The Inspiration behind The Litterateurs Rainforest Retreat from Tony Castles PhD Candidate
"Academic writing does not always come easily for many of us. Like all of us who are writing, I want to be succinct and productive. Mostly I want my writings to be engaging and informative. I am told that restorative sleep, exercise, a good diet, and a balanced mind-set improves cognitive function. It is also said that challenging the mind is a healthy Segway into a sharp intellectual capacity. There is no doubt that tackling a PhD or writing a novel challenge the mind in a variety of ways.
Yoga, meditation, and mountain walks help me to think over things or to simply give my brain a well-deserved rest. I consciously make the effort to sleep and eat well to get my mind in a focused state to create a flow of words. Brain stimulating music or writing with others, all clicking away on our keyboards along with the sounds of minds ticking over offers an added inspiration. However, in day-to-day activity, other priorities of life get in the way, and it can become difficult to find sustained time to indulge in writing. Many academic authors have recognised academic writing retreats as a strategic way in which to develop a writing practice, increase publications and enhance academic development.
I attended an Academic Writers Retreat in Bali, in November 2019. It was a one-week residential in the secluded mountains. The purpose of the retreat was to allow for time away to focus and make advances in one’s research and scholarly writing in a supportive and social environment. It was held in a traditional Bali house style retreat centre amongst the hills and rice paddies. It offered a selection of inspiring and aesthetic spaces in which to write and provided daily yoga, massages, guided walks in the rice paddies and to local swimming holes. Delicious food was prepared and served, much of it fresh from the garden. Personally, I found the retreat inspiring and productive, and I met some remarkably interesting people from around the world. I wanted to go again, and I had found a perfect retreat in Tuscany. However, Covid 19 hit. I searched for an alternative writers retreat in Australia but could only find retreats that were instructional. I just wanted an inspirational and peaceful space, away from distraction, amongst like-minded peers. So, I developed a writers retreat with my friend Tess Golding Clarke who is a creative writer and copywriter. We wanted to create something special that offered a beautiful space to immerse ourselves in whilst working on our writing projects. We discussed the idea of bringing both academic and story writers together to share what might or might not prove to be unique perspectives of the written word and to encourage an inspirational and thought -provoking environment. It is a great pleasure for Tess and me to present the serenity of the beautiful coastal rain forest, the coming together of like-minded peers, delightful discussions over sumptuous vegetarian meals, yoga classes, meditation and bush and beach walks. We invite you to join us and immerse yourself in nature whilst you write." For further information see https://fb.me/e/2jjpQDl7r