Frequently Asked Questions

The following information pertains to the 2016-18 Fellowships search, which is now complete. Information for the 2018-2020 search may change. Please check back in the fall of 2017 for updated information about the 2018-2020 search.


  • Who can apply for a KR Fellowship?
    Any writer who has completed an MFA or PhD degree before September 15, 2015 but no earlier than January 1, 2010.
  • I’m not a U.S. citizen. Can I still apply?
    Yes, but all applicants must be eligible to work in the United States. Any non-U.S. citizen who receives a fellowship will qualify for a J-1 Visa.
  • Is there an age limit for applicants?
  • I don’t have a graduate degree in creative writing, but I have many publications and awards. May I apply for a fellowship?
    No. To be eligible for a KR fellowship, applicants must have completed an MFA in creative writing or PhD in creative writing, English literature, or comparative literature before September 15, 2015 but no earlier than January 1, 2010.
  • I am receiving my MFA in May 2016. Am I eligible?
    No. Applicants must have an MFA or PhD in hand at the time of application, hence the September 15, 2015 degree completion deadline. You will be eligible for our next search, which will take place in the fall of 2017.
  • May I apply for a fellowship if I have an MA in creative writing?
  • What kind of teaching experience is required?
    Applicants must have professional teaching experience in creative writing and/or literature at the undergraduate level.
  • Will you only accept applicants who write fiction or poetry?
    No. We invite applications from all genres, including creative nonfiction and playwriting.

Application Process

  • What is the application deadline?
    Applications must be submitted no later than September 15, 2015 in order to be considered.
  • Is there an application fee?
  • Is publication required for submission of an application?
    Publication is not required, but the strongest candidates will be those with the strongest records of publication.
  • Do I need to send letters of recommendation or transcripts?
    Applications must include two letters of recommendation, one of which should directly address the applicant’s teaching ability. Applications must also include a cover letter, curriculum vitae, 8-10 page writing sample, and unofficial transcripts from your graduate degree.
  • How should my references submit letters of recommendation?
    Letters of recommendation should be submitted electronically. The online application site will include instructions for submitting letters of recommendation.
  • Do my letters of recommendation need to come from professors or teachers who know my writing?
    Because the selection committee will evaluate your writing, your references do not necessarily need to speak to your writing. One of your references must speak to your teaching ability, and the other should provide character references and give the selection committee an idea of your potential to work with the students, faculty, and staff at the Kenyon Review and Kenyon College, and to successfully fulfill the requirements of the fellowship.
  • May I submit a writing sample that is slightly longer than 10 pages?
    No. Additional material beyond 10 pages will not be read.
  • May I send additional material, substitute another writing sample, or otherwise update my application at a later date?
    No. We cannot change or add information to your application, writing sample, curriculum vitae, or cover letter once we have received it.
  • For the writing sample, can I submit work that has been previously published?
  • Can I submit creative nonfiction, memoir, or a screenplay that I have written?
  • I write both poetry and fiction, can I apply to both categories in the same year?
  • How do I know that you received my application?
    You will receive a confirmation number when your application is successfully submitted. If you do not receive a confirmation number, please contact us.

Selection Process

  • How are applicants chosen for the fellowship?
    Fellows are chosen based on the achievement and promise of their written work, on the strength of the recommendations, and on their teaching experience and ability.
  • Who is on the selection committee?
    Editors and members of the staff of the Kenyon Review and faculty of Kenyon College.
  • What does the selection committee look for in the writing sample?
    Significant achievement and long term potential as demonstrated in the style, skill, and ambition of the writing sample.
  • What does the selection committee look for in the cover letter, and how long should this letter be?
    Cover letters offer you an opportunity to introduce yourself and your aspirations, as well as any projects or goals you would pursue if you received a Fellowship. Cover letters should be no longer than a single page.
  • When and how will you let me know your decision?
    The selection committee will notify applicants in November, 2015. Semi-finalists be interviewed online, and the final candidates will come to Kenyon College in November or December for a campus visit. Final decisions will be made no later than February, 2016 and Fellows will arrive at Kenyon in August, 2016.
  • If selected, can I defer my fellowship?
    No. Fellowships may not be postponed.
  • If I am not selected, can I apply again?
    Yes. Because we are currently only accepting two fellows every two years, we will be turning down many talented and qualified candidates and we encourage those candidates to reapply.
  • Can you give me feedback and tell me why I wasn’t selected for a fellowship?
    No. Due to the volume of applications we will be receiving, we cannot comment on individual applications.

Responsibilities and Expectations

  • What will be expected of me as a fellow?
    The primary expectation is that you will undertake a significant writing project. You will attend regular individual meetings with faculty mentors who will assist you as you write and revise your manuscript. Fellows are also expected to teach one class per semester in the English Department of Kenyon College, contingent upon departmental needs. Fellows will also assist in creative and editorial projects for Kenyon Review and KROnline, read submissions during the reading period, and may have opportunities to assist in the Kenyon Review Summer Programs.
  • Is residency required?
    Yes. Fellows are required to live in the local community in order to attend workshops, readings and other public events, and to contribute to the Kenyon Review, the English Department, and the broader cultural life at Kenyon.
  • Can I keep my full-time job and/or pursue another degree during the fellowship period?
    No. This fellowship is a full-time academic commitment and is not to be pursued concurrently with another full-time job or degree program.
  • When does the fellowship begin and end?
    The fellowship begins in August, 2016 and ends in June, 2018.
  • Do I get any kind of degree by completing the fellowship?
  • Am I guaranteed a teaching position during my fellowship?
    It is expected that fellows will teach at least one class per semester in the English Department of Kenyon College, but these positions cannot be absolutely guaranteed because departmental needs may shift. The fellowship stipend will not be affected by teaching status. Fellows may also have opportunities to teach in the Kenyon Review Summer Writing Workshops.
  • In what ways will the fellows assist The Kenyon Review and KROnline?
    Fellows will work on a variety of creative and editorial projects for both Kenyon Review and KROnline. While the nature of these projects will depend on the needs of the magazine and the interests and skills of each fellow, contributions may include reading submissions, assisting with programs and reading series, working with Kenyon Review student associates and interns, and developing new initiatives.

Financial Information

  • How much is the fellowship?
    Fellows will receive a $33,800 yearly stipend, plus health benefits.
  • Is it possible to live on the fellowship?
    Yes. Fellows are expected to devote these two years to developing as writers, teachers, and editors, so the stipend is intended to fully support the fellows for those two years.
  • Will housing be provided?
    At this time, housing is not provided. Depending on availability, we may be able to reserve faculty apartments for fellows, and there are also many inexpensive rental opportunities in and around Gambier, Ohio. We will keep fellows aware of these options.
  • Is there an opportunity for me to teach additional classes or in any other way supplement my income?
    Opportunities for additional teaching may exist, but are dependent upon the curricular needs of the English Department and the Kenyon Review Summer Programs.

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