Let Your Creativity Flow!

Accepting Applications for Playwrights and Screenwriters (Winter 2020).

Top 5 Things You Should Know About This Retreat:

  1. Dates: Thursday, February 20 – Sunday, February 23, 2020
  2. Deadline to Apply: Friday, January 24, 2020 (selected fellows will be notified on or after February 5).
  3. Retreat Location: Medgar Evers College, CUNY (located in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, NY- room and board not included.)
  4. Genres: Playwriting and Screenwriting
  5. Tuition: $400 (there is a non-refundable $25 application fee; details below)

Individuals interested in participating in this retreat can apply online or via postal mail. See info. on this page in the “How to Submit” section and follow the “Submission Guidelines” please.

Come enjoy one-on-one and small group sessions in a nurturing environment.


The Wild Seeds Writers Retreat © (formally the North Country Institute & Retreat for Writers of Color ©) is a collaboration with the Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College, CUNY (CBL); the English Department at SUNY, Plattsburgh; and the Paden Institute and Retreat for Writers. It provides a nurturing writing environment where established writers and newly discovered writers of color can focus on the craft of writing and create cross-cultural conversations around the literature created by writers of the African Diaspora. Writing fellows have an opportunity to draw upon their experiences as writers in a racialized society; to become knowledgeable about the issues and concerns facing writers of color; and to study with a professional in the genres of fiction, memoir, poetry, screenwriting, and playwriting. The first retreat, held in 2004, was highly successful and featured poet Sonia Sanchez, author Tony Medina, and writer Indira Ganesan. Subsequent faculty workshop leaders have included nonfiction writer Patrice Gaines; poets Martin Espada, E. Ethelbert Miller, and Aracelis Girmay; and writers Jeffrey Renard Allen, Marita Golden, Victor LaValle, and Bernice McFadden among many others. Wild Seeds alternates between the Valcour Educational and Conference Center in Plattsburgh, New York, and the campus of Medgar Evers College, Brooklyn, New York.


  1. Playwriting: Submit 10 – 20 pages of your script
  2. Screenwriting: Submit 15 – 20 pages of your script
  3. Please paginate all submissions.
  4. VERY IMPORTANT: Do Not Submit Full Manuscripts.
  5. Materials Must Include:
    • The completed application. PDF File: Application__Wild Seeds_Retreat_2020_Single_sided winterb
    • cover letter indicating your preferred genre. It must also include your name, telephone number, postal mailing address, and email address.
    • Your cover letter must also express your reasons for wanting to participate in Wild Seeds Writers Retreat and how you believe you would benefit from this experience. Also include a brief description of the project you are presently working on, if applicable, and  background information on you as a writer.
    • A paginated writing sample. (MS Word or PDF files ONLY.)
    • Two (2) letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with your writing.  References may be submitted separately via mail or e-mail to writers@mec.cuny.edu; Cc: CReynolds@mec.cuny.edu with the subject heading:  “Wild Seeds Reference for YOUR FIRST NAME LAST NAME- GENRE.” References must be received within one week of the selection process; the dates will vary per retreat. [Winter 2020 references deadline is January 24, 2020.]
    • A non-refundable application fee of $25 (more details below).

Submissions not in adherence to the parameters may be subject to disqualification.  All dates, times, and instructors noted here are subject to change.


OPTION 1- Submit works electronically (via email) to: writers@mec.cuny.edu (and be sure to send a copy to creynolds@mec.cuny.edu). In the subject heading, put “Wild Seeds Submission, YOUR NAME, YOUR GENRE. Electronic submissions are strongly encouraged.

OPTION 2- To submit via postal mail, send to:

Center for Black Literature
Medgar Evers College, CUNY
1650 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11225

OPTION 3- Hand delivery/ Courier service ONLY [Physical address; DO NOT SEND MAIL TO THIS ADDRESS.]

The Center for Black Literature
School of Professional & Community Development
Medgar Evers College, CUNY
1534 Bedford Avenue, 2nd FL
Brooklyn, NY 11225

(Between Lincoln PL and Eastern Parkway, above CHASE Bank)

Subway: 2, 3, 4, and 5 trains to Franklin Ave. Station; S to Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Bus: B49 to Lincoln Place (Eastern Parkway) in either direction

To apply:

  1. Download and complete the application [include this form with your submission]

PDF File: Application__Wild Seeds_Retreat_2020_Single_sided winter.


  1. To pay application fee: This link will direct you to the Research Foundation of The City University of New York (RFCUNY) in order to make an electronic payment. Please select the “Wild Seeds” option If sending the submission via e-mail but paying by check via mail, please include the application with the payment.

Checks and money orders should be made out to: “Research Foundation of the City University of New York” or “RFCUNY” with a notation that reads: Wild Seeds Tuition. This should be mailed to the above mailing address for the CBL (1650 Bedford Avenue).


