Who can apply to Sage Hill?
Anyone may apply. We receive applications from writers in all stages of their careers from novice to professional and all points in between.
I don’t live in Saskatchewan/Canada. Can I still apply?
Yes. We receive applications from all over Canada, the US and beyond.
I am in my forties/fifties/sixties. Am I too old to apply?
No. We receive applications from writers of all ages and abilities.
I am younger than 19. May I still apply to the adult experience?
No. This programme is designed for adult writers. If you are between 14-18, please apply to the teen writing programme.
My writing experience/background isn’t creative. Should I still apply?
Yes. Our introductory courses offer a great starting point for writers new to creative work.
It’s been many years since I have written/published. Should I still apply?
Yes. Over the years, many of our participants have attended our workshops in order to reinvigorate their writing.
When are the application deadlines?
What is the application fee?
The application fee is $50 Canadian. This non-refundable fee covers the administrative costs involved with processing your application.
Should I send letters of recommendation?
Letters of recommendation are not necessary. Your application will be assessed on the basis of your writing sample and statement of intent.
What sort of material should I submit?
Your writing sample should reflect your strongest and most recent work. If you plan on attending a workshop or colloquium, the material you submit should reflect what you plan to work on during the programme.
When will I hear about my application?
Decision will be made two-three weeks after the deadline.
I have been waitlisted. What next?
You will be contacted by Sage Hill if a spot opens up in the programme.
Do you accept emailed applications?
Yes. Please see the website for guidelines.
How are applicants selected for the programme?
All applications are reviewed by a three-person jury. Selections are based on the strength of the writing sample and the letter of intent.
Who is on the jury?
The jury consists of professional writers from a range of backgrounds and genres. Please note that current faculty members do not participate in the jury process.
What does the process consist of?
After all applications have been received, the materials are copied and forwarded to the jury. Once they have had an opportunity to review all the applications, the jury meets to decide what candidates meet the standards for the programme. If there are more qualified candidates than spaces, a waitlist will be created. It is not Sage Hill’s policy to simply fill spots in the programme, so if enough qualified candidates do not apply, programmes may run with fewer participants, or may be cancelled.
What is the schedule like at Sage Hill?
While your instructor will determine the specific schedule, you can expect to spend part of your time each day reading other people’s work, editing your own, participating in group discussions, as well as writing. In addition, faculty readings are held during the programme. The only exception is the Colloquium level which primarily focuses on one-on-one sessions between the facilitator and the participants.
How much time is spent in group activities?
This will vary depending on the programme and the instructor, but you can expect to meet regularly as a group for a few hours at a time. These meetings provide an opportunity for workshopping, as well as discussions about writing and the development of technique. Typically, the Introductory group meets every day, the Workshop groups meet every second day, and the Colloquia meet a few times during the ten days.
How much time will I have with the instructor?
Each participant will receive individual attention from the instructor. You can expect to meet with the instructor at least twice during the course of the programme to discuss your work. He or she will have received and read your application, as well as writing samples, prior to your arrival on site. Oftentimes, participants are invited to submit additional materials to the instructor, and you will be instructed when and how to do so if you are accepted.
How much time will I have to write?
Part of each day is set aside for writing. You will have a desk in your room where you can work privately, and there are a number of spaces on site.
Will we be attending classes every day?
No. Although the programme is intensive, it is designed to provide an experience that develops the writer as a whole. This means you will have time to read and write, time to visit with other participants, time to take walks or go into the nearby town of Lumsden.
What is the difference between a workshop and a colloquia?
Workshops have up to six writers in the cohort. A workshop is an opportunity for the group as a whole to take a look at each participant’s writing. Often this includes general discussion around the nature of the writing, specific discussion concerning the piece at hand, and then a few one-on-one meetings with the instructor. This allows for plenty of writing time as well as the group sessions. It is for writers who may have some works published, are at a committed level of engagement with the art form, and are experienced in the process of how to make their writing better.
A Sage Hill colloquium is tailored for five fully engaged writers who have a significant publication history. The primary focus is on each writer’s writing. There will be in-depth analysis and recommendations based on one-on-one discussions with your instructor. The participants are there to write and write intensely. The instructor may want to conduct one or two sessions with the entire cohort during which a general discussion about writing and publishing may take place.
What does the fee cover?
Tuition includes room and board, as well as instruction.
I need financial assistance. What are my options?
Sage Hill offers a number of small scholarships. You must apply for these at the time of making your application. Alternatively, you may wish to seek outside sources of funding. Depending on the nature of your project, you may qualify for assistance from provincial or national agencies.
Is my tuition tax deductible?
If you declare your occupation as a writer on your tax form, you may claim tuition fees as an expense.
Is Sage Hill affiliated with any other organization such as the Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild or the University of Saskatchewan?
No. Sage Hill is an independent non-profit organization developed to meet the needs of writers in Saskatchewan and across Canada.
I had such a great time at Sage Hill – can I apply more than once?
Yes. Many of our alumni have attended more than one programme. You may write in more than one genre, and therefore may decide to apply for both fiction and poetry workshops in different years. We alternate special topic workshops (children’s writing, non-fiction, playwriting) and you may want to apply for these as well. Having attended previously is not a guarantee that you will be accepted, however; every application is considered on the merit of the works submitted.
I’d like to say thank you to Sage Hill in some way. What can I do?
We love to hear from alumni! Send us an email or a letter letting us know how your experience was and what you’re working on now. Let us know when you’ve experienced success with your writing. If you’d like to donate to a scholarship or to the general programmes, any amount helps.