Hope Cove Writers’ Retreat

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Thursday 14 November – Sunday 17 November 2024

Is this you?
  • Needing time away from everyday life, to make progress on a writing project?
  • Looking for good company, fellow writers, to help you to find your muse?
  • Excited by the prospect of a few days of unadulterated writing (or relaxing!)?
The Hope Cove Writers’ Retreat is designed for you

This is what past participants had to say.

  • Thank you for a wonderful weekend. It was so lovely to be amongst other writers and I can’t wait for the next one
  • Thank you so much for hosting and running the retreat. I feel I have benefited and grown in confidence as a result and it’s wonderful to feel connected again with other writers. Oo-er, I just referred to myself as a writer – now there’s progress.
  • Your tutelage style is inclusive and non judgmental, and your gentle guidance gave me the confidence to read my draft manuscript to the small group of fellow writers with valuable feedback shared. I learned a lot about creative writing, far more than I had expected, just from talking to you.
  • Thank you for organising such a wonderful weekend. I’m so glad I decided to join you all. I feel so uplifted.
  • I would like to say how much I enjoyed the retreat at Hope Cove. A beautiful setting and a delightful hotel.  I, personally,  learnt a lot about myself and my writing. Thank you for your hard work. It was a delight to meet everyone. I shall definitely keep writing.
Join me for 72 hours of writerly escapism

How you spend your time is up to you.

  • Writing and writing and writing, in beautiful surroundings
  • Discussing the writing process, and gaining a greater understanding of how other writers write
  • Sharing your writing and listening to that of others, and giving and receiving helpful feedback
  • Meeting new writers and forging friendship that can help your writing to progress

There’s time for you to explore the Hope Cove area, walking the cliff path, or across the beach. And, you’ll leave on Sunday afternoon, refreshed and ready to return to the real world.

Hope Cove view from balcony

What’s the plan for the Hope Cove Writers’ Retreat?

Writing, writing, writing!

You arrive on Thursday 14 November. Your room should be ready by 3pm. There will be a welcoming cream tea in the Lounge at 4pm. It’s unlikely we’ll be taking tea on the balcony, but look at the view!

Thursday evening is a time to relax and meet fellow writers. We meet at 6.30pm in the bar, and go into dinner at 7pm.

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday, there will be ‘together sessions’ led by me, Anne Rainbow.

Friday / Saturday Morning sessions: 10am-12.30pm

We will talk through writing issues: general or specific to your own writing. The discussion – and how the time might be split – will be decided the evening before, based on the needs of those who plan to attend. A session could include any/all of these ‘standard’ writing topics.

  • Creating story ideas
  • Inventing 3D characters
  • Writing realistic dialogue
  • Plotting
  • Show versus tell
  • Story structure

… and may stray into other topics, eg routes into publishing, according to individual requests and how the session develops.

Friday / Saturday Afternoon sessions: 2.30-5pm

These sessions are mostly read/review opportunities. The writer will read aloud (or nominate someone else to read for them) an extract of their work. The other writers will then give feedback. The aim will be to encourage those who maybe lack confidence and to help each writer to overcome any issues and to make great progress.

Sunday session: 10am-1pm

The Sunday session is an opportunity for more read/review and leftover writing craft topics, plus making plans for the future.

Sunday afternoon tea: 4pm

I won’t be rushing off at 1pm. After lunch, I’m happy to spend more time with any writers who are planning to stay another night, or those who live locally and want to stretch the weekend a little further.  Our ‘finale’ will be – in Save the Cat styler –  a mirror image of our opening scene: a cream tea (for those who can manage it!)

Where will the ‘together sessions’ take place?

‘Together sessions’ will take place mostly in the Cove Room which is our base, but we also have the option to sit in one of the pods (dry and warm and with lovely views) … or we may go for a walk, or … lots of choice.

Some locations with the hotel, eg the Cove Room and the pods, may be tricky for anyone with mobility problems. Check the Cottage Hotel’s policy on disability for more details. I will do my best to accommodate the needs of those attending.

Outside of these ‘together sessions’?

There will be opportunities between these ‘together sessions’ to relax, write, meet and get to know each other. Plus meal times:

  • Breakfast – you may eat alone (in the restaurant or order room service), or with others of your choosing, or join me in the restaurant.
  • Dinner – you are invited to meet each evening, in the bar at 6.30pm and, if you wish, to eat together at 7-9pm.
  • At 9pm or soon after, coffee is taken in the lounge and the rest of the evening can be spent discussing anything and everything.

Bring with you notebooks and/or laptops and expect to spend the whole weekend in the company of other writers, inspired by the fantastic views.

