TEN GREAT CHRISTMAS GIFT IDEAS FOR WRITERS plus DATES FOR RELAX AND WRITE 4!

Need some ideas for the writers in your life? Here’s my top picks and some news about the next Relax and Write retreat too.

RELAX AND WRITE

christmas_deer

Here’s my pick for great gifts for the writer in your life – or as a special treat for yourself if you’re the one scribbling away like a fury.
1. The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.artists way

I recommend this book to just about everyone I meet. It was the book that got me finally acting towards my long-held dream of being a writer. It’s practical, uplifting and guaranteed to get you writing or painting or dancing – or whatever creative pursuit brings you joy.

2. A room with a door that closes – or at the very least a screen to close off a corner of another room. That’s what I have, and it works just fine. Writers need a space of their own and plenty of privacy – we often do quite crazy things when we’re writing, and it can scare other people!
3. Bird by Bird by Anne…

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RELAX AND WRITE IN THE MOUNTAINS!

Dateless LOGO NO KOINONIA

PLEASE NOTE – THIS RETREAT HAS BEEN POSTPONED UNTIL Friday 26 – Sunday 28 APRIL 2019!

RELAX AND WRITE YOUR WAY TO WELLNESS!

I’m excited to announce the next Relax and Write Retreat – this time in the mountains west of Brisbane – from Friday 5th October to Sunday 7th October 2018.

I’m holding a special retreat in a beautiful mountain-top location, for women to relax with gentle yoga and meditation, and get writing with inspiring creative workshops.

The lovely people at Koojarewon Retreat, in Highfields – 12 kms north of Toowoomba, are turning the entire place over to us, and they’re providing all the meals, so it should be truly relaxing, even if the accommodation is pretty basic.

 

It’s dorm style but we have plenty of room to spread out through the dorms to claim a patch for privacy. And, best of all, the bathrooms are inside, so there’s no traipsing out to facilities in the middle of the night. Keeping the accommodation “rustic” is how I’m able to keep retreat prices affordable.

 

It’s important to me that these opportunities are available to all women. I know how difficult it can be to spend money on yourself, especially for something as seemingly frivolous as a retreat.

But what is it they say on airplanes? Make sure you give yourself oxygen first, then take care of the person next to you. And that’s what retreats like this provide, a bit of oxygen, breathing room, nurturing for the nurturers, so we are refreshed and renewed and ready to take care of everybody and everything once again. Writers and creative artists in particular need to ensure that their own tanks are full enough to keep the flow of creativity coming.

air hostess

Each day begins with a gentle yoga class, followed by creative writing workshops suitable for beginners through to more experienced writers wanting to renew passion for their projects. Healthy vegetarian meals are provided so all you have to do is let go of all the busy-ness of every day life and surrender to the peace of the mountains, stretching, breathing and writing your way to wellness.

Air hostesses with food

Come away from your weekend feeling refreshed and renewed, with a suitcase full of story ideas and hints and tips for improving your writing. See reviews from previous retreats here: https://relaxandwriteretreats.blog/about/reviews/

COST includes
• two nights basic accommodation
• all meals, morning and afternoon teas and supper
• two yoga classes
• three, two-hour creative writing workshops
• introductory relaxation and writing session

$360 per person for the entire retreat

You can get more information and book by contacting me at kublershaw@optusnet.com.au 

RW3 group shot goodie

This retreat promises to be extra special and I’m very much looking forward to meeting a whole new group of amazing women and listening to their stories.

Be like Heidi and come and join me in the mountains to find your legs again.

Heidi

Lots of love

Edwina xx

 

RELEASE THE RETREATS!

relax writers at work

Feeling frazzled? Had enough of the rat race and housework and looking after everybody else? Treat yourself to a writing retreat in paradise, at a price you can afford.

A couple of wonderful retreats coming up!

Only a few weeks away until Relax and Write 3 at our Mermaid Base Camp at Evan’s Head. From Friday 31st August until Monday 3rd September our Mermaids and Scribes are taking over Camp Koinonia by the sea to write, relax and revel in each other’s joyful company. Yoga in the mornings, creative writing workshops through the day, lots of free time for beach walks and swims if you dare, and evenings full of feasting and fun. Can’t wait to get there! We still have a few spots available but please do hurry if you’re keen to come.

