"I became a poet in Pittsburgh," says, poet and University of Pittsburgh professor Terrance Hayes, pictured above at his home. Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

John Darnielle's first novel, Black Sabbath's Master of Reality, was about a teenage boy in a psychiatric institution who is obsessed with heavy metal. Lalitree Darnielle/Courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux hide caption

itoggle caption Lalitree Darnielle/Courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Amy Clampitt used her award money to buy a house in Stockbridge, Mass., near the home of Edith Wharton, one of her favorite writers. Andrea Shea/WBUR hide caption

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James Ellroy lives in Los Angeles, which serves as the setting for much of his work. Jenniffer Carroll/Knopf hide caption

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A first edition of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby was displayed at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair in 2013. Book critic Maureen Corrigan — who calls the cover "striking" — says she likes to think that if it landed on her porch today among the more than 200 books she receives a week, she would read it. Oli Scarff/Getty Images hide caption

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Artist Miranda July contributed a series of photos in which strangers try on one another's favorite outfits. Michael Schmelling/Courtesy of Blue Rider Press hide caption

itoggle caption Michael Schmelling/Courtesy of Blue Rider Press

Dana Goldstein has reported on education for several years, including in The Atlantic and The Daily Beast. Michael Lionstar/Courtesy of Doubleday hide caption

itoggle caption Michael Lionstar/Courtesy of Doubleday

Kwei Quartey sets one of the crime scenes in his second D.I. Dawson book in Agbogbloshie, an Accra slum. Ofeibea Quist-Arcton /NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Ofeibea Quist-Arcton /NPR

Lee Child is the author of 19 Jack Reacher novels — and is currently working on the 20th. Sigrid Estrada/AP/Random House hide caption

itoggle caption Sigrid Estrada/AP/Random House