Helsinki Writing Retreat
 

May 2019 participants achieved during retreat:

  • An hour-long presentation — text and draft slides — for international meeting abroad.

  • Came to finish a chapter for an academic collection — met my goals and now I have a first draft of the chapter.

  • Four poems, one stand-up bit, and a first draft of a chapter from a memoir. Started a short play, and wrote about half of it.

  • The structure of my next book.

  • I achieved my script for my meditation album, and got some website copy sent off too.

  • 75% of what I planned in the beginning. 100% of what I planned in the last day.

  • I made words come out of my fingers!

  • Fleshed out the structure of my novel, and talking about it out loud (when usually an internal process)

  • Challenged myself with new forms of poetry/spoken word and stories.

 
 
Everything seemed to go very smoothly, it was somehow easy to focus.
— May 2019 participant
 
 
I loved the focused time for writing without the possibility for distractions. And socialising with great people in the breaks!
— May 2019 participant
 

 

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writer Reviews

I feel very positive about my experience and am excited to see how I can go forward with this writing project now that I have the tools! Thank you!
— August 2018 participant
 
 
I came [to the retreat] thinking I was going to write… which I did, but it was also a social and cultural experience.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
Jessie [the facilitator] is fantastic. She has amazing organisational skills and gets everything done to make our environment calm and pleasant.
— November 2018 participant
 
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The lunchtime yoga was excellent and really made the day better. Perfect length, timing and routine.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
I really liked that there was a clear purpose to everything we did, that there was relaxation time and time to talk together.
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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I was surprised by the fascinating range of other people’s projects, from public health research to fantasy fiction.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
[The retreat] was like a holiday!
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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I really enjoyed being able to write with other people.
— Asylum 2018 participant
 
 
I loved how the retreat created protected space for my writing — it was like a writing sauna!
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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I was surprised by how easily I managed to stay focused during the whole duration of the writing sessions, and how quickly those blocks of writing time went by!
— Asylum 2018 participant
 
 
I prioritized my writing and wrote 7000 words for my PhD thesis. Following the retreat’s agenda I got into a really good working daily rhythm — I hope I can replicate this at home!
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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I really appreciated Jessie’s positivity and manner, especially the calm and gentle way she ended our writing time, and directed us to the next activity.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
This format is VERY good for my own writing and hence my translating and editing work. I will attend again.
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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The other participants were all really interesting people, I enjoyed the fact that it was all women. I liked that we could give each other space and didn’t always have to talk in all the breaks as it was hard to get out of my own writing headspace and I am used to working alone all day.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
I loved how friendly and welcoming Jess was, and how high-energy.
— Asylum 2018 participant
 

 

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I was surprised that I was able to focus so well and get ‘in the zone’ during every writing session.
— November 2018 participant
 
 
Being able to detach from distractions was so good.
— Asylum 2018 participant
 

 

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I loved meeting and interacting with other writers in the city.
— Asylum 2018 participant
 
 
The group size was good as we could all talk to each other and bond as a group. A nice mix of people (different ages and life stages, different backgrounds, different nationalities, different projects).
— November 2018 participant
 

 

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The lunches were really delicious, with high quality ingredients used. It was very nice to have a hot meal, salad, and a dessert for lunch. I also really liked the smoothies we had as our morning snack.
— November 2018 participant