At Sea Writers' Residency - Information


The At Sea residency programme aims to provide a quiet, and quietly inspiring, place for writers to concentrate solely on reading, thinking and writing without the distractions and pressures of the everyday. Writing is an endeavour that rewards persistence, time and concentration. At Sea hopes spectacular sunsets, a vibrant seaside culture and, above all, space will help.


You will have full run of a two-bedroom, two-bathroom Grade-II-listed flat in Margate’s old Fort Lodge hotel, built in 1823. The flat is at the top of a majestic spiral staircase and is filled with hundreds of books for both reference and fun. There is a fully stocked kitchen and you will be provided, of course, with bedding and towels. NB: Unfortunately there is no lift in the building so, regrettably, the residency is not suitable for writers with mobility issues.


As well as having private access to a peaceful seafront apartment, the successful applicant will be given a £250 stipend in cash. This should be enough to cover food for the week, as well as a little local sightseeing for inspiration. If you are travelling to Margate by train, we can also pay £50 towards your train fare.


The next At Sea residency will run from Saturday 16 November to Sunday 24 November 2019 and is open to poets. The following residency will be in March 2020 and will be open to writers of crime fiction.

Selection Criteria

The November 2019 At Sea residency is open to emerging poets. There is no age limit for applicants. We are looking for passionate, promising poets who will relish a week of solitude to devote to their work. You will be eligible to apply as long as you have no full-length collections of your work in publication at the time of the residency. (You will still be eligible if you have had work printed in magazines or journals, or if you have published a pamphlet or chapbook.)

We would like to see a sample of your poetry to help us make our decision: please submit three to five short poems or up to five pages of a longer work in document form.

We especially welcome applications from poets from diverse or lower-income backgrounds.

The focus of the residency will change every time: the next residency, in March 2020, will be open to crime writers. (Memoirists, fiction writers, essayists, graphic novelists, biographers, screenwriters – your time will come!)

Application Process

We would like to read a sample of your writing, and we also want to hear about you: please provide a few paragraphs about yourself, your background, your creative interests, and why At Sea would be helpful to you.

Apply Now