Welcome Resistance! Writing as Spiritual Practice Retreat

January 12–15, 2023

Online and in-person

When we approach writing as a contemplative practice, our natural resistance can shift from blocking creative work to becoming its essential, enlivening ingredient. Resistance provides helpful information; it calls forward the best parts of our will; it raises the stakes. In this long weekend retreat, we’ll work with resistance as a chance to practice faithfulness, awareness, and humility in our writing lives. We’ll welcome the gifts of resistance and learn to thrive despite its ongoing challenges.

This retreat is for committed writers of all stages. Please come with a writing intention, an idea for a project, or a work-in-progress.

Writing the Sacred Journey: Introductory Workshop

Saturday, February 4, 9 a.m.—12 p.m. Central Time Zone

This workshop will be offered ONLINE $65 and IN-PERSON $75

Memoir becomes spiritual with intention—when we look for holiness within the details of our personal stories, when we open ourselves to transformation as we write, and when we craft our stories to engage the inner life of an audience. Each of us has a sacred story written uniquely for us within our memories. And all of us can participate in creating and recreating our stories on the page as an ongoing spiritual practice.

Join Elizabeth Jarrett Andrew for an introduction to the art and spiritual practice of writing memoir. What is memoir and how is it different from autobiography? What makes memoir spiritual? How can the practice of writing memoir, whether for an audience or no audience, support spiritual growth? We will start with the basics, using writing exercises, readings from master writers, and conversation. Elizabeth will also offer suggestions and resources to sustain the practice moving forward.

Diving Deep and Surfacing: A Spiritual Memoir Writing Intensive

June 18-22, 2023

Online and in-person

What happens when writers practice craft techniques for the sake of spiritual discovery and growth? In this five-day retreat for writers, we’ll explore craft challenges common to spiritual memoir writing that are also opportunities for deepening spiritual practice. We’ll look at scene creation as an opportunity for attentive listening, at reflective writing as a form of contemplation, at character formation as an opportunity to withhold judgment, and at thematic development as a way to participate in meaning-making.

Writers will be supported by a writing community, receive guidance from an experienced instructor including an opportunity for a one-on-one conversation, and have abundant creative solitude. Each day will include three hours of instruction, discussion, and writing exercises focused on the day’s topic. Participants will both hone their writing skills and widen the contemplative dimensions of their writing practice.

This retreat is for writers who have a foundational understanding of spiritual memoir, having read Writing the Sacred Journey: The Art and Practice of Spiritual Memoir or taken an introductory class. Please come with a writing intention, an idea for a project, or a work-in-progress.

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Learn more about Elizabeth.