Fordham University, Rose Hill
New York City
June 20 – 24, 2018

Application Period: December 1st – January 15th
This project is made possible by lead funding from Fordham University, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, The New York State Council on the Arts, and The National Endowment for the Arts.

Li-Young Lee at the Kundiman Retreat


In order to help mentor the next generation of Asian American writers, Kundiman sponsors an annual Retreat in partnership with Fordham University. During the Retreat, nationally renowned Asian American poets and writers conduct Master Classes and manuscript consultations with fellows. Readings, writing circles and informal social gatherings are also scheduled. Through this Retreat, Kundiman hopes to provide a safe and instructive environment that identifies and addresses the unique challenges faced by emerging Asian American writers. This five-day Retreat takes place from Wednesday to Sunday. Workshops will not exceed six students.



A nationally renowned Asian American writer facilitates each Master Class workshop. Fellows are assigned a home group for the duration of the retreat and the faculty rotates in the workshopping of each home group. The Kundiman Retreat is generative in nature and so Master Classes are focused on new work that is written at the Retreat. Master Classes include a craft talk, readings and prompts / exercises to generate this new work. Poetry fellows will receive a manuscript consultation on a 10 page manuscript. Fiction fellows will receive a manuscript consultation on a 30 page manuscript. Our hope is that fellows are able to forge a deeper relationship to their artistic process and are able to encounter their work with renewed focus and energy.  



The Kundiman Retreat is held at Fordham University's beautiful Rose Hill Campus located in the Bronx, NYC.



The Retreat is open to anyone who self-identifies as Asian American. 



The non-refundable tuition fee is $375. Room and board provided free to accepted fellows.
The application fee is $25.



To learn about Retreat logistics, please visit:



Between December 1st and January 15th, apply to the Kundiman Retreat by clicking on one of the below buttons. Submit a cover letter and brief writing sample 5–7 pages of poetry or 5 pages of prose (1250 words max)]. Notification on application status will be given by February 20th.  


Frequently Asked questions

Q: Can I apply in both genres?
A: Yes, you may apply in both poetry and fiction, but should submit a separate application for each genre.

Q: I am a current Kundiman fellow/alum. Can I return to Kundiman, but study under a different genre than the one I was accepted into?
A: In order to study in a different genre, returning fellows will need to submit an application in that genre.

Q: I'm a creative nonfiction writer. Can I apply to the retreat?
A: Unfortunately, at the moment, Kundiman only has the capacity to offer spaces at the retreat for those writing poetry and fiction. 

Q: Can I receive feedback on my application?
A: Unfortunately, because Kundiman is a small nonprofit with limited staff, we are unable to provide feedback on individual applications.

Q. Can I submit an excerpt of a longer piece of writing?
A. Absolutely!  You can include a cover page that notes that your submission is an excerpt.

Q. Can I apply if I live outside of the U.S.?
A. We welcome everyone who self-identifies as Asian to apply.  

Other questions? E-mail:

2018 Poetry Faculty

sun yung shin photo by uche iroegbu.jpg

신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin was born in Seoul, Korea, during 박 정 희 Park Chung-hee's military dictatorship, and grew up in the Chicago area. She is the editor of A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota, author of poetry collections Unbearable Splendor (winner of a Minnesota Book Award); Rough, and Savage; and Skirt Full of Black (winner of an Asian American Literary Award), co-editor of Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption, and author of bilingual illustrated book for children Cooper’s Lesson. She lives in Minneapolis.

John Yau Photo credit Eve Aschheim.jpeg

John Yau is a poet, fiction writer, critic, editor, curator, and publisher of Black Square Editions, a small independent press that has published books and broadsides of poetry, fiction, criticism, and translation, as well as prints. He has contributed essays to many catalogues and museum publications, as well as written for Art in America, Artforum, Art News, New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Art Press. In 2012, he helped start the online journal, Hyperallergic Weekend, where he frequently posts his reviews His work is included in many anthologies of poetry, fiction, and criticism, and has been translated into French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Chinese.

C Dale Young.jpg

C. Dale Young practices medicine full-time and teaches in the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers. He is the author of four collections of poetry, the most recent being The Halo and Torn (Four Way Books 2016, 2011), and a novel in stories The Affliction (Four Way Books 2018). A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation, he is the 2017 recipient of the Hanes Award given by the Fellowship of Southern Writers. His poetry has appeared in many literary magazines and journals and has been included in several editions of The Best American Poetry. He lives in San Francisco.

2018 Fiction Faculty

Karen Tei Yamashita photo credit Tosh Tanaka.jpg

Karen Tei Yamashita is the author of Through the Arc of the Rain Forest, Brazil-Maru, Tropic of Orange, Circle K Cycles, I Hotel, Anime Wong:  Fictions of Performance, and forthcoming, Letters to Memory, all published by Coffee House Press.  I Hotel was selected as a finalist for the National Book Award and awarded the California Book Award, theAmerican Book Award, the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association Award, and the Association for Asian American Studies Book Award.  She received a US Artists Ford Foundation Fellowship and is Professor of Literature and Creative Writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz.