Special Note:

How Will AI Change Writing?—Join our FREE Writers' Stage event "Writing for Change: Exploring The Question of AI" next Wednesday 4/17.

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How to Apply

Submission Requirements

  • The complete draft of your novel. Though the draft need not be polished, applicants should keep in mind that it will be competing with other submissions to the program. In particular, readers are looking for a unique and nuanced writing style, a good story, and writing material that promises breadth and substance. We accept novel drafts up to 450 pages only (12-point font and 1-inch margins).
  • A synopsis of 350 words or less that reveals the full arc of the book.
  • A brief personal statement about what you hope to gain from this course of study and what your experience has been in previous workshops and/or consultations and writing groups. This personal statement should include your best estimate of how many hours you will be able to devote to class work each week, not including classroom time and your own writing.
  • Nomination by a GrubStreet instructor or equivalent workshop leader. No letter is necessary. There is a place on the application form to list your nominator and his/her contact info.
  • Experience in at least one workshop at GrubStreet or an equivalent writing center, MFA program or conference. There is a place on the application form to list the titles & dates of previous workshops.
  • There is a section at the end of the application where you will the option to apply for a GrubStreet Fellowship.
  • There is no application fee.

Applications for the 2024-2025 Novel Incubator are now closed. All applicants can expect to hear from us by mid-April, 2024.

Please note that the upcoming round of the Novel Incubator will take place in-person in Boston at GrubStreet's Center for Creative Writing in the Seaport. Occasionally, classes may be held on Zoom if it becomes unsafe to hold in-person meetings due to COVID-19. You can see GrubStreet's latest in-person meeting status here.


The entire cost of the program is $8,595. Tuition is payable in two installments.

Fellowships Learn More

Fellowships are available and based on a combination of merit and financial need. We strive to locate support for our students who need it, and may offer awardees anywhere from 25% to 75% support, depending on our funding year, and the number of successful applicants.