The Rough Draft Writer’s Retreat

The Rough Draft Writer’s Retreat is an event series featuring a visiting writer on the second Wednesday of each month, as chosen by a panel of local writers and literary-minded Rough Draft regulars. Each visiting writer will have the chance to engage with our community at a Rough Draft event, as well as a quiet place to work and reflect in a lovingly restored 1735 stone townhouse—conveniently located just steps from our shop.

Our goal for the Rough Draft Writer’s Retreat is to bring the best and brightest literary talent to Kingston, to introduce our community to new voices and viewpoints, and to give visiting writers an opportunity to experience the city we love. Visiting writers will receive a complimentary round-trip bus ticket to/from New York City (or other areas serviced by Trailways NY), will be able to explore our city's shops and restaurants when they arrive Tuesday evening, and will be invited to work from the nearby Kingston Writer's Studio (or from the comfort and privacy of their apartment) during their stay. Their visit will culminate with a reading and Q&A at Rough Draft on Wednesday evening, followed by a leisurely departure late Thursday morning.

Writer’s retreats will be offered for the second Wednesday of each month, plus one day before and after. Interested authors/poets/journalists/writers of all kinds are invited to apply.


How it Works

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, any time of year. If you're interested in a residency for a specific month, please submit your application by the first day of the month prior to the month you have in mind. (For example, if you're hoping for a residency in April, submit your application by 11:59 PM on March 1.) Please note in your application if you're open to multiple dates; this may increase your chances of being selected.

Whether you're selected for a specific event or not, you’ll be notified of your status at least three weeks before that date. If you've indicated availability for subsequent events, you'll remain in the running for those and will hear from us again after those respective application periods.

Kingston is walkable city just two hours from Manhattan via car or Trailways bus. Visiting writers will receive a complimentary round-trip bus ticket to/from New York City (or other areas serviced by Trailways), or are free to make their own transportation arrangements. Writers will be treated to one meal and unlimited coffee while in town, but should plan to provide for other meals and expenses.

How to Apply

Think you should be Rough Draft’s next visiting writer? We look forward to hearing from you! Click below to apply or learn more in our FAQ.

A huge thanks to our sponsors: Trailways NY, the Colonel Abraham Hasbrouck House, and the Kingston Writers’ Studio. (Are you a local business that would like to sponsor part of our writer’s retreat? Get in touch!)

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