Flüeli-Ranft, with Gasthaus in the foreground

Creative writing retreat

in idyllic Switzerland

Sunday 9 to Saturday 15 October 2022

Looking to start a writing project? Or to complete your work in progress? This retreat is for participants at any level of writing experience, from beginners to advanced. It’s open to no more than ten people, to guarantee individual attention. If you want to learn more about how and why writing retreats enable significant leaps forward, click on this article.

Make time and space for yourself: gain focus, find inspiration and hone your craft through daily workshops, independent writing time and feedback sessions. Enjoy writing in unforgettable surroundings in the supportive company of like-minded people, and enhance your day with a walk in nature. Your highly experienced tutor will guide you through workshops and discussions on key elements of writing, such as: characterisation, structure and plot development, point of view, voice, sense of place and dialogue. The final session will offer you an invaluable practical approach to various stages of editing. 

All participants will have their own room (each with en-suite WC and shower or bath) in the charming Gasthaus Paxmontana ‘am Dorfplatz’

Built in 1617, the intimate Gasthaus (only 16 rooms) belongs to the nearby Jugendstil-Hotel Paxmontana, an icon of Art Nouveau, listed in the Swiss Historic Hotels directory. A breakfast buffet rich in regional specialities will be provided Monday to Saturday at the Jugendstil-Hotel. A three-course dinner will be served Sunday to Friday, mostly at the Gasthaus Restaurant; on some nights it may be served in the Veranda Restaurant of the main hotel, at its discretion. A sandwich-lunch will be provided Monday to Friday in either of the two restaurants. Workshops will take place in a dedicated seminar room annexed to the Gasthaus. The retreat fee includes the workshops, accommodation, tourist taxes and the above meals; drinks are excluded and charged individually.

Accommodation is in the historic village of Flüeli-Ranft, famous as the home of Saint Nicholas of Flüe (1417-1487), Switzerland’s patron saint. A mystic, hermit, political councillor and judge, he is celebrated – by the religious and non-religious alike – for preventing a civil war. The pretty village sits in an enchanting peaceful landscape conducive to creativity.

Why this retreat?

Timing:

6 nights, from Sunday 9 October to Saturday 15 October 2022

  • Arrival between 15:00 and 18:30 on Sunday, for dinner at 19:00 
  • Departure by 11:00 after breakfast on Saturday

Price:

  • CHF 1,500 inclusive of workshops, accommodation, meals and tourist taxes; exclusive of drinks. (At the time of writing, CHF 1,500 are equivalent to approx. US$ 1,540 / Euros 1,460 / GBP 1,235.)  
  • A 25% deposit will be payable upon acceptance of a place on the retreat; and the balance by 9 September. Late applicants: enquire below about availability.

FURTHER INFORMATION and BOOKINGS:

  • Email Valeria on mvaleriavw@outlook.com 
  • Or contact her by clicking here.

Measures against Covid-19:

Although the world is presently coping better with Covid-19, it is best to remain cautious. Anyone showing signs of Covid-19 infection should therefore take a PCR test; if confirmed positive to the virus, they should refrain from attending the retreat. All participants are asked to take a lateral-flow test on the day of arrival, in the interest of their own health and to protect others. Any measures adopted by the Swiss Government and the Canton at the time of the retreat are to be respected.

If you can’t make this retreat…

If you live in Switzerland and can’t make the six days of the retreat, take a look at the 3 one-day masterclasses Valeria will be holding for and at the great Literaturhaus Zentralschweiz in Stans on Saturdays: 3 December, 14 January and 18 March. See here or directly on the Lit.Z website.

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Ken Howard OBE RA, Wellhorn and Wetterhorn, 2016, oil on canvas, private collection

‘Every now and then you find a subject so perfect that were you to stay in that one place for the rest of your life you would find enough to keep you painting for all time.’

Ken Howard OBE RA, from Ken Howard’s Switzerland – In the Footsteps of Turner, Royal Academy of Arts, 2013

Credits:

Photos © the author.

The Write Life image reproduced with the kind permission of The Write Life‘s Jessica Lawlor and Susan Shain. Photo freely available from Shutterstock.

Wellhorn and Wetterhorn, by Prof. Ken Howard OBE RA, reproduced with his kind permission.

Quote from Ken Howard’s Switzerland – In the Footsteps of Turner, reproduced with Prof. Ken Howard’s kind permission.