Kangaroo Island Retreat – March 2016

KI-Lighthouse-SunsetKangaroo Island Nature Writing Retreat

Travel guide: Chris Carter (Time Travel Australia)

Writing tuition: Dr Inga Simpson

March 9 – 17, 2016

Group: max 10

Cost: $3195 (ex Adelaide)

 

a walk is only a step away from a story, and every path tells” ~ Robert Macfarlane.

Travel back in time to Kangaroo Island – considered Australia’s Galapagos – with author Inga Simpson (Nest, Mr Wigg, Where the Trees Were) in this week-long immersion in writing and in place. We’ll explore the island’s unique landscapes, natural and human histories, flora and fauna (did you know the island was once home to a dwarf emu?!) – and of course its fine food and wine.

KIEmuWe’ll be staying in historic lighthouse-keepers’ cottages, and, with Time Travel’s archaeologist Chris Carter as our host and  guide, traversing the island’s wild coastline, and getting to know some of its abundant wildlife and fascinating histories – including the first non-Indigenous settlement of South Australia.

In between all that stunning scenery, Inga will lead daily writing workshops, focusing on techniques for bringing the natural world to life on the page. How to describe what you see, remember – and imagine. You’ll develop a toolkit for evocative description, learn how to harness story and emotion, and to anchor plot, character and structure to place. Each workshop uses a combination of instruction, examples and practical writing exercises, with plenty of opportunity for discussion.

We’ll consider the traditions of nature writing, as well as issues such as anthropomorphism, notions of belonging, and acknowledging the whole history of a place. You’ll also receive one-on-one feedback on your writing (submitted beforehand), and, of course, have plenty of time to write – or just wander, in search of inspiration.

The retreat is ideal for nonfiction and fiction writers at all levels, particularly those with an interest in nature writing, environmental, travel or history writing, memoir, or place-based fiction. Unplugged from the mainland, you’ll not only explore the island but learn how to better capture a sense of place on the page – and tap deeper into your own creativity.

This is the first in our Retreat to an Island series, which combines travel with learning, offering a unique experience staying some of Australia’s most beautiful islands.

Emma Lindsay 2013, Dwarf kangaroo island emu (extinct), Oil on linen, 121 (w) x 149 (h). Photo: Elouise

Emma Lindsay 2013, Dwarf kangaroo island emu (extinct), Oil on linen, 121 (w) x 149 (h). Photo: Elouise

Tuition, feedback, accommodation, meals, transfers, and park fees are all included.

For more information about the writing program, contact Inga: inga@olvarwood.com.au

To book, or for a full itinerary, please contact Chris: info@ruins.com.au

Weekend Retreat @ Kioloa: 4-6 December

Kioloa

 

 

 

 

 

Kioloa Weekend Nature Writing Retreat

December 4-6, 2015

Led by Inga Simpson and Chris Carter

Participants: 10-15

Cost: $525 (includes accommodation, tuition, guided walks, and all meals).

Where: Kioloa, far south coast, NSW

The miniature sandscapes of ridge and valley pressed into the soles of my feet and for days after the walk I would feel a memory of that pressure and pattern” ~ Robert Macfarlane.

Start your writing summer early by spending a weekend immersed in writing and place on the pristine far south coast of New South Wales.

Writing workshops will be led by Dr Inga Simpson, author of Nest and Mr Wigg. You’ll learn more about the genre of nature writing, and through a mixture of tuition, examples, practical writing exercises and discussion, hone your skills for describing the natural world and anchoring character and plot to place. You’ll also consider issues around writing for advocacy, anthropomorphism v anthropocentrism, and notions of belonging.

We’ll be staying in an historic homestead on the Australian National University Kioloa coastal campus. Kioloa dining and kitchen

The weekend will also include guided walks, led by archaeologist (and head chef!), Chris Carter. We’ll learn more about the natural and human histories of Kioloa and get a closer look at its beautiful beaches and forest.

Kioloa is 2 & 1/2 hours from Canberra and 3 & 1/2 hours from Sydney.

