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- MFA Admissions Process
Interested in applying to the MFA program in Creative Writing at UNC Wilmington? Learn more about the process and application materials required.
See details about our admissions process . Additional information regarding the MFA Program is posted in our Frequently Asked Questions , which we update regularly. Please review them carefully before applying.
The Fall 2024 application system is open. Applications are due by 11:59pm ET on January 15, 2024 .
Your application to the MFA program in Creative Writing at UNC-Wilmington will be submitted online to UNCW's Graduate School. Along with your online application, you are required to upload
- an electronic copy of your manuscript (the writing sample)
- your personal essay (also called a statement of interest, purpose, or intent)
In addition to the application materials submitted online, you will need to mail to the Graduate School your transcripts .
IMPORTANT: You will submit your application & fee BEFORE you upload your supplemental materials, listed below. (Steps to completing your online application can be found in the <Let's Get Started> tab of your application.)
Once you submit your application, you may access the Self Service Portal to upload your documents.
Application Materials Required
Here is a complete list of the required application materials:
- An application for admission to the Graduate School (online) The MFA program in Creative Writing (separate from the UNCW MA in English) accepts online applications from September 1—January 15 for August admissions.
- A typed manuscript in the applicant's writing genre (uploaded as a single document—cover sheet is optional): Up to 10 total pages of poetry (one poem per page; multi-page poems acceptable) Up to 30 total pages of fiction (double-spaced); single or multiple pieces Up to 30 total pages of creative nonfiction (double-spaced); single or multiple pieces
- A personal essay (300-500 words), uploaded with the online application, which focuses on goals for the development of your writing. You will want to talk about your writing style, as well as literary influences (both contemporary and historical). In what way(s) does UNCW support/meet your vision for these goals? What will you contribute to the program? In the essay, identify the genre-Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, or Poetry-for which the application is intended.
- DO NOT SEND transcripts to the Department of Creative Writing as this will delay the Graduate School from receiving and recording your application materials. Send all official college transcripts , in sealed envelopes, to: Graduate School University of North Carolina Wilmington 601 South College Road Wilmington, NC 28403-5955 Electronic password-protected transcripts may be sent directly from the institution to [email protected].
- A non-refundable application fee of $75 (paid online as part of the application). Waiver info here.
- If you are interested in being considered for an assistantship in the Creative Writing classroom, or in the Publishing Laboratory (or both!), please include a brief (1-2 page) supplemental statement of relevant experience and interest. (If interested in both, upload a single combined essay.) (upload with online application, in the Assistantship Essay section—separate from the Personal Essay in #3)
- The GRE (Graduate Record Exam) is not required for admission to our program.
- Letters of recommendation are not required, nor accepted.
- There is no foreign language requirement nor interview process.
- International applicants must meet additional requirements; details posted in the FAQs .
All application materials (including the application fee) must be posted to the online application system by 11:59 pm ET on January 15 . Late applications cannot be accepted as the system closes at midnight on January 16. You may begin to apply as soon as the system allows applications for the following year (September 1). We do not admit new students mid-year (i.e., in spring semester).
For more details, see the 'Applying' section of our FAQs . If you have questions about the application process after reviewing the FAQs for prospective students, please contact Lisa Bertini, MFA Program Assistant, at [email protected] or 910.962.3070. (UNCW will be closed during winter break, generally Dec 23-Jan 1.)
You can check the status of your application, request confirmation of receipt of application materials, as well as address missing items in your application in the ' Getting Started ' section of the Graduate School's admissions webpage.
If you are having trouble with any part of the online application, please refer to the technical support options available through the application system. If you still need help resolving your issue you may contact the graduate school .
Be sure to review the Getting Started section of the Graduate School website for a step-by-step guide to applying for admission. Many of your questions will be answered there.
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University of North Carolina, Wilmington
North carolina, united states.
The UNCW Department of Creative Writing is a community of passionate, dedicated writers who believe that the creation of art is valuable to self and culture. Our faculty encourages a rigorous yet supportive environment in which writers can grow as artists and as individuals. We believe excellence starts with an informed application of craft and we encourage writers to explore aesthetics and methods across genre lines.
The Department of Creative Writing is an independent department housed in its own building, keeping its undergraduate and graduate communities all in one place. It offers BFA and MFA degrees in Fine Arts (Creative Writing), both programs also having the potential of an extensive publishing and editing component.
