LAST CHANCE TO RELAX AND WRITE IN THE MOUNTAINS!

Heidi

Only two more weeks until we’re up in the hills running and dancing, arms spread wide, singing and laughing! Well, maybe it’ll be more like walking and writing and enjoying some gentle stretches and deep relaxation, but you get the idea.

If you’ve been um-ing and ah-ing about whether to come, now’s your chance. This is the sign you’ve been waiting for.

a sign

The weekend starts with welcome drinks and nibbles, then dinner and our first writing session, getting to know each other and exploring what stories we really want – or need –  to write.

Saturday is jam-packed with yoga first thing, then two writing workshops.

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After dinner it’s bonfire time with marshmallows and singalongs and whatever special talents everyone would like to share. Jude is famous for her bawdy jokes so watch out!

marshmallows

Sunday finishes with more yoga and another writing workshop which includes advice on editing your own work and then developing a plan to follow up on all the new story ideas you’ll have in progress by then.

gympie 8 great

Amy the Camp Koojarewon cook is creating a fantastic vegetarian menu especially for us.

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We have the whole retreat centre to ourselves. So even though we’re in dorms we can spread right out and make ourselves cubby-house rooms within them. The grounds are lovely with giant trees and fantastic views, lots of places to walk and write and relax. Coffee shops are nearby for those who need a strong brew in the mornings.

koojarewon verandah

koojarewon view

Not only that, my friend Monique is joining us to provide massages! Yes, go the whole hog and book yourself in for an hour-long pampering and healing massage. Contact Monique HERE to book your spot.

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I’m so excited to be hosting this wonderful weekend of writing, yoga and fun. Come along and join our merry band of mermaids, scribes and wood-sprites.

vintage women dancing

Contact me HERE to book or for more information. But hurry. Places are strictly limited to no more than 15 participants. Only two spots left! $400 for the whole weekend including accomodation and all meals. Special deals for locals who want to sleep in their own beds. BOOK NOW!

Treat yourself to a weekend of creative fun with like-minded women in beautiful surroundings.

We all deserve some time out now and then.

Lots of love

Edwina x

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RELAX AND WRITE IN THE MOUNTAINS!

RW3 group shot goodie

Is your creative spirit crying out for a little TLC? Come along and regain your love of writing and life at the next Relax and Write Retreat at Camp Koojarewon in the mountains near Toowoomba, Queensland.

From 2pm FRIDAY 26 APRIL – 1pm 28 APRIL 2019

Join like-minded women in a fun and supportive environment discovering just how much some deep relaxation can ignite your imagination and get you writing again. Relax and unwind with gentle morning yoga sessions and get writing with innovative workshops that use yoga and drama techniques to help move those stories out of your head and onto the page.

The program includes two full yoga sessions and four creative writing workshops covering the basics of story development, whether you’re writing memoir, fiction or screenplays, as well as hints and tips on editing and submitting your work to publishers.

Cost includes two nights basic dorm accommodation –we have the run of the whole camp so no one will have to sleep on a top bunk unless they want to and we’ll have plenty of room to spread out (a couple of ensuite rooms are available for those with health issues or special needs) — plus delicious vegetarian meals, morning and afternoon teas and suppers.

Come along and join the fun, make new writing buddies and rekindle your love of writing.

Contact Edwina for more info and bookings.

COST
Includes basic dorm accommodation, all meals, two yoga classes and four creative writing workshops.
$400 for the weekend of yoga, writing, fun and feasting – Or pay your $200 deposit before 8 March 2019 for EARLY BIRD $360

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Edwina Shaw has been writing and publishing since 2002. She teaches Creative Writing at the University of QLD and is also an experienced yoga teacher. Her book Thrill Seekers was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards and has recently been released as a new imprint through Raven Books UK. Her feature film project M is under development with a producer attached. She is a registered teacher and runs workshops at schools and writers’ festivals through Speakers Ink and the QLD Writers Centre and also works as an editor and mentor. She lives in Brisbane where she can most often be found writing, doing yoga, or daydreaming. She loves helping other women rediscover their creative spirits and get their bodies moving again.

YAHOO! YIPPEE! RELAX AND WRITE 3!

mermaids swimming

This Spring, forget the housework – SPRING CLEAN YOURSELF!!

Come and join our merry band of mermaids and scribes at the next Relax and Write Retreat from Friday 31st August until Monday 3rd September 2018 at beautiful Camp Koinonia by the sea at Evans Head Northern NSW.

Bookings are now open for Relax and Write 3 with early bird prices in effect until the 31st July. Places are filling fast so make sure you put your hand up soon by contacting Helena at helenapastor2@gmail.com for more info and a booking form.

