If you’re searching for some inspiration and a change in scenery, a writing residency might be just what you need.
While we are still in the midst of a global pandemic, many of us are searching for enough inspiration to write. Maybe you were able to produce this past year, maybe you weren’t—but by now, if you’re anything like me, finding the mental space and energy to write after being stuck inside the same four walls for the past year is often impossible.
If you’re looking for a change in scenery and wish to dedicate some time to your craft, a residency could be just what you need. Many residencies that weren’t available last year are returning now that vaccinations are just around the corner for most adults in the United States. Some residencies, like The Mastheads July Residency, are still monitoring Covid-19 infection and vaccination rates carefully; while applications typically open in January or February, they may open instead for a short time in April. Others have carefully examined their practices and are accepting applications.
Below, we’ve collected a few residency programs with applications closing soon. One of them might be your chance to get out of your house, get out of your writing rut, and still feel confident about keeping yourself and others safe. Most of these deadlines are quickly approaching, so don’t hold off.
Bethany Arts Community Residency
BAC is a collective environment for artists of all disciplines. They offer short-term residencies (twelve days between September 21 and October 23, 2021) in Ossining, NY, for the development of new works and works-in-progress.
All accepted artists are given a small weekly subsidy and must plan for a public component in their residency plan, which will be open-access for the outside community.
During Fall 2020, BAC made adjustments to their residency program and was able to safely welcome artists to their facility. Many of these same implementations are still in place, which include limiting the number of participants to enable social distancing, requiring face coverings in shared spaces, performing daily health checks, and regularly cleaning public surfaces.
Applications must be submitted by April 15, 11:59 EDT, 2021. You can find the application link here.
Blackacre’s Writer in Residence Program
Throughout this year, six writers in residence will stay in the historical Presley-Tyler house, located on the Blackacre State Nature Preserve in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
In addition to comfortable accommodations including Wi-Fi, a furnished living room, bedroom, and kitchen (plus a washer and dryer), writers receive a small $200 stipend and access to a car; the residency is at least one week, but may be longer. (The length of stay is dependent, in part, on the schedule for other visiting writers). Writers-in-residence are required to to give one to two public presentations in the community during their stay.
This residency is ideal for pandemic times; after being accepted, the writer has the ability to delay the beginning of the residency for up to a year. Applications for 2021 close on June 14, 2021.
Find further details and information on how to apply here.
Converging Liberations Residency
This residency is for Massachusetts-based artists, creatives, and community organizers who self-identify as Black, Indigenous, or as a person of color. The residency will take place across four weeks in August and September, 2021, though the website gives “rain date” options for 2022 in case of Covid-19 precautions.
Selected applicants may attend the residency for one to four weeks, and during those weeks they will have 24-hour access to a private studio space, a private room in shared housing, and will receive up to $1,000 for an unrestricted stipend ($500 per two-week period), up to $300 for meals ($150 per two-week period), and up to $200 for travel support.
Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. EDT on April 12, 2021. Find more details and application instructions here.
New York State Summer Writers Institute
While the Summer Writers Institute is a program rather than a residency, it’s a good option to consider for those of us still feeling anxious about leaving the house, as all programming will be taking place online this year.
The NYS Summer Writers Institute takes place June 27 through July 23. If your application is selected, the program costs $3,000 for four weeks, $1,500 for two weeks, or $900 for one week. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until spots are filled, so submit yours ASAP! Find more details and application instructions here.
Artist Residency at Penn Center
Penn Center, located on St. Helena Island in South Carolina, is on the site of the former Penn School, which was one of the country’s first schools for formerly enslaved people. Individual artists or artist groups can apply in any media, but projects must engage or partner with one or more of the Carolina Sea Island communities and be related to the histories and cultures of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor in the context of the theme Civil Rights and Social Justice.
The residency will be held during the period of September 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022, but will be subject to pandemic safety protocols.
The artist or artist group chosen for the residency will receive an honorarium of up to $10,000, materials and exhibition support of up to $15,000, and travel, accommodation, and subsistence support of up to $5,000.
Application materials should be submitted by 5 p.m. EDT on April 26, 2021. Find more details here.
Do you know of a residency with upcoming deadlines we should include in a future post? Please email our editor, Stella, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Stella Cabot Wilson is an Associate Editor for Don't Write Alone and Catapult. She grew up in Colorado and Wyoming and lives in New York City. You can find her on Twitter @ssrosecw .