Wild Seeds Writers Retreat, Winter 2021

Unleash Your Creativity

Wild Seeds Writers Retreat, Winter 2021

with Cheryl Boyce-Taylor and Nicole Dennis-Benn

Thursday, February 18 – Sunday, February 21, 2021

Medgar Evers College, CUNY

The Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College, CUNY (CBL) and the English Department at SUNY, Plattsburgh present the Wild Seeds Writers Retreat at Medgar Evers College, in Brooklyn, New York. The winter dates are February 18–21, 2021.

The Wild Seeds Writers Retreat encourages published writers and emerging writers of color to participate in writing workshops focused on fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. They will focus on the craft of writing and engage in cross-cultural conversations around literature created by writers of the African Diaspora.

The Winter 2021 faculty leaders are Cheryl Boyce-Taylor and Nicole Dennis-Benn. Funding for Wild Seeds Writers Retreat is supported by New York City Council Member Inez Barron, 42nd District; New York City Council Member Laurie A. Cumbo, 35th District; and the Ford Foundation.

Please note that the Retreat will be held online if COVID-19 prohibits the hosting of it on the campus of Medgar Evers College.



Cheryl Boyce-Taylor is a poet and visual artist born in Trinidad and raised in Queens, New York. She is the author of four collections of poetry: Raw Air, Night When Moon Follows, Convincing the Body, and Arrival. Boyce-Taylor has authored two new books: Mama Phife Represents, about the life of her son, hip-hop legend Phife Dawg (Malik Taylor), to be published by Haymarket Books in 2021; and We Are Not Wearing Helmets, political poems, to be published in 2021 by TriQuarterly Books/Northwestern University Press.

Boyce-Taylor holds a master’s degree in social work from Fordham University and an MFA in Creative Writing from Stonecoast: The University of Southern Maine. A Vona Fellow, she has facilitated workshops for Cave Canem, Urban Word NYC, Poets House, and Poets & Writers. Her poems have been published in Prairie Schooner, Adrienne, Poetry, Killens Review of Arts & Letters, The Mom Egg Review, and Black Lesbians—We Are the Revolution!

www.cherylboycetaylor.net; Photograph by Dominique Sindayiganza


Nicole Dennis-Benn is the author of the acclaimed novel Patsy, (Norton/Liveright, 2019), which Time Magazine called “stunning,” and the debut novel, Here Comes the Sun (Norton/Liveright, 2016), which received numerous accolades. She is a Lambda Literary Award winner and a recipient of the New York Foundation for the Arts Artist Grant. Time Out Magazine has described Dennis-Benn as an immigrant putting her stamp on New York City and Vice named her among immigrant authors “who are making American literature great again.”


Please note that all dates and instructors are subject to change.


Application Deadline for Winter 2021 Retreat: December 14, 2020

Fellows who are interested in participating in the upcoming retreat should download the application below.

Cost: Tuition is $500. Scholarships are available.

Please visit www.centerforblackliterature.org for application guidelines and more information about the Center for Black Literature.

Applicants’ submission materials must include:

  • A cover letter of introduction expressing reasons for wanting to participate.
  • Background information about you as a writer.
  • A brief descriptionof the project you are presently working on (if applicable).
  • A writing sample (up to five pages).
  • Two letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with your writing,
  • A nonrefundable application fee of $25 should accompany the application.

Applications and references should be emailed to writers@mec.cuny.edu. Please copy Clarence V. Reynolds at creynolds@mec.cuny.edu.

Wild Seeds Writers Retreat


You are accessing this information because you have read and understood the Wild Seeds Writers Retreat guidelines outlined on the Center for Black Literature website (updated September 2020). You are submitting this application for the following category (please check only one):

◻ Fiction
◻ Poetry

Wild Seeds Writers Retreat

February 18 – 21, 2021 | Medgar Evers College, CUNY

Brooklyn, NY 11225

Please Submit Online by the Deadline: December 14, 2020













Applicants’ submission packet must include the following materials:

  1. A cover letter of introduction and a short essay that includes:
  • The reason you want to participate in this Retreat.
  • How you would benefit from this experience.
  • Background information about you as a writer.
  • Brief description of the project you are presently working on (if applicable).
  • A writing sample (up to five pages).
  • Two letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with your writing
  1. The names and emails of two individuals who will submit references on your behalf.


Reference #1:


Reference #2:

  1. Nonrefundable Application Fee ($25).

My application fee will be:

☐ Submitted online via this link: RFCUNY APPLY

☐ Mailed and included with this application

Please Note:

  1. The Center for Black Literature is working remotely. Online applications and fee preferred.
  2. RFCUNY is the nonprofit arm of the City University of New York and is registered as a charitable organization and is a 501(c)(3) organization.
  3. If sending via postal mail: Send a certified check or money order payable to Medgar Evers College Educational Foundation. In the memo, write “Center for Black LiteratureWild Seeds Writers Retreat Winter 2021”

Mail to:
Center for Black Literature
Medgar Evers College, CUNY
1650 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11225
ATTN: Wild Seeds Writers Retreat Winter 2021


 I understand the information and guidelines outlined in this application.