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1. What Are the Great Children’s Literature Writing Retreats?

This one’s for the writers, but could be of just as much use to those folks who want to be published authors and just haven’t gotten there yet.  In my time as a roving children’s librarian I’ve spoken at two different but enchanting writing retreats.  I should probably define my terms, though, so when I say “writing retreats” I mean places where authors, incipient and otherwise, pay a fixed amount to be inspired, edited, or taught by a knowledgeable staff.  Bonus points if there’s pretty scenery. Extra added bonus points if you get good food.

Recently I was speaking at one such retreat (to be named below) and it got me to thinking.  If you wanted to make a compiled list of all the children’s literary retreats in the States, where would you go?  Well, you’d go here since I’m going to start trying to compile such a list right now.

If you can think of any that should be added (and specifically target writing for kids and/or teens) mention them in the comments and I’ll include them.

Literary Retreats for Folks Who Write for Kids and Teens

Better Books Marin

Name: Better Books Marin
Location: Marin County, California? The website is a bit spotty on that point.
Who’s It For? The motto is, “A Craft-Based Workshop for Middle-Grade & YA Writers”.
What’s it like? This is a retreat for folks who want a good hands on learning and critique experience.  As you can see from this schedule, the days are rigorously planned out.  This is the kind of retreat where you get bang for the proverbial buck.

 

SCBWI Falling Leaves / Spring Leaves

Name: SCBWI Falling Leaves / Spring Leaves Retreat
Location: Silver Bay, NY
Who’s It For? The two retreats (Spring Leaves for the spring and Falling Leaves for . . . well, you get it) rotate genres.  So there’s a little something for everyone.
What’s It Like? Both SCBWI members and non-members are able to apply for this retreat.  Compared to some other retreats this is an affordable option.  Registration does not appear to be currently open for the next fall conference, but one suspects it’s just a matter of time before it opens up.

The Highlights Foundation

Name: The Highlights Foundation
Location: Honesdale, PA
Who’s It For? Boy howdy, you name it! Of all the workshops listed here, the Highlights Foundation’s is the one with the most workshops per year.  Everything from science writing and nonfiction picture books to early readers and first chapter books are covered.
What’s It Like? I’ve spoken twice at Highlights with a third engagement is coming up in two months. Basically it’s just lovely. Adorable tiny cabins. Amazing food. Great speakers. It feels more low-key than some of the other retreats, but honestly you can find the workshop that fits your style.

Oregon Coast Children’s Book Writers Workshop (OCCBWW)

Name: Oregon Coast Children’s Book Writers Workshop (OCCBWW)
Location: Oceanside, Oregon
Who’s It For? Everyone, insofar as I can tell. Anyone writing children’s books, anyway.
What’s It Like? This is the rare retreat where you can get actual graduate level course credits for taking the workshops and intensives on offer. Unlike other retreats this one makes no bones about what they hope to accomplish: “Getting attendees published is the end goal.” They do a lot of one-on-one coaching as well.

Picture Book Boot Camp

Name: Picture Book Boot Camp
Location: Phoenix Farm, Western Massachusetts (in the Northampton area, I believe)
Who’s It For? It’s described as a Master Class for working picture book authors.
What’s It Like? Well, this one’s much smaller and more personal than a lot of the other retreats mentioned here.  Authors Jane Yolen and Heidi Stemple started a boot camp at Jane’s 1896 Victorian farmhouse home in Massachusetts.  There appears to be a lot of close attention paid to the attendees (which cap off at 12).

The Speakeasy Literary Retreat

Name: The Speakeasy Literary Retreat
Location: Various. It moves around. Past retreats have been in San Francisco (2012), Fallen Leaf Lake (2013), and Portland (2014). The next one is slated for the Rivendell Writer’s Colony in Sewanee, TN
Who’s It For? That’s a bit unclear. To be a member of the Speakeasy Literary Society you must submit your application and be accepted. One assumes that folks who attend the retreats are also members.
What’s It Like? Informal and without an official schedule. As they (the Speakeasy Literary Society) say, “We have one mission: to encourage children’s publishing professionals to relax and commune in a variety of inspirational settings. Preferably with drinks.” Of the retreats listed in this post, this one’s probably the most laid back.

Whispering Pines

Name: Whispering Pines Writer’s Retreat
Location: West Greenwich, RI
Who’s It For? Hard to say. This is the rare retreat without a website. At the same time, with its connection to NESCBWI, it’s one of the most successful.
What’s It Like? Now in its 20th year, co-directors Lynda Mullaly Hunt and Mary Pierce are stepping down this year and will be replaced with Julie Kingsley and Cameron Kelly Rosenblum. Described as the kind of place where you “design your own retreat” but with plenty of speakers, games, and fun.  Liz Goulet Dubois has recapped several years’ worth of retreats, so you should be able to glean how they go.

Name: The Writing Barn
Location: Austin, TX
Who’s It For? Everyone. Juv and YA alike.  Picture books, novels, chapter books, you name it.
What’s It Like?  The brainchild of author Bethany Hegedus, it’s just the loveliest space.  Wild deer and foxes frolic about the cactus plants while inside the barn you’ve amazing and brainy folks talking about books left and right.  I’ve only spoken there once, but it was just the nicest time.  Busy?  Heck, yeah!  And fun.

I’ve heard a rumor that the Spruceton Inn, a bed and bar in the Catskills (run by Jon Scieszka’s daughter, the writer Casey Scieszka, and her author/illustrator husband Steven Weinberg) has the occasional writing and/or illustration retreat.  So far there’s nothing to confirm this online, but I know they’re game so if you writerly types want to do an official retreat, think about contacting them.

Sidenote: Laurel Snyder mentioned that, “The Hambidge Center for Creative Arts & Sciences isn’t just for kidlit enthusiasts but they WILL fund YA and kidlit projects, which not everyone does.”

Actually, author Laurel Snyder also pointed out to me that most retreats are of an unofficial nature.  As she put it, “I’m doing my third retreat this year, and all three have been DIY– a group of writers getting together in a house in the woods, just because they can!”  So in lieu of going to any of these magnificent places, consider renting a cottage for a week and inviting some pals!

