if not for the time away from my hectic life as a reporter for The Oregonian.
“I'm grateful, too, that the community Soapstone builds doesn't end with the residencies. The annual work days were always more than just weeding or planting or doing repairs — they were a chance to get together with other writers who knew what it was like to spend time in these rooms, trying to bring something into the world, and to meet some of the extraordinary women who helped make this place a reality. I loved those days, the opportunity to contribute to the community that nurtured me and, of course, the chance to be at Soapstone, to see the retreat again and feel the joy that always helps me write.”
Luciana Lopez is now an economics reporter for Reuters in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Her work has appeared in literary journals and anthologies, including Portland Noir, Rio Grande Review, ZYZZVYA, and Lichen.