Why I'm Hosting a Writing Retreat

My name is Vonna and I'm a literature super fan. I love to read and one day I got the nerve to write. A whole book!

About two years ago I was selected to attend Hedgebrook, an established Writer's Retreat in Whitby Island, WA. I was humbled and thoroughly excited. Then reality set in. I have three kids, a husband and a full-time day job. Could I really go all the way to Washington state for two - four weeks? Furthermore could I survive in a Yurt in the woods with no other Black people? Now, I had no evidence I would be the only Black girl there, but I decided I would be. Then what comes out??? The movie, Get Out (thank you Jordan Peele) and Hedgebrook was a hard NO for this kid.

Fast forward and I've written and published six full length novels -- and I think I may have found my tribe. I'm a member of several online writing groups and often see posts about the lack of inclusion in our craft. The idea of diversity in literature sadly and often times means women, white ones. As I scoured the web for writing retreats, I was bombarded with photographic evidence that these opportunities to escape to write, expand your knowledge of the craft and fellowship with other writers largely did not include Black women.

Like many other times, I decided to do it myself. I am hosting my own 4-Day Writers in Residence Retreat and opening it up to 7 -12 other writers who want to experience escape, expansion and fellowship. I'm blessed to live in a wooded, secluded area with space enough to share and doggone, I'm doing it! Here is what I intend to achieve.

The Short Term Goal

My intentions are to have a 4-day writing retreat to read, write, learn and build relationships with other like minded creatives.

The Long Term Goal

My intention is to hold a retreat twice a year. I want my home to be a safe place to create, laugh and grow in our chosen craft. I intend to be of service. I intend to be "what" I so desperately needed and couldn't find. I intend to make my little, not-so-fancy "farm" a sanctuary for other writers who have yet to find their tribes.