The winter 2016 residency, which begins our spring semester, will take place from January 1–10, 2016.

The summer 2016 residency, which begins our fall semester, will take place from July 8–July 17, 2016.

Please see our deadlines page for information regarding when applications are due.

The Admissions Committee looks for the willingness to work hard and evolve as a writer; evidence that the applicant is not just a writer, but a reader; and creative work that (by way of command of language, freshness and originality of prose or verse, depth of understanding and clear explication of the subject(s), development of dramatic material, and demonstrated knowledge of the relationship between form and content) warrants admission to a graduate-level program.

How to apply:

Applicants must submit a writing sample, a personal essay, a completed application form, and the $50 application fee, in addition to transcripts and three letters of recommendation. Writing samples, essays, and application forms may be attached as PDF or Word documents through the online application portal. Please label all attachments this way: last name, genre to which you’re applying, and either “writing sample” or “essay.” For example, if your last name were Smith and you were attaching your poetry manuscript, you’d label the attachment “Smith, poetry, writing sample.”

For applications sent via regular mail, please ensure that ALL materials are clearly labeled Solstice MFA Office to ensure proper on-campus delivery.

The manuscript:

Your manuscript must represent work in the genre in which you plan to concentrate: no more than 10 pages of poems or 25 typed pages of fiction or creative nonfiction. Applicants for the writing for children & young adults concentration may submit a combination of these genres, totaling no more than 25 typed pages. Material in excess of the stated page limits will not be read.

Pages must be numbered, and your name should appear on each page.

Your manuscript must be typewritten in a 12-point font. Fiction and creative nonfiction must be double-spaced. Poems should be singled spaced, one poem per page. Longer poems are fine as long as the total page limit is adhered to.

The personal essay:

The personal essay should state: highlights of what you’ve been reading during the last two years, what you have learned from any literary influences (new or old), and how you have applied that knowledge to your own work; what you consider to be the strengths and weaknesses of your own work; experience with critical evaluation of your work; what you hope to gain from an MFA program; and possible obstacles to carrying a 25-hour-a-week workload. The essay should be formatted as per above, and must not run over the limit of five typed, double-spaced pages using a 12-point font.

Other requirements:

*Three letters of recommendation, sent directly (not enclosed with your application) to: Meg Kearney, Solstice MFA Director, Pine Manor College, 400 Heath Street, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467. (NOTE: Letters can be emailed, provided they include complete contact information and a digital signature, to *Letters of recommendation need not be from a published author and/or former professor. We are looking for letters that vouch for the applicant's seriousness and dedication to the art of writing, as well as his/her ability to get along well in a community of writers. Letters are confidential and cannot be shared with applicants.

Official college transcript(s) from any school(s) where you received a degree or transfer credits.

A completed application form, and the $50 application fee, payable by check or credit card.

GREs are not required.

If you are reapplying within 12 months from your last application, the MFA Office will still have your original file, including transcripts and letters of recommendation. In this case, you need send only a new or revised manuscript, a one-to-three page personal essay updating us on your life as a writer since you last applied, a new application form, and the $50 application fee. If you are hoping for a Need-Based Scholarship, you will need to begin this process again; see our Financial Aid page for details.

The MFA Office will confirm receipt of your application, letters of recommendation, and transcripts by email; our office cannot return applications or provide copies of applicants’ evaluations or letters of recommendation.

Applicants can expect a response within three weeks of receipt of their complete application by the Solstice MFA Office. If you have any questions, please contact the MFA in Creative Writing office at:

Solstice MFA Program of Pine Manor College
400 Heath Street
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467 (617) 731-7697 / 7684
Fax: (617) 731-7631