Applications for 2020 will be accepted August 1, 2019 – September 7, 2019.

The Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence

What:  The Mount, Edith Wharton’s former home in Lenox, Massachusetts, offers two and three week retreats each March for three women identifying poet, fiction, or creative nonfiction writers. Selected writers will receive a $1,000 stipend, work space at The Mount, and nearby (but offsite) lodging for the entirety of their residency. Participants are expected to provide their own transportation to and from The Mount.

The principal responsibility of each writer is to spend time further developing her creative work. In addition, we ask that you make yourself available for local media requests and participate in one public panel discussion with fellow participants during your stay.

When: Selected writers may choose between a two-week (March 9 – 20), or three-week (March 9 – 27), retreat period. All writers must be present for orientation on Monday March 9, 2020.

Where: Residents will work at The Mount in Lenox, MA.

Edith Wharton designed The Mount, a Georgian revival mansion, on a wooded parcel on the shores of Laurel Lake and lived there from 1902-1911. It was at The Mount, which she called her “first true home,” that Wharton came into her own as a writer and produced some of her most iconic works. Please note that

Today, The Mount is a historic house museum and cultural center that celebrates the artistic, literary, and humanitarian legacy of Edith Wharton. While The Mount is primarily closed to the public during this period, please note you will be sharing the house with staff and the occasional visitor.

Who: Women writers and scholars are invited to create, advance, or complete works-in-progress during their time at The Mount.

Applicants must provide a proposal, to include:

  • CV or resume (not to exceed 5 pages)
  • A one page statement of purpose outlining your proposed project while at The Mount.

Tell us about your writing, and what you’d like to accomplish at The Mount as clearly and concisely as possible. If you have a particular relationship to Edith Wharton’s work here is a great place to share it. Statement can be single-spaced and should not include any biographical information.

  • Writing sample of 20 pages or less in manuscript format.

Work samples can be work-in-progress or already published work; whatever you feel will make for the strongest application.  It can also include several short pieces or sections of writing as long as they do not go over the 20 page limit.  You are allowed one additional cover page to explain the context of the writing sample for the jury. Manuscripts must be double spaced, using a 12 pt. Font. Do not include biographical or identifying information in your Work Sample. Make certain your name is not on any of the work sample pages.

  • $25 Application fee.

Application fees support the administration of the Writers retreat program.

CLICK HERE FOR 2020 APPLICATION

Selection Criteria:

Submissions are blind-reviewed and ranked based on the following criteria: quality of writing, originality of voice, strength of the proposal, and relationship to Edith Wharton and The Mount. Final candidates may be contacted for a telephone interview with the selection committee.

The Selection Committee’s decisions are final. We regret we are unable to provide critiques of and/or comments on applicants’ work samples or applications.

Important dates:
Applications open August 1, 2019
Application deadline September 7, 2019
Residents announced November 2019
Residency March 9 – 27, 2020

Questions?

Contact Michelle Daly, Public Programs Director at mdaly@edithwharton.org or 413-551-5110.

Past Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence

2019

  • Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah
  • Julia Phillips
  • Caroline Weber

2018

  • Elif Batuman
  • Buzzy Jackson
  • Kate Reed Petty

2017

  • Christene Barberich
  • Donna M. Lucey
  • Vanessa Manko

2016

  • Claire McMillan
  • Yvonne Puig
  • Koren Zailckas

2015

  • Natalie Dykstra

2014

  • Kate Bolick
  • Francesca Segal