 

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2. Fusenews: Gravel in the bed

“If kids like a picture book, they’re going to read it at least 50 times, and their parents are going to have to read it with them. Read anything that often, and even minor imperfections start to feel like gravel in the bed.” – Mark Haddon

I’ve just returned from speaking at a magnificent writing retreat weekend at Bethany Hegedus’s Writing Barn in Austin, Texas.  That quote was one that Bethany read before Alexandra Penfold’s presentation and I like it quite a lot.  Someone should start a picture book blog called “Gravel In the Bed”.  If you need a good treat, I do recommend The Writing Barn wholeheartedly.  The deer alone are worth the price of admission.  And if you’ve other children’s book writing retreats you like, let me know what they are.  I’m trying to pull together a list.

  • I just want to give a shout out to my girl Kate Milford. I don’t always agree with the ultimate winners of The Edgar Award (given for the best mysteries) in the young person’s category but this year they knocked it out of the park. Greenglass House for the win!
  • As you know, I’m working on the funny girl anthology FUNNY GIRL and one of my contributors is the illustrious Shannon Hale.  She’s my personal hero most of the time and the recent post Boos for girls just nails down why that is.  Thanks to bookshelves of doom for the link.

Not too long ago I was part of a rather large gathering based on one of my blog posts.  The artist Etienne Delessert saw a piece I’d written on international picture books and how they’re perceived here in the States.  So what did he do?  He grabbed local consulates, flew in scholars, invited friends (like David Macaulay) and created an amazing free day that was hugely edifying and wonderful.  You can read the SLJ report We need more international picture books, kid lit experts say or the PW piece Where the Wild Books Are: A Day of Celebrating Foreign Picture Books or the Monica Edinger recap International Children’s Books Considered.  Very interesting look at these three different perspectives.  And, naturally, I must thank Etienne for taking my little post so very far.  This is, in a very real way, every literary blogger’s dream come true.  Merci, Etienne!

  • There’s a lot of joy that can come when when a British expert discusses their nation’s “forgotten children’s classics“.  The delightful Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature is out and its editor Daniel Hahn has recapped the books that he feels don’t get sufficient attention in Britain.  Very funny to see one of our American classics on this list (I won’t ruin which one for you).
  • How do we instill a sense of empathy in our kids?  Have ‘em read Harry Potter.  Apparently there’s now research to back that statement up.  NPR has the story.
  • Ooo. Wish I lived in L.A. for this upcoming talk.  At UCLA there’s going to be a discussion of Oscar Wilde and the Culture of Childhood that looks at his fairytales.  It ain’t a lot of money.  See what they have to say.
  • Because of I have ample time on my hands (hee hee hee hee . . . whooo) I also wrote an article for Horn Book Magazine recently.  If you’ve ever wondered why we’re seeing so many refugees from the animation industry creating picture books, this may provide some of the answers.
  • Over at the blog Views From the Tesseract, Stephanie Whelan has located a picture book so magnificent that it should be reprinted now now now.  Imagine, if you will, a science fiction picture book starring an African-American girl . . . illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon.  Do you remember Blast Off?

Of course you don’t.  No one does.  Stephanie has the interiors on her site.  And since the number of books that show African-American girls as astronauts are . . . um . . . okay, I’ve never seen one.  Plus it’s gorgeous and fun.  REPRINT REPRINT REPRINT!

  • Speaking of girls in space, I’ve never so regretted that a section was cut from a classic book.  But this missing section from A Wrinkle in Time practically makes me weep for its lack.  I WISH it had been included.  It’s so very horribly horribly timely.
  • As you’ll recall, the new math award for children’s books was established.  So how do you submit your own?  Well, new submissions for 2015 (and looking back an additional five years) will begin to be received starting June 1st. So FYI, kiddos.
  • Daily Image:

Know a librarian getting married?  Or an editor?  Or an author?  Gently suggest to them these for their registry.


Thanks to Stephanie Whelan for the link.

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3. How Applying For Writing Grants (Even If You Don’t Get Them) Can Help You Be A Better Writer

winters_cristin_aptowicz-withskull_800BY CRISTIN O’KEEFE APTOWICZ

In the summer of 2010, I gave up what were the defining elements of my life for over a decade—my New York City apartment, my arts-related job in Soho and my role as host of a popular Lower East Side reading series—all to pursue my dream of writing the biography of 19th century collector of medical oddities.

More than a few people in my life thought I was crazy. Sometimes the person staring back at me from the mirror thought I was crazy too. But I knew that the idea couldn’t be completely insane because of one reason: I had earned a yearlong residency at an Ivy League university to do it.

To confirm, I was not the likeliest candidate to receive such a residency. I didn’t (and still don’t) have a MFA, nor did I study nonfiction writing as an undergrad. The vast majority of my arts career had been developed within the New York City poetry slam community, about as far from academia as you can get. My earliest poetry collections were self-published, and had titles like Dear Future Boyfriend: This is What I Sound Like and Hot Teen Slut, a “memoir-in-verse” about the year I spent writing and editing erotica.

But even from the earliest parts of my career, I understand that the biggest obstacle between me and the writing grants, fellowships or residencies I coveted was myself. After all, the only true way to guarantee you won’t get a grant is by not applying for it.

And so, it is in that spirit that I present to you a brief guide to submitting for grants (which typically provide writers with financial support), residencies (which offer writers a work and/or living space to create for little or no cost) or fellowship (often times a hybrid of grant and residency, where a writer receives ongoing support in someway) with the hope that it will inspire you to put yourself out – no matter how new or established you are – and challenge yourself and your art for the better.

1. Believe in yourself. That might sound silly to state, but it’s important. You need to realize that you are talent worth rewarding, and that your ideas deserve attention and support. Believe in yourself, and go to Step Two.

2. Evaluate Yourself. Note I did not say “Cast Judgment on Yourself.” No, evaluate yourself means looking at everything you bring to your art. Be specific and catalogue it all. Please know that every perceived minus you feel you have, can be a plus. There are just as many grants and fellowships for new/emerging artists (for which artists already knee-deep in their career cannot apply) as there are for more established artists. Where ever you are in your career, there are grants and funding opportunities for you!

3. Figure Out What You Want To Do. What do you need to help you take your art to the next level? Would it be funding, to help buy supplies? If so, how much (or really, how little) money would it take to make a real difference? Would you prefer a residency, to give you time and focus? If so, how long could you leave your life to participate in a residency: two weeks? two months? a year? Be honest and specific, but don’t be afraid to be ambitious too!

