Residencies and Retreats

Looking for a place to stay and write, or an opportunity to spend focussed time on a project? We are pleased to announce a range of Norwich UNESCO City of Literature residency and retreat opportunities for writers and translators.

Whether you’d like to apply for a Dragon Hall retreat, take part in our circular residency exchange with Québec UNESCO City of Literature, or join us online as a virtual resident, we can offer you the unique and valuable gift of time, space, and freedom, allowing you to produce you best work

Dragon Hall Retreats

The Dragon Hall Cottage is available for retreats for creative writers and literary translators, providing the perfect space to work from our Literature House, here in Norwich UNESCO City of Literature. Our first Retreats in the cottage have proved so popular that we are offering two more Retreats in August 2024.

The Retreats are open to creative writers and literary translators at any stage of their career, offering the chance to focus on work in progress, carry out research in the region, or maybe come as a pair to collaborate on a project.

We have set aside time for two 12-day retreats in August 2024. You can apply via our website, with a deadline of Monday 8 April 2024.

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My stay at the cottage has been delightful.

Allison van den Hoek, writer
Québec City UNESCO residency


Image © Llamaryon

Norwich is part of a new circular residency exchange project initiated by Québec City with other UNESCO Cities of Literature around the world. The aim of this exchange is to forge links between the partner cities, their literary ecosystem and their writers and translators, as well as to raise the profile of the UNESCO City of Literature designation. In 2024, Norwich is hosting a writer or a translator from Krakow, and Québec City is hosting a writer from Norwich.

We are now open for applications for the writing residency in Québec City, which will run from 1 to 31 August 2024. This opportunity is open to published writers based in England. Writers applying for this residency should have some connection with Norwich, whether they’ve lived, worked or studied in the city, or featured it in their writing.

During their residency, in addition to working on their own creative project, the visiting writer will be asked to write a short text that captures their experience of the host city. The writing residency will be hosted by the Maison de la littérature, in the heart of Québec City’s historic district. In addition to the writing residency, the Maison de la littérature houses a public library, writing rooms, a graphic novel studio, a creative studio, and a theatre, which stages a programme of literary events.

For more details about the residency and the application process, check out the call on our website. The deadline for applications is Monday 25 March 2024.

You can read about our previous virtual residency exchange between writers in Norwich and Québec City in the Imagining the City section of our website.

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The experience opened my eyes to both places, and I feel I have a better understanding of both cities as cultural centres.

Megan Bradbury, writer
Visible Communities virtual residencies

NCW has offered virtual residencies as part of our Visible Communities programme since 2021. You can read commissions, listen to podcasts and watch events with previous translators in residence on the Visible Communities section of our website.

In 2024, we would like to appoint three translators in virtual residence for the Visible Communities programme. The three residencies will run simultaneously for three months, from September to November 2024. We will pay a fee of £3,000 per residency.

The aim of the virtual residency is to support literary translators to work on a project that addresses in some way the concerns of the Visible Communities programme, outlined on our website. We will commission our virtual residents to write a piece for the NCW website about their project and to curate a translation-related Meet the World event during the residency.

We will programme regular online meetings with the three translators in virtual residence, offering an opportunity for them to share work in progress and gain feedback from each other. This year, we will also be offering each translator in residence a mentoring session with an experienced literary translator who will give feedback on work and advice on a career in literary translation.

The Visible Communities residencies are open to UK-based Black, Asian and Ethnically Diverse literary translators working from any language into English. We are particularly interested in collaborating with literary translators and writers who translate from or have some knowledge of the diaspora and heritage language communities within the UK.

For more details about the residency and the application process, check out the call on our website. The deadline for applications is Monday 22 April 2024.

‘I’ve been privileged to undertake two residencies with NCW in the last few years – the first a translation, the second an oral history project. Both these residencies, in different ways, have helped me reconfigure my own engagement with the literary scene in the UK, and consider how I might move forward in this regard. As a published writer and literary editor in Nepal, where I grew up, returning to the UK to take up a fulltime job as a copywriter/editor was a challenge. Engaging with NCW has allowed me to refresh myself and branch out into translation. Thank you for the opportunity!’

Rabi Thapa, translator in virtual residence, 2023

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Funded residency time is the best thing that can be offered to emerging translators and helps remedy some of the issues within the literary translation industry.

Nadiyah Abdullatif, translator in virtual residence, 2022 and 2023
Korean-English literary translation residency

We have partnered with the Literature Translation Institute of Korea since 2019 to offer residencies in the Dragon Hall Cottage to literary translators working from Korean to English, whether based in the UK or elsewhere. Former residents include Anton Hur, Mattho Mandersloot, and three of the translators involved in the IYAGI series of chapbooks published by Strangers Press – Clare Richards, Soobin Kim and Paige Aniyah Morris.

This year, the residency is open to an experienced literary translator working between Korean and English and based anywhere in the world. The residency will run from Monday 1 July to Saturday 27 July 2024 and will offer focused time to work on a translation project, with support from a UK-based mentor. The Korean translator in residence will also have the opportunity to attend plenary sessions at the BCLT summer school, which will take place online in 2024.

For more details about the residency and the application process, check out the call on our website. The deadline for applications is Monday 25 March 2024.

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A residency provides two of the most valuable elements to any translator’s or writer’s practice: time and (at least temporary) freedom from financial concerns. These elements are essential for creativity. The residency is also an incredible and unrivalled opportunity to connect with a literary community and converse with fellow literature lovers and creators.

Paige Aniyah Morris, translator in residence in 2023

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