BLISSFUL BALI WRITING RETREAT: JUNE 15 – 20 2023

PUT YOURSELF IN THIS PICTURE 🙂

Oh yeah! It was when my lovely friend, and fellow yoga and writing retreat facilitator, Kerstin Pilz (see our Let’s Talk Writing episodes HERE) showed me this photo that I started to get very, VERY excited! I could see myself on that verandah, sitting on that bamboo daybed with my journal, the music of the stream washing away all the stress of the year, as I wrote freely and joyfully with a huge grin on my face. Oh yeah!

Can you feel it too? Is a retreat far from the busyness and bustle calling you? Is your creative spirit crying out for some loving care? Is it time to put yourself and your writing at the top of your priority list for once?

Do you deserve a really special treat, just for you? You know you do!

This retreat is super special : five nights, six days in the heart of rural Bali, staying at the amazing Bali Eco Stay resort with two excellent :), experienced, creative writing facilitators, published authors, and yoga teachers, gently guiding you back to full health and happiness, and rejuvenating your creative powers! Or you could just dream the day away on your daybed if you like! Beautiful open air bungalows and yoga shala with all equipment provided.

All fresh organic vegetarian meals, airport transfers, special guided tour, cultural activities, complimentary massage and tarot reading, chakra cleansing, one on one session with a facilitator, 6 writing workshops, 5 morning yoga sessions, 4 restorative yoga breathing classes, and your beautiful bungalow accomodation is included! It will be heavenly!

Blissful Bali Writing Retreat

With Kerstin Pilz PhD and Edwina Shaw

Unleash your wild mind and heart

& write your life back into balance

So why don’t you join us at our Blissful Bali Writing Retreat and set your stories free!? 

Get your stories out of your head and onto the page and feel the joy of creating beauty of your own in the peace and tranquility of Bali. Whether you have an established writing practice or have always wanted to write but never had the time, this retreat is for anybody in need of some quality nurturing of their creative spirit.

Every day begins with gentle yoga, followed by breakfast and an inspiring writing workshop to get those creative juices flowing. The afternoons are free for your own adventures and explorations, naps, or 1:1 sessions with Kerstin & Edwina, a complimentary massage and tarot reading, and a guided writing group for those who like to write in company. At the end of the day, we come together again for some gentle yoga breathing exercises to help clear your mind and revitalise your energy. Every evening we share incredible dinners and relax with conversation and readings.

All activities are optional.

This is your retreat. Our aim is to nurture your body, mind, and creative spirit so you leave feeling renewed, both as a writer and as a human being, with a whole lot of new writing; and bright, exciting ideas and refreshed energy to take home with you.

See HERE for more information. Come along and join in the Bliss of this once in a lifetime experience!

Not flash with cash right now? A $450 deposit will secure your place and you have until April to pay it off – payment plans available. Or save up for Bali in 2024 as I’m sure this will become an annual event.

Want something more affordable and closer to home? Check out my popular, lower-priced weekend retreats HERE.

Oh gosh I hope you can come. Check it out here and dream a little! You can make it happen if you really want it!

Lots of love

Edwina xx

RE-MEMBERING – Structure for recovery and trauma memoirs

At our recent memoir and life writing retreat I came across an article in Womankind magazine about Gloria Anzaldua’s theory of the stages in reconstructing self after trauma. And blow me down if it didn’t also work for structuring trauma memoirs! I’m not saying it’s the only way to heal or that the stages of recovery or stages of a memoir need to follow this order, but for anyone struggling with either trauma or finding a structure for the writing of traumatic events, I hope this will help.

GLORIA ANZALDUA

As with the stages of grieving first put forward by Elisabeth Kubler Ross, there is often a to-ing and fro-ing between stages or phases of emotional growth, sometimes all in one day.

However, a familiarity with how other people have found the experience and stages to identify can be most useful. And for writers having some kind of structure, any kind, is very welcome, especially when grappling with wrestling real-life trauma onto the page.

TRAUMA MEMOIR STRUCTURE IN 7 EASY STEPS!

  1. THE EARTHQUAKE – this is it! The trauma hits and our world is turned upside down. The story we’ve been telling ourselves about ourselves is destroyed and our old beliefs and identity collapses.
Photo by Sanej Prasad Suwal on Pexels.com
  • LYING IN A HEAP – this is when we’re lying in the debris of our old lives, not knowing who we are anymore. Not knowing which way to turn. We may try to pretend that nothing has changed, we may try to return to who we were before, the lives we used to lead, but find it is no longer possible.
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com
  • ROCK BOTTOM – we realise the damage has been done and there is no going back to who we were. We are stuck, unable to move, unable to find a way forward. We have fallen to pieces and can see no way to stick ourselves together again.
Photo by Alexey Demidov on Pexels.com
  • CALL TO ACTION –  you break free from your old ways of coping and reconnect with spirit. We let go of all that no longer serves us and begin to see a way ahead.
Photo by Abby Chung on Pexels.com
  • RECONSTRUCTING OURSELVES – now is the stage where we collect all those thousands of little pieces we fell into and attempt to put them back together again. Not as the old “us” but a new creation made from the same stuff rearranged, re- membered.
  • THE BLOW UP – returning to the world and reconnecting with others as our new selves.
  • EXPRESSION – here we experiment with our new reality and new self, expressing ourselves in creative activities – writing, art, dance music, healing, teaching, spiritual activism.

 If you’re writing a trauma memoir you’re in stage 7! YAY! I can certainly relate to all these stages and applaud all of you who, like me and Gloria, have picked up all those mixed up, broken pieces of yourself off the floor and created a brave new you and wonderful new life filled with creative expression.

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

Creativity is a powerful tool for healing emotional pain. Write it all out, paint it, dance it, play it on a guitar, whichever way works for you. Create beauty from the pain. 

Let me know if this structure is helpful to you, in understanding your own trauma journey, or for structuring your trauma memoir. I hope it works for both!

With lots of love

Edwina xxx