Mayborn Fellowship in Biography

Stay tuned for details about our 2018 contests

The Mayborn Fellowship in Biography offers a two- to three-week creative residency in a casita in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains above Santa Fe, New Mexico. Providing a concentrated period of uninterrupted time, as well as mentoring by distinguished biographer James McGrath Morris, the fellowship is intended to provide an emerging biographer with solitude and inspiration.

The committee selecting a recipient of this fellowship will evaluate applicants based on three criteria:

  • A viable biographical project clearly described (see below for guidelines)
  • Proof that sufficient research has been, or will be completed, before the residency so as to be able to use the time for writing
  • Evidence that the residency could play an important role in the development of the project

Eric Nishimoto
“The privilege and import of being a Mayborn Fellow in Biography is not lost on this fledgling author. To learn the craft and develop my book under the ‘biographers’ biographer’ is the opportunity of a lifetime for which the Mayborn, in so many diverse ways, has prepared me. Santa Fe to write and be mentored by Jamie Morris – wow.” Read Eric’s bio here.

This fellowship includes the following:

  • Free registration to the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference 
  • Free registration to the Biographers International Conference May 19-21, 2017
  • Two to three weeks creative residency in Santa Fe with mentoring from James McGrath Morris
  • A reading at the end of your stay
  • $500 to help defray costs

Deadline to apply has been EXTENDED to May 12, 2017. Notification of award will be made within that week. The winner will schedule a residency with James McGrath Morris of Biographers International Organization.

To apply for this scholarship:

  • Download application here.
  • Fill in all text boxes electronically
  • Save the document with the title “Mayborn Fellowship in Biography Application – Your Last Name”
  • Email the completed form and your biography sample in Word Document format to with the subject “Mayborn Fellowship in Biography – Your Last Name.” 

The biography sample needs to include three sample chapters with a chapter-by-chapter synopsis for each chapter in the proposed book. Chapter synopses need to be from three to five pages each. The entire biography sample needs to be double-spaced. 

The application deadline has been EXTENDED to May 12, 2017.

For more information, please call Jo Ann Livingston at 214-403-5853.

Previous Mayborn Fellowship in Biography Winners:

Judith Bula Wise
Brian O’Leary 
Eric Nishimoto
Diana Parsell
Sarah Perry