The Alley Cat residency program was founded in 2014 with the goal of offering writers a welcoming space to work in the heart of a lively literary community. We currently host six writing residencies per year.
Residents enjoy flexible, drop-in access to an inspiring writing space: an art gallery located inside a community-oriented independent bookstore in the Mission. Every resident receives:
·Generous discounts on new and used books · An Alley Cat blank book · Wi-Fi access · A chapbook of their work published by Alley Cat at the end of their residency · A chapbook release party and reading hosted by Alley Cat at the end of their residency
The residency welcomes writers to pursue whatever goals, projects, or ideas they’re interested in. The only requirement is that residents produce a short chapbook manuscript by the end of their residency.
Please note: The residency does not include accommodations or meals, so it may be best suited for local writers; non-local writers are welcome to apply, but are responsible for arranging their own accommodations.
Past residency program administrators include Jordan Gower, Raul Ruiz, and Jason Mull.
About the Space
The gallery is pleasant and airy, with high ceilings and a skylight. Its eclectic art exhibits rotate frequently. Because the gallery is located in a bookstore, it’s not an entirely private or quiet space; you can determine for yourself whether this is compatible with your writing practice. (If you’re comfortable writing in coffee shops, you would likely be comfortable here.) Depending on scheduling, you may sometimes share the space with another resident.
Alley Cat does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, age, religion, national origin, gender, sexuality, ability, education, or income. We want to make this residency accessible to all writers, and we especially encourage marginalized and underrepresented writers to apply.
Some notes on accessibility: The bookstore and gallery are wheelchair accessible. The bathroom is not approved as accessible (the toilet is one inch too far from the wall), but does have grab bars and a sink and toilet installed at the appropriate height. Because the bookstore is a public space and not scent-free, we are unfortunately unable to offer a scent-free environment.
If there is a way that we might be able to make the residency more accessible to you, please let us know in your application (there's an optional question about access needs). Our resources are limited—the program is run by volunteers and has no funding—but we are committed to accommodating residents’ needs whenever possible.
How Do I Apply?
Residents are selected by a rotating panel of local writers; decisions are based primarily on writing samples. There is no application fee.
We have two residency periods every year, and three residents participate in each residency. This year: ·Residency Period A runs from July 2017 – November 2017 · Residency Period B runs from December 2017 – May 2018
We are currently accepting applications for Residency Period A. The deadline for applications is May 1.
Applications for Residency Period B will be open from July 1 – September 1.