Maine Coast Writers Retreats

            ...cultivating the heart of expression 

Update: Due to the unknowns of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are postponing retreats until the Spring of 2021. The good news is we offer a variety of online opportunities to write and make art via Zoom. For more information, please click here.


Maine Coast Writers Retreats offer experiences in inspiration, creativity, and craft set against the backdrop of spruce wood magic and the spaciousness of sky, lake, and sea. We gather during the quieter seasons to generate new writing and share our work fresh from the page. Combining the Gateless Writing Method, the Gestalt Cycle of Experience, and Adventures in Word and Image, we hold our process in the appreciative stance, honoring the genius and courage in us all. Craft is taught through the process of naming what shines. We relish in the spontaneity of our time together and offer support in the next phase of our writing practices back home. 

Our schedule is structured with ample time for “writing without the brakes” generative prompts and includes strategies for practicing self-care for creatives, such as, guided and walking meditations, tactile/visual art activities, acclimatization to the natural world, guided solos, Tai Chi/Qigong and/or massage, and community engagement. Time is built into the workshop for personal writing and for availing yourself of our many local treasures alone or with others, but we recommend that participants who come from afar tack on a day or two for extra time spent in further exploration of our treasured landscape.


If you already love Maine to pieces, or you've been curious to see the green woods and glistening waters, grab your spot soon. There's no better place to drum up the muses than in the magical state of Maine.


Woo Your Pages, Valentine's Weekend, February 12-14, 2021

Cozy up (by the woodstove at Bird and Tree Studios in Pemaquid, Maine or on "Zoom") for a special weekend that focuses on generative writing "coupled" with the pleasing practice of revision. We'll experience a warm-hearted approach to illuminating the power in your work, practice the slow dance of grounding your reader, and do the tango of rhythm and pace. We'll immerse in the sensuous work of detail. You'll submit 750-1,500 words ahead of time. Excerpts from your work will be used in class to illuminate useful craft tools. This workshop will include the theory and practice of the Gateless Writing Method, an appreciative approach to creating and editing and to life, and an evening reading of some polished work. Participants will create an artful assemblage that represents the power of self-compassion, your best friend, that will help hold space for you back home.

Salty Girls!, June 10-13th, 2021 (Hold the dates and stay tuned!)


By Land and By Sea, October 7-10, 2021 

Three days and three nights of Gateless Writing Salons in response to Moments of Nature in the beautiful harbor village of Round Pond, Maine. Walk to the water's edge to find inspiration in the stillness of slack tide and the passion of the crashing waves. This workshop will include two special outings (weather permitting) and more than one bountiful feast all supported by the supreme comfort of The Chamberlain House.


Price includes accommodations for three nights and three days ($895 for private room/bath, $745 for private room/shared bath), all meals locally sourced whenever possible, seven salons, and materials. A reading and pop-up shop will be held Saturday night, a chance to share work that you bring. We reserve four spots for commuters at $495. Commuter spots are great for local writers and for travelers who wish to secure lodgings on their own.









Your Facilitator

Jodi Paloni brings passion, unrelenting curiosity, and a variety of interests to the facilitation of her retreats that include writing, great food, art-making, and connection to the natural world. A career educator for over thirty-years, Jodi is also a certified ICF and Gestalt Coach specializing in creativity and life transitions, and a trained instructor in both the Gateless Writing Method and Sequencing: Making is Knowing. She holds an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and an MS in Environmental Studies from Antioch New England Graduate School. 


They Could Live With Themselves is Jodi's collection of linked stories set in the fictional New England town of Stark Run. She's an IPPY Silver Medalist and a three-time finalist for the Maine Literary Awards. She has been a Kenyon Review Summer Writers' Workshop Peter Taylor Fellow and an AWP Writer to Writer Mentor. Jodi has received support from the 2019 Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance fellowship at Monson Arts and the 2018 literary arts residency at the Joseph A. Fiore Art Center based on the submission excerpted from her current work, a novel-in-stories set in mid-coast Maine where she lives and works as a freelance writer, editor, and teacher of writing workshops and retreats. She teaches state-wide for Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance. Manuscript services in project development and editorials and private writing support are available upon request.



"My creativity blossomed under Jodi’s masterful facilitation. Her positive feedback, along with that of the other participants, continues to encourage me to keep writing."

                  ~Jane Honeck, accountant, financial coach, author of The Problem With Money


"Jodi Paloni is a gifted facilitator—generous, humorous, and gentle."  

                  ~ Mary Lou Bagley, artist, actress, author of the novel Otherwise

"I feel so very blessed to have spent the days with such an amazing group of writing women!"

                  ~ Kathy Pell, teacher, service coordinator, author of "Flying South" (Gemini Magazine)





Photos by Kristin Dillon at Blue Horse Photography

and Jodi Paloni

© 2016 Jodi Paloni