UNCW’s MFA Program is celebrating its 20th anniversary and there is no better way to do that than by looking back on the successes of our students. That is where we pride ourselves. Our students and alumni have published more than 90 books and chapbooks. Jason Mott’s first novel became last season’s ABC TV series The Returned; Brad Land’s debut memoir Goat is being filmed as I write this; Hannah Dela Cruz Abrams received a $25,000 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award and a $50,000 Whiting Writers Award; Arianna Nash won the Philip Levine Prize for Poetry; Rochelle Hurt won the Barrow Street Book Prize; Leah Osowski won the Wick Poetry Prize at Kent State; Emily Carr won the New Measures Poetry Prize; Xhenet Aliu won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize; the list of books goes on and on-- publishers such as St. Martins; Algonquin; Viking; Ballantine; Morrow; Random House; Simon and Schuster. Alumni have published some hundreds of poems, stories, essays, reviews in prominent and vital venues. Indeed, here are a few of the magazines with which recent students published while still in the program: The Georgia Review, Black Warrior Review, The Journal, Crazyhorse, Indiana Review, Colorado Review, Agni, North American Review, Green Mountains Review, Third Coast, Puerto del Sol, Passages North, Oxford American, River Teeth, Creative Nonfiction, Fourth Genre; The Paris Review Daily, Poetry International, Granta Online, and The Nation.
We are a faculty of 15 seasoned, well published, working writers, all teaching graduate coursework in writing, literature, translation, or publishing, editing and book design. We offer the traditional tracks of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, with a graduate course available in screenwriting.
We enjoy a community of 63 students undertaking a three-year program of study in an independent department of creative writing housed in its own building. The community is all in one place. Cross-genre study is not only encouraged—it is required. Our workshops are capped at 14 and often run much smaller. No one phones it in here. We take pride in mentoring our students. And we take pride in engendering a rigorous, but very supportive atmosphere amongst the students.
We offer 9-10 GTAships each year, each paying a stipend of $15,500 and involving the teaching of creative writing or publishing and editing, or, in two cases, film studies, at the undergraduate level.
One opportunity that sets us apart is our Publishing Laboratory and its imprint Lookout Books. Students have now edited, designed and published five national titles, one of which won the National Book Critics Circle Award. The Pub Lab also houses two national literary magazines, Ecotone and Chautauqua.
Please visit our website (below) and view a short video about us. We are proud of our MFA and BFA programs in Creative Writing, and of that unique, state-of-the-art Publishing Laboratory, where both graduate and undergraduate students learn all aspects of publishing in a hands-on environment that is unique in higher education. You can also read about our award-winning semiannual journal, Ecotone, and its sister book imprint, Lookout Books, at ecotonelookout.org.
Get to know us. Check out the faculty.
Then, we hope you’ll consider joining us.
Let us know if you have any questions.
601 S. College Road Creative Writing Department Wilmington North Carolina, United States 28403 Phone: (910) 962-3331 Email: [email protected] Fax: 910-962-7461 http://http://uncw.edu/writers/
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing +
Undergraduate program director.
Students may declare a major in Creative Writing and enter the BFA degree program only after submitting a successful portfolio for review by the faculty. Students must also have demonstrated their talent and dedication in one of the basic prerequisite courses in creative writing by receiving a grade of B or better.
The BFA program provides an intensive apprenticeship in writing, informed by the close study of literature, to serious, aspiring writers, among a community of accomplished professional writers. Training is provided in the art of writing within the context of studies in aesthetics, the literary tradition, the craft and profession of publishing, and broad liberal arts subject matter relevant to the student's need and goals. Our primary educational goals include: 1) providing dedicated and talented students with a rigorous apprenticeship in the art and craft of creating literature; 2) developing students' critical faculties, their understanding of literary forms, and their aesthetic judgment; 3) providing students with a strong intellectual foundation in the historical literary tradition, grounding their practice of the art of writing in an understanding of how that art has been practiced by the greatest classic and contemporary authors; and 4) providing a thoughtful interdisciplinary foundation for understanding creative writing's relationship to other arts and scholarly areas.
We value and promote cross-genre versatility. The major and minor require a beginning creative writing course in the chosen genre, then specialization in one or more genres, culminating in a senior seminar, a senior thesis, and a reading. Courses are also offered in screenwriting and playwriting. Atlantis is the undergraduate literary magazine, fully staffed by student editors. Each year, based on a judging of undergraduate manuscripts, the program awards the Sam Ragan Prizes in Poetry and the Jessie Rehder Short Story Awards. Students benefit from contact with numerous nationally-known visiting Writers-in-Residence and speakers, including guests during the department's annual week-long Writers' Symposium.
Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing +
Graduate program director.
We enjoy a community of approximately 66 students undertaking a three-year program of study in an independent department of creative writing housed in its own building. The community is all in one place. Cross-genre study is not only encouraged—it is required. Our workshops are capped at 14 and often run much smaller. No one phones it in here. We take pride in mentoring our students. And we take pride in engendering a rigorous, but very supportive atmosphere amongst the students.
We offer differing numbers of GTAships each year, but each pays a stipend of $15,000 and involves the teaching of creative writing or publishing and editing, or, in one case, film studies, at the undergraduate level.
One opportunity that sets us apart is our Publishing Laboratory and its imprint Lookout Books. Students have now edited, designed and published five national titles, one of which won the National Book Critics Circle Award. The Pub Lab also houses two national literary magazines.
