Curiouser & Curiouser: Mindfulness for the Creative Writer

We’re so happy to announce a new mini-retreat, Curiouser & Curiouser: Mindfulness for the Creative Writer, which will take place on February 9-10, 2019! For the first time, we’ll be teaming up with Melissa Jean, a specialist in Mindfulness and Creative Writing. We are so excited to welcome her to Rockvale Writers’ Colony as she facilitates this special mini-retreat and leads you in a series of engaging, meditative workshops geared towards enhancing your experience with creative writing.

Jon Kabat-Zinn defines mindfulness as “the awareness that emerges through paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally, to the unfolding of experience moment to moment.” The relationship between mindfulness and writing is bi-directional; writing exercises can cultivate mindfulness and presence, and mindfulness techniques can be used to support a writing practice by developing helpful mental habits, overcoming writers’ block, encouraging creativity, and facilitating fruitful self-discovery. 

In these workshops, we will take a deep dive into our own inner worlds to discover how courageously befriending ourselves and cultivating a more habitual state of curiosity, openness, gentleness, and awareness can transform our relationship to the writing process and to our own creativity.

Melissa Jean is an Assistant Professor in the Mindfulness Studies masters’ program at Lesley University, where she also works as an Interdisciplinary Studies facilitator for Creative Writing MFA students. She teaches courses in academic writing, creative writing, research methods, and mindfulness and the environment. She received an MFA in Fiction Writing from Lesley, and a PhD in Human Dimensions of Ecosystem Science and Management from Utah State University. Her writing has appeared in The Colorado Review and a variety of online journals, including most recently Junoesq, The Hopper, Waxing and Waning, and Causeway Lit.

Please see below for the tentative schedule:

Saturday, February 9

11 AM – 12 PM: Arrival, Get Settled

12:00 PM: Lunch; Introduction

1:30 PM: Workshop (2 hours)

3:30 PM: Free Writing Time

5:30 PM: Optional Outdoor Walking Meditation

6 – 7 PM: Dinner

7:15 PM: Workshop (1 hour)

8:15 PM: Opportunity to Share Your Writing

Sunday, February 10

7:30 AM: Guided Meditation

8:00 AM: Breakfast

9:15 AM: Workshop (1.5 hours)

11 AM – 12 PM: Check Out

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Cost: $150/person includes private bed/bathroom, meals, workshops and plenty of free work time (tax included)

Payment: Paypal or Personal Check

No Application Required! Registration is on a First-Come, First Served basis. Please email Sandy at sandy.rockvale@gmail.com. with any questions or to register. We ask that you only email if you are definite about attending and know that your schedule will permit you to do so. Spaces are very limited for this mini-retreat and we will not be able to hold spots for those who are undecided.