This Year's Program

2024 FALL Residency

Join us both online and in person for events September 1 through November 17, 2024. Learn more here >

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The INTERNATIONAL WRITING PROGRAM (IWP) is the oldest and largest multinational writing residency in the world. With a tradition of excellence that has continued for over five decades, the IWP annually brings outstanding authors from every continent to the University of Iowa (UI), a major American research institution internationally renowned for its writing programs.

Since 1967, over 1,600 writers from more than 160 countries have taken part in the IWP’s Fall Residency. The goal of the IWP is to provide authors a one-of-a-kind intercultural opportunity and the time and space to write, read, translate, study, conduct research, travel, give readings, stage work, and become part of the vibrant literary and academic community at the UI and in Iowa City, the first American city designated as a UNESCO City of Literature, in part because of the IWP’s presence.  

Each year the IWP brings together 30-35 of the world’s emerging and established writers to participate in the Fall Residency’s unique intercultural experience. Over the course of 11 weeks, in addition to working on their own projects, writers may give readings and lectures that share their work and cultures, collaborate with artists from other genres and art forms, and travel and interact with American audiences and literary communities across the United States.

Program Overview

The first days of the Fall Residency are set aside to welcome and orient the writers to life in Iowa City and at the IWP. Weekly events include public readings, IWP writer-based courses for UI students on Monday and Friday afternoons, panel presentations at the Iowa City Public Library Fridays, field trips, and cultural events on some weekends.

Some of these activities during Fall of 2024 include:

  • International Translation Workshop - Graduate-level students of literary translation and creative writing work one-on-one with IWP writers in a workshop format to create polished English translations of Fall Residency participants’ materials. The class meets to discuss the translations in progress on Friday afternoons throughout the semester. 

  • Readings - Because Iowa City is uniquely nurturing of creative writing, readings occur almost every night of the week – in coffeehouses, arts centers, restaurants, and other venues. In Fall of 2024, the IWP will sponsor a reading series in the IWP’s own Shambaugh House. In addition, numerous readings are scheduled through the sponsorship of foreign-language departments, civic entities, local bookstores, or other groups.

  • IWP Panel Series - These weekly panels take place each Friday at noon at the Iowa City Public Library, and present discussions on literary issues and on the influences and forces shaping writing around the world. The presentations are streamed live and archived online, and draw audiences from across the University and local community.

  • Theatre Collaborations - The IWP arranges opportunities for the works of our writers-in-residence to be read dramatically, and for collaborations between writers and performance artists. One venue for this is Global Express, an evening of dramatic readings of IWP writers' work staged by actors from the University’s Division of Performing Arts. Other opportunities may arise through the University, local venues, and the Portland Stage Company of Maine.

  • Dance Collaborations - In a long-standing collaboration similar to Global Express, IWP writers work with choreographers and dancers from the UI Department of Dance, culminating in a public performance that brings the writers' words off the page and onto the stage.

  • Cultural Activities & Field Trips - Participants receive complimentary tickets to occasional cultural events including concerts, performances, and regional activities. In recent years  these have included a trip to the historical Amana Colonies, nature hikes, and more. Performances and lectures by American and international performers, academics, writers, and public figures of note are held almost nightly at the University of Iowa and in Iowa City.

  • Community Interactions - A particular benefit of the program involves opportunities to interact more deeply with a range of local community members, including individual and group visits or dinners in the homes of faculty members and IWP supporters; talks given by IWP writers to area groups (including the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council and UI Senior College); classroom visits to local schools and colleges; and trips to speak and/or read across the state of Iowa.

  • Other invitations - Throughout the Residency, writers may also receive invitations to appear at events and in courses hosted by universities, organizations, and institutions across the country.

  • Participation in other IWP Projects - Residents are encouraged to lend their expertise to the various initiatives at the IWP, including Digital Learning Courses and Between the Lines. Possibilities include: recording interviews or talks about the craft of writing, facilitating creative collaborations and mentoring young writers.

  • Domestic travel - For 2024, the IWP will arrange group travel periods to Chicago, Washington DC, and New York City. The purpose of these trips is to introduce IWP writers to important and diverse American literary communities. Activities may include city tours, visits to sites of cultural or historical significance, public events, community engagement, professional connections, and educational outreach.

  • After the Residency – Thanks to partnerships with several excellent organizations, the IWP is able to connect a handful of Fall Residency writers with follow-on residency opportunities each year. These partner organizations include the Hermitage Artist Retreat, Pittsburgh’s City of Asylum, Stockton University, and the Vermont Studio Center. We very much appreciate these collaborations and the ways they enrich participating writers’ experiences in the U.S.

For examples of past, full calendars of events, please see our Annual Reports.

Accommodations for the 2024 Residency are at The Graduate Hotel, located in downtown Iowa City. Writers will have private rooms, which include a bathroom, mini-fridge, coffee pot, and microwave. Meals are mostly eaten away from the hotel. The IWP provides weekly access to a community kitchen for cooking meals and sharing cultural cuisines. As part of campus life, IWP writers are also given visiting scholar privileges, which provides access to the University of Iowa library system and the state-of-the-art Campus Recreation & Wellness Center.

IWP Expectations of Participants

  • The IWP does not require that a literary text or project be completed by the end of the Fall Residency.

  • Writers are generally expected to participate in: one public reading, one discussion in the IWP Panel Series, the mid-Residency travel period, and the final travel period. Otherwise, the Residents’ calendars are characterized by unstructured time to allow for individual work schedules and goals.

  • Travel away from the program is possible for professional engagements on a case-by-case baasis. Such engagements should, however, not interfere with a writer’s scheduled Residency commitments. Because of J-1 regulations, consult with the IWP before accepting any engagement.

  • The Fall Residency is designed for the writer only and cannot accommodate spouses, partners, or children. The IWP asks that, in order to support a working atmosphere, visits by family and guests be kept to no more a few days, and not coincide with IWP-led travel.

  • Please visit Fall Residency Questions for further information.

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