4. Research Opportunities. Too often, artists will get overwhelmed at this stage, but that’s because they put too much pressure on themselves to get started on grants immediately. Instead, I would suggest making it a two week long game for yourself, where you collect as much information on grants, residencies and fellowships as you can which fit you and your vision of where you can go with your art (now, or in the future). It’s as easy as creating a Word doc, and copy & pasting information. The name of the grant or fellowship, a sentence-long descriptor, a URL and the deadline date is really all you need. Put the information in chronological order, closest deadline date to farthest, and pretty soon you’ve created a pretty spectacular to-do list.

“But how do we find about grants, residencies and fellowships?” you are probably asking.

The easiest answer is the most obvious one: search. Just plug in your chosen art form (“writing,” “fiction,” “playwriting,” etc…) and the word “grants” (or “residencies” or “fellowships”) and see what comes up. However, please take into consideration that the smaller the pool of applicants, the greater your chance at a success. So instead of just searching “writing grants,” try searching “poetry grants.” Another tip: searching grants that are just within your state or your city (the name of your city or state with the phrase “arts council” can yield great results).

Another way to discover grants, fellowships and residencies is to look up the bios of writers you admire to see what funding they’ve received when they were at your stage in their career.

And lastly, another incredible resource is NYFA National Artists Grants. It’s the largest of its kind in the county, and it’s absolutely free to use:

And now the big one, Step 5.

5. Just Do It. Don’t overthink the applications. As long as you qualify at the basest level, submit. The first application you do will be the hardest, as you will likely creating everything you need from scratch: bios, artistic resumes, samples, project summaries, etc. But once these have been created once, you’ll be able to repurpose them for every future application. So don’t let the first one scare you.

And if you freeze up in the middle of your application, try thinking about what the granting organization NEEDS to hear from you, instead of what you WANT to say. It’s basic enough advice, but you’ll be surprised how often artists get caught up polishing the bells & whistles of their application, and ignore its heart: who are you, and how will awarding you this opportunity ultimately benefit you (the artist) and the organization (whose mission is to help artists just like you).

6. Be Proud of Yourself. The moment you submit an application, you’ll immediately be obsessed with knowing if you’ve won or not. That’s natural, so be forgiving. But also be proud. The moment you submit your application is the moment that you prove to yourself that your work is worthy and deserving. Regardless if you win or if you lose, that new sense of self is something you should honor and celebrate.

7. Spread the Word. This is the final step, but in many ways, it’s one of the most important. As writers, we need to empower each other to take these steps forward, and the best way I’ve found is to match artist friends we believe in with grants that would make good fits for them. It’s natural to feel territorial about grants you yourself are applying to, but if you stumble across a good grant that you can’t (or aren’t) applying for, try to find to match it with another writer you know. Even artists who seem more established and in the know may be extremely grateful at your thoughtfulness, and poets who are peers (or are even less established than you) will surely be heartened and inspired by your attention.

And that’s it. The first few times you submit can be rocky, but as you get more comfortable with the process, you might even find yourself looking forward to it. Grant applications can be interesting new ways for you to examine your art and your process. They can ask you questions about your projects that you’ve never thought of, and force you to create things (budgets, time lines, etc…) that will only help you and your project in the long run, regardless if you get the funding or not.

Before I wrap this up, I want to tell you two short personal stories about me and grants.

I was 23-years-old when I received my first book contract to write a history of the poetry slam movement. I immediately set about applying for funding to help me with what I knew would be the enormous costs of tackling such a project. Over the course of three years, I applied for several dozen different funding opportunities. I got exactly zero of them.

However, I can also say—with absolute honesty—that I would never have finished the book without that relentless parade of (unsuccessful) applications. Each one helped me better understand my project, and the steps that it would take to cross the finish line with it. The applications asked me questions about timelines, budgets, whom I imagined the audience would be. It asked me if it could be taught in the classroom, if it would appeal to people outside of my community, if it helped shine a positive spotlight on any under-represented communities. It asked me about me: where I had as a writer to actually finish the project I was pitching.

With each application, I grew a deeper understanding of the book I was writing, and grew more and more determined to do it regardless if I received the funding I once thought was so necessary. And soon—with zero funding and a lot of hard work—my book, Words In Your Face: A Guided Tour Through Twenty Years of the New York City Poetry Slam, came out in the Fall of 2007.

When it was time to write my second nonfiction book, I knew exactly what to do. I searched for appropriate grants, residencies and fellowships, lined-up my recommendation writers, and prepared my CV, artist statements and summaries of the project. And then I began applying. I applied to everything I could, and shortly after submitting my first batch of applications, I received my first rejection. And then another. And then another. Soon I had wracked up an entire year’s worth of rejection. I had reached the point where the very next application I was slated to start was the very first one I applied for the previous year.

But then I opened my email’s spam folder and found an email from the University of Pennsylvania. Certain that it was rejection, I opened it up to read without even removing from the spam folder. You can imagine my surprise when the first sentence congratulated me for being named the 2010-2011 ArtEdge Writer-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania, and I knew in an instant that leaving my comfortable life in New York City was the choice I had to make. A year’s worth of applications had forged in me a deep need to write this book, and the greenlight that UPenn had given me was the last piece of the puzzle. I knew I could do it, and know—with UPenn’s residency—I knew how I would do it as well.The UPenn residency turned out to be the first of several fellowships and residencies I would receive, each one absolutely instrumental to the creation of my resulting book, Dr Mütter’s Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine, which was published in Fall 2014 by Gotham Books / Penguin.

When young writers ask me for my advice about how they can secure funding for their own projects, I tell them the stories of both my books. Because to me the value of these applications isn’t just the financial support they can provide if you win one. No, there is a lot to be gleaned from those first steps too: to find yourself and your project worthy enough to put in an application. That, my friends, can be the real game-changer.


9780698162105_p0_v1_s260x420Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz (@coaptowicz) is the author of six books of poetry (including Dear Future BoyfriendHot Teen Slut,Working Class RepresentOh, Terrible Youth and Everything is Everything) as well as the nonfiction book, Words In Your Face: A Guided Tour Through Twenty Years of the New York City Poetry Slam.

Cristin’s most recent awards include the ArtsEdge Writer-In-Residency at the University of Pennsylvania (2010-2011), a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry (2011) and the Amy Clampitt Residency (2013). Her sixth book of poetry, The Year of No Mistakes, will be released by Write Bloody Publishing in Fall 2013 and her second nonfiction book, Dr. Mütter’s Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine, was released by Gotham Books (Penguin) in September 4, 2014

 

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4. My Writing Tribe

Last week I spent a long weekend at a lake house in rural Illinois with ten of the closest friends I’ll ever have. They’re the Dystropians, fellow classmates and writers who graduated from VCFA with me. We live on all sides of the country, from California to New York to Florida, and once a year we get together to talk craft, laugh, and write.

