Word Witching

a writing & storytelling retreat

for radical artists & creatives

August 31st - September 2nd

...in the woods of Midcoast Maine

 In

“A day will come when the story inside you will want to breathe on it’s own. That’s when you’ll start writing.” —Sarah Noffke

To create in the artistic medium we're most passionate about is to tell a story; to liberate that story from our flesh and allow it to breathe on it's own two feet, to become a living work of it's own is transmutation; it's turning our stories into healing medicine for the world to experience; and to tell that story with our art and then share it with other people is a gift.

Given that, I believe sharing our stories through the creative process, together in the flesh with other humans, is a deeply healing experience to offer oneself.

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WHAT THIS IS

I'm passionate about my craft as a writer, working with women around their art, and bringing women together in the name of creating; and this weekend-long retreat is a celebration of all of that.

This retreat is for women only, who are or aim to be radical creatives and humans; who want to give breath and life to the stories living inside of them through their art, to bring meaning and medicine to the world through their craft, and seek to share in that process with others.

Maybe you're one of those people who thinks they're "just not creative" or your well acquainted with your craft — regardless, this retreat is a means to connect with other humans seeking or celebrating art and creativity, to have accountability around your process to either deepen with or discover your craft.

This experience is a way to start a relationship with your creativity, or find new avenues to develop how you create your art in the world, the impact it has, and how to both feel more nourished by your creative process and distribute it into the world in a way that can be nourishing for others. It's a means for investing in yourself, in your dedication and commitment to your craft or your ache for more community and creativity in your life.

Whether it's rich poetry or prose, crafting a piece of music that makes your soul beat double time, making medicines with plants harvested by hand, choreographing a dance performance that's rich with soul, leaving it all on the canvas, weaving a buckskin pouch, singing until your voice is horse, photographs that capture the very essence of it's subject — art and it's artists come in many forms; it's all beautiful, it's all meaningful, and it's all powerful and it's what this retreat is here for.

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WHAT WE'LL DO

We'll spend our time in workshops leaning into our creativity; engage in deep writing and storytelling exercises with one another; unravel some of the big stories of our lives in ritual format that's not culturally appropriative; delve into some of the business side of what it mans to be a creative and artist in this crazy modern culture within which we reside; have professional photoshoots done individually that expose the natural, raw and united beauty of who we are; experience personal mentorship around our relationship to our artistic medium of choice, our relationship to storytelling and how we negotiate within our creative process; open up to the truth of our voices that want to sound off; and so much more.

This will be a space to both connect to and celebrate your creativity; to push our comfort zones of what it means to be witnessed in and share our creative process; to vulnerably tell our stories to people that might be strangers but will leave feeling like family.

We'll even learn about plants that can stimulate and support our creative process, help us to integrate the deep, soulful work we'll be doing over the weekend and plants that can have our back when the going gets tough with creating or sharing our stories with the world.

 

 

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WHERE WE'LL BE

The property we'll be on in rural Midcoast Maine is abundant and welcoming during the time of year we'll be gathering, with hot days generally in the 70's and cool nights generally in the 50's, so the weather is anticipated to be both nourishing and rejuvenating — inviting us to dip in the spring-fed pond on the land and soak up the sunshine.

While this is a camping only retreat, we're excited to offer you an opportunity to truly be close to the land for a few days. With an outdoor shower running on the property's well water and composting toilet, not only will be be spending our time together close to the land, we'll also be leaving a minimal impact on the land through the use of renewable resources.

Something else that I strongly believe in is care-taking our planet as best we can, so when gathering in large groups with people, I think it's our eco-logical duty to leave as little of a footprint as possible.

I encourage you to keep this in mind, because where there is minimal impact left on the plant, we will make up for impact in the experience together for the weekend itself!


Location

Midcoast Maine

(Exact address will be e-mailed to you prior to retreat)

Lodging / Accommodations

Three Lily Farm

Located in rural Midcoast Maine, Three Lily Farm is an off-grid, solar powered culinary education and retreat center on 26 acres of land that's lovingly tended and stewarded by Camille and Frank Giglio, as well as their two beautiful boys, Wilder and Sunny.

The goal at Three Lily Farm is to tread lightly on this earth and be stewards of the land by producing the highest quality foods without the detrimental effects of modern-day agriculture practices.

Three Lily Farm is here to provide a place where nature, traditional food preparation and primitive skills can be learned and experienced for the betterment of society.

The 26 acres include a stunning spring-fed pond, that makes for luxurious late summer dips; beautiful forest surrounding the house and immediate property; a wonderful organic garden; abundant wild edibles and medicinal plants; chickens, honey bees, and playful pups.

Accommodations for this retreat are camping only, so you're responsible for bringing your own gear necessary for your comfortable stay on the land.