Watch a gorgeous video about Kioloa Coastal campus here.

Bookings via: info@ruins.com.au

Contact Inga regarding the workshop  content: Inga@olvarwood.com.au

 

Nature Writing Masterclass – 29 August

spring 2012 003This masterclass is ideal for more advanced writers of fiction or nonfiction interested in better evoking landscapes, flora and fauna on the page, and utilising the natural world not only as setting but the anchor for character, plot and structure.

The class will be led by Inga Simpson, through a combination of instruction, examples and practical writing exercises, with plenty of opportunities for discussion. You’ll come away with a better understanding of the tradition of nature writing, the importance of story and emotion, a toolkit for describing the natural world, techniques for developing the thematic elements of your work – and probably a long reading list!

You’ll also receive personal feedback on up to 5000 words submitted beforehand, and the class will be tailored to suit the interests and strengths of participants.

When: Saturday 29 August. 9.15 am – 12.30 pm.

Where: In ‘the studio’ at Olvar Wood, in the Sunshine Coast hinterland (address details supplied once booked in).

Cost: $125 (includes, tuition, feedback and morning tea).inga simpson_34

Class: 4-8 participants.

To book: email Inga@olvarwood.com.au

Bio: Dr Inga Simpson is the author of Mr Wigg and Nest, which was longlisted for the Stella Prize, Miles Franklin Literary Award, and shortlisted for the ALS Gold Medal. She has a PhD in Creative Writing (QUT), and is currently completing a second PhD in English literature (UQ), which examines Australia’s history of nature writing and its potential as an environmental strategy. Inga is also the winner of the 2012 Eric Rolls Nature Writing Prize.

Upcoming Nature Writing Retreats

tent-balconyOlvar Wood is excited to announce a new suite of nature writing retreats.

Our inaugural Shallow Crossing Nature Writing Retreat at The Escape, in May, was a great success. From 2016, we will be running the retreat each year in September/October as part of the Milton ArtsFest.

In the meantime, we can confirm that we will be offering a weekend nature writing retreat at Kiola, NSW (4-6 December).

Our Retreat to an Island series, in cahoots with Time Travel Australia, will kick off in March 2016 with a week-long retreat on Kangaroo Island.

In 2016, we also hope to offer nature writing retreats in Port Macquarie and Lamington National Park – more soon.

In 2017, again with Time Travel, we will be beginning our Nature Writing (and Walking) UK series with a journey across Britain – details soon.

In 2018, we are planning a one-off nature writing and ornithology trip to Peru!

Contact Inga to register your interest or join our mailing list: inga@olvarwood.com.au

Nature Writing Masterclass: Woodford – 7 June

Woodford_sliderInga will be teaching a nature writing masterclass as part of The Planting 2015 – the winter festival at Woodford.

When: 8.45 Sunday,  7 June

Cost: $35

Bookings: here.

She’ll also be giving a talk later in the day on Australia’s history of nature writing and its relevance today as an environmental strategy. The full program is available here.

Writing Nature Workshop: Sydney 13 June

Napa-Valley-634x475Inga will be teaching a one day nature writing workshop at the NSW Writers’ Centre mid June.

When we tug at a single thing in nature, we find it attached to the rest of the world.
—  
John Muir

This workshop is ideal for fiction and non-fiction writers at all levels with a passion for the natural world.

You’ll focus on techniques for bringing landscapes, flora and fauna to life for your audience, including: evocative description, effective use of emotion, and the importance of story. You’ll also consider issues such as anthropomorphism, culture versus nature, and the challenges faced when writing with an environmental message.

The workshop uses a combination of instruction, inspiring examples of nature writing, practical writing exercises, with plenty of opportunity for group discussion. You’ll come away with a stronger understanding of nature writing – past and contemporary, Australian and international – and a practical toolkit for sharing your love of nature on the page.

