In a brilliant PR move, Amtrak is now offering 2-5 day Writer Residencies, transforming themselves into a MacDowell Colony on wheels.
Here’s the scoop from their press release:
Amtrak is excited to announce the official launch of the #AmtrakResidency program.
#AmtrakResidency was designed to allow creative professionals who are passionate about train travel and writing to work on their craft in an inspiring environment. Round-trip train travel will be provided on an Amtrak long-distance route. Each resident will be given a private sleeper car, equipped with a desk, a bed and a window to watch the American countryside roll by for inspiration. Routes will be determined based on availability.
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and reviewed by a panel. Up to 24 writers will be selected for the program starting March 17, 2014 through March 31, 2015. A passion for writing and an aspiration to travel with Amtrak for inspiration are the sole criteria for selection. Both emerging and established writers will be considered.
Residencies will be anywhere from 2-5 days, with exceptions for special projects.
Of course, I applied. Locking myself in a train car with no place to escape but the bathroom is the ideal no-excuses setting to write that comic book I’ve been “planning” for years.