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Outwrite is Canteen’s new  reading series and competition. Part Iowa Writers’ Workshop, part American Idol, Outwrite solicits aspiring writers to compete against established authors on a level playing field. Each event features a flash-writing competition between one published author and two audience members. Our writers have 20 minutes to compose their pieces, which are read to the audience anonymously. The audience then chooses the winner.

✎  OUTWRITE 3: BROOKLYN, September 21, 2012
At Bushwick’s art haven, 3rd WardNew Yorker staff writer, essayist, novelist, and short story author Ben Greenman competed against two unpublished writers in the third installment of Outwrite. The audience, choosing among three topics, selected “Donald Trump: An Inner Monologue.” While our three competitors wrote, Elliott Holt and Marie-Helene Bertino entertained the audience with stories about their lives as authors and Brooklyn literary trivia.

The title went to literary debutante Ben Schwartz. Our unpublished authors now have 3 wins and no losses.

Read Outwrite 3′s Winning Composition

At KGB Bar, New York City’s dark den of literary sin, Matthew Aaron Goodman (author of Hold Love Strong, honored by USA Today as a New Voices Pick and by Barnes & Noble as a Discover Great New Writers Book) competed against Nachshon Rothstein and Diane Keeney. While the competitors wrote about “My Uncomfortably Long and Overly Revealing Out-of-Office Email Response,” prizewinning essayist and fiction author Alexander Chee (Edinburgh) entertained with a reading.

Nachshon Rothstein emerged victorious—and our lauded authors now have zero wins and two losses.

Read the compositions from Outwrite 2.
At perennial L.A. favorite Skylight Books, poet and New Yorker staff writer Dana Goodyear took on literary debutantes Bradley Spinelli and A. Wolfe.

While memoirist and novelist Joyce Maynard (To Die For, At Home in the World) read to the audience, our contestants madly wrote a response to the evening’s topic: “There’s a good explanation for those Internet searches you found on my computer.” A. Wolfe’s entry, read anonymously, got the most applause and took the grand prize. Congratulations, A. Wolfe!

To read more about Canteen in the news, visit our Press & Events page.

For additional information, please contact info [at]

Outwrite is sponsored by The Noble Experiment:
Brooklyn’s finest (and most literary!) rum and whiskey distillery.


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