The Eccles British Library Writer in Residence Award

Applications are invited for the Eccles British Library Writer in Residence Award.

The award of £20,000, sponsored by the David and Mary Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library, is open to writers resident in the United Kingdom. Writers should be working on a non-fiction or fiction full-length book, written in the English language, the research for which requires that they make substantial use of the British Library’s collections relating to North America (the USA and/or Canada).

The award holder will be the Eccles British Library Writer in Residence for a period of one year from 1st January 2012. The award will help the Writer in Residence to spend part of that time on site at the British Library, making direct use of the collections relating to North America (the USA and/or Canada).

The Eccles British Library Writer in Residence will work with the Director of the Eccles Centre for American Studies to develop and participate in seminars, workshops and other activities and events related to the project. Necessary expenses such travel and subsistence to undertake these activities will be supplementary to the award – to be agreed in advance with the Centre Director.

The Writer in Residence will enhance the Eccles Centre’s web presence on the British Library website (www.bl.uk/eccles) in the form of a blog or similar contribution, and will also provide occasional short articles for inclusion in American Studies in Britain and similar publications. The Eccles Centre and British Library’s support of this award will be acknowledged in the book when published, and in any other publications, web articles or media features resulting from the award.

The British Library website, including public access to the catalogues, can be found at http://www.bl.uk. The Eccles Centre does not house a collection separate to that of the British Library, and the bibliographies on the Eccles Centre web pages give only a snapshot of some of the items in the British Library collection.

For details of Eccles Centre activities see http://www.bl.uk/eccles. Enquiries regarding the British Library’s holdings relating to the USA and Canada can be directed in the first instance to Dr Matthew Shaw (Matthew.Shaw@bl.uk) (US curator) Dr Philip Hatfield (Philip.Hatfield@bl.uk) (Canadian curator) or to the Eccles Centre (eccles-centre@bl.uk).

The award will be made in four quarterly payments of £5,000. No extra funding will be available with the exception of expenses reimbursed for activities and events as outlined above. The Writer in Residence will have privileged access to the curatorial expertise of the British Library, will be able to use the Writers and Scholars’ Room and will be entitled to use some BL staff facilities. On publication of the book every effort will be made by the Eccles Centre to host a launch event at the British Library.

Applications (no more than 5 pages) should:

  • Include a resumé of the book being written;
  • Include a brief CV;
  • Explain the nature and extent of the anticipated use of the British Library’s collections relating to North America (the USA and/or Canada);
  • Propose ways that the project will promote awareness and use of the British Library’s collections relating to North America (the USA and/or Canada);
  • Include evidence of a publisher’s intention to publish the finished book – this should include a hardcopy publication by an established publisher;
  • Be submitted before 5 p.m. on Wednesday 31st August 2011.

Notes to Editors:

Applications should be submitted by email attachment to: eccles-centre@bl.uk

The judges reserve the right to request further information, including full book proposals, at a later stage of the application process.

Eccles Centre for American Studies

The British Library

96 Euston Road

London NW1 2DB

T +44 (0)20 7412 7551/7757



For more information contact:

  • Miki Lentin
  • The British Library
  • t:+44 (0) 20 7412 7112
  • m:+44 (0) 7976 793 666
  • f:+44 (0) 20 7412 7168
  • e: miki.lentin@bl.uk


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