Give Yourself a Writer’s Gift: Apply For A Writing Residency


Each Wurlitzer Foundation fellow in Taos, New Mexico receives his or her own private casita, which provided me with the opportunity to retreat to complete one book and begin another.  There are many different kinds of artistic residencies — the arts, music, performance — you just need to know where to look for offerings in your field. For instance, the Artists In Residence In the Everglades ( “invites visual artists, scholars, composers and writers to seek both solitude and solidarity in the inspiring environment of Everglades National Park. Participants are provided a furnished apartment for the length of the residency, usually four weeks. Visual arts include painting, sculpture, photography, installation and video. Writers include poets and authors of fiction, creative non-fiction and creative journalism. Composers, musicians, dancers and performance artists are welcome to apply.”  My being the writer-in-residence in the Everglades was the experience of a lifetime. 

Are you toiling over a novel or a book proposal or another writing project, only to be interrupted constantly by everyday life? If so, a writing residency—a retreat to achieve your writing goals—might be exactly what you need. Join me for “How to Land a Writing Residency” workshop on Saturday, August 18, 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., Fairfield County Writers Studio, Charles Street, Westport, CT ( If  you are in Connecticut, please plan to join me on August 18. If you live elsewhere and would like the workshop for yourself or your group, I offer it online at your convenience.


In my workshops, I teach you how to find what you are looking for and figure out what you need and want: location, length of stay, level of privacy, etc. Then I help you tackle the application guidelines. Rule #1 is key: You do not have to be previously published; however you do need to have an actual project to work on during the residency.

For instance, in the Everglades, participants must present one program for the public and donate one piece of art (or writing) to the park. The super perk is having unlimited access to the 1.5 million acres of Everglades. I soaked it all up, attending everything I could.

I will help you articulate your project, come up with a project plan and write a persuasive statement that conveys why you chose to apply to that particular program. We will sort out deadlines and fees, and bid you farewell with a plan in hand to succeed in the application process. Please bring a laptop, iPad or cell phone to access residency websites for information during this workshop.

As a writer, speaker, adventurer and author of books including Volunteer Vacations Across America, named by Amazon as one of the Top 25 new travel guidebooks; and Immersion Travel USA: The Best and Most Meaningful Volunteering, Living, and Learning Excursions, which won the Society of American Travel Writer’s Lowell Thomas award in the Best Travel Guidebook category, well-timed writing residencies have changed my life. Most recently I was the writer-in-residence at Everglades National Park in Homestead, Florida., and a writing fellow at the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, New Mexico. An adjunct professor at the Welch College of Business at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, teaching Professional Writing and Speaking, I have ghostwritten more than a dozen books for leaders in business, medicine, marketing, and more.

Where do you want to go? I will help you get there. Looking forward to hearing from you:

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