The program includes a fun mix of yoga in the mornings,

relax and write yoga

and informative and inspiring creative writing workshops throughout the day.

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With lots of time for relaxing, swimming, walking, meditating, chatting and little lie downs 🙂

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PROGRAM FOR RELAX AND WRITE 3

FRIDAY
Arrival from 2 p.m. Check-in
5:30 p.m. Welcome, drinks and nibbles, intro
6:30 p.m. Deep relaxation and introductory
writing exercises
7:30 p.m. Dinner

SATURDAY
7:30 – 9 am Gentle morning yoga and breathing
exercises with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 p.m. Writing Your Way into a Story – Helena
FREE TIME FOR LUNCH AND
BEACH ACTIVITIES
3:30 – 5:30 p.m. Using yoga and drama techniques for
developing your characters – Edwina
7pm Dinner
OPEN MIC NIGHT If you’re up to it, please bring
along a song or other musical item,
a poem, a short performance piece
or whatever else you would like to share…

SUNDAY
7:30 – 9 am Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30p.m. Structuring for Suspense – Edwina
EXCURSION TO CHINAMANS
BEACH FOR PICNIC LUNCH AND
FREEWRITING
4pm – 6 pm Writing Dialogue – Helena
7pm Dinner

MONDAY
7:30 – 9 am Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 p.m. Pitching your work – from bios to synopses
to grant applications – E and H
Feedback and farewells.

COST

We’ve done our best to keep prices for the retreat reasonable – we know women often don’t have much cash to spend on themselves. We also know they really need some time out to nurture themselves and their writing.

$470 for single room in ensuite cabin
$430 for twin share in ensuite cabin

EARLY BIRD $440/$400 if booked and deposit of $150 received before 31st July 2018

The cost includes:
• 3 x yoga sessions
• 6 x writing workshops.
• 3 x nights accommodation
• 3 x healthy vegetarian dinners

If you have any ideas for workshops you ‘d like to see included, please let us know.

For more information and to book please contact Helena

We’d love to have you come along and join the fun. We always have a wonderful time 🙂

Helena and Edwina photo

Helena and Edwina

MERMAIDS AND SCRIBES TOGETHER AGAIN!

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Just back from RELAX AND WRITE RETREAT 2! And what a wonderful time we had. The photograph above was taken at our picnic at Dirawong Reserve a short drive from Mermaid base camp (as we now fondly refer to Camp Koinonia). It’s all part of beautiful Evans Head, a special place for the Bandjalang Nation who we thank and acknowledge as the original people of this beautiful part of the world.

camp 2 koinonia cabins

We had perfect weather for our three nights and big days of  writing workshops and yoga to refresh the spirit and body and inspire new stories. Again we had a wonderful warm group of women, some returning for a second dose of retreat bliss, and several new friends. One of the highlights for Helena and I as facilitators was watching how easily everyone bonded, supported each other and readily shared their stories. We had a great time!

yoga camp 2 downward dog

We had women ranging in age from 28 to 70, experienced writers with several books under their belts –  to newbies making their first attempts. We listened and learned from each other, laughed and swam, and feasted and sang. We held our first ever open mic night and unearthed some wonderful talents. It was lovely to have some music as part of the retreat this time.

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Our next retreat is tentatively booked for the 31st August to 3rd September 2018 – so make sure to put your hand up if you’d like to secure a spot. Drop us a line through the contact page.

I’ll finish with some feedback from one of our lovely participants:

Thank you for these three beautiful days. They have re-invigorated me as a writer, and as a human being.” Vahida Berberovic 19/03/2018

You can’t ask for better than that 🙂

For more reviews see here

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More photos!

Our beach 🙂

koinonia beach camp 2

Our cabins.

cabin shotour hall camp 2 chapeltime for a swim!

mermaids swimming

misty mornings

mist through trees caMP 2

sunrise with person camp 2

Come along and join the fun!

Lots of love,

Edwina and Helena xx

ANNOUNCING RELAX AND WRITE MARCH 2018!!

sunset evans head

YAY! Dates are now set for the next Relax and Write Retreat!

Friday March 16 – Monday 19th 2018

Feeling like you deserve a special treat?

This retreat may be just the ticket.

Three nights away in a beautiful beachside location with like-minded women, relaxing with gentle yoga and inspiring your inner writer with fun writing workshops.

It will still be lovely and warm in March so bring your swimmers and sunblock. We’ll be staying at the beautifully basic Camp Koinonia in Evans Head, Northern NSW
relax writers outside

So, whether you’re a writer in need of relaxation and a good stretch, or a yoga practitioner yearning to write, this is the retreat for you.

For more information and to book please contact Helena:
helenapastor2@gmail.com or
phone 0447 334 665 for further info.

