This is a writing event with a difference. In addition to writing, you learn the real-world skills getting your work published and sold. Come prepared with an open mind and lots of writing material. We learn by doing. Nothing awakens the writer inside as much as writing.
Day 0 (15th Aug)
Arrive. Walk. Chat. Mingle. Soak in the fire.
Those who reach in the morning can enjoy a walk through the forest, and spend time with other attendees. We get to know each other that evening. We may also talk about the very basis of writing: Why do we write? What motivates us? Who do we write for? A fireside can be great for such a conversation!
Aspects of a good book, Plot, Character, Description & Setting
We dig into the aspects of a good book, and spend time on Plot and Character in depth.
In Plot, we go over various frameworks of plot, and how they apply to some contemporary writings, such as Harry Potter. How a good plot leads to a strong narrative. In Character, we explore what characters are, their different types, how they are built, and so on.
We understand exactly what Description & setting is, and do visioning and focusing activities to make our descriptions and settings more vivid.
Point of View, Clean language, Editing, Writers block, The project of writing.
Point of view is a big decision - will you write in first-person? third ? Multiple perspectives? This dictates how a story is understood. We will do writing exercises in pairs, to help the writer get into someone else’s shoes and write.
We will then discover some of the bad writing habits we pick up young, and the ways to unlearn them. We learn to omit needless words and write clean.
Editing cannot be over-emphasized. Good writers do it over and over again. We understand why, and explore some tools which can help.
We do some activities and discuss strategies based on research on creativity from the field of psychology. From figuring out how to “think outside the box” to ways of dealing with the famous writer’s block, we put science to good use. We build on the authors’ toolkit.
Next, we dig into the project of writing: how to plan and execute it. We understand the book completion plan and discuss ways to eliminate distractions, create focus and so on. We look at some tools which can help.
We review the book writing plans of those keen on sharing. We tweak the plans where required and understand the committed milestones and dates.
Publishing options, Marketing your book.
This is the day when the Experts from Half Baked Beans step in.
In the First Half Stuti Changle discusses the importance of book marketing and use of social media. She covers important aspects of book marketing, citing examples. She also shares case studies of how social media can be used for book marketing. She walks us through the steps to do it the right way, and also how the right fit of content and contests can help.
In the second half Chetan Soni talks about Publishing process and options. He will walk us through the general process of publishing a book and the options now on offer, ranging from traditional publishing to self to e-publishing. He will walk us through how to write a good proposal , a detailed synopsis and a blurb for a book.
For detailed profiles of the mentors, click here.
Day 4, (19th Aug)
Any open items not discussed can be covered here. We close the retreat with all participants sharing feedback.
We end by 10.30 AM so that people needing to board the Shatabdi can make it well on time.
When: 15-19 Aug, 2018
Where: The Quiet Place, Satkhol Village. Uttarakhand - 263138 (India). Details here.
How much : INR 24,900 ( 3 days of learning, twin-sharing stay, food, taxes). Inspiration is free.
Only ten participants accepted on a first-come first-serve basis. Click the "Book Now" button and secure your spot.
About the Instructors
Chetan Mahajan is the founder and co-host of the Himalayan Writing Retreat. A Penguin-published author, he quit the corporate world and moved to a village in the Himalayas to be a full-time author and blogger over three years ago. The Himalayan Writing Retreat is all about helping people with their writing. Chetan blogs about living in the mountains here. His blog won the Indiblogger award for humour. He is also a writing coach with the london based the writing coach.
Dr. Vandita Dubey, is a US licensed Clinical Psychologist, and the author of the book “ Parenting in the age of Sexposure”. She co-hosts the Himalayan Writing Retreat. She also hosts the "Writing For Self-growth" Workshop, You can learn more about her and read her blog here.
After completing his education Chetan Soni started a book publishing platform, Half Baked Beans in 2014. They have published 90+ books till now and have ventured into Book Marketing also. Recently HBB was selected in the list of Top 10 Internet Publishing startups of 2018 by Silicon India magazine.
Chetan likes to travel and write in his free time. He curates road trips through his other venture.
In 2016, at twenty-three, Stuti Changle quit her first and only corporate job with the dream of becoming a storyteller. She packed a rucksack and left Mumbai, where she worked as an Area Sales Manager, in search of her true self.
An year after her dream expedition, across India and Europe, she is back to reality with her novel, on the open road. Stuti is am currently based out of Gurgaon, where she writes at Starbucks and leaves for the Himalayas when she struggle with writer's block. She has sailed to the Andamans, camped with the Indian Jawans in Arunachal Pradesh, scuba dived in the Indian Ocean, swum with the dolphins in the Mediterranean, danced to Bollywood songs on the streets of Prague, floated free for hours on the beach in the Island of Mallorca.
A post-graduate in management from the prestigious B-school IMI, New Delhi and a graduate in Computer Science and Technology, Stuti has worked with HSBC and Coffee Day Beverages. She is now a Marketing and social media expert with Half Baked Beans.
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