La Maison Baldwin Writer-in-Residence Program
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of James Baldwin’s arrival in St. Paul de Vence, we fulfill his dream to foster emerging writers in his adopted hometown
Pour célébrer le 50e anniversaire de l’arrivée de James Baldwin à Saint-Paul de Vence, nous réalisons son rêve de promouvoir les écrivains émergents dans sa ville d’adoption.
The Maison Baldwin Writers-in-Residence Program for 2020-2021
Shortly before James Baldwin passed away, he told close friends in Saint-Paul de Vence that he dreamed of seeing his beloved house made into a writers' colony. This medieval village, with its uncommon light, its majestic mountaintop placement and surrounding countryside, has for centuries attracted artists, architects, alchemists and thinkers, great minds intent on changing the world. Here is where Baldwin wrote some of his most enduring books, including If Beale Street Could Talk, Just Above my Head, and his sole book of poetry, Jimmy's Blues.
Writers in residence are offered a room in the village center to pursue their current creative project. While in residence, they will contribute to the literary culture of Saint Paul de Vence by offering a community event or creative public program.
They are hosted at La Maison Baldwin Residence for Writers, a house in the historic center of St. Paul de Vence located directly across the street from the village church. The home features a 3rd-floor bedroom suite with a sunny terrace overlooking the tiled roofs of the village and the valley beyond.
Residents also stay in a charming artist cottage made available to the program through a partnership with the city of St. Paul de Vence.
Lunch every day is offered to the resident writers through partnerships with local restaurants and host families. The fellowship includes a $700 travel stipend.
Eligibility and How to Apply
This fellowship is open to emerging writers working in the spirit of James Baldwin. Eligible to apply are poets, playwrights, essayists and fiction writers with no more than one published book or staged production.
The review committee will select ten fellows for residencies of 2 to 4 weeks in fall 2020 (Sept 15 to Oct. 31) or spring 2021 (April 1 to May 15).
To apply, send a cover letter, a brief bio and writing sample of ten pages to with the subject line "residency application." The deadline is December 31, 2019. Please indicate your preferred residency duration and period.
Spring 2019 Resident Evan Starling Davis reflects on his 4 week stay in the writer's cottage
Maison Baldwin Writers-in-Residence, 2019-2020
Left to right: Fatin Abbas, Evan Starling Davis, Kiprop Kimutai, Michael R. Jackson, Ricky Laurentiis, Brooke Obie, Jamie McGhee, Chet’la Sebree, Charif Shanahan and Regie Cabico.
These ten writers were selected from a pool of 127 candidates who applied to become the Inaugural Maison Baldwin Writer-in-Residence. .
Although this fellowship is limited to emerging writers, these finalists push the boundary of that definition. They have been recognized with top honors from from the Cave Canem Foundation, the Dramatists Guild, The Lannan Foundation, the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts, the Academy of American Poets, the Poetry Foundation, and the Kweli Scholar Program. They’ve won the Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award, the Phillis Wheatley Award for First Fiction, and the Crab Orchard First Book Prize; they have followed Baldwin’s footsteps to the MacDowell and Yaddo colonies; and they have earned prestigious fellowships at Syracuse University, Bucknell University, and Stanford University.
Founding donors to La Maison Baldwin received this digital chapbook, featuring work by the 2019 writers-in-residence
“This is about as high a percentage of top shelf writing that I've seen in a very long while. I regret the fine material that will be left on the cutting room floor, so to speak, all of it worthy of a prize or honorable mention.”