Ragdale and StoryStudio Chicago are pleased to announce an exceptional writing retreat in February with best-selling author Audrey Niffenegger at the Ragdale Foundation in Lake Forest, Illinois, a spectacular setting that offers the best of nature and architecture.
For over 100 years, Ragdale has provided the time and space for artists and writers to delve deeply into creative endeavors, and today it has a tangible energy that feeds your work from the moment you arrive.
Past, Present, Future: A Brief Consideration of Time and Memory
Stories are made by playing with time and by creating artificial new memories that can be as meaningful as anyone’s reality. This workshop retreat is open to fiction and non-fiction writers who are interested in experimenting with methods of shaping memory and shifting time. We will discuss structure, tense, unreliability, physics, the science of memory, and various narrative techniques and party tricks that offer surprising, subtle possibilities for writers.
Please prepare for the retreat by bringing a draft of a short story, essay, or book chapter whose structure, time management or use of memory you would be happy to rework. 3000 word maximum, please. These will be sent ahead of the workshop to all participants; please read these before the workshop meets. Instructions and other readings will also be sent beforehand.
Students are welcome to bring laptops and notebooks to the workshop. There will be in-class writing exercises and reading aloud. This is a workshop for intermediate and advanced students. If you aren’t sure if this workshop will suit you, please get in touch and we’ll help you figure that out.
In addition to scheduled programming, we’ll take advantage of the winding paths, secluded benches, and fifty acres of pristine prairie. The history of Ragdale, the unique setting, and the spirit of so many writers who have written in these spaces before are sure to inspire us all. This retreat will offer everyone the opportunity to stop and look and wonder, and sometimes learn. All attendees will be fed by Chef Linda.
How to Register
You can choose to stay overnight on the Ragdale grounds, or just come for the programming and meals. Rooms are assigned randomly. A small number of Ragdale rooms are en suite (you can reserve for an additional $100 fee), and some rooms share a bathroom with just one or two other writers. They are broken down in to different price ranges. We can guarantee that all rooms have that special Ragdale spirit!
- I want to stay overnight in an en suite room with a private bathroom ($785) SOLD OUT
- I want to stay overnight on the Ragdale campus in the “Barnhouse,” sharing a bathroom is fine with me ($685) SOLD OUT
- I want to stay overnight on the Ragdale campus in the “Friends Studio,” sharing a bathroom is fine, and I don’t mind climbing some stairs ($650) SOLD OUT
- I’ll come in each day for programming and meals ($510) SOLD OUT
PUT YOUR NAME ON OUR WAITLIST IN CASE ANY AVAILABILITY OPENS UP.