Please visit our website (below) and view a short video about us. We are proud of our MFA and BFA programs in Creative Writing, and of that unique, state-of-the-art Publishing Laboratory, where both graduate and undergraduate students learn all aspects of publishing in a hands-on environment that is unique in higher education. You can also read about our award-winning semiannual journal, Ecotone, and its sister book imprint, Lookout Books, at ecotonelookout.org!
Phone Calls from the Dead: Stories, Large Animals in Everyday Life: Stories
Natural Causes, Thirty-Seven Years from the Stone, Smoulder: Poems
Nina de Gramont
The Last September; The Boy I Love; Meet Me at the River; Of Cats and Men; Gossip Of The Starlings
Papadaddy's Book for New Fathers,The Night Train, The Bible Salesman, Solo: My Adventures in the Air,
Lunch at the Piccadilly: A Novel (2003)
Where Trouble Sleeps ,Redeye: A Western ,In Memory of Junior, Killer Diller , The Floatplane Notebooks (1988)
Walking Across Egypt ,Raney
The Songs of Hollywood, Skylark: The Life and Times of Johnny Mercer, Ira Gershwin: The Art of the Lyricist
The Dark of the Island, Down the Wild Cape Fear, The Patron Saint of Dreams, Creative Nonfiction: Researching and Crafting Stories of Real Life.
All the Wild That Remains; The Tarball Chronicles;)
My Green Manifesto; Soaring with Fidel; The Prophet of Dry Hill; Sick of Nature; Return of the Osprey; Under the Devil's Thumb; A Wild, Rank Place
Bobcat and Other Stories, The City Is a Rising Tide
Robert Anthony Siegel
All Will Be Revealed, All the Money in the World
Emily Louise Smith
poems and essays in Best New Poets, the Southern Review, Southern Poetry Anthology: North Carolina, Boulevard, Front Porch, New South, The Journal, Smartish Pace, 27 Views of Wilmington, and Literary Publishing in the Twenty-First Century.
Re-entry, Palma Cathedral, The Island, Travels in Vermeer, Vermeer in Hell
BFA Coordinator, work in Haunted Voices, Haunting Places: An Anthology of Writers of the Old and New South, Big Muddy, 55 Words, Prick of the Spindle, Aries, Calliope, winner, Authors in the Park Short Story Prize
Ocean Avenue; Astoria; The Star By My Head: Poets from Sweden; On Foot I Wandered Through The Solar Systems
Anna Lena Phillips Bell
A Pocket Book of Forms; 32 Poems, Colorado Review, the Southern Review, the Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. VII: North Carolina, the Raintown Review, Southern Poetry Review, the Anthology of Appalachian Writers, Really System, Canary, and 111O.
author of two poetry collections: We Call This Thing Between Us Love and … Hide Behind Me… His debut novel, The Returned, was optioned
-pre-release!- by actor Brad Pitt's production company, Plan B, as a television series and premiered on the ABC network in 2014 under the title Resurrection (2 seasons). His second novel, The Wonder of All Things has been optioned -also pre-release!- by Lionsgate Films for the big screen.
KaToya Ellis Fleming
Publications & Presses +
Visiting Writers Program +
Mei Fong, John Jeremiah Sullivan, Ilya Kaminsky, Steve Almond, Scott Cairns, Cristina Garcia, Patricia Hampl, Cynthia Huntington, Van Jordan, Jason Mott, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Bob Reiss, Mary Ruefle, Natasha Trethewey; Nikki Finney; Roxane Gay; Michael Taeckens; Bill Roorbach; Jill McCorkle;
Reading Series +
Writers Week ( http://uncw.edu/writersweek/ )
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Poetry: Mark Cox, Melissa Crowe, Malena Mörling
Fiction: Sarah Domet, Nina de Gramont, Clyde Edgerton, Rebecca Lee, Jason Mott
Nonfiction: Sayantani Dasgupta, Clyde Edgerton, David Gessner, Rebecca Lee, Melody Moezzi
Editing/Publishing: Anna Lena Phillips Bell, Michelle Donahue, KaToya Ellis Fleming, Michael Ramos, Emily Louise Smith
The program offers partial funding and full funding on a competitive basis. The program offers teaching, publishing, and editorial assistantships, as well as fellowships, scholarships, and tuition waivers.
Lookout Books , Ecotone , Chautauqua
The program brings three to four writers and editors to campus each year through its month-long visiting writers and editors series. The program also hosts Writers Week, an annual event offering readings, workshops, craft talks, and panel discussions. Other features include a publishing and editing curriculum within the Publishing Laboratory, which hosts the Lookout Books imprint; and opportunities to participate in three outreach programs at local schools and organizations and with regional teens.
Hannah Dela Cruz Abrams, Xhenet Aliu, George Bishop, Emma Bolden, Jonathan Russell Clark, Nina DeGramont, Jason Frye, A.J. Gnuse, Kirsten Holmstedt, Rochelle Hurt, Brad Land, Josh MacIvor-Andersen, Jason Mott, Derek Nikitas, Carmen Rodrigues, Dana Sachs, Daniel Nathan Terry, Carson Vaughan