I spent a week in Tuscany at a writer’s retreat with a lovely view from my bedroom window. I arrived after a whirlwind of travel and sightseeing: hiking the Camino de Santiago trail in Spain, visiting quaint Dutch towns in the Netherlands, and exploring Renaissance art in Florence. I was scattered in thought and feeling stuck in my writing.

But a week surrounded by fellow writers was relaxing and rejuvenating. I was in awe by their adventuresome spirit, fascinated by their stories and enthralled by their writing. 

3 women writers laughing at dinner table at A Writer Within's retreat in Italy

There was free time to reflect and write or stroll the grounds of the beautiful Villa Castellare. There were excursions to medieval walled towns in the Tuscany countryside and delicious meals cooked by Nadia.

Group of women writers with colorful umbrellas in front of stone wall

Most of all, there was a heartfelt bond among a community of writers and I was enriched by every encounter. I came home with a renewed sense of purpose – I will stop procrastinating and make myself sit in that chair and write.

P.S. Kathryn Kay  holds retreats in Tuscany in May and October.


Cynthia Lim

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I’m Kathryn Kay, the founder of A Writer Within. I offer support and inspiration to women writers through one-on-one coaching, editing services, and week-long retreats in Tuscany. My focus is on getting writers into the creative flow, beyond their internal critic, and their very best stories onto the page. If you have a writer within, let's set her free!