Perhaps Irish philosopher John O’Donohue best sums up the single-word theme of our next ’Wild Atlantic Writing Awards’ (WAWA): Beauty.
In his elegant book, ‘Divine Beauty: The Invisible Embrace,’ O’Donohue writes ‘The human soul is hungry for beauty: we seek it everywhere - in landscape, music, art, clothes, furniture, gardening, companionship, love, religion and in ourselves. No-one would desire not to be beautiful. When we experience the Beautiful, there is a sense of homecoming. Some of our most wonderful memories are of beautiful places where we felt immediately at home. We feel most alive in the presence of the Beautiful for it meets the needs of our soul.’
In its essence, Beauty holds so many different meanings for so many different people.
To some, it might be a landscape, a city, a hometown, a loved one, partner, child, grandparent or sibling, still alive or sadly passed on. To others, it’s a cherished memory, a favorite song or poem, even an adorable pet.
Here’s your chance, either in our creative nonfiction category or flash fiction category, to write about your unique view of Beauty.
The winner for each category will receive 500 euro in cash or a voucher worth 1,000 euro redeemable towards any of our retreats of your choice this year or next.
Remember, maximum 500 words, multiple entries accepted and a deadline of Friday, September 9th, 2022.
See full details here: WAWA BEAUTY
Paris, City of Light
Speaking of beauty.
There’s probably no more beautiful city, especially in the golden season of Autumn, than Paris, the City of Light.
We’d like to remind you that ‘Ireland Writing Retreat’ will host an exciting week of writing workshops and guided excursions in this wonderful cosmopolitan mecca during October 17th to 23rd.
Interestingly, many of our workshops will take place in the very brasseries, bistros and restaurants where legendary literati such as Simone de Beauvoir, James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway, Sylvia Beach, owner of Shakespeare and Company bookstore, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Oscar Wilde, Henry Miller, Gertrude Stein and Samuel Beckett - not to mention the French classicists Moliere, Camus, Voltaire, Balzac, Victor Hugo, Zola and Proust - met, chatted and probably sang boisterously after consuming generous quantities of pastis and absinthe. Perhaps even gossiped about each other (after all, there is a condition known as literary envy - even among our finest littérateurs :)).
Whether you love fiction or creative nonfiction, our retreat will please you no end. We’ve conducted extensive research. We know where these writers spent their evenings (and a great part of their days too). We even know where they lived.
So, join us, for a fascinating series of soirées around favorite haunts along the Seine, the lively Latin Quarter and the bohemian Saint-Germain-des-Prés. We’ll even host a special workshop in an apartment in one of the most literary boulevards in Paris right beside Notre Dame itself.
‘Ireland Writing Retreat’ prides itself on innovation. We’re not known for lectures on the theory of writing, you can get those free on the internet. We prefer to tackle key elements of story-telling, whether that be creating authentic dialogue or credible characters, through hands-on critiques of your own writing, sent to us in advance, as well as assignments you complete during our retreat week.
And, of course, aside from our retreat activities, there are also wonderful new exhibitions to enjoy at the city’s many art galleries and museums, including the Louvre and Musee d’Orsay.
And, remember, tempus fugit. Sign up now, only ten people can be accepted on any of our retreats.
Everyone who has been to one of our previous retreats benefits from a generous discount on our upcoming Paris retreat in October.