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Creative Writing
at Springfield


At Springfield Writing Retreats you will discover how a greater awareness of the ecology of creativity, process and place can give you the best possible opportunity to achieve your writing goals. 

​There is no doubt, you will work hard, you will write, and you will love the process!
​Once you discover the joy of the creative process you will want to write more than ever.

You will have many hours each day to write, and you will be guided, challenged, inspired, encouraged and delighted.
​This workshop is more than a writing class, and its implications will be more than you imagine. 

Join us for this journey into a deeper understanding of the ecology of creativity. ​




The old image of the lonely writer, tucked away in a bare and isolated hovel is about as far away from Springfield as you can imagine. Being a part of a like-minded group of women, in a gorgeous natural setting will empower you to push through to write beyond your limiting beliefs.


Creative ecology applies the ideas of biological ecology to our creative process. In 1866, the biologist Ernst Haeckel derived the term ecology to explain how living organisms relate to each other and to their world. Ecologists look at patterns and habitats in terms of systems and relationships. They see living organisms as systemic wholes, rather than ‘things-as-parts’. 

At Springfield we view our writers holistically too. As living beings you need to be nurtured and nourished on many different levels as you write. As creativity ecologists we consider patterns and habitat to generate a curated, supportive process for you.

Writing has often been described as a long suffering, solo endeavour. We sit at a desk, alone, and we write, alone, some- times for hours each day. Karen Joy Fowler reminded me, in a workshop three years ago, that writing is also is a form of creative expression, and can be a joyful process.

Your creative process is influenced by your wellbeing, your environment and the patterns and relationships in your daily lives. What you do, and don’t do, what you eat, your sleep, your conversations and your moods can all work to either enhance or limit your creativity. This week is a program of curated experiences designed to support and nourish your creative writing process.

We encourage you to give yourself to this process and rediscover the joy in your writing. ​


This is a sample of Springfield's holistic approach to writing, the details may change slightly depending on the format & focus of the different retreats.

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My time at Springfield Farm has been the highlight of my writing life.  The quality of the program, the people helping us, the fabulous food, the accommodation and scenery have made for an outstanding experience.

- Gillian Barnett



Our Heart and Soul ​is Our Team of Facilitators

Magic happens when a group of writers comes together to work, and to create. When your facilitators are powerful, talented, creative, skillful teachers, the powers of place and process are exhilarating. When you are nourished, supported, encouraged and inspired the work produced is awe inspiring! 



Canadian Author 

Sarah Selecky is the author of Radiant Shimmering Light and This Cake Is for the Party.  Sarah created the Sarah Selecky Writing School in 2011, which has since grown into a creative community of over 10,000 writers from around the world.

When she is not writing, Sarah is thinking about how to connect to a creative source. She helps writers bring insight and innovation to their work by writing and speaking about creativity, mindfulness, and literature.

Sarah's writing school transformed it into an internationally celebrated online writing school in 2011. Two years later, she opened The Story Intensive, creative writing, and mentorship program that runs every fall, and includes guest lectures with Margaret Atwood, George Saunders, Ruth Ozeki, and Ann Patchett.  Sarah has studied with exceptional teachers, including Natalie Goldberg, Lynda Barry, Zsuzsi Gartner, and Karen Joy Fowler.  She is an alum of Hedgebrook, The Humber School for Writers and the Banff Centre, and graduated from the University of British Columbia with an MFA in Creative Writing. 

Her first book, This Cake Is for the Party, was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Commonwealth Prize for Best First Book in Canada and the Carribean, and it was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor Prize. The New York Times called the stories “utterly fascinating.” You can find my writing in The Walrus, ELLE Canada, Fashion Magazine, and a variety of newspapers and magazines. Her new novel, Radiant Shimmering Light, is available in Canada, the US, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK, and has been optioned for a television series. Kirkus Reviews called it “A killer satire . . . [and] a funny, tender, gimlet-eyed dive into the cult of self-improvement.”



Australian Author

Charlotte Wood has been described as one of Australia's most original and provocative writers.  

She is the author of six novels and two books of non-fiction. Her latest novel, The Natural Way of Things, won the 2016 Stella Prize, the 2016 Indie Book of the Year and Novel of the Year, was the joint winner of the Prime Minister's Literary Award for Fiction, and has been published throughout Europe, the UK, and North America. 

In 2016 Charlotte was named the Charles Perkins Centre's inaugural Writer in Residence at the University of Sydney, a radical initiative bringing science and art together in a world-class research facility.

Her non-fiction books include The Writer’s Room, a collection of interviews with authors about the creative process, and Love & Hunger, a book about cooking. 

Her sixth novel THE WEEKEND will be published in Australia in October 2019, and in the US and UK in 2020.

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American Author

Karen Joy Fowler is the author of six novels and three short story collections. Her 2004 novel, The Jane Austen Book Club, spent thirteen weeks on the New York Times bestsellers list and was a New York Times Notable Book. Fowler’s previous novel, Sister Noon, was a finalist for the 2001 PEN/Faulkner Award for fiction. 

Her debut novel, Sarah Canary, won the Commonwealth medal for best first novel by a Californian, was listed for the Irish Times International Fiction Prize as well as the Bay Area Book Reviewers Prize, and was a New York Times Notable Book. 

Fowler’s short story collection Black Glass won the World Fantasy Award in 1999, and her collection What I Didn’t See won the World Fantasy Award in 2011. Her most recent novel We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, won the 2014 PEN/Faulkner Award for fiction and was short-listed for the 2014 Man Booker Prize.
​She is the co-founder of the James Tiptree, Jr. Award and the current president of the Clarion Foundation (also known as Clarion San Diego).  She currently lives in Santa Cruz.

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Australian Novelist

Dr Nike Sulway is a writer and academic.


She is the author of several books, including 'The Bone Flute', the 2013 Winner QLD Premier's Literary Awards, 'The True Green of Hope', 'What The Sky Knows' and 'Rupetta', which—in 2014—was the first work by an Australian writer to win the James Tiptree, Jr Award. She teaches creative writing at the University of Southern Queensland.



Australian Playwrite and Novelist

Dr Catherine McKinnon, is an award-winning playwright and novelist. 


She will be joining us fro Day 1 of the retreat. Catherine studied theatre performance and cinema at Flinders University, and worked for the Red Shed Theatre and later the State Theatre Company as a theatre director and writer. Her play Tilt was selected for the 2010 National Playwriting Festival, and As I Lay Dreaming won the 2010 Mitch Matthews Award. Her short stories, reviews and articles have appeared in Transnational Literature, Text Journal, RealTime, Narrative and Griffith Review. McKinnon, along with four other writers, won the Griffith Review Novella 111 Award, 2015, and her novella 'Will Martin' was published by Griffith Review in October of that year. She currently lectures in Performance and Creative Writing at the University of Wollongong. Her novel Storyland was published by HarperCollins in 2017 and is currently shortlisted for the Miles Franklin Award, 2018.


We look forward to hearing from you!

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