Writer’s residency in Brussels with Passa Porta
The National Centre for Writing is collaborating with Passa Porta and Flanders Literature to offer a writing residency in Brussels in 2023 to an England-based writer
Applications for this residency have now closed. Please see our current opportunities here.

The National Centre for Writing is collaborating with Passa Porta and Flanders Literature to offer a four-week writing residency in Brussels in April 2023 to an England-based writer or graphic novelist. The residency is part of an exchange, with the National Centre for Writing hosting a writer from Flanders in Norwich in 2023.

About the residency

Passa Porta is a multilingual house of literature at the heart of Brussels, providing a showcase, a platform and a workplace for literature. It includes a literary salon, a multilingual bookshop, a corner for reading, conversation and rendezvous, space for workshops, offices, and a flat for a writer in residence. Passa Porta has a broad network of contacts with the press, publishers, translators and cultural organisations in Belgium and abroad.

This residency will offer the writer a quiet place to write. However, there will be the opportunity to take part in public events in Flanders and Brussels, as well as to meet and collaborate with fellow authors and translators.

The writer in residence will devote most of their time in Brussels to working on a manuscript. In their letter of application, they should present a concise and concrete plan of work regarding their stay. The author will be asked to mention Passa Porta in the final publication of the manuscript they worked on during their stay.

Passa Porta will invite the writer to leave a ‘literary trace’ of his or her stay – in other words, a short text of fiction (1000 words), rooted partially in reality. The text will be published on the online magazine of Passa Porta and may be used by Passa Porta in future publications to promote the residence project. This and any other assignments will be renumerated accordingly.

Travel and accommodation

The writer will be offered free accommodation in a self-catering flat at the Passa Porta house of literature. This distinctive and comfortable flat has a floor area of 90 sq. m. and looks out over the picturesque Oude Graanmarkt (Old Grain Market). Its entrance is separate from that of Passa Porta and is on the Oude Graanmarkt, close to the Grand Place.

The flat comprises a living room, a study, a bedroom, a bathroom and a kitchen. It is equipped with an internet connection, printer, television and, if required, a laptop. A telephone is available at the guest’s expense.

The National Centre for Writing will cover the cost of travel to and from Brussels and Passa Porta will pay a small stipend towards living expenses. The writer should take out their own travel and health insurance for the period of their journey and stay.

The residency will take place as long as COVID-19 safety measures allow. If the residency cannot take place, it will be postponed to a mutually agreed date.

How to apply

This opportunity is open to writers based in England.

It is open to writers of novels, short stories or poetry, children’s or young adult literature or literary non-fiction, and graphic novelists. Authors working on a manuscript as part of academic research do not qualify. The author must have had at least one work published by a literary publisher (not self-published).

Applications should include:

  • a covering letter explaining:
    • why you wish to take part in the residency, what you will bring to it and what you hope to get out of it;
    • a description of the manuscript or project on which you will work;
    • why Brussels, and any Norwich connections;
  • a CV, including publications in your own and other languages.

Writers wishing to apply for the residency should send their application to [email protected]

The deadline for applications is Monday 13th June 2022.

The selection will be carried out jointly by Passa Porta and the National Centre for Writing, and the successful applicant will be informed in early July.

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