Where is the Writers’ Retreat?

The address of the Cottage Hotel is Hope Cove, Devon TQ7 3HJ.

The nearest train station is Totnes. There is a bus service from Totnes to Kingsbridge, and we can easily transport you (free of charge) from Kingsbridge to the Cottage Hotel. If you need picking up from Totnes, taxis can be expensive – but, let me know; we will try to co-ordinate arrival/leaving times so that you can be transported by car at minimal cost.

What’s the cost for attending the Writers’ Retreat?

As well as any accommodation costs (see below), and personal purchases of food/drinks, the fee for the retreat-time-with-me is £325 per writer and £150 for a non-writer accompanying a writer

This retreat-time-with-me price includes:

  • Welcoming cream tea on Thursday
  • Group time over breakfast
  • A pre dinner drink in the bar and a glass of wine at the dinner table
  • Group time over dinner and afterwards in the lounge

For writers only:

  • 13 hours ‘together sessions’ with Anne (10am-12.30pm and 2.30-5pm, on Friday/Saturday plus 10am-1pm on Sunday)
  • Coffee/tea during our together sessions
One-on-one sessions

If you wish to have additional one-on-one time with me, a limited number of 40-minute sessions will be available during the weekend. Pre-booking and pre-payment will be required. Cost: £60 per session. Follow-up one-on-one sessions may also be arranged via the RedPen Mentoring programme.

Is it a residential course?

Yes and no! You don’t need to stay at the Cottage Hotel. If you live locally, or prefer to organise your own accommodation, that’s not a problem. You can still attend the welcome cream tea on the Thursday, and the ‘together sessions’ on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

You may also book with the hotel to have dinner with the group (6.30 for 7pm) on any of the evenings and enjoy leisure time with the group who are residents.

The Cottage Hotel is a very popular venue and, to avoid disappointment, it’s essential to book your accommodation as soon as possible. Full information about the Cottage Hotel, and more photos, can be seen on their website: https://www.hopecove.com. Check also the website for the hotel’s policy on bookings and cancellations: https://www.hopecove.com/public/miscellaneous/terms-and-conditions

What’s the cost of the hotel accommodation?

At the Cottage Hotel, the price would usually be as per the ‘3-6 nights’ in the Winter Tariff 2023/2024. However,we have negotiated a special Dinner, Bed and Breakfast rate for our writers – at the ‘7 nights’ rate;  just quote ‘RAINBOW WRITERS RETREAT’ for a discounted price. The 2024/25 tariff won’t be announced until September 2024, but it shouldn’t be much dearer than that shown in the Winter Tariff for 2023/24.

I’ve already booked my accommodation. I will be staying in room 132, one of the ground floor sea-view rooms and would recommend you also choose a sea view room.

  • If you are on your own, there’s no supplement on the smaller back rooms, but there is a small supplement on the sea view rooms.
  • If you are travelling from afar, you could book to stay on the Wednesday/Sunday nights too.
How should you book your accommodation?

Contact the Cottage Hotel, direct, by telephone on 01548 561555. When booking your room, quote ‘RAINBOW WRITING RETREAT WEEKEND’.

Refreshments – health warning!

Hope Cove dining room

The Cottage Hotel is renowned for its amazing views – but also for their meals.

For residents of the hotel, breakfast is ‘full English’ and dinner is 5-course, plus coffee.

Previous attendees know how easy it is to over-indulge, so, for everyone on the course (residents and non-residents), lunch is an optional extra. You will have a long ‘lunch break’ from 12.30pm until 2.30pm. So, there is plenty of time to explore local options – or eat in the hotel bar/restaurant.

Dress code

The evening dinner dress code is smart casual. Otherwise, be comfortable.

By Sunday, depending on how much you were tempted by the Cottage’s famous desserts made by the hotel’s pastry chef, you might be grateful for loose-fitting clothes …

If you plan to explore the cliff paths (stunning views and a good work-out), bring walking boots and suitable outdoor clothing. We might be lucky with the weather; we might not!

How to book your place on the Hope Cove Writers’ Retreat

Places are limited to 12 writers plus any non-writers accompanying them. To book your place, email me at anne.rainbow@btinternet.com

When do you need to pay?

A deposit of £125 will reserve your place. (£75 deposit for non-writers) Full payment is required by 30 September 2024.

I will send details of how to pay when I confirm your booking.

What if you need to cancel?

If a replacement can be found for your place, a full refund of monies paid is available, and would be paid after the weekend retreat.

Any other questions?

Email me at anne.rainbow@btinternet.com