Many of us don’t have writing communities back home, and this weekend is one of the few times we get to geek out, be ourselves, and embrace all things writing. This is my writing tribe. I can’t describe how important it is to have a writing tribe. It’s the one group of people who are going through the same highs and lows with me and understand what it is to sacrifice to write, and to love it with your whole heart.

This year I brought my camera, and I put together the following photo essay of our weekend. Enjoy!

Note: Scroll over the images with your mouse and you will see the full color contrast versions of the images.

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House-and-Tree

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Jessica-Walking

Mary-and-Acorns

Owls

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Writing-on-the-porch

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Meg-and-Tristan-writing

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Rachel-and-bird-house

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Mary-and-Jen-writing

IMG_9948

IMG_9681

Blowing-Bubbles

IMG_9657

IMG_9709

IMG_9712

IMG_9701

IMG_9999

Jess-and-books

Girls-laughing

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IMG_9526

Ingrid-and-Rachel

IMG_9539

IMG_9544

IMG_9871

Set-of-six-selfies

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It was a magical weekend!

Learn all about writing from this brilliant group of Dystropians. Check out these amazing blog posts they’ve shared:

Want to hear about last year’s lake house retreat?


4 Comments on My Writing Tribe, last added: 10/7/2014
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5. My Writing Tribe

Last week I spent a long weekend at a lake house in rural Illinois with ten of the closest friends I’ll ever have. They’re the Dystropians, fellow classmates and writers who graduated from VCFA with me. We live on all sides of the country, from California to New York to Florida, and once a year we get together to talk craft, laugh, and write.

Many of us don’t have writing communities back home, and this weekend is one of the few times we get to geek out, be ourselves, and embrace all things writing. This is my writing tribe. I can’t describe how important it is to have a writing tribe. It’s the one group of people who are going through the same highs and lows with me and understand what it is to sacrifice to write, and to love it with your whole heart.

This year I brought my camera, and I put together the following photo essay of our weekend. Enjoy!

Note: Scroll over the images with your mouse and you will see the full color contrast versions of the images.

IMG_9458

IMG_9762

House-and-Tree

IMG_9914

Jessica-Walking

Mary-and-Acorns

Owls

IMG_9827

Writing-on-the-porch

IMG_9838

Meg-and-Tristan-writing

IMG_9835

Rachel-and-bird-house

IMG_0083

Mary-and-Jen-writing

IMG_9948

IMG_9681

Blowing-Bubbles

IMG_9657

IMG_9709

IMG_9712

IMG_9701

IMG_9999

Jess-and-books

Girls-laughing

IMG_9527

IMG_9526

Ingrid-and-Rachel

IMG_9539

IMG_9544

IMG_9871

Set-of-six-selfies

IMG_0063

It was a magical weekend!

Learn all about writing from this brilliant group of Dystropians. Check out these amazing blog posts they’ve shared:

Want to hear about last year’s lake house retreat?


0 Comments on My Writing Tribe as of 10/7/2014 11:11:00 PM
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6. Retreating to Write - Lucy Coats

Shh! I shouldn't be writing this on the Wednesday afternoon before it's due. I'm locked away in Devon, and I should be head down, working on my novel. But as usual, life got in the way, and I didn't manage to post something wise and insightful a week in advance.

The thing is, life has got in the way quite a lot lately. I won't go into details, but there it is. I'm behind where I should be, running to keep up and not miss deadlines and not disappoint people (including myself). I knew it was going to happen, and that's why, for Christmas (and birthday and probably next Christmas as well), I asked, for once, for something I really really wanted.

Time to write with no distractions.

It's a precious thing, is time, especially writing time. I can't actually remember when I had a stretch of it unbroken by that life-getting-in-the-way thing I mentioned earlier. But now I do, and I'm appreciating every moment of its extreme preciousness. So here I am, in the tiny village of Sheepwash in Devon, at the amazing Retreats for You, being cossetted (including nightly hot water bottles and glasses of wine brought to my room), cared for, fed delicious meals (which I'm not allowed to clear up after), and above all LEFT ALONE to do what I really want to. Write.

Yesterday I wrote over 3000 words. I haven't done that in a long time. Today I'm already up to 1500 (and that's not including this post). I'll be at 3000 again by the end of the day or bust, and I'm here for nine more whole days, leaving the family and dogs behind to take care of themselves.

I can't even begin to tell you how marvellous it is to say that. Sometimes, as writers, we just crave quiet and time and space to think, and it's not always easy to come by. As a mother and a carer and a person who wears far too many hats, I'm pretty hard on myself. Writing is supposed to be my full-time job - and yet, far too often, I find myself squeezing it in around everything else. The gift of what I really need - time to do the work I love - may not be everyone's idea of the perfect present, but it is mine, and I am grateful to my family for understanding that and for making it possible.

Long live Retreats for You (trust me, if you're a writer you NEED to come here!), and I know you'll forgive me if I get back to my novel now. I'll see you all again on the other side!

Out now from Piccadilly Press UK & Grosset and Dunlap USA: Beast Keeper and Hound of Hades (Beasts of Olympus)
"rippingly funny…offers food for thought on everything from absentee parenting to the mistreatment of animals (even immortal ones).
Publishers Weekly US starred review
Coming in May 2015 from Orchard, Cleo (UKYA historical fantasy about the teenage Cleopatra VII)
Follow Lucy on Twitter
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Lucy is represented by Sophie Hicks at The Sophie Hicks Agency

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7. Spot Open for October Breckenridge Writing Retreat

As many of you know, because I've been singing it from the rooftops (not really, but only because my singing would kill the birds nesting in our chimney), I'm going to a 5-day writing retreat this Oct. in Breckenridge. The mountains and trees that time of year are ah-mazing, and I can't believe the awesome people I'll get to meet up there. Anyway, I was chatting via email today with the lovely Cicily Janus, who besides being a published author of this book:





...and former intern to uber-agent, Scott Hoffman, is also the host of this fabulous writer-ly getaway. She told me that one of the writers backed out because they found out they are a finalist for a Fulbright (must be nice to have those kind of conflicts in your schedule), and will have to postpone their retreat until 2012.  That means there's a spot open for this year--and because I know that all our blog followers are super cool, and I really want someone super cool to spend the week with, I'll share the details one more time:

You can spend 5 heavenly days here:


 "Here" is Breckenridge, Colorado where you can write and talk shop with Cicily, 3 awesome editors, an amazing agent, an Edgar-nominated author, and 12 other fabulous writers. Attendees get critiques by all staff on the first 10,000 words of their ms, and have scheduled meetings with the staff during the week BONUS: Cicily is a gourmet cook (I'm listing sample menu items below), AND there's a hot tub.My awesome hubby, who may or may not be trying to redeem himself from his shocking betrayal (can you tell I'm still not over it?) encouraged me to go for it.

