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'Lit Throwdown' Lets Inmates Display Writing Talent

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'Lit Throwdown' Lets Inmates Display Writing Talent

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'Lit Throwdown' Lets Inmates Display Writing Talent

'Lit Throwdown' Lets Inmates Display Writing Talent

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/127964628/127964839" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Six published authors competed in a writing "throwdown" against inmates at California's San Quentin State Prison over two consecutive Friday evenings in June. The surprise topic: "Damn. Now I'm back on square one again."

Last Friday the professional and the incarcerated writers met to have their writings judged.

The Lit Throwdown is part of a volunteer creative writing class — taught by two brothers since 2003 — on San Quentin's H-Unit yard of 1,000 prisoners. With most education programs cut inside prisons, volunteer-based programs like this are among the few remaining enrichment classes available to inmates.