Cleveland State University Poetry Center

Anisfield-Wolf Fellowship in Writing and Publishing

The Cleveland State University Poetry Center is accepting applications for the Anisfield-Wolf Fellowship in Writing & Publishing, a two-year postgraduate fellowship that offers an emerging writer time to work toward a first or second book and an opportunity to gain experience in editing, publishing, literary programming, and outreach in collaboration with the staff of the CSU Poetry Center. 

The CSU Poetry Center is a 58-year-old independent nonprofit press that publishes 3–5 books of contemporary poetry, prose, and translation each year. The Poetry Center also hosts the Lighthouse Reading Series and the NEOMFA Writers at Work Colloquium and serves as a teaching lab for students at Cleveland State University and within the Northeast Ohio MFA program. The Fellow will be a two-year employee of the CSU English department. The salary is $40,000 per year with health insurance and benefits. 

The fellowship will encompass two academic-year (9-month) residencies of 30 hours per week, divided between writing, work at the CSU Poetry Center, and community outreach work designed in collaboration with the Poetry Center. Poetry Center work will include reviewing submissions, attending editorial meetings, and assisting with publicity and marketing efforts. Outreach work will include: giving public readings and/or talks in the greater Cleveland area; helping launch a CSU Poetry Center podcast on literary editing and publishing; contributing to local literary events and programming, such as the Cleveland Drafts Festival and events hosted by other partner programs; teaching community workshops, such as at a local high school, library, or prison; and an additional endeavor of the fellow’s own design. 

This fellowship is named for and supported by the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards (, which honor literature that promotes equity and social justice and are administered through the Cleveland Foundation. Through the creation of this fellowship, Anisfield-Wolf and the CSU Poetry Center hope to support writers from backgrounds and with perspectives historically underrepresented in publishing and creative writing programming. By providing editorial experience and professional development opportunities at a literary press, the fellowship also aims to help address the longstanding lack of diversity in the U.S. publishing workforce. 

Minimum Qualifications:

  1. MFA in creative writing
  2. Evidence of significant creative publication
  3. Demonstrated progress toward a first or second book in any genre of creative writing
  4. Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  5. Potential to complete community outreach work
  6. Ability to contribute to the diversity, cultural sensitivity, and excellence of CSU and its surrounding community

Preferred Qualifications:

  1. Strong record of significant creative publication
  2. Experience in literary programming, publishing, and/or community outreach and education
  3. Experience in arts engagement/outreach projects with underserved communities 

Required Application Materials:

  1. Cover letter describing your qualifications for the fellowship, including a description of your commitment to a fellowship that supports increasing diversity in the publishing workforce.
  2. Statement on community outreach and literary publishing/programming: a 1–2 page statement outlining your interest and experience in community-oriented literary publishing or programming work. (Experience in teaching community workshops, producing podcasts, running a reading series, and/or any related programming would be relevant.)
  3. Writing Sample (15–20 pgs max.), any genre of creative writing
  4. CV
  5. Names and contact information for three references

Submit application to CSU’s online applicant portal by February 1, 2020. Link here:

Finalists will be interviewed by Skype in March 2020. 

For more information, see

Contact Information

Hilary Plum, Associate Director
CSU Poetry Center
2121 Euclid Ave
RT 1841
Contact Phone: 
(216) 687-3986
Contact e-mail: