Just a couple minutes' walk from the fellowship offices, State Street's food carts offer cheap, gourmet food in the non-winter months. Photo © Oliver Bendorf, 2011-13 MFA.

An aerial view of Picnic Point, a prime bonfire location and firefly-viewing spot each fall. Picnic Point is just a short walk from Helen C. White Hall, home to the Program in Creative Writing. Photo © University of Wisconsin-Madison Board of Regents.

Pictured above is Helen C. White Hall, home to the Program in Creative Writing. Photo © University of Wisconsin Board of Regents.

The Institute Fellows Aria Aber

Chekwube O. Danladi Natasha Oladokun

Emily Shetler Lucy Tan

Mary Terrier Kate Wisel

2018-19 FELLOWS: Aria Aber, Chekwube O. Danladi, Natasha Oladokun, Emily Shetler, Lucy Tan, Mary Terrier, and Kate Wisel.

The Institute Fellows Oliver Baez Bendorf

Leila Chatti Tia Clark

Tiana Clark Marta Evans

2017-18 FELLOWS: Oliver Baez Bendorf, Leila Chatti, Tia Clark, Tiana Clark, and Marta Evans.

Derrick Austin Jamel Brinkley

Natalie Eilbert Sarah Fuchs

Marcela Fuentes Barrett Swanson

2016-17 FELLOWS: Derrick Austin, Jamel Brinkley, Natalie Eilbert, Sarah Fuchs, Marcela Fuentes, Barrett Swanson

Brian Booker Brian Hoffman

Lauren Russell Walter B. Thompson

Meg Wade D. J. Thielke

Jennifer Luebbers Ari Banias

Jaquira Diaz Mehdi Okasi

Laura Eve Engel Andrew Mortazavi

Lydia Fitzpatrick John Murillo

Michael Sheehan Emma Straub

Traci Brimhall Kevin Gonzalez

Nick Lantz Danielle Evans

Laleh Khadivi Rebecca Dunham

A FEW WICW FELLOWS FROM THE PAST DECADE: Brian Booker, Ben Hoffman, Lauren Russell, Walter B. Thompson, Meg Wade, D. J. Thielke, Jennifer Luebbers, Ari Banias, Jaquira Diaz, Mehdi Okasi, Laura Eve Engel, Andrew Mortazavi, Lydia Fitzpatrick, John Murillo, Michael Sheehan, Emma Straub, Traci Brimhall, Kevin Gonzalez, Nick Lantz, Danielle Evans, Laleh Khadivi, and Rebecca Dunham.

Contact Us

Sean Bishop, Administrator
Program in Creative Writing
Department of English
600 N. Park St, H.C. White Rm 6195
University of Wisconsin
Madison, WI 53706

Madison from the air: Helen C. White Hall, home of the Program in Creative Writing, is just one building out of frame in the bottom right corner. The Fellow offices overlook the lake.

An aerial view of Madison. Helen C. White Hall, home of the Creative Writing Program, is one building out of frame in the bottom right corner. Fellows' offices overlook the lake. Photo © University of Wisconsin Board of Regents.

Applying for a Poetry
or Fiction Fellowship

Applications are now open for the WICW Poetry and Fiction Fellowships, awarding stipends of at least $38,000 and generous health benefits. All applications must be received by March 1. Please read our instructions and eligibility requirements, below, before clicking here to upload your application.

To be eligible, applicants must have completed or be scheduled to complete an MFA or PhD in Creative Writing by August 15 of the fellowship year. Eligible applicants may have published or signed a contract for no more than one full-length collection or book of poetry, fiction, or creative nonfiction as of the March 1 deadline. Individuals who have never published a full-length collection or book remain eligible, of course. Successful applicants must commit to reside in the Madison area for the full duration of the Fellowship from mid-August to mid-May (holiday travel, weekend trips, and attendance of the AWP and/or MLA conferences are of course permitted within reason); to teach one section of undergraduate mixed-genre or single-genre creative writing each semester; to hold no other teaching, graduate study or fellowship obligations; to assist in the selection of the Brittingham and Felix Pollak Prizes in Poetry, the University of Wisconsin’s undergraduate writing prizes, and the following year’s Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing Fellowships; and in general to participate fully in the life of the Madison writing community during the fellowship period. For more details regarding the responsibilities and privileges of our fellows, please see the main fellowships page.

Applicants should prepare the following materials before applying:

Do not include more than one genre in a single submission. You may apply in more than one of our fellowship genres, but you must upload a separate application for each, with separate application fees. If you are submitting short fiction, please do not send more than one short story. The limit is one story no matter how short that story may be. If you send more than one story, we will only read the first. If you are sending a novel excerpt you may (but need not) include a brief synopsis (one or two paragraphs) of the novel, as page one of the manuscript.

One of our three poetry fellowships, the First Wave Poetry Fellowship, is reserved for writers with a background teaching social justice and/or performance poetry (e.g. slam or spoken word), or writers with a strong personal background in slam poetry, spoken word poetry, or arts-based social justice activism. As part of the application, poetry candidates will be asked if they meet these qualifications. Applicants who do not meet these qualifications shouldn't worry: you are still very much eligible for the Ron Wallace Poetry Fellowship, and the Jay C. and Ruth Halls Fellowship.

The poetry and fiction fellows will be chosen by May 1 each year, and announced on the fellows page. If you have questions concerning these fellowships that are not answered in the FAQ below, please contact Sean Bishop, Coordinator of the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, at institutemail@english.wisc.edu.

Fellowship FAQ

Required Degree

Previous Books (fiction, poetry, & HEAF fellowships only)

Writing Sample (fiction and poetry fellowships only)

Selection Process (fiction and poetry fellowships only)