In a previous blog post, I talked about the initial planning for your writing retreat. In this post, I want to focus on what happens during the writing retreat.
You’ve chosen your location and booked the venue - whew! - and you’re fired up to create your webpage that will give writers all of the amazing details of how you’ll inspire, support, and energize them into making progress on their WIP.
But, wait. Have you been so focused on finding the perfect place that you’ve neglected to sort out what will actually happen once you and your guests are there?
Your answer will depend on the type of writers you want to attract, and the amount of time and effort you’re able to put into the planning.
The Let Me Write Writer
For some, the beauty of a writing retreat is less is more. These writers want to simplify their life for a few days or weeks. They don’t want a lot of extras that might detract from their writing, so plan for lots of free writing, even if you offer other activities.
The Teach Me More Writer
This type of writer wants to learn more about their craft. They want workshops on character development, or how to once and for all, figure out the balance of “show don’t tell.” If helping people hone their writing skills is your jam, make workshops, speakers, or editing sessions a major part of your writing retreat. Don’t forget to give the writers space and time to process what they’ve learned, too.
The I’m on Vacation Writer
Then, we have the writer who wants to combine a writing retreat with a true vacation. Why not? They may never get a chance to go to the amazing location you’ve chosen, so they might as well make the most of their time there.
For a writing retreat like this, plan walks, hikes, excursions, etc. that allow them to enjoy the local attractions. Suggest your guests bring notebooks so they can capture any inspiration that comes with exploring the area.
A Mix of Writer Types
You can certainly plan your retreat around one type of writing retreat guest, if that feels more comfortable for you. But, if you feel you can handle multiple types of needs, then go for it!
It may be something as simple as carving out an excursion or a morning yoga session for those who want to join, while the free writers stay at the venue. Or you could mix in some optional workshops and small group sessions to give your writers even more choices.
Whatever you decide, keep in mind that while you’re hosting the writing retreat, you need to create an experience that writers will want to be a part of.
What types of writing retreats have you planned? What did you find appealed to the majority of your writers?