Writing Residencies for Reclusive Geniuses and Exhausted People

6 minute read
Author: RobertB

A round-up of upcoming writing residencies, lovingly compiled by screech owl in human form Emma Kernahan @crappyliving

THE SUPERMARKET CAFE FLASH FICTION RESIDENCY is open to writers with a keen interest in free WiFi and a relaxed approach to personal hygiene.

Applications will be considered from those needing to complete stories of fewer than 1,000 words, spoken sentences of 10 words or more, or sleep cycles of 3-5 consecutive hours.​

LOCATION: Within 5 miles of the applicant’s home or the distance it takes to get a toddler to sleep in a car seat, whichever is closest.  ​

DURATION: 35 minutes.

DEADLINE: The day before you get around to reading this properly.​

​THE NOTORIOUSLY RECLUSIVE LITERARY GENIUS IN RESIDENCE PROJECT is an international scheme open to all writers seeking space to write searing and astonishing prose.


  • The toilet in your own house​.
  • The corner of the shed next to the lawnmower​.
  • The driver’s seat of your parked car when you told everyone you were just popping out to get milk.​
  • The light and contemporary shared office space in which J D Salinger wrote The Catcher In The Rye.​

THE BRONTË SISTERS RESIDENCY PROGRAMME is open to women who self-publish their brilliant fucking novels.​

Successful applicants will receive access to an attic, at least one Michael Fassbender, and a lifetime’s supply of Kate Bush​.

AREAS OF PARTICULAR INTEREST: The wild and untamed demands of the soul.

LOCATION: A Premier Inn just outside Skipton. Buffet breakfast provided


Please contact our Current Affairs Building for further details. Bring ID, your health records and your bank details blessed be the fruit.

Gif of Offred from The Handmaid's Tale looking up at the camera with a determined and slightly creepy expression.

THE FUCK THIS SHIT RESIDENCY PROGRAMME​ is seeking applications from those who have irrevocably lost part of all or their WIP because their laptop had an entire cup of tea knocked over it.  ​

Candidates will need to prepare a lengthy essay in answer to the question: ‘Why didn’t you back-up your work?‘ and will be assessed on how imaginatively they injure the interview panel with it.​

Successful candidates will receive a void to scream into, a series of large items to throw against a wall, and an assurance – verbally and in writing – that the universe is now dangerously out of alignment and must be rectified.

Also, another cup of tea.

THE COMMUNITY LIBRARY WRITER IN RESIDENCE PROGRAMME​ seeks applications from anyone who has been empowered to run a library for free, due to the closure of their actual library.

Applications are particularly welcome from writers seeking to develop a successful fantasy book and film franchise that will be the UK’s primary export post-Brexit, or literally anyone who can help people with their Universal Credit applications.

LOCATION: The J K Rowling Library of Imaginary Books, which contains all the novels that would have been written by lone parents if they had been adequately supported by the UK benefits system.​

DEADLINE: To be decided by popular vote.

DURATION: Candidates can end their residency at any point by saying ‘Big Society’ three times and summoning mythical clap-goblin Michael Gove.

THE ACADÉMIE PARIS VOLTAIRE DISTINGUISHED POET IN RESIDENCE PROGRAMME is open to anyone who is a poet and does not know it.

THE OMFG MY NOVEL CAN GET IN THE BIN UNFINISHED MANUSCRIPT WRITER IN RESIDENCE PROGRAMME​ is now open to anyone who has been writing the same novel for a minimum of 85 years and wishes to have time to complete their descent into madness.  ​

The residency will provide unlimited time to write. Candidates will need to provide a summary of how they intend spend all of this time cleaning the bathroom, making choux pastry from scratch and tweeting about Brexit​.

The panel would also welcome an outline of the internet research you intend to undertake into key parts of your novel, such as what Screech from Saved By The Bell looks like now, which character from Pride and Prejudice you are, and whether it’s technically possible to wear a suit of armour while driving.​

LOCATION: Starbucks at the Swindon Retail Outlet​.

DURATION: ​Eternity.

Gif of Rose as an old lady in Titanic saying "It's been 84 years..."

THE SUNDAY NIGHT TELEVISION SCREENPLAY RESIDENCY is open to groups of friends who got drunk about 6 months ago and had like, the best ever idea for a TV show and haven’t spoken about it since but should totally write it.

As is traditional, screenplays must be written while on a treadmill, wearing a leotard and sweat bands, smoking Lambert and Butler.​


  • Keening strings in opening credits.
  • Visual metaphors for sexual tension.
  • Talking about the hero’s journey through a mouthful of carrot cake (see above).
  • Something about Scotland?
  • That guy from the BT ads.
  • That time Poldark invented Working Tax Credits​.

THE DOROTHY PARKER FELLOWSHIP AT THE NEW YORK INSTITUTE OF DEVASTATING LITERARY COMEBACKS​ is open to all writers of comedy and romantic fiction who are never invited to apply for writers residencies and whose writing is sometimes described as ‘women’s fiction’.

Successful candidates will have 6 months in New York to drink gin and look like a fucking boss.

All residents will be required to deliver a keynote speech at the Institute Summer Conference entitled ‘No, YOUR mum.’​

Institute Fellows will receive some cream for that sick burn.​

Gif of a group of young men making a variety of shocked and impressed reactions to a sick burn. In the middle a boy with glasses and a hoodie looks directly at the camera with a satisfied expression while another boy claps both hands to his head and runs past the camera screaming.

THE SCREECH OWL AND HOWLER MONKEY WRITERS’ RESIDENCY​ provides a peaceful writers’ residency to anyone with a passion for animal welfare and a flair for owl- and monkey-based storytelling.

Residents will have time for deep reflection among the wildlife of the rescue sanctuary. Ear defenders and tetanus vaccinations will be provided.​

HOST: Screech from Saved By the Bell.

THE UNBELIEVABLY SPECIFIC WRITERS’ RESIDENCY​ is open to anyone who has completed any number of novels, so long as that number is between 5 and 8 and the novels are about religious dissent in eighteenth-century Norfolk. ​

Gif of Kyle MacLachlan in Twin Peaks asking "can you be more specific?"

Applicants must have previous public speaking experience, a full length cape, and a flair for bell-ringing.

Successful candidates will receive £20,000 for no reason, a cottage in Wisbech, and will need to be dog-friendly​.

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