September Retreat in Kawartha Lakes Combines Memoir & Collage

Turquoise Waters Memoir & Collage Retreat

When: Friday, September 6 (noon) to Sunday, September 8 (3 p.m.)

Where: Sandy Lake; near Buckhorn, under 2 hours drive from Toronto




ALLYSON LATTA, writer and literary editor

HEATHER GENTLEMAN, artist, Hag Atelier in Toronto’s Distillery Historic District

Special guest:

DIANE SCHOEMPERLEN, author and collage artist, Kingston (author page; collages)

Artist Heather Gentleman and I will collaborate with retreat facilitator Janet Markham to present a unique weekend of creativity: writing and art workshops — suitable for beginners —  inspired by my Seven Treasures memoir series.

You’ll be charmed by the venue, a bright, well-appointed 10-bedroom lakefront property with separate art studio.

Your weekend will feature workshops to spark your imagination; lively discussion with a small group of fellow participants, instructors, and our guest speaker; and quiet time for writing or contemplation in one of many cozy spots, whether you prefer an overstuffed chair by a window or a bench-swing by the shore.

Fee includes:

    • private room with queen bed (shared baths)
    • 7 delicious meals, plus snacks and non-alcoholic beverages
    • 3 writing workshops with handouts
    • 3 collage workshops in the newly renovated studio with lake view
    • evening reading salons (you can read, or simply listen) and discussions
    • talk by guest speaker Diane Schoemperlen; more about her collages here
    • basic tutorial on how to self-publish a book, for yourself or others, based on what you create over the weekend
    • free Wi-Fi
Collage by Diane Schoemperlen: "July" from her perpetual calendar.

Collage by Diane Schoemperlen: “July” from her perpetual calendar.

Nurture your imagination in tranquil natural surroundings and enjoy views of one of Ontario’s few turquoise lakes from cottage, deck, dock, hammock, kayak, or pedal-boat. (There will also be swimming or hot-tubbing, weather permitting.)

Fee (including art supplies):

$599 per person (single)

$499 per person (shared). Note: One bedroom offers twin beds.


Registration: Contact to inquire or apply.

Please note:

  • Retreat is limited to 8 participants.
  • Two rooms are on the third floor and may not be suitable for guests with mobility limitations.
  • Alcoholic beverages are not included in the fee. Beverages such as milk, juice, coffee, and tea will be available.
  • Art supplies will be provided. We’ll also send registrants a list of suggested items to bring from home to incorporate into their collages.


IMG_3328Last summer’s 5-day Turquoise Waters writing retreat — with guest author Michelle Berry — was great creative fun. This summer’s retreat will take place the last week of July and is full. (Watch for my interview with guest author Alexandra Leggat on this website soon.)

The Memoir & Collage Retreat is our newest offering. Join us!


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