The Writers Retreat

At the Women At Woodstock Writers Retreat, we welcome women bloggers, memoirists, fiction writers, poets, and nonfiction writers of all levels and any age. Our content-rich retreat offers two tracks: Track 1 - The Writers Colony, and Track 2 - The Workshop Intensive.

You have your choice of either track at the retreat - it's up to you which you choose.

Options For Everyone

For everyone at the Writing Retreat, there will be workshops and writing time during the day. In the evenings we'll gather for an Evening Salon of cheese and wine (or beverage of your choice) and readings, sharing what we wish from the day's work.


Track 1 / The Writers Colony

You will start each day with a morning session with in-depth readings from our members’ submitted manuscripts and feedback and discussion. You’ll also receive information about the publishing world, the process of submitting your work to literary journals and magazines, finding an agent, and self-publishing. Bring a 20-page manuscript (which can be anything you’re working on) prior to the retreat - either on paper or on your laptop; whatever works for you.

In the afternoons, you have the option to write on your own - either in Cedar Heart Lodge, the Library, the Dining Room, or in your own room, or you can attend a Workshop Intensive (Track 2) session if you wish to have inspiration to generate new writing and have the chance to read your new materials to your fellow writers.

Or, you can do absolutely nothing except think and enjoy yourself; read a book, take a walk on one of the hiking trails, take a nap - whatever you want.

Lifebridge Sanctuary main lodge - back
Lifebridge Sanctuary Garden House

Track 2 / The Workshop Intensive

Each day you will join in an intensive full-morning or full-afternoon writing workshop with our resident writing coach, where a safe space will be created for you to write and practice your developing skills with prompts, discussions, and short writing sessions, concentrating on your own life experiences and writing mainly in memoir. After a long break for thought, a meal, and maybe a walk outdoors, you'll have the next afternoon or morning to reflect on what you wrote in the last session, rework what you wish, or write more. Then - you'll reconvene for another intensive session to dip into your well of experience and put it to paper once again.


Ann Voorhees Baker - The Writers Colony (Track 1)

Ann Voorhees Baker is the founder of Women At Woodstock. She has been leading writing groups at our annual retreat and in online workshops for many years. Ann's short stories have been published in the Chicago Quarterly Review and elsewhere, and she's been awarded two writing residencies at Dorland Mountain Arts Colony. She has edited and/or ghostwritten several nonfiction books. By day she's a web developer and social media marketing expert.

The Writers Colony track will have two parts:

(1) a discussion session at the beginning of each daily meeting, on various aspects of the business of getting published: proper formatting for your manuscripts, opportunities and processes for submitting your work, how to write a query letter and a synopsis, how to find an agent, and various options for publishing.

(2) a reading session each morning, with our writers reading from their works-in-progress, with time given to talk about each piece to help the writer consider what revision may be needed.


Susan Hodara - The Workshop Intensive (Track 2)

Are you inspired to record the transforming events of your life? Are you drawn to translate your most vivid memories into writing? Are you driven to shape your experiences into well-crafted and poignant memoirs? This workshop offers a supportive environment where participants will write, share their writing with the class, receive constructive feedback, and have the chance to rewrite and revise as desired. We will address topics such as the (un)reliability of memory, the creation of sensory scenes, the challenges of revisiting the past, and the importance of adhering to the truth.

Susan Hodara is a memoirist, teacher, and journalist. Her articles have appeared in The New York Times, Communication Arts, and more. Her short memoirs are published in various anthologies and literary journals, and she is a co-author of the collaborative memoir Still Here Thinking Of You: A Second Chance With Our Mothers (Big Table Publishing, 2013). She is a highly sought-after teacher of creative and nonfiction writing, and has taught ongoing memoir workshops at the Hudson Valley Writers Center since 2009.

Click here to visit Susan's website.

When & Where

Our Writers Retreat in the fall is live and in person!

Wednesday, October 9, 2024 - Monday, October 14, 2024