Outer Banks 2020

April 25 – May 2, 2020
(one week beginning Saturday afternoon)

SOLD OUT as of 10/1/19!
If you’d like to be placed on a list for future OBX retreats, read details below and fill in the form at the bottom

This. The Outer Banks of North Carolina. Encompassing barrier islands and sandspits from the Virginia border on down, running almost the full length of the North Carolina coastline.

Our retreat will be in Corolla (pronounced cah-RAW-lah), a resort community at the northern tip of the Outer Banks where the paved road ends, swerving through dunes and turning into a beach highway…literally.*

The “Black Pearl”

We’ll be staying in “Black Pearl,” a three-floor semi-oceanfront house overlooking the seaside dunes on the opposite side of the street. Just walk across the pavement, take a few short steps and there’s a set of stairs to boardwalk-style beach access over the dunes.


The house is very comfortable with:

  • indoor pool
  • outdoor pool
  • outdoor hot tub
  • outdoor poolside cabana
  • indoor sauna
  • pool table
  • media room

plus an elevator to make accessing all three levels easier.
Take a look at it here.

On the top floor, Level 3, you’ll find the kitchen, dining room and main living room where we’ll meet for daily workshops, readings and discussions.

You’ll choose from a variety of bedrooms located on Levels 1 and 2. First come, first served.

The house is a short walk from a grocery store, restaurants, and boutique shopping.  

What’s Included

The following bedrooms are currently available. Each has an en-suite (in-room) private bathroom — no sharing required.

Options are

  • single occupancy
  • double occupancy
  • triple occupancy

depending on the room. It’s a very affordable week with prices from $1050 for a king single occupancy to $600 per person for a double occupancy room.

Your price includes:

  • bedroom with private en suite bathroom
  • bed linens and towels 
  • workshops and instruction — daily hour-long workshops, evening readings/discussion groups
  • two teaching tracks:
    generative which explores various writing forms and offers prompts, enabling you to learn as you generate new ideas and new work
    craft which focuses on writing you’re already working on, giving you the opportunity to refine one longform piece of 2,000-10,000 words through group critique in preparation for submission and publication
  • ongoing consultation — I’ll read your work throughout the week and provide general comments (line-by-line editing is an additional fee)

A supermarket is within walking distance; participants typically purchase breakfast/lunch foods for the week. While you’re on your own for dinner, the group will likely pitch in for family-style meals if you want to join in.

Cost Based on Occupancy

The pricing breakdown is as follows. If you choose double occupancy, you must choose your roommate at time of the final payment. 

See chart below for comparison of rooms and bedroom numbers, and click on this link to photos on the vacation rental site Twiddy.com

KING (SOLD OUT but see note accompanying Reservation Form)
Book as single or double

Book as single only

Book as single or double

For photos, refer to the link below to the house on Twiddy.com. Photos are not guaranteed and room may be slightly different than pictured. Some rooms have direct access to either a large deck or private balcony. Poolside rooms overlook the pool. Oceanside rooms overlook the street but an ocean “view” is not guaranteed.


How to Reserve

To place a hold on your choice of room — with your intended number of occupants– fill out the form that follows the chart below. You’ll be invoiced via PayPal for half the amount  — payment due within one week. First come, first served on room choice. 

Half the payment due upon booking, one-quarter December 15, one quarter February 15 . You will be invoiced for those amounts, or you can send a personal check — your choice.

SOLD OUT – Fill out form below to be put on an email list; if enough participants indicate interest, another week may be added at a later date.

Reservation Form – Waiting List

All reservation slots are filled, but if you’d like to be put on a waiting list, please complete the form below.

*Above Corolla, the areas where the sand meets the sea are known as the 4×4 beaches (four by four beaches) because the only vehicles legally allowed are 4x4s. There are no paved roads, no restaurants, stores, gas stations, nothing. Only houses and roads made of packed sand and dirt (if you’re lucky).

This is where the wild horses roam, hemmed in to the north and south by tall, telephone-pole-like posts strung with metal wire and fencing that run from the dunes into the waves.

During your stay, I’d strongly encourage you to take one of the many Wild Horses tours available, and can recommend one company that’s managed by a fellow writer I got to know on my last visit; for groups of 6 or more, he may be able to cut us a deal.

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