Deadline: 01/08/2018

Mountain and Wilderness Writing

Residency in any genre on mountain narratives, wilderness adventure, or with an environmental theme.

Mountain and Wilderness Writing (MWW) is a three-week residency for nine writers working in any genre (fiction, nonfiction, or poetry), on mountain narratives, stories of wilderness adventure, or projects with an environmental theme. 

The interior journey of exploration and the psychology of extreme endeavours are as much a focus as the physical accomplishments involved, and there is a strong emphasis on literary quality. 

Writers will enjoy dedicated, uninterrupted writing time in a spectacular mountain setting, and the communality of a small group of peers from around the world under the guidance of two experienced editors.  

This program overlaps with the Banff Centre Mountain Film and Book Festival, and guest artists of the MWW program (visiting authors, editors, or agents) offer further enrichment and inspiration. Many projects developed in the MWW program have gone on to publication, and several books by alumni have won inter-national awards. 

What does the program offer?
Participants will work in the peace and isolation of Banff Centre’s Leighton Artists Studios and consult on an individual basis with two faculty editors: Marni Jackson, award-winning journalist, author, and editor; and Tony Whittome, for many years an Editorial Director of Random House UK.

Prior to the start of the residency, writers will submit some 5,000 words from their projects. Intensive editing, both conceptual and detailed, of these or other passages forms the foundation of the program, although longer texts can be discussed.

During the program, participants will take part in twice-weekly, two-hour workshops under the guidance of the editors, where participants will critique and support each other’s work with detailed attention to texts of 20 pages or less per workshop.

Writers will also have access to the Banff Centre Mountain Film and Book Festival, which attracts accomplished filmmakers and authors from around the world. 

Who should apply?
Writers in all genres—fiction, nonfiction, poetry, essay, history, biography, and memoir—are encouraged to apply. Both established and emerging writers are welcome. 


  • Marni Jackson 
  • Tony Whittome

Application Requirements:

  • Financial Assistance: Be sure to complete the Financial Aid section to be eligible for financial assistance.
  • Resume: A resume, C.V., or a short description of your previous writing activities i.e. include a list of publication credits if applicable, and previous writing programs or workshops taken.
  • Portfolio: 
    • Segment from the work-in-progress you will work on during the program (maximum 10 pages).
    • Samples of additional published or unpublished work (maximum 10 pages).
  • Project Summary and Bio: Provide a 100-word artist biography and a 100-word summary of the proposed project. These summaries will be used as a narrative for administrative and public use.

All program applications take place online through the program page. Learn more here: 

Mountain and Wilderness Writing

Mountain and Wilderness Writing


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