Important Info is below, but check out the Writing Retreats website for more info and how to contact Cicily.

DATES: Oct. 13-17, 2011 It's an easy trip for me since I live here, but Cicily has had attendees from all over the world, including Australia and England. You'll get to meet some interesting people...ya know, aside from me. :)

2011 Staff of Awesome:
Literary Agent: Scott Hoffman
A refugee from the world of politics, Scott Hoffman is one of the founding partners of Folio Literary Management, LLC. Prior to starting Folio, Scott was at PMA Literary & Film Management, Inc.
My current list is about half fiction and half nonfiction. My fiction is about half literary, and half commercial (chick lit? Sure - if it's smart and fresh, and has a strong voice.) Nonfiction is spread out among
serious journalistic or academic nonfiction, narrative nonfiction, and quirkier pop-culture books. If your project doesn't fit one of the "established" categories, I'm probably your guy - I love projects that
can't be easily classified.

Editor: Anica Rissi
Anica Mrose Rissi is the Executive Editor at Simon Pulse, a YA imprint of Simon & Schuster. She looks for edgy, voic

2 Comments on Spot Open for October Breckenridge Writing Retreat, last added: 6/22/2011
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8. How I Found the Wizard (Chautauqua: Day Three)

Though I am eager to start my third day in Chautauqua, I wonder how Monday can match Sunday’s experience. Not only is Send in the Clowns stuck in my head (and I can’t stop singing the song), for last night’s supper, we were treated to the best barbecued chicken I have ever eaten. And then, there were those chocolate frosted brownies next to an invisible sign with my name on it that said, “These special writer’s brownies are meant to be eaten in multiple portions. Do not eat just one!”  I think everyone had an invisible sign with his or her name, because I was not the only one going for seconds—and thirds, and then, halfway to the bus, I turned around, yelling to Nanci. “I can’t help it. Save me a seat. Do you want another brownie?”

Prior to being served dinner, we were encouraged to walk the lovely grounds at Westfield and to pick our own blueberries to eat—one of my favorite fruits. I was so smitten with photographing the blueberries that I realized–too late–that I had nothing to collect the blueberries in. I did the next best thing: I ate one after another, until a gentleman offered me his full cup of blueberries. (I savored them for days.) Thank you, kind sir!

My belly full of blueberries, I listened to the birds sing, studied insects on leaves, and then discovered The Land of Dinosaurs Versus Trucks, which is where I was when the call of “Chicken being served,” resounded through the fields.

 After everyone had eaten, we settled in our seats, where we quickly fell under Joy Cowley’s spell. If I had attended the Highlights Foundation Writers Workshop in 2010, I would have missed Joy. And I can’t imagine missing the opportunity to connect with her. Joy returned this year after a three-year absence, and she is an absolute joy!

Joy Cowley

Joy speaks from the heart and from years of experience, and with such love for others, you feel as if you are a child, alone in a room with her, listening to stories. I would have sat there all night if I could. She stresse

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9. What Would You Write?

In the past couple weeks I've been working on a submission for a writer's retreat. I was very excited about the prospect of the retreat but, admittedly, I think applications can be as daunting as, shall we say, root canals.

If you ran into me on the street, I might not have a clear idea (yet) about the direction of my proposal, but through multiple hand gestures and a back-and-forth conversation, I believe I could convince you that I am a writer worthy of being awarded the retreat. So, I find it a bit perplexing that, as a writer, I'm not exactly succinct in writing and defining my artist's statement, a requirement of the application.

And then I realized that was 99% of the reason that I needed to go on the retreat.

Our lives have gotten so over-scheduled and crazy that writing often falls among the cracks of all the other things that need to get done. Don't get me wrong, I'm one of those women who gets a lot done, regardless of how packed the calendar gets.

But to make progress on a nonfiction work I hope to tackle in 2011-12, I need some quiet time to figure out its tangled narrative web and conduct research without chaos breaking out. (Our dog now seems offended and whines when I am on the phone!)

One of the retreats to which I've applied is simple yet distant from home. (And one day, I would love to try a Tom Bird retreat, as Robyn did.)

But, for right now, I am more in need of space to think only about my writing (and me) than I am in need of someone guiding my process. I hope to meet others sharing in the passion for writing, as well as make progress on projects that need some tender loving care from me. It will help me tend to my garden of writing, instead of throwing fertilizer and water and hoping the sun will nourish it and help it grow.

Even if I am not awarded a place at one of the retreats I've applied for, there is a Plan B. I plan to create and nurture as many small, local retreats as I can in the next 365 days--it's just adding something to my calendar, isn't it? Although I've managed that way before, I'm determined to honor and focus on my new work and let some of the older projects languish in the desk drawer. (They are usually the ones I grab when I find I have a chunk of time to work on my own writing.)

If you were going on a retreat, what would be the project(s) you would focus on? Why? What would you hope to accomplish? ...And what is YOUR artist's statement?

Elizabeth King Humphrey is a writer and editor living in Wilmington, NC. Her piece "Running on Heart" is in the September 2011 issue of The Writer.

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10. Writing & Yoga Retreats: What are They? How do They Benefit Writers? GuestBy Stephanie Renée dos Santos

Ever imagined having the opportunity to dedicate a whole week to working exclusively on your writing, with daily guided yoga and writing exercises outside your door, to be amongst other writers, and writing teachers who support your effort? Writing & Yoga Retreats now span the globe in place like: Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, Ireland, England, and the United States.

What are some of the benefits from attending this type of writing retreat? These retreats aim to kindle your creative fire and liberate your authentic voice and deepest truths. Writers need dedicated time to connect with the Muse, or to bring concentrated effort to complete a project ̶ time that can be hard to come by in everyday life. Everyone’s standards are raised in a community of writers. And getting outside of one’s everyday writing atmosphere can trigger new perspectives and imagination. A writing retreat combined with yoga offers an ideal space in which to concentrate on writing without interruptions and to help you relax into your work.

