A Writer's Weekend Retreat
Alma Alexander is the author of the international sensation The Secrets of Jin-Shei and the three books of the young adult series "Worldweavers." She has published both fiction and non-fiction books, including an e-mail novel (one of the first of its kind) co-authored with her husband Deck. Her other books include an autobiographical account of her twenty years in Africa and an award-winning fantasy duology. She has also published many shorter pieces, including literary criticism, essays, short stories, travel writing, feature journalism, and poetry. She has taught the art and craft of writing at many levels, including University-level continuing education. She has been a presenter and instructor at a number of writers' conferences and festivals in the United States and internationally, including the prestigious Whidbey Island Writers Conference. She is at present working on her next novel -- the only statement in this paragraph that does not need to be updated from time to time, as she is always working on a novel.
Robert A. ("Deck") Deckert is a writer and a veteran editor and writing teacher. Before his retirement from the 9-to-5 working life, he worked in the newspaper business; his wealth of experience includes that of an editor and an author of two novels in his own right as well as the book he wrote with his wife, Alma. He has been a deeply beloved and supportive writing mentor to a devoted following of pupils, some of whom returned several times to continue studying with him during his 15-year tenure as a teacher of memoir and life-story writing in Florida.
You will have free access to our extensive library, and to (between your two mentors) more than fifty years of accumulated writing and editing experience.
Applications are being taken now.
Aspiring authors are welcome, but we feel that intermediate writers, with at least some writing experience, will get the most out of this weekend. Please send your application for the month of your choice at least four months in advance. We are unable to accept applications from persons younger than 18, and we cannot accommodate accompanying minor children.
We live in an area that has much to offer during the writing workshops. In April, spring bulbs, rhodoendrons and lilacs make our front yard a riot of color and scent; May brings longer and warmer days, perfect for sitting out on our deck overlooking private cedar woods. June and July are perfect summer months, and nearby parks with cool streams and waterfalls offer inspiration and rejuvenation for visitors; in August we start cooling down a little, and in September and October we are wrapped in the brilliant colors of fall. There will be something beautiful to remember whatever time of year you come to visit us.
The cost of the full weekend program, including all meals, is $995. You may bring a non-participating visiting spouse for an additional $195. We will pick you up as you arrive in Bellingham -- by train or by air -- you can fly in at your convenience to SeaTac Airport and we'll pick you up at the Bellingham Val-U-Inn, which is where you'll be dropped off by the airport shuttle. Let us know your time of arrival well in advance. Aside from transportation to and from Bellingham, the program cost covers accomodation and all meals.
One-day programs are also available, in the weeks not reserved for weekend retreats. The fee is $395 (group rates are available). One-day programs are intensive writing workshops, including a critique of a presented manuscript.
Gift certificates are available for both weekend retreats and the one-day programs. These include a full information package for the person receiving the gift, including photographs and detailed instructions on how to get here and how to get the most out of the writing retreat experience.
All fees are due by the end of the month preceding your residency or one-day workshop. If you wish, you are welcome to transfer fees electronically via PayPal, or mail us a check. Do not send any money with your application.
Please mail your completed application to us at 506 Sudden Valley, Bellingham, WA 98229 along with a writing sample of about 2000 words. We will contact you after we have reviewed your application.