About the Residency:
The City Books Writer’s Residency offers flexible access to a comfortable, creative space within Pittsburgh’s oldest bookstore for adult writers to develop new writing or to advance existing work-in-progress. The opportunity allows writers to pursue individual writing goals or projects without the expectation of a page count or publication. The CBWR is intended for local/regional writers within driving distance of the bookstore. A small stipend is a possibility but by no means guaranteed; therefore applicants are encouraged to secure funding from 3rd party sources for transportation, family/childcare, meals, etc., if necessary.
About City Books:
A community-oriented, independent bookstore located in the Allegheny West neighborhood of the Northside, City Books serves greater Pittsburgh, as well as the tri-state and neighboring Appalachian/Rust Belt regions. Our mission is to promote artistic and written expression in relation to experience and narrative; to foster dialogue among artists, writers and audiences across race, gender, sexual orientation, geographic, and socio-economic boundaries; and to reinforce the vital bond between literature and art as part of the region’s cultural heritage.
40% Discount on books and merchandise during the Residency
A City Books Reader’s Journal
Curate a virtual Resident’s Choice book shelf, and an in-store shelf, if desired
Workspace with free Wi-Fi and gender-neutral bathroom facilities
Minimum of 3-5 hours per week in store during regular business hours (Wed-Sun 11-5)
Availability for Independent Bookstore Day or Small Business Saturday (depending on term)
Permission to use likeness in marketing campaigns/accessibility for media requests
Spring term: Feb 1-June 30 (deadline Nov. 30)
Fall term: July 1-Nov 30 (deadline Apr. 30)
A signed contract may be required before the start of the residency.
City Books reserves the right to name more than one Resident per term.
All writers, 18+, at any stage in their careers, writing in any genre, who are residents of the Pittsburgh/tri-state/neighboring Appalachian/Rust Belt regions, who do not work for City Books, are eligible.
A degree in writing (undergraduate or MFA) is not required.
Emerging, marginalized, and historically excluded writers are encouraged to apply.
Applicants must not have published a full-length book by either traditional or independent means.
City Books volunteers, as well as family members of current and former volunteers, are not eligible.
Accessibility details will be provided upon request.
(Proof of current COVID vaccination is required before the writer(s) begins in-store hours. Masks are required for bookstore access. No exceptions.)
Applicants should send a letter of introduction via email that addresses why they are applying for the residency, a CV or resume (if available), a 3-5 page writing sample (any genre), and a brief but specific proposal indicating the nature of the planned work.
Please include all relevant contact information and dates of preferred term. Prior to final acceptance, City Books may require personal or professional references.
Materials should be e/addressed to: firstname.lastname@example.org (RE: Writer’s Residency Application) or to City Books Writer’s Residency, 908 Galveston Ave., Pittsburgh PA 15233. No phone calls will be accepted.
Deadline for spring residency application: Nov. 30
Deadline for fall residency application: Apr. 30
Notification will be made prior to public announcement.
Early termination/Right of refusal:
City Books reserves the right to terminate the residency early if the Resident is not fulfilling the above-listed responsibilities or is at all preventing the bookstore’s ability to fulfill its mission.
All City Books decisions are final.