Writers often suffer from physical pain in the shoulders, neck, head, lower back, hips and eyes. This stress in the body can inhibit or block creativity. A daily yoga practice helps reverse and relieve bodily tension; when the body is eased, so are the tensions of the mind.

Yoga Benefits to the Writer:

·Open your chest, bring your shoulders back, loosen up your neck, and increase circulation to your head. Improve your posture after long days at the computer and reading

·Stretch your body and awaken your mind

·Open your hips, where creativity, emotions and creative expression often get trapped

·Learn to create and access the state that creativity likes to manifest into: A state of empowerment, focus, grounding, intuition, strength, compassion, staying power

·Learn to set intentions/goals for your writing and visualize/meditate on them

·Create balance, which will increase your ability to focus clearly

·Experience community

·Release your mind and body and open the space for ideas to flow

Participating in a writing retreat is a public declaration of being a writer and demonstrates your courage and willingness to test your ideas ̶ honing, sharing, and readying them for the world. A daily yoga practice aides the writing endeavor.

Writing & Yoga

Writing and Yoga are soul mates. Yoga reveals insights; Writing is the recorder. Yoga balances the rhythms of breath; Writing surfs breath through oceans of language. Yoga taps the unconscious mind; Writing transcribes the wisdom of the unconscious. Writing requires work; Yoga is the assistant. Writing is an offering to the world; Yoga eases the offering’s sacrifice. Writing is a solo act; Yoga provides community.
 
* * *

Stephanie Renée dos Santosis a fiction and freelance writer and yoga instructor. She is currently working on a historical novel set in 18th century Portugal and colonial Brazil. Stephanie leads Writing & Yoga Retreats in Brazil and the United States. For more information please visit: www.stephaniereneedossantos.comor email [email protected].

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Would you like to participate in Friday "Speak Out!"? Email your short posts (under 500 words) about women and writing to: marcia[at]wow-womenonwriting[dot]com for consideration. We look forward to hearing from you!

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4 Comments on Writing & Yoga Retreats: What are They? How do They Benefit Writers? GuestBy Stephanie Renée dos Santos, last added: 12/13/2012
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11. The Writing Barn’s Magic

wpid-IMG_20130211_131304.jpgSONY DSCMore months than I would have hoped for have passed since my last blog post. It’s not as if I haven’t been writing. I have. For hours on end. At this time in my life, the work I do on my novels bears more importance because ultimately, I want to leave something behind on this earth. Something beautiful. Whether it be through published works, photographs, or inspiring the children I encounter on a daily basis, that is where my main focus remains. Still, I enjoy blogging, so I am jumping back in with hopes that I can resume a more regular routine. Thank you for bearing with me.

I recently returned from a three-day stay at The Writing Barn in Austin, Texas. This inspiring place of sanctity is run by author Bethany Hegedus, who couldn’t be more kind, welcoming, or talented. The Writing Barn is just as welcoming with its endless shelves of books, calming figurines, and the artwork of E. B. Lewis, all of which greets you when you walk through the front door. Before you even unpack your bags, you know you won’t want to leave. You want to breathe everything in, read the array of fabulous novels, books on writing, all there for visitors to enjoy. You want to sit outside and watch hawks soar above the grounds, traipse past cactus plants in search of a bunny you spot on the drive in. And the baby deer romping through the thicket, you want to enjoy their presence.

You unpack your bag and get to work, because that is why you are here. To learn. To grow. To absorb the energy that exists in this beautiful place. To look deep into your current WIP and be truthful about what needs to change. Because in order to grow, one must change, even in the way we approach our writing.

SONY DSCI was fortunate to have a dear writer friend with me. Both Nanci Turner Steveson and I had important revisions to tackle. We had read each other’s manuscripts. We took vows to be honest, painfully honest about what didn’t work, while emphasizing the qualities that stood out. While compliments are nice, I’d prefer to know where I’ve fallen short in my writing. I thrive on revision, really. It makes me feel alive, it brings out the best in me. I always tell my agent to hold nothing back in terms of questions or asking me to delve deeper. The more intense a revision, the happier I am. The most valuable critique groups, or critique partners, are those that aren’t afraid to be honest. How else do you get better?

SONY DSCMy stay at The Writing Barn did wonders for my soul. It could have been the colorful lanterns that swing in the trees, the sound of Nanci tapping on her laptop with her headphones on, or the moments of clarity that would happen after taking a photography break outside. There is a sense of peace here, and writing juju. While not quite tangible, you feel the wisdom left behind by previous writers, many of them published authors. In the porch beyond the kitchen, the wooden beams hold the signatures of published illustrators/writers. Every now and then I’d look above me, knowing that I, too, would sign a beam one day.

SONY DSCWe have to believe in our writing, even when we close ourselves around our work, protecting it. Do not be afraid to do this. Think of your work as precious, like a baby fawn not ready to be on its own. For the most part, all else is beyond your control. The only thing that matters is that you do the work. Day in and day out, to the best of my ability. My father always told me to protect the energy surrounding a story, to keep it safe, until it was strong enough to send out into the world.

So that’s what I’ve been doing since I returned from The Writing Barn. Revising, revising, revising. Writing, writing, writing. Aside from that, I am living life, always thankful for the people I hold closest to my heart, thankful for the wonderful books I read each night before falling asleep, and thankful that places like The Writing Barn exist.

My deepest gratitude to Bethany Hegedus, who believed in creating this barn of wonder and inspiration and much beauty. Thank you for sharing your joy of writing with others.

wpid-IMAG0169-1-1.jpgFor more on information on booking an individual writing retreat or attending one of their classes, go to: http://www.thewritingbarn.com.

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12. Friday Speak Out!: Retreats! What Are They Good For? (Absolutely Somethin'!)

by Sioux Roslawski

In March I'm going on a writing retreat. A self-made one. Two other writing friends and I are going to cram our laptops and our bodies into my car and head to Conception, Missouri. Specifically, to Conception Abbey...the place where monks create a blissful aura over all who stay there.

No teachers. No frills. No schedule. So if that's what it doesn't have, what does this writing retreat have?

Loads of uninterrupted writing time. A lack of distractions because I don't have to sweep or mop or do dishes. I don't have to cook. I don't have to run after my dog as he hunts for poopsicles to eat in the backyard. And no internet unless I go to the abbey's library (and their hours are limited).

This is what I need now. I'm in the finishing stages of my manuscript (first draft) and am hoping to have it finished by this retreat and get some feedback prior to going...so I can then slash and burn the unnecessary parts and build up what I need to bolster while I'm in Conception.

