Porter Square Books Writers in Residence Program

Porter Square Books will once again be hosting Writers in Residence in 2024. The residency will be housed at Porter Square Books: Cambridge Edition. Applications will be open July 1-August 31, 2023. The public announcement will be made at the end of October. 

In order to make the resources needed to write books more available to the writers and aspiring writers in our community, Porter Square Books will select two writers, one writing for adults and one writing for young readers, to be our Writers in Residence. Click here for more information about the residency.


The Perks:

The Writers in Residence will receive:

Staff discount (40% off on nearly everything) at both locations and at Cafe Zing

Access to the Cambridge Edition office after 5PM during the week and all day on weekends when the store is open (our office isn’t much and we can’t offer computer access but it’s a quiet space with flat surfaces)

Access to galleys/ARCs

The chance to advocate for the books they love through staff picks



The Responsibilities:

3 bookish pieces for the Blog (Could be short essays, book reviews, interviews, other)

3 Event introductions or “in conversation” events for other authors.

A “Welcome Reading” in February

Availability for Independent Bookstore Day (The last Saturday in April)

If the book worked on while a resident is published, Porter Square Books will be the first choice to launch the book when it is released

Writers in Residence are expected to use the office space for a reasonable amount of time over the course of their residency. (About five hours a week or more on average.)



February 1, 2024-October 31, 2024



All writers, 18+, at any stage in their career, writing in any genre, who are full-time residents of the greater Cambridge area, who do not work for Porter Square Books or any other bookstore or have a permanent academic position at a college or university or work for a publisher, are eligible to apply. Previous applicants are also eligible to apply again. Former Porter Square Books employees, as well as family members of current and former employees, are not eligible.



Fill out the form here. Along with basic information, you will need to provide a short (500-1000 word) essay answering the question “How will a Porter Square Books residency help you as a writer?”, a sample of a work in progress (up to 25 pages and including an elevator pitch for the project, preferably including the piece(s) that you plan to work on as a resident), and a CV or Writer’s Resume (if you’ve got one). You will have to create a Porter Square Books account to upload files. If you do not have one, you can create it here.


Deadline and Announcement:

The application deadline will be August 31st. The Writers in Residence will be publicly announced at the end of October.


Fine Print and Other Information:



All applicants will be notified a day or two before the public announcement.


Preference Given

To ensure the Writer in Residence program has the biggest possible impact, Porter Square Books will give preference to writers from marginalized populations; those who are least likely to have had the kind of access to books and the book industry the residency can provide or who face other barriers to resources and publication. To be a bit more specific, if we’re down to two applications that the selection committee believes are of equal quality and one of them is a straight white man and one of them is...well...any other identity, we will award the residency to the later.


Right of Refusal for Launch Event

Porter Square Books reserves the right to refuse to host the launch event for a Writers in Residence book for whatever reason.


Early Termination of Residency

Porter Square Books reserves the right to terminate a residency early if we believe the writer has engaged in behavior (past or present) that does not reflect the values of Porter Square Books and our community or if we believe an association with the writer inhibits, in any way, our ability to fulfill our mission and serve our community. Porter Square Books also reserves the right to terminate a residency if we believe the responsibilities outlined above are not being met.


Apply for the 2024 Porter Square Books Writer in Residence here.