Amina Henry – Playwriting Faculty 

Amina Henry is a Brooklyn-based playwright, essayist, and educator. Her productions include: Hunter John and Jane at JACK, Ducklings at JACK, The Animals at JACK, Happily Ever at Brooklyn College, An American Family Takes a Lover at Theater for the New City, Water produced by Drama of Works, The Minstrel Show, produced as part of the 2013 Bring a Weasel and a Pint of Your Own Blood Festival at 13th Street Theater/CSC (NYC), and Bully at Interrobang Theater, Clubbed Thumb and SUNY Purchase. She is currently working on commissions from The New Group, HERO Theater, and Project Y Theatre. She was a 2017–2018 recipient of a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC) Space Grant and a 2018 Dixon Place Space Residency. Upcoming productions include New Light Theater’s production of The Great Novel, June 2019 at The Flea. Currently, she is an adjunct lecturer at Brooklyn College, as well as a teaching artist for the Teachers & Writers Collaborative and the Hunts Point Alliance for Children. Selected publications include: “Hello, My Name Is Joe” in The Brooklyn Review and 24 Gun Control Plays (NoPassport Press, 2013), “Bully” in The Kilroys List: 97 Monologues and Scenes by Female and Trans Playwrights (Theatre Communications Group, 2017) and the essay “Lessons in Beauty” in the forthcoming issue of Suzy Magazine. 

(Amina Henry will also be featured at the 15th National Black Writers Conference in March 2020.)


Cedric Hill – Screenwriting Faculty

A well-rounded background as a technical director, actor, stagehand, writer and producer has influenced and prepared Cedric Hill for the role he relishes most, director. The art of telling stories well has been a driving force for Mr. Hill throughout his career. With more than a decade of professional expertise, he seamlessly traverses between theater and film using his innate curiosity to produce works replete with depth and meaning. To gratify his need to produce works of substance, Mr. Hill founded To and Fro Productions, LLC, in 2005. As executive producer he wears many hats from developing scripts, creating budgets and casting to writing, engineering production strategy and directing. Under his leadership, the company has produced staged readings, plays, documentaries, shorts, and feature-length films. These endeavors have been showcased at festivals domestically and abroad while garnering national media attention. Projects of note include Lunatics Lovers & Actors (producer, co-director), Homeland (line producer), Jimmy and the Double Barrel (producer), I Do (writer), Outwordly Fabulous (producer, director), Passing (producer, director), Shades of War (producer, director) and Acceptable Losses (writer, producer, director). As a freelancer Mr. Hill, a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers, has served as producer and/or director for a number of projects creating PSAs, training videos and short films. The culmination of his experience lends itself to the benefit of students taking the Acting for Film courses he instructs at the New York Film Academy. Cedric Hill’s aspiration of filmmaking almost didn’t come to fruition. In 2002 he suffered the loss of both kidneys and his dreams of spending 15 hour days on set quickly turned to the reality of spending four hours a day, three days a week on a dialysis machine. In an unexpected plot twist, Mr. Hill received a “second chance” when he was gifted a kidney from an Iraq War Veteran who had befriended Mr. Hill a decade earlier while the two studied Theater at Rowan University. The New Jersey native and resident spends his downtime honing his culinary arts skills, studying history, and sharing a good chuckle with family and cherished loved ones. | From IMDb Mini Biography By Haasan Morse, Morse Code PR. Inc.



To returning fellows (those who have participated within the last 12 months):

  • You must complete the application, indicating which retreat for which you’re applying.
  • The $25 application fee is required as well as a cover letter.
  • Unless submitting for a different genre, you do not have to resubmit your text. If submitting for a different genre you should submit relevant text for consideration.
  • If you have previously received a scholarship, note that scholarships will be first made available to NEW applicants and then to re-applying fellows.
  • References will not be required if resubmitting within this 12 month period.

If you do not see your questions answered on this page, please see the Frequently Asked Questions” on the description page or contact CBL at (718) 804-8883. You can also send inquiries to writers@mec.cuny.edu.


  • January 24: Deadline for applications. NEW DATE!
  • January 24: Deadline for references. NEW DATE!
  • February 5: Notification of Acceptance (approximate) NEW DATE!
  • February 07: Confirmation of Acceptance by fellows
  • February 10: Fellows to send instructor(s) sections of their work for assessment
  • February 15: Deadline for fellows to pay tuition
  • February 20-23: Retreat at Medgar Evers College, CUNY

NOTE: Days generally start at 10:00 AM and end at 3:00 PM (unless otherwise determined by instructor). Learn more about upcoming retreats and background information here. All dates and times are subject to change.


  1. Tuition is $400 for all four days.
  2. The application fee is $25. To pay the $25 application fee, click HERE.
  3. Payment plans are available for those who are accepted to the program. Contact Maēshay k. Lewis at 718-804-8882 or mlewis@mec.cuny.edu to make arrangements.
  4. Once accepted, fellows must make payment in full by February 15, 2020.
  5. Once accepted, tuition will be collected by the Research Foundation of the City University of New York (RFCUNY) on behalf of the Center for Black Literature of Medgar Ever College, CUNY. Click HERE to make a payment or a contribution via the RF Tuition Payment System [this is for selected fellows only].
  6. REMINDER: selected fellows will receive official communication from the Center for Black Literature around February 5th. 


If you have questions or need more information, contact Maēshay k. Lewis at (718) 804-8882 or via email at mlewis@mec.cuny.edu. Alternatively, contact Clarence Reynolds at (718) 804-8881 or via email at creynolds@mec.cuny.edu.