What I want from a retreat—at least this one—probably differs from what you would desire. However, I do think writers should dig deep to discover what they need from a retreat before signing up for one.

Can you create your own?
If your constructive writer friends can dole out great critique, perhaps you can plan a DIY retreat. Rent a cheap cabin. Beg one of the attendees to give up their basement for a night. Check out the retreat centers—they'll feed you and give you a bed, and the rest is up to the group.

Before packing your bags, agree to what is going to happen. Are there going to be scheduled critique sessions? Where is everybody—are some polishing while others need some inspiration to begin something new? And what distractions/nonwriting activities are going to happen—if any?

Big or Small?
You might benefit from a large regional or national retreat, where you'll be able to network with writers and make new connections. Or, you might be better off working with your writing guild/circle of friends and paying a locally-known writer to lead a small group. Survey what everyone is looking for and where they are. Is everyone working on memoirs and they need a gifted memoir writer to help them fine-tune their voice and create an unforgettable place? Or is everyone a novelist and they would each love to have a pitch-critique session with an editor/publisher?

Be Creative
If time and money are at a premium, think outside the box. Your local library might have a room that they'd let you use. Many art museums have education wings. You could reserve one, and when anyone needs a break from their writing, they could wander through the galleries for more inspiration.

So—don't retreat too deep into yourself and miss out on some productive experiences. Go on a retreat...and watch what happens.

* * *

Sioux Roslawski is a St. Louis third grade teacher and a freelance writer. She's been published in Sasee magazine, eight Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies, as well as several Not Your Mother's Book collections. In her spare time she's working on a novel and rescues dogs.
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Would you like to participate in Friday "Speak Out!"? Email your short posts (under 500 words) about women and writing to: marcia[at]wow-womenonwriting[dot]com for consideration. We look forward to hearing from you!

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13. Writer Path Retreat Photo Montage





Friday, May 30th, 2014,







Jordan Rosenfeld

and I meet up at Mt. Madonna

before the 18 intrepid writers who signed up for our weekend writers retreat. Our spacious cabin greets us. Anticipation envelopes us. The first writer arrives.

So begins the 1st even Writer Path Plot and Scene Retreat.
 









Sign-ups now available for next year's Writer Path Retreat May 1st - 3rd, 2015!

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14. RUNNING AWAY or THE CHARNEY MANOR RETREAT. By Penny Dolan.



Last week, I ran away, down south to Oxfordshire and a wonderful old Quaker house and garden called Charney Manor. I was going to the Scattered Authors Society annual July retreat. 
 
If that word makes you think about the sounds of silence, the scratching of pens and gloomy sighs over quietly tortured drafts, you’d be mistaken. 


“Charney”, as it is known,is definitely not silent. Charney is four often-noisy days, full of shared knowledge, skills and experiences, plus one or two grumbles and many reminders of the good things about being children’s and/or young people’s authors. 

The retreat is all about self-help, the essence behind the Scattered Authors Society network.

So what did we talk about, you might wonder, and what did we do?

We introduced our other lives and our interests, as well as our books. We indulged in “Library 101”, a mock panel-game, airing those aspects of the writing life people wished could be sent to that place of no return, and those that make us happy.

 
There were periods of being informed: one very interesting double session started with two editors talking about their own role within publishing houses, and concluded with two very well-established authors suggesting ways in which a writer can be their own best editor too.



Another double value session was on the process and reasons for self-publishing. This remarkable discussion moved from the importance of using self-publishing for established niche and/or “book-of-my-heart” material but it also developed into a view of self-publication being used not as “replacement”, but as a way of maintaining and managing a broad and fluid author platform in the modern market-place.

One morning offered some refreshing glimpses of school visit styles followed by other suggestions and much discussion. It was a welcome chance for the “lone” school visitors to see or hear about other approaches but everyone came away with the mantra: “And don’t forget to read from your book as well!”

Two afternoons were given over to workshops: a calming “torn collage” technique that helped people reflect on their own work or similar issues – a workshop that is an established Charney favourite - and then a new “seven word sentence “exercise, still based on picture images, designed to help authors focus on the quality of their writing, rather than quantity.

There was some worry over what seemed to be a dud session: Work-In-Progress. 


At first, when we met, nobody admitted wanting to come to what sounded like a down-beat session. However, when the moment came, several people arrived, with questions and/or readings, and the WIP session was so enthusiastically valued and lively that a second took place the next day! And in between a keen and generous photographer took author portraits during her free time, and another kindly made sure that all sessions started with five-minute readings.

Of course, some of the time was specifically social. Each evening, around six, everyone gathered on the lawn, sharing drinks, while swifts soared overhead through the summer air. One evening of lively comedy games grew into an informal song & music session, while the last evening brought the famous Charney Quiz, cunningly created so the most learned do not necessarily the most points.

The final day is always a little sad so as well as the start of plans for next year, two writers talked about their own use of writing retreats as a way of balancing the need to be in the world of story and the need for family and people. One chose solitary spaces, while the other preferred writing alongside other writers, and there was much wishful thinking and planning going on.

Charney was all of this, together with lots of time for questions, solitude for thinking and/or writing time for those who wanted to get work done, and the blessing of being easy “among our tribe”. Finally, after the last lunch, a small group remained, sitting in the sunshine and chatted about books they’d enjoyed. Others, like the swifts, were already off and away, travelling back to their homes and to real life, the pleasant days so soon over. Sigh!

I haven’t named anyone in this blogpost but you all know who you are, and thank you for making this year’s Charney such a very special time. 

One last thing. It is a mistake to call the week at Charney Manor a retreat. Mostly, it is just a truly and lovely TREAT.


Penny Dolan





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15. Writing retreats in Italy and Lithuania

Summer Literary Seminars is now accepting applications for their new programs in Italy (May 15-30, 2009) and Lithuania (July 20 - August 4, 2009). Academic credit is available through Concordia University. SLS produces a blended program of workshops, lectures and unique cultural experiences. Deadline: April 15, 2009. More details...

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16. Writing master class offered in Montreal

The Blue Metropolis Foundation is offering a master class for professional and emerging writers during the 11th annual Blue Metropolis Montreal International Literary Festival -- Fiction and Memoir: "Writing Ourselves" led by Donald Antrim. Application deadline: March 4, 2009. Dates: April 25-26. More details...

