Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The 12 Best Writing Fellowships & Retreats in the US


(Source: hedgebrook.org)

For all of the writers on Tumblr looking to improve their craft and find new inspiration for their work, here are some of the best writing fellowships and retreats in the US. Many of these programs encourage collaboration with other writers, as well as with immersion in natural environments such as coastlines, farms, and mountains. While a lot of retreats and fellowships are relatively new, there are also ones that have existed since the 1900s. 


1. The WCR Writing Fellowship at the Wellstone Center in the Redwoods
Location: Soquel, CA

The Wellstone Center in the Redwoods offers its writing fellows a stunning and peaceful writing environment. It also offers its fellows and residents organic gardens, orchards, yoga, and cooking courses. They encourage interaction with nature and see creativity as the key to enriching our lives.

2. NYC Emerging Writers Fellowship at The Center for Fiction and The Jerome Foundation
Location: New York, NY 

This fellowship provides writers with a grant, space in The Center for Fiction’s Writers Studio, mentorships, contact with agents, membership to the Center for Fiction, which includes access to its collection of books, workshops, events, and more. The NYC Emerging Writers Fellowship is geared towards writers who are residents of New York City and who have not been published by a major or independent publisher.

3. The Hodson-Brown Fellowship by The C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience and the John Carter Brown Library
Location: Chestertown, MD 

The Hodson-Brown Fellowship is geared towards writers, academics, and scholars pursuing work pertaining to literature, history, culture, or art of the Americas before 1830. The fellow will have access to the John Carter Brown Library for research and nearby housing. The writing term will be at the Starr Center at Washington College. Office space at Custom House and use of Fellows’ Residence is also provided. 

4. The Kenyon Review Fellowships
Location: Gambier, OH

The Kenyon Review’s fellowships support authors in the early stages of their careers to help them grow into mature writers, teachers, and editors. These fellowships require a significant writing project, meetings with faculty mentors, teaching duties at Kenyon College, and participation with The Kenyon Review. 

 5. Artists’ Fellowships by The New York Foundation of the Arts 
Location: New York, NY

Artists’ Fellowships are dedicated to supporting artists’ living and working in New York across every cultural and ethnic background. Focus is placed primarily on artists’ voice and vision. Applications from every experience level are encouraged. 

6. The MacDowell Colony Fellowship
Location: Peterborough, NH

The MacDowell Colony provides artists and writers the time and space to create both in isolation and in social settings. Studio space, accommodations, and food are provided. Access to the Savidge Library is also provided, which houses collections of past MacDowell Fellows. 


7. Master Class Retreat Series at Hedgebrook
Location: Whidbey Island, WA

Philanthropist Nancy Nordhoff has transformed a farm to retreat cottages for women writers. This retreat is for inexperienced and experienced writers, and includes one-on-one meetings and classes led by celebrated teachers. Each writer is housed in a cottage and Hedgebrook’s prepare each meal. Whidbey Island boasts walking trails, ponds, Double Bluff Beach, and views of Puget Sound and Mount Rainier. 

8. Yaddo
Location: Saratoga Springs, NY

Yaddo is a historic and creative community located on a 400-acre estate. It is dedicated to fostering creativity by providing an encouraging space for its residents to work. Applicants may apply as individuals or members of two- or three-person teams. 

9. The Kundiman Asian American Poetry Retreat
Location: New York, NY

Kundiman is a community that “creates an affirming and rigorous space where Asian American poets can explore, through art, the unique challenges that face the new and ever changing diaspora.” Kundiman offers workshops and writers’ retreats led by nationally renowned Asian American poets. This retreat culminates with a reading at Fordham University’s Lincoln Center campus. 

10. Wellspring House: A Retreat for Writers and Artists by Preston Browning
Location: Ashfield, MA

Wellspring House is a renovated carriage house owned by Ann and Preston Browning. It is a quiet retreat geared towards writers and artists in need of a private and natural environment. Located in the town of Ashfield, MA, near the hills of the Berkshire Mountains, this retreat is a great break from any city or suburb.

11. Haven Writing Retreat by Laura Munson
Location: Whitefish, MT

At Haven Writing Retreat, New York Times bestselling author Laura Munson strives to inspire and explore the creative realm with every writer in attendance. She believes this is possible while in Montana’s gorgeous countryside.  

12. Whispering Pines Writers’ Retreat by SCBWI New England
Location: West Greenwich, RI

New England Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Whispering Pines Writers’ Retreat is perfect for writers interested in children’s literature and working with other writers and mentors. There are also presentations delivered by mentors and notable industry professionals. 

Some notes on methodology:
We took reviews from previous fellows and retreat participants into great consideration. For example, if a newly established retreat did not have any reviews or comments on their own website or on others’, it was not included. Articles about fellowships and retreats such as Holly Robinson’s on The Huffington Post’s website were valuable sources of information. Additionally, there are so many fellowships and retreats offered by or in part by colleges and universities across the US. We didn’t include many of them because they are primarily teaching residencies.  

Friday, April 18, 2014

Try making Jacques Pepin’s carrot “butterflies” and olive “rabbits” to bring your Easter lunch to a whole new level.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

 The Shadows of the Past can’t save you from the Shadows of the Present. 

The Maya come alive in Pat Murphy’s Nebula Award-winning novel, The Falling Woman. 

 The Shadows of the Past can’t save you from the Shadows of the Present.

The Maya come alive in Pat Murphy’s Nebula Award-winning novel, The Falling Woman. 

Monday, April 14, 2014
Today marks the 102nd anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking. Here, an infographic of Walter Lord’s minute-by-minute account, A Night to Remember.

Today marks the 102nd anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking. Here, an infographic of Walter Lord’s minute-by-minute account, A Night to Remember.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A Response to Book Riot’s “The Great TBR Poll”

We loved Book Riot’s "The Great TBR Poll" so much that we asked the Open Road staff to sort through their shelves and e-readers and share a bit about themselves. The results varied from how many books are on their TBR lists to where they’re kept, but one thing remained the same: the Open Road staff loves their books.

Some notes on methodology: 

Total participants: 28

Like Book Riot, we rounded and approximated numbers like “over 300” became “300” to generate these averages. And for answers like “too many to count” we decided that you could never have too many books.  

1. Do you keep a list of books you want to read?

Responses: 28


2. How many books are currently on your “to be read” list?

Range: 0300


Average: 39

3. How many books do you own that you haven’t read yet?


Range: 0500

Average: 57

4. Where do you keep your TBR list?


File or spreadsheet: 0
Goodreads: 8
Journal or notepad: 1
Mobile device or app: 7
On e-reader: 1
Physical stack/shelf: 3
Retailer wishlist: 4
Other social network: 1

Props to Rebecca Schinsky and the team at Book Riot. This was really fun!

—Friends and fans at Open Road

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Spring has sprung!

Knitters, check out these lightweight projects that only use one little skein for big springtime fun.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Breaking down The Edgar Awards, the most prestigious award in mystery writing.

Find winning and nominated titles here!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Facebook Sonnet

Welcome to the endless high-school
Reunion. Welcome to past friends
And lovers, however kind or cruel.
Let’s undervalue and unmend

The present. Why can’t we pretend
Every stage of life is the same?
Let’s exhume, resume, and extend
Childhood. Let’s all play the games

That occupy the young. Let fame
And shame intertwine. Let one’s search
For God become public domain.
Let church.com become our church.

Let’s sign up, sign in, and confess
Here at the altar of loneliness.

—Sherman Alexie

Saturday, March 29, 2014
Happy birthday to the amazing Elizabeth Hand!

Happy birthday to the amazing Elizabeth Hand!