Here’s what participants from the 2017 retreat had to say…

“Edwina and Helena have an easy style of putting people at ease and making each individual feel welcome and they were flexible in altering the program to meet the needs of the participants.”

“It was a great break away, affordable and I left feeling refreshed and with a significant amount of writing done.”

“I came away with a lot of information about entering into the field of professional writing as well as a wealth of ideas and starting points for fiction and memoir writing.”

relax and write yoga

Also announcing our MORE DASH THAN CASH positions. Would you love to do a retreat like this but don’t have the available funds right now? We know what that’s like (and we need some helpers!) so we’ve created a couple of sponsored positions.

Apply for one of our supported spots where for a few hours assistance with kitchen and other duties you can join us at a greatly reduced cost 🙂

Helena and Edwina Relax and write 2017

So, come along and join our merry band of scribes and mermaids. Relax, write and enjoy yourself in a beautiful coastal setting with experienced workshop facilitators and published authors Helena Pastor and Edwina Shaw – see their bios HERE.

Unwind with yoga and free your creative voice with lots of fun writing activities and workshops. All only a minute’s walk from a glorious beach surrounded by national park where you can swim, walk, laze in the sun or meditate to your heart’s content.

Pick up from Coolangatta or Ballina airports is available if you’re coming from afar.

PROGRAM

Friday
2 pm onwards – checking in
5:30 – meet and greet, drinks and nibbles
6:30 – Deep relaxation and introductory writing exercises
7:30 – Dinner

Saturday
7:30 – 9 am – Gentle morning yoga and breathing exercises with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Writing Your Way into a Story – Helena
FREE TIME FOR LUNCH AND BEACH ACTIVITIES
3:30 – 5:30 – Using yoga and drama techniques for developing your characters – Edwina
7pm – dinner
Open Mic Night. If you would like to, please bring along a song or other musical item, a poem, a short performance piece or whatever else you would like to share 

Sunday
7:30 – 9 am – Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Structuring for Suspense – Edwina
Excursion to Chinaman’s Beach for picnic lunch and freewriting
4pm – 6 pm – Writing Dialogue – Helena
7 pm – dinner

Monday
7:30 – 9 am – Yoga with Edwina
10:30 – 12:30 – Pitching your work – from bios to synopses to grant applications – E and H
Feedback and farewells.

For more information and to book please contact Helena:
helenapastor2@gmail.com or
phone 0447 334 665 for further info.

Come along and join the fun. We’d love to have you with us.

Get in fast. Places are strictly limited to no more than 15.

Mermaids and Scribes

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It’s only a week since the first ever Relax and Write Retreat finished up in a flurry of collage and fortune telling and one last swim (it was cold!).

Helena and I couldn’t have been happier with how it all went. We feel super lucky that we had a such an incredible, talented, warm and lovely group of women there with us, willing to be our retreat guinea pigs. And we are thrilled that they all had such a wonderful time and came away feeling nurtured and inspired, ready to  forge ahead with their writing.

Our retreaters had a wide range of writing experience – from complete newbies to Sue who had three completed manuscripts under her belt and a number of development awards to boot. The same with yoga – three yoga teachers and some complete beginners. Luckily Helena and I both have experience with students with a variety of needs so we embraced the differences and everyone benefitted from each other’s experiences as well as our input.

relax writers outside

We learnt a few things ourselves – heaps actually! Mainly that we wildly over-catered. You don’t need to cook three whole bags of pasta for 12 women! Johnny provided us with excellent meals and we even had a few massages.

What was most important was the women themselves who all leapt in with both feet and gave everything a go. We felt like an awesome unstoppable team – all 12 of us.

We’re really looking forward to seeing everyone at our next retreat in March 2018, and meeting the new women who come to join our happy band of mermaids and scribes.

Nina Woodrow, one of our talented participants wrote this beautiful poem about the retreat.

the mermaids
thought that they were teachers and bikers and writers
and mothers
and comics and social workers
generally over competent humans
and of course they were all these things too
but really they were mermaids
and you could tell
by the way they started to glisten
when they got close to the sea
by the way they shed their sensible shoes
and by the way their hair lifted at the roots
and communed wilfully with the sea breezes
but most of all you could tell
by the way they collectively knew
straight away
without anything being said
that different rules applied at mermaid base camp
how time for instance
could suddenly collapse in on itself
crumble like a sand dune at high tide and that long forgotten
drowned troubles and truths
sunken sorrows
could be exposed this way
so the mermaids formed a chain
they made a silent pact
they weaved their arms around each other’s waists
and dived in

By Nina WOODROW

Thanks so much to all our retreaters for making our inaugural retreat such a success!

with lots of love, Edwina and Helena xx

Helena and Edwina Relax and write 2017