22 - 29 July 2022
La Poterie, Le Pays Vallée du Loir, France
With the announcements of international borders reopening, we are excited that we can once again run our week-long writer's retreat at La Poterie, a stunning French chateau, once owned by Napoleon's granddaughter!
We ran a very successful first retreat in July 2019 with six advanced writers who benefitted greatly from the unique opportunity to work intensively with industry professionals over the course of the week.
Tutored by Jen Hutchison (writer, editor, publisher AUS) & April Eberhardt (literary agent USA) the group was able to examine and polish their writing skills to masterclass level in one-on-one, tutorials and group discussions in spectacular surroundings with, of course, great food and wine.
We encourage writers of all ages and abilities to apply, (but not raw beginners please). Wherever you are on your writing journey, you will return home stronger, more confident and well-armed with techniques publishers expect to see in submission-ready manuscripts.
All Expressions of Interest will be considered.
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Meet Your Tutors
April Eberhardt & Jen Hutchison
April Eberhardt is a US literary agent passionate about helping authors be published in the most satisfying way.
After 25 years as a corporate strategist and management consultant, April joined the literary world, where she saw strategic opportunity to play a role in the changing world of publishing.
She advises and assists authors as they choose the best pathway to publication, and serves as a consultant to publishing startups serving indie authors.
She serves on the Advisory Council for The American Library in Paris and is a reader for the “Best American Short Stories” series published annually by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
April represents clients of many nationalities and presents at conferences worldwide. She holds an MBA from Boston University in marketing and finance, a BA from Hamilton (Kirkland) College in anthropology and French, and a CPLF degree from the University of Paris.
She divides her time between San Francisco, New York, and Paris.
Jen Hutchison is a professional editor, writer and publisher. She established Journeys to Words Publishing in 2018.
She enjoyed a corporate career before deciding, a decade back, to focus on her own writing and encouraging and teaching other mature-age writers and took herself back to university to do her Master of Writing and Publishing at RMIT.
Via masterclasses Jen teaches advanced creative practice and the polish and readiness expected by publishers in today's competitive market.
Jen has two books published with another two in development.
Jen loves swimming, walking Caminos, and skis in Japan every northern winter (pandemics allowing).
Your fee of $6,250 includes your accommodation (seven nights) in the chateau, all meals (except any eaten out), your daily tuition, one-on-one consultation with the experts, feedback on your writing, Master Classes in six subject areas, and collection and return of you and your luggage from the local railway station.
At Your Own Expense:
Return train fare from Paris
Souvenirs or personal spending
Travel arrangements, travel insurance, and national entry and exit (both ends of the trip), and regulations within France, required ID and apps, vaccination-proof, 72-hour testing prior to travel (both ends), and any other Covid 19 special considerations are your responsibility.
The organisers of La Poterie Writers Retreat can direct you to information sources but take no responsibility for these elements or their effect on your attendance. If the retreat cannot proceed due to Covid restrictions, participants will be offered an alternative date, or refund (less $300 admin fee).
Just For You:
Please note that this is an intensive, week-long retreat focussed on your writing. No partners, no children. Thanks for understanding.
The retreat fee of $6,250 is payable in two halves, the first on acceptance of your application, the second 60 days prior to commencement of the retreat.
If you need to withdraw and do so prior to the second payment, your deposit will be refunded less an admin fee of $300. Refunds will not be offered less than 60 days prior to departure. We will try to find a replacement from the waiting list, but this may not be possible.
Please note that La Poterie is a three-storied chateau, beautifully restored, but without a lift. All writing activities, meals, and socialising take place on the ground level. All bedrooms are on the first or second floors.
We look forward to hearing from you and including you in this exciting writing adventure. If you have any questions, please contact Jen.
A Typical Day on your Retreat
Up to six participants, over six days....
Your writer's retreat day starts with a group breakfast in the gracious dining room, windows open to the garden, blossoms visible and the giant spreading oaks across the lawn.
We gather for our first session in the Drawing Room, and work through the morning - Master Classes, discussion, writing exercises and more discussion.
Lunch is either in the dining room or under the trees in the garden. You are free to continue your writing in the afternoon, to nap, to laze in the garden or walk the country lanes around the chateau, and we have one-on-one sessions with writers then too, to discuss your particular needs and the status of your manuscript.
Drinks are in the garden at 6.00pm and dinner is inside if it's cool, or in the garden under the trees when it's warm, which it mostly is in July and August. Conversation over wine and beautiful food prepared by our hostess Cynthia, and lively, literary conversations into the night, or not, as you choose— if your comfortable bed in this beautiful chateau calls to you.
Submit an EOI
To be considered for a place, please complete this form, and then email email@example.com
the first 20 pages or the first three chapters of the manuscript you would like to work on (whichever is the longer).
Testimonials from our 2019 retreat
Unfortunately, we were unable to run our 2020 & 2021 retreats due to covid restrictions.
I’ve gained tremendously from your wisdom, critique and editing skills. Thank you for putting fresh energy into my fiction writing and novel, which I’d almost decided to give up on. But now, I’m determined to see all the way through. I’ve had a glorious few days of “thinking fiction” and I’m going back home metaphorically carrying a lot more than I came with. I look forward to reading your book on the flight. Have a safe fight, Jen and hope our paths cross again.
With affection and respect.
You have moved me many kilometers down my path, and your prompts, your insights and your willingness to see and to speak what is needed, is a tremendous gift.
To April and Jen, for sharing your professional experience and offering us such wise guidance. To Jean for all your help, but also to Elisa and Eileen, and Anne and Jaya and Carrie, for sharing your writing and offering thoughtful insights on mine. Your retreat had it all, dear April! Thank you for putting such a friendly group together and working out a well-balanced writing program with Jen, which included time and attention to each of us.
Thank you all for your encouragement to write and rewrite ... and to keep writing.
With gratitude and warm appreciation,
If you are interested in joining our retreat in July 2022 - fill in the EOI form (above) or contact Jen with any questions.