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Writer and Letras Boricuas Fellowship awardee, Francisco Font Acevedo. Photo: Juan Luis Martínez Pérez
Writer and Letras Boricuas Fellowship awardee, Francisco Font Acevedo. Photo: Juan Luis Martínez Pérez

Philly-based Puerto Rican writer Francisco Font Acevedo granted Letras Boricuas fellowship

Font Acevedo is among 20 writers who were awarded an inaugural Letras Boricuas fellowship.

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The national Letras Boricuas Fellowship is a collaboration between the Flamboyan Foundation’s Arts Fund and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Letras Boricuas aims to “identify and connect writers” from various backgrounds and identities who “embody the vastness, diversity and complexity of Puerto Rican experiences.”

The grant program was established to “enrich and sustain” Puerto Rican literary culture across the island and the U.S. Diaspora.

This year, 20 writers were chosen to receive the Letras Boricuas Fellowship, and awarded each with a $25,000 grant. 

Among them was the Philadelphia-based Francisco Font Acevedo, a Puerto Rican fiction writer who has also worked as an English-Spanish interpreter.

His writing takes inspiration from “what results from personal and other people’s memory, dreams, the hybridity of cultural identities, the occupation and eviction of humanized spaces, nomadism and exile, human dignity and misery, and what I do not know.” 

Font Acevedo was born in Chicago to Puerto Rican parents. He would later move to and grow up in Rincón, Puerto Rico.

The writer lived in Rincón until 2018. He now lives in Philly, where he moved to reconnect with his sister who had already been living in the city for the past two decades.

Regarding the Letras Boricuas award, Font Acevedo shared that receiving the fellowship will grant him greater financial stability while completing his next novel.

“It was a surprise, and at the same time a relief,” he told Billy Penn

For his next novel, Font Acevedo’s tale will not take place in Philadelphia, but does carry a sense of Philly, according to the writer.

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