We encourage you to embrace the rural beauty of this exquisite land, by camping with us under the stars, falling asleep to the sound of barred owls and peepers calling, and waking up to the cacophony of animals that call in the morning. Beautiful spots for tenting are already cleared and ready for your dope camping setup.

Three Lily Farm is equipped with private outdoor shower facilities and composting toilets for your use throughout the weekend.

If you are unable to bring a tent, we will have a few available to rent for $50 for the weekend. If this is something you are interested in, please send us an e-mail at info@alexandraschueler.com to reserve one.

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Traveling

The following airports are the closest options to choose from, that you can fly into. In the private Facebook group for the women attending the retreat, there will be a file where women collaborate on travel for carpooling and getting to the retreat location together:

 1.5 hours from Portland, ME International Airport

3.5 hours from Boston, MA International Airport

.45 minutes from Bangor, ME International Airport

(Note: This are relatively rough estimates in time and distance based on Google Maps. Traffic and unknown conditions may have these times vary.)


Food

We're incredibly fortunate to have Chef Frank Giglio providing us with the most incredible food to nourish us throughout the weekend. While Frank's culinary offerings are based in classic technique and traditional foods preparation, he has also been immersed in using food as medicine. Wearing his chef’s hat, he focuses on sustainable cuisine, seeking the highest quality foods grown locally and harvested in season, supporting the crucial farm to table method of preparing food. He remains deeply connected to the earth in his daily life, merging herbalism and living food nutrition with wild food foraging. Frank creates innovative dishes that are wholesome, full of vitality and have a very small ecological footprint.

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Our meals will include:

Friday Snacks / Dinner

Saturday Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner

Sunday Breakfast / Lunch

There will be hot coffee and herbal sun tea available in the mornings and into the afternoon.

If you have any firm dietary restrictions, please be sure to let us know in advance so that we can do our best to accommodate your needs. However, we can't guarantee we will be able to accommodate every need. Make sure to bring any extra food items you might need through the weekend to support you having an enjoyable dining experience while we are together!

Frank Giglio is a classically trained chef who runs Three Lily Provisions, a Maine based company focusing on culinary education and artisanal products harvested from the Maine landscape. With a strong emphasis on seasonal eating, Frank merges wild harvested and locally farmed ingredients to create a rich and dynamic cuisine. An avid food preserver, the chef works diligently throughout the growing season to stock up his root cellar with countless jars of mead, fermented vegetables, miso, and many other nutrient dense condiments. Frank, his wife Camille, and two boys, live off-grid in the midcoast area and enjoy spending as much time outdoors as possible.

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Temporary Schedule

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Friday

1-4PM: Arrival & Getting Settled

4-6PM: Opening Circle

6-7PM: Dinner time

7-10PM: Fire & Storytelling Circle

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Saturday

8-10AM: Casual breakfast + Hangtime

10AM: Guided movement

11:30AM-1PM: Coaxing the Muse Creativity Workshop

1-2PM: Free time, walk the land, swim in the pond

1-2PM: Lunch & Hangtime

2-4PM: Radical Truthtelling Workshop

4-6PM: Personal writing mentoring with Alexandra Schueler

6-7PM: Dinner time

7-10PM: Fire Hangtime & Poetry/Writing/Song Sharing Circle

Sunday

8-10AM: Casual breakfast + Hangtime

10AM: Guided movement

11AM-12PM: Personal writing mentoring with Alexandra Schueler

1-2PM: Using plants as allies for the creative process with Camille Rose Giglio

2-3PM: Closing circle


Retreat Investment:

$500

2 Breakfasts

2 Lunches

2 Dinners

Personal Photoshoot Session

Workshops & Craft Activities

Personal Workbook / Journal

Gifts & Surprises


Investment in Full:

Registration open until retreat fills (25 maximum spaces)

Installment plan is available until July 14th


Cancellation Policy

Before June 31st: Should the need to cancel arise, we will refund you the amount paid — minus a $150 administration fee.

From June 31st to July 31st: We cannot offer a refund, though if the retreat is sold out, we will attempt to invite someone from our waitlist. If we’re able to register someone to take your place, we will refund you the amount paid minus the $150 administration fee.

From July 31st forward: Absolutely no refunds or transfers available under any circumstances.


Your Retreat Staff

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I'm Ali, and I'll be facilitating our experience throughout the weekend together as your guide and support system in all things creativity and connection.

I've been hosting retreats for women for the past 4 years, with several years of leadership training preceding that, which has offered me a rich background experience for gathering groups to do soulful work together in person.

Since I was a kid, writing has been my passion and I've worked hard over the last 8 years to get to a place where it can also be my career and profession, too.

I'm so excited to create a place where we can delve into what it means to be a modern creative and artist - whether it's just a passion for you, you want to discover more of this part of yourself, or even make it a profession - I have a lot to share in the way of doing all of that, and I look forward to offering workshops and guidance that can support you in deepening your relationship to your art and your creative process.