Workshops & Retreats

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1) WRITING YOUR WAY THROUGH DIVORCE ~ A WEEKEND RETREAT

September 23 – 25, St. Petersburg, Florida

NEW DATES ADDED:    
November 4 – 6,  St. Petersburg, Florida
January 13 – 15, St. Petersburg, Florida
ocean writing
“Writing Your Way Through Divorce” is a weekend writing retreat for women dealing with divorce at any stage of the process. This retreat will not only teach you writing techniques to get your feelings unstuck, but in sharing your experiences with a community of sensitive individuals who have similar emotional struggles, you will gain the confidence and tools to express yourself through the written word.

Whether your goal is to create a blog, write a memoir, a short story or essay, or simply get your feelings on paper, Writing Your Way Through Divorce will start you on the write path. We’ve been there, we’ve done it. And we can provide the support and structure to help you gain clarity and confidence and end up with a piece of writing you will be proud of.

The weekend takes place in a beautiful waterfront residence, just 25 minutes from Tampa International Airport. Friday night, and all day Saturday and Sunday, with healthy gourmet breakfasts and lunches included, you will leave the weekend feeling refreshed and confident to write this new chapter in your life.

Writing Your Way Through Divorce is led by two professional writers who have the experience and expertise to help you on your journey.

Amy Koko became an expert on divorce the hard way…by going through one. Her popular blog Ex-wife New Life led to her now published memoir, There’s Been A Change Of Plans, A Memoir About Divorce Dating and Delinquents in Midlife. She has been a featured blogger on Huffington Post Divorce, First Wives Social Network, BlogHer, and More.com as well as a guest blogger on Divorced Girl Smiling, among others.

Rebecca Gold is a writing instructor and has been facilitating writing groups for more than 20 years, and has studied with esteemed writing professionals including Julia Cameron, Natalie Goldberg, Dani Shapiro, Candace Walsh, Tanya Taylor Rubinstein, Leslea Newmann, among others. Also divorced and remarried, she is widely published in the field of adoption and parenting.

Here’s what your Weekend Retreat includes:
Friday night: Introductory session to get to know one another, and define expectations and goals. Wine/soft drinks & appetizers will be served.

Saturday: 9:00 – Breakfast served. Followed by a lesson on Exploratory Writing Techniques. Discover and practice three valuable writing tools to find the one that works for you. Julia Cameron- Morning Pages, Natalie Goldberg’s Timed Writes, Linda Metcalf’s Proprioceptive Writing. Lunch provided. The afternoon sessions will consist of lessons and writing exercises with optional sharing. The writing exercises and readings are selected to show different ways that writing can be an effective tool for processing emotion, as well as stimulate creativity and aid in emotional healing and personal growth. We will break up into groups depending on your writing goal, whether it is a blog, a book, or exploratory journal writing.

Sunday: 9:00 – Breakfast served, followed by Exploratory Writing exercises and personal coaching sessions. Each participant will have a private coaching session with Amy and Rebecca to review their work and offer editorial advice on taking it to the next step. Lunch provided. Afternoon sessions include writing on The Future is Now, and Where to Go From Here; a practical lesson on how to find an agent, publisher, blogs, websites, and avenues to take your writing.

All levels of writers welcome.
Fee: $495 (includes meals, but not overnight accommodations)
LIMITED NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS ALLOWED! REGISTER EARLY! PAYMENT OPTIONS AVAILABLE!

Payment Options

2. WRITING YOUR WAY THROUGH DIVORCE ~ ONLINE WORKSHOP 

writing hands

This 3- week writing workshop is conducted via an email group (WHICH MEANS YOU CAN ATTEND TO IT WHEN YOU WANT AND WITHOUT MAKEUP ON– or clothes, for that matter). You will receive two email lessons and writing exercises each week which will stimulate creativity and aid in emotional healing and personal growth. This online workshops will not only teach you how to use writing as a tool to get your feelings unstuck, but also provide the support and structure to help you write with clarity and confidence and end up with a piece of writing you will be proud of. Whether your goal is to create a blog, write a memoir, a short story or essay, or simply get your feelings on paper, Writing Your Way Through Divorce will start you on the write path.

You can ask questions or comments to the group throughout the first 2 weeks which will spark some interactive group discussion. Then you submit your lesson work and Amy will give written feedback with areas for improvement. The third week is devoted to writing and editing your Final Paper which can be blog post, an essay, a book chapter, etc., which should incorporate all of the previous lesson work.  Submit your Final Paper to Amy for a detailed, personalized critique to take your work to the next level. Limited number of students allowed in each class, so register EARLY.

SCHEDULE:              

October 3-week Online Session:  BEGINS ON SATURDAY, October 8 through October 29  (8 SPOTS LEFT)
$125.00  
 (includes a full manuscript critique of your work)





3. HOW TO WRITE IT FUNNY!   ONLINE WORKSHOP FOR BLOGGERS AND OTHERS    
if they laugh

Writing funny is no joke. While there is no easy formula to writing humor, there is an art to being funny, and more importantly, WRITING FUNNY. And that’s where I can help! This 3- week (Introductory) workshop is conducted via an email group (WHICH MEANS YOU CAN ATTEND TO IT WHEN YOU WANT AND WITHOUT MAKEUP ON– or clothes, for that matter). You will receive two email lessons and writing exercises each week, which will include:

  1. Lesson 1 (Saturday)- How to find funny material in everyday situations;
  2. Lesson 2 – (Wednesday) How to refine your voice and write like you speak;
  3. Lesson 3 – (Saturday) How to incorporate dialogue and create believable characters
  4. Lesson 4 –  (Wednesday) How to revise and edit your work to get the not so funny out of your way

You can ask questions or comments to the group throughout the first 2 weeks which will spark some interactive group discussion. Then you submit your lesson work and Amy will give written feedback with areas for improvement. The third week is devoted to writing and editing your Final Paper which can be blog post, an essay, a book chapter, etc., which should incorporate all of the previous lesson work.  Submit your Final Paper to Amy for a detailed, personalized critique to take your work to the next level. Limited number of students allowed in each class, so register EARLY.

SCHEDULE:              

AUGUST 3-week Online Session:  BEGINS ON SATURDAY, August 13 through September 3   (8 SPOTS LEFT)
$49.00  
 (includes a full manuscript critique of your work)






4. MANUSCRIPT CRITIQUE AND COACHING SERVICES
coaching services
While critiquing your work, I will not be looking for typos, sentence structure, or proper use of similes and metaphors. I will be asking myself one question. Is this funny? Once that question is answered, I will delve deeper, why is this so funny or why isn’t it. I will be able to give you good, clear examples of how it could be even better with a slight change in wording, or possibly using dialogue instead of description, or maybe IT JUST ISN’T FUNNY in which case we will work to make it so. You will come away with a clear direction in which to go with your work, whether it is a blog, short story, novel or screenplay!

If you would like to continue working with me on a weekly, biweekly, or monthly basis we can set something up so that you are ACCOUNTABLE to me, your coach, and we will work together through phone calls and critiquing your work to get your piece COMPLETE and READY to send out for publication.

Written Critique: $30.00 (minimum) for up to 10 (double spaced) pages, and $1 p/page after that.
(Discounts offered for work longer than 50 pages)

Coaching: $20 per 15 minute session.  Your first session will be FREE and we will create a plan that will work for you, whether that is weekly, biweekly, or monthly phone calls or skype sessions.  And, I will have read your work before we meet to make the most out of the 15 minute sessions. You can purchase as many sessions as you choose, though I recommend 4 to begin so you will have one month of devoted writing and 4 status calls to be accountable for.