If you ask very nicely we may even extend our early bird prices 🙂 Contact Helena on helenapastor2@gmail.com for more info and to book.

mermaids swimming

But wait – there’s more!!

From Friday 5th to Sunday 7th October 2018, while Helena is away at KSP (we’re both KSP residents this year), I am running a retreat in Toowoomba in collaboration with the Unleash the Beast Writing and Wellness Symposium.

It’s a fabulous initiative tackling mental health issues and discussing how we can use creative techniques like writing to help heal ourselves and others. I’ll be busy on their big day, Wednesday the 10th October, running a Writing for Trauma Workshop and speaking on a panel on Early Intervention Strategies for Children with funny woman Mandy Nolan – looking forward to that! You can check out the program HERE and book tickets HERE.

But most exciting is that I’m running their companion retreat – Relax. Write. Retreat.

High in the mountains, this retreat is set among the trees and views of Highfields near Toowoomba on the top of the range west of Brisbane at the lovely Koojarewon youth camp (Ok ok, we’re not youth but they still let us in!). This retreat is fully catered. In fact it looks like they intend to stuff us like geese- with force-feeding scheduled every few hours!

Koojarewon koojarewon food koojarewon grassy

Yoga in the mornings, writing workshops through the day, feasting and fun and naps and long walks and lots of good company. For me that’s the recipe for a perfect retreat.

For more info on the Toowoomba retreat and to book click HERE

Whether you want to escape to the beach for a luxurious long weekend of yoga and writing, or just pop up to the hills for a dose of pampering and creative inspiration, we have the retreat for you!

I love facilitating these retreats and watching people relax and write stories that surprise themselves, and the rest of us. The accommodation isn’t posh but we’re not either. Our aim is to keep these retreats as affordable as possible because we know most women don’t have much cash to splash around – especially on themselves.

But sometimes, a bit of time out and nurturing of your creative self is just the ticket!

Come along and join the fun – we’d love to have you.

evans head

Lots of love

Edwina xx

 

 

RELAX AND WRITE 2

cloud rainbow

Just back from the latest Relax and Write Retreat – a combined yoga and writing retreat for women, that I run with Helena Pastor – my best writing buddy and dear friend.

With 12 participants ranging in age from 28 to 70, we did yoga and writing workshops, laughed and swam, feasted and sang. Together we shared our stories and lifted up each other’s hearts.

mermaids swimming

For the full rundown and lots more photos see here

We had a fabulous time. Why don’t you come along and join us at the next one?

Lots of love

Edwina

koinonia beach camp 2

RETREAT COMPLETE :)

beach

I’m back! And what a wonderful retreat it was. Above is a photo of the beautiful beach where I wandered and thought about my characters, and other things, every morning and evening. Ah, it was heavenly!

So – here’s a rundown:

2 weeks

1 writer

1 cabin in the woods by the sea

cabin

26 swims

2 tubs of zinc cream

40 000 new freckles

2 beaches

1 waterhole

waterhole

 

10 kangaroos

I special kangaroo friend

kangaroo friend

1 possum

I Wanda the Wonga pigeon

100s of other beautiful birds

2 massages

5 new human friends

100 shells

shells

and

1 fully completed screenplay manuscript!!!

writing space

Yes, I worked hard and got it done. 125 pages – hopefully not all crap!

It’s now being read by my fabulous mentor Stephen Lance.

Thank you Screen QLD!!

It all equals one very happy writer 🙂

edwina pic (2)

Wishing you all 2 weeks retreat of your own.

Lots of love, Ed xx

 

RETREAT!

writing at beach

YAY! Tomorrow I’m off on writing retreat – just me this time. I’m heading five hours south to a beautiful secluded beach and an air-conditioned cabin where I can focus exclusively on my screenplay. My office here at home is a corner of the living room which these days at least has a screen around it. Through most of summer it’s almost impossible to work here though because it’s so hot that my brain turns into some sort of south east Asian hot pot stew, even with a fan blowing straight on me and all of my papers.

Time away on retreat – this time I have a full glorious two weeks (thank you Screen Queensland!) – makes all the difference when you have a big project to tackle. Time alone with just you and the work enables you to immerse yourself in the world of the story you are creating without distractions and everyday responsibilities. Everything else slides away and you become just a conduit for the work you are creating – a little crazed perhaps-  but focused and productive. Well, I hope so anyway.