Booking and more information here: http://www.nswwc.org.au/products-page/courses/writing-nature/

 

Environmental Writing Workshop: Shallow Crossing, 5 May

shallow crossingAs part of Olvar Wood’s inaugural nature writing retreat at The Escape, Shallow Crossing, near Bateman’s Bay, we are offering a one-day workshop on the art and business of nature writing.

Led by Dr Inga Simpson, This workshop is ideal for those new to nature writing as well as professional writers working in environmental fields.

Whether you’re writing for your local government publication, volunteer newsletter, or just want to capture place more effectively in your fiction or non fiction – this one-day intensive in a wonderful setting will inspire.

You’ll focus on techniques for bringing landscapes, flora and fauna to life for your audience, including: evocative description, effective use of emotion, and the importance of story. You’ll also consider issues such as anthropomorphism, culture versus nature, and the challenges faced when writing with an environmental message.

The workshop uses a combination of instruction, inspiring examples of nature writing, practical writing exercises, with plenty of opportunity for group discussion. You’ll come away with a stronger understanding of nature writing, contemporary environmental writing, and a practical toolkit for sharing your love of nature on the page.

Shallow Crossing is about 2hrs from Canberra or 30 mins from Bateman’s Bay.

Date: Tuesday 5 May (9.30am-4pm).

Cost: $125, including lunch and morning tea (the food, by the way, is fabulous).

Bookings close 29 April. For all enquiries and bookings, please email admin@olvarwood.com.au

clyde-river-bank

Nature Writing Retreat: Shallow Crossing, 3-8 May

Olvar Wood’s inaugural nature writing retreat will run from 3-8 May, 2015.

We’ll be ‘glamping’ at The Escape, at Shallow Crosssing, near Bateman’s Bay, on the south coast of NSW.  It’s a beautiful, wild setting: river frontage, amid a forest of spotted gums and cycads. The accommodation is glamorous and … the food to die for.

It’s an immersion in nature, and writing about place – whether you’re dreaming of being the next Annie Dillard or Barry Lopez, wanting to write the waves like Winton, or perhaps just sharpen your activist pencil to save your local environment.

There is a maximum of eight places available for residential writers.

The cost is $1995 per person (single occupancy)

or $1610 per person (twin or double share).

The cost includes:

  • all tuition (three morning workshops and one full-day workshop – held in the studio)
  • one-on-one feedback on up to 5000 words (submitted beforehand)
  • 5 nights accommodation
  • drinks and nibbles on arrival
  • all meals & soft drinks
  • morning teas
  • half day nature walk with Yuin Nation elder, Noel Butler
  • evening fireside concert with local musician Roddy Reason
  • access to retreat kayaks.

Of course, there will also be plenty of free time for you to wander, read, write and relax!

The retreat is ideal for non fiction and fiction writers with an interest in the natural world. The workshops focus on techniques for bringing landscapes, flora and fauna to life for your audience, including: effective description, use of emotion, and the importance of story. Each workshop uses a combination of instruction, examples and practical writing exercises, with opportunities for discussion. We’ll consider the traditions of nature writing, as well as issues such as anthropomorphism, the pressures of writing for advocacy, connection to place, and the blurry line between nature writing and memoir.

You’ll also meet with one of the tutors one afternoon during the retreat for individual feedback on up to 5000 words (fiction, non fiction or poetry) submitted beforehand.

Tuition and feedback will be provided by Dr Inga Simpson .

One-day workshop

Up to ten non-residential writers will be able to attend the full-day workshop on the Tuesday (9.30am-4pm), including lunch and morning tea, for $125.

This workshop is ideal for professional writers working in environmental fields, as well as creative writers. The workshop will focus on broadening your knowledge of nature and environmental writing, equipping you with a ‘toolkit’ for describing the natural world, and tips on writing for advocacy.

Retreat bookings require a deposit of $250 by 31 January (fully refundable), with the balance due 23 March.

Workshop bookings, with payment, can be made at any time up until 14 April, 2015.

[Note: If you are unable to make it this year, the next retreat will run over one week in October, 2016 as part of the Milton Arts Festival. ]

For all enquiries and bookings, please email admin@olvarwood.com.au