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17. Writing retreats in Italy and Lithuania

Summer Literary Seminars is now accepting applications for their new programs in Italy (May 15-30, 2009) and Lithuania (July 20 - August 4, 2009). Academic credit is available through Concordia University. SLS produces a blended program of workshops, lectures and unique cultural experiences. Deadline: April 15, 2009. More details...

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18. Saskatchewan retreat seeks summer writers

Sage Hill Writing Experience (SK) offers ten-day intensive summer programs for beginner, intermediate and advanced writers in writing for young adults, fiction, and poetry. Faculty includes: Arthur Slade, Daphne Marlatt, Karen Solie, Catherine Bush, Terry Jordan, John Lent, Susan Stenson, and special guest Richard Ford. Application deadline: May 8, 2009. Scholarships available. More details...

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19. Little house looking for writers

A quiet, cozy little cottage in Hunts Point, Nova Scotia is available for rent at reduced rates for writers. More details...

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20. Writer's weekend in Peterborough

Turning Leaves writer's retreat welcomes writers for an all-inclusive writer's weekend October 23-25 at Elmhirst's Resort, Peterborough, ON. Led by Ruth E. Walker and Gwynn Scheltema. Cost: $695 (includes 4 in-depth workshops, creativity sessions, private writing time, meals, private room.) More details...

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21. Wanna Get Away?

Yeah, me too. So I am. I've read about writing retreats ( my blog Sister, Valerie, is on one right now), but as my kids are young, I thought a retreat would be something I'd do "later." Once the kids were grown, once I had more time, less responsibility, etc. Yet, through a series of random events, I ended up on the phone with the lovely Cicily Janus, published author of The New Face of Jazz...




...and intern to uber-agent, Scott Hoffman. I'll share the details below, because there are still a few spots left, but the bottom line is:

I'm spending 5 heavenly days here:


 "Here" is Breckenridge, Colorado where I'll get to write and talk shop with Cicily, 3 awesome editors, an amazing agent, an Edgar-nominated author, and 12-13 other fabulous writers. Attendees get critiques by all staff on the first 10,000 words of their ms, and have scheduled meetings with the staff during the week BONUS: Cicily is a gourmet cook (I'm listing sample menu items below), AND there's a hot tub.My awesome hubby, who may or may not be trying to redeem himself from his shocking betrayal (can you tell I'm still not over it?) encouraged me to go for it.

Important Info is below, but email me if you want the full brochure [drhelvig (at) yahoo (dot) com], or check out the Writing Retreats website (although the new brochure I have from Cicily reflects current pricing). NOTE: Cicily had a wait list from last year, so half of the spots are already taken, and the retreat isn't until October!

DATES: Oct. 13-17, 2011 If you've never been to the Rocky Mountains in the fall, that's reason enough to come right there. It's an easy trip for me since I live here, but she's had attendees from all over the world, including Australia and England. You'll get to meet some interesting people...ya know, aside from me. :)

2011 Staff of Awesome:
Literary Agent: Scott Hoffman
A refugee from the world of politics, Scott Hoffman is one of the founding partners of Folio Literary Management, LLC. Prior to starting Folio, Scott was at PMA Literary & Film Management, Inc.
My current list is about half fiction and half nonfiction. My fiction is about half literary, and half commercial (chick lit? Sure - if it's smart and fresh, and has a strong voice.) Nonfiction is spread out among
serious journalistic or academic nonfiction, narrative nonfiction, and quirkier pop-culture books. If your project doesn't fit one of the "established" categories, I'm probably your guy - I love projects that
can't be easily classified.

Editor: Anica Rissi
Anica Mrose Rissi is the Executive Editor at Simon Pulse, a YA imprint of Simon & Schuster. She looks for edgy, voice-driven fiction; unexpected or dark humor; smart writing; and characters that she can’t get out of her head. A

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22. Highlights Foundation: An Interview with Alison Green Myers

WOW: Welcome, Alison, to The Muffin. We are so happy to have you here today to talk about the Highlights Foundation! Can you briefly describe for us the Highlights Foundation and its purpose or mission?

Alison: The Highlights Foundation believes that children deserve excellent stories. These stories start in the minds of our authors and illustrators. We give our guests a place to shape their stories, to improve upon them, to seek guidance from the best, and to connect with others who share the same passion.

WOW: I'm sure all children's writers are currently drooling over that description. Your mission sounds absolutely fantastic! How does it differ from Highlights for Children magazine?

Alison: The Highlights Foundation is a separate entity from Highlights Inc. We are a non-profit, and as such, we have many supporters of our mission. Highlights Inc. has been very generous with the Foundation’s needs. Our executive director, Kent L. Brown Jr., is a descendant of the founders of Highlights for Children, Garry and Caroline Myers. Kent worked his way to editor-in-chief of the magazine and then created Boyds Mills Press publishing house, along with its subsidiaries. As a prominent figure in the industry, Kent saw a need. Now as editor, chief emeritus, and publisher at large, Kent is able to dedicate his time to the causes of the Foundation.

WOW: Thank you for clearing that up. What are Founders Workshops? What topics do they cover? Where are they located?

Alison: The Founders Workshops are located at the homeplace of the founders of Highlights for Children, Garry and Caroline Myers, in the picturesque mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania. We find the publishing industry’s best writers, editors, and illustrators to teach Founders’ Workshops and only those who are proven mentors, willing and able to help writers and illustrators meet their goals. Our workshops range from weekend retreats about such things as establishing meaningful conflicts to week long workshops on topics like writing your first novel. We take special pleasure in fussing over our guests by offering gourmet food and cozy cabins (pictured above) for relaxation during—and after—a day of learning and writing.

WOW: Gourmet food and writing! You can't get much better than that. How do you find a schedule of the workshops and sign up to attend?

Alison: The best place to find information about  our offerings is on our website, www.highlightsfoundation.org. You can also contact Jo Lloyd at the Highlights Foundation. She'd be happy to send you a brochure with details about our Founders Workshops and our annual Writers Workshop at the Chautauqua Institute. Just call her at 570-253-1080.

We are also excited about our Founders Facebook page, where we promote our offerings, give writing tips from our faculty, and share highlights of workshops and events that take place at the homeplace. You can link to our Facebook page from the URL above.

WOW: Sounds easy! Who teaches these workshops?

Alison: Our faculty is varied: editors, authors, illustrators, and professors. The one common thread among them is that they are the best in the business. Who wouldn't feel like sitting down to an intimate dinner of eight

4 Comments on Highlights Foundation: An Interview with Alison Green Myers, last added: 3/31/2011
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