My days will go something like this – an early morning walk, swim and yoga on the beach, then home for breakfast and writing.  More writing. Lunch then a break for breathing and sivasana (or maybe just a nap!). Another beach trip for extra swimming and an explore, then home for more writing. Writing. Writing. Dinner. Then some relax and wind down time so I’ll be able to sleep without my head buzzing with the story – though my dreams will most probably be filled with it.

Four years ago around this time of year, I spent a wonderful two weeks at Varuna the Writers House in the Blue Mountains writing the first draft of the novel that this screenplay is now so very loosely based upon. In two weeks I wrote over 60 000 words, so I’m hopeful that my fortnight at the beach now will result in the same frenzied output and I’ll be bringing back a completed screenplay.

It’s going to be a grand adventure!Edwina beach writing

Wish me luck!!

See you when I get home 🙂 xx

Interested in a writing retreat of your own? There are still a few place left in the next Relax and Write Retreat – click HERE for more details.

 

RELAX AND WRITE RETREAT 2018

sunset evans head

YAY! Dates are now set for the next Relax and Write Retreat!
Friday March 16 – Monday 19th 2018
Feeling like you deserve a special treat this Christmas?
This retreat may be just the ticket.
Three nights away in a beautiful beachside location with like-minded women, relaxing with gentle yoga and inspiring your inner writer with fun writing workshops.
It will still be lovely and warm in March so bring your swimmers and sunblock. We’ll be staying at the beautifully basic Camp Koinonia in Evans Head, Northern NSW

relax writers outside

So, whether you’re a writer in need of relaxation and a good stretch, or a yoga practitioner yearning to write, this is the retreat for you.
Here’s what participants from the 2017 retreat had to say…
“Edwina and Helena have an easy style of putting people at ease and making each individual feel welcome and they were flexible in altering the program to meet the needs of the participants.”
“It was a great break away, affordable and I left feeling refreshed and with a significant amount of writing done.”
“I came away with a lot of information about entering into the field of professional writing as well as a wealth of ideas and starting points for fiction and memoir writing.”

Also announcing our MORE DASH THAN CASH positions. Would you love to do a retreat like this but don’t have the available funds right now? We know what that’s like (and we need some helpers!) so we’ve created a couple of sponsored positions.
Apply for one of our supported spots where for a few hours assistance with kitchen and other duties you can join us at a greatly reduced cost.

For more information and to book please contact Helena:
helenapastor2@gmail.com or
phone 0447 334 665

relax and write yoga

So, come along and join our merry band of scribes and mermaids. Relax, write and enjoy yourself in a beautiful coastal setting with experienced workshop facilitators and published authors Helena Pastor and Edwina Shaw – see their bios HERE.
Unwind with yoga and free your creative voice with lots of fun writing activities and workshops. All only a minute’s walk from a glorious beach surrounded by national park where you can swim, walk, laze in the sun or meditate to your heart’s content.
Pick up from Coolangatta or Ballina airports is available if you’re coming from afar.
PROGRAM for March 2018
Friday
2 pm onwards – checking in
5:30 – meet and greet, drinks and nibbles
6:30 – Deep relaxation and introductory writing exercises
7:30 – Dinner
Saturday
7:30 – 9 am – Gentle morning yoga and breathing exercises with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Writing Your Way into a Story – Helena
FREE TIME FOR LUNCH AND BEACH ACTIVITIES
3:30 – 5:30 – Using yoga and drama techniques for developing your characters – Edwina
7pm – dinner
Open Mic Night. If you would like to, please bring along a song or other musical item, a poem, a short performance piece or whatever else you would like to share 
Sunday
7:30 – 9 am – Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Structuring for Suspense – Edwina
Excursion to Chinaman’s Beach for picnic lunch and freewriting
4pm – 6 pm – Writing Dialogue – Helena
7 pm – dinner
Monday
7:30 – 9 am – Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Pitching your work – from bios to synopses to grant applications – E and H
Feedback and farewells.
For more information and to book please contact Helena:
helenapastor2@gmail.com or
phone 0447 334 665

Helena and Edwina photoCome along and join the fun. We’d love to have you with us.
Get in fast. Places are strictly limited to no more than 15 places.