Write & Relax



Imagine if you could get away from the pressures of everyday life to write in a place that offered sea air and views, peace and the creative support and advice to achieve what you want to do.

Writers need time and space to write; things that can be impossible to find in everyday life. This creative, nourishing retreat carves out the space to just be and to write.

From the moment you arrive, you’ll be looked after, with great food, quiet, support, gentle strolls to keep you energised and in flow, and optional yoga Nidra to put you to sleep at night.

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We start the day with a good breakfast ready to move into a writing workshop - tailored to the group, and your individual needs which we will establish before we start.

Some people may want to rise at 6am to write before breakfast; others will write until late and then sleep in; resting and recuperating along with their writing.   Everyone will set their own pace and goals on the retreat and we will meet you wherever you are to help you achieve what you want to do.

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The retreat will give you the time, space and energy to write and create in a safe, supported place

The exact programme will be planned when we know who our group is and what their needs are; but each day will run something like this:

  • Breakfast – help yourself at the right time for you.
  • 10am Writing workshops covering: journalling, book writing, getting started on a new project, finishing, editing, the importance of premise why concept sells, creative expression, the publishing world, pitching and how to get a literary agent.
  • Lunch – important in Italy, we will eat well!
  • Free writing, reading or resting time
  • Story tea time (or Aperol in Franco’s bar) - discussion, sharing, questions. One-to-ones
  • Optional: Deep relaxation / yoga Nidra session - to set you up for a creative day or a good sleep after lunch.


The villa’s position and the relaxed environs of Puglia create the perfect environment to rest, heal and nourish your body, mind & spirit with all of life’s most important things. The food is amazing, not to mention the clear turquoise sea directly opposite the villa.

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Introducing your host

Jacq Burns was commissioning editor at Random House & Editorial Director at Harper Collins where she edited classics such as Men are from Mars; Women are from Venus, Who Moved My Cheese,Chicken Soup for the Soul, and Toddler Taming - which have sold millions of copies.

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She is the author of Write a Bestseller, published by Hodder, and a bestselling series of successful books for Random House, under a pseudonym.  Jacq has also ghostwritten a number of well-known titles and she co-founded The London Writers Club. She is a literary agent for non-fiction authors. 

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Here are some answers to commonly asked questions:

How long is the retreat for?

The retreat is for 5 nights and 6 days. You can check in from 2pm and we begin Day 1 at 3pm and go through until Day 6, after we’ve committed to our next steps and future writing plans over a long breakfast, finsihing around 11am.


What can I expect?

Writing workshops, techniques, advice, feedback, time to free write and check back in.

You can also expect to move, breathe and relax so you are able to be creative. There is ample free time in the afternoon for you to write, rest, take walks, read or book a private, optional 1:1 mentoring session. There is a small swimming pool at the villa and we are right on the sea. There is also a long path along the coast and a beautiful grotto nearby.

Are meals included?


We have 3 fabulous Italian meals per day included in our stay and these are a great time for connection and conversation. Coffee, teas and mineral water and fruit are also included.


What room choices do I have?


All rooms are double with ensuite. You do not have to share!  The rooms will be allocated in the order of booking.



I love the sound of this, how can I reserve my spot?

Tentatively planning for our Italy Writers' Retreat in Puglia, September 2022

*All retreats are on hold until we find out about the COVID19 International restrictions and travel policy updates.

If you’d like to be on the waiting list for the next Write a Bestseller Italy Retreat, send a